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Biting the hand that (used to) feed you.......An Appeal to my Fellow Framers

Discussion in 'The Grumble' started by Rob Markoff, Jan 18, 2011.

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  1. blackiris

    blackiris SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Ok I might not be the smartest girl on the block.... but that letter
    sure seems like some fancy talk , big words, with a bunch of STALLING krap thrown in..... :shrug:

    Why would the past writers want to contact Decor? Isnt that the magazines job?
    Just saying............... :kaffeetrinker_2:
  2. FramerDave

    FramerDave PFG, Picture Framing God

  3. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    When you have a customer who owes you money for extended periods do you wait for them to cantact you. Just Sayin'.
  4. blackiris

    blackiris SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I guess I was reading it a different way Jeff.... :shrug:
    I'm sure DECOR knows who they owe $$$ too.... :kaffeetrinker_2:
  5. JWB9999999

    JWB9999999 SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Maybe not Nicole. I've had 3 customers come in in the last 2 weeks with outstanding balances from 1 year or 2 years ago. None of them had any clue they owed me money, despite our many attempts during that time to contact them to pick up their work. One assumes "companies" do a better job of tracking purchases and debts than individuals do, but that's often not true.

    If they are wanting to meet their obligations and pay their debts, let's give them a chance to do so now that they have acknowledged them. Wouldn't all of you expect the same consideration?
  6. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    If they owed me money and made the public statement that they were looking to clear old invoices I would have been on the phone 10 seconds after I read the statement. I guess that is just me and why people don't owe me money.
  7. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    Me too!
  8. Artrageous

    Artrageous PFG, Picture Framing God

    I remember a certain Larson Juhl/Documents thread where we were told that answers and changes were forthcoming.

    I'm guessing that Decor magazine hopes this thread goes away the same way that one did.
  9. Pat Murphey

    Pat Murphey SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    For those that don't have a stake in this, why don't you let things play out without all the speculation? :p
  10. Artrageous

    Artrageous PFG, Picture Framing God

    Seems only the squeaky wheel gets the oil.
  11. David N Waldmann

    David N Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Come on, this is The Grumble. It at least seems a worthy cause...
  12. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    It's called support, Pat.

    IF the high paid pilots had done some supporting for the little pilots pay
    and conditions over the years (and especially two years ago),
    maybe civilians today wouldn't be playing Russian roulette on small regional
    carriers that pay the pilots less than a local newbie framer. :kaffeetrinker_2:
  13. Pat Murphey

    Pat Murphey SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Gee, Baer, I didn't know that you were helping "unionize" newby framers as we did with commuter pilots (albeit sometimes unsuccessfully). The vast majority of commuter pilots are qualified and experienced - they do more hands on flying than those flying 16 hour non-stop 777 flights to the Orient. All pilots need initial experience and they get it in the right seat. Do you have some sort of expert, alternative suggestion? The rare bad apple as in the recent accident had known problems aggravated by fatigue, and should have been weeded out - that was one of my jobs as a check airman in the last 12 years of my career.

    My point in this thread was simple - the man made an offer to fix this, and the piling on began immediately. If he doesn't follow through with those affected then piling on would be appropriate, of course. :p
  14. DVieau2

    DVieau2 PFG, Picture Framing God

    I agree with Pat.

    I think this thread is wrong on several different levels.

  15. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    You're entirely right Pat.

    Which would be why this thread was started. Some of the writers have been waiting since June of last year to be made whole.

    at the least, it's a conundrum
  16. Rob Markoff

    Rob Markoff PFG, Picture Framing God

    Thanks, Pat and others for your support.

    Just to be clear, the "man" you may be referencing (Kim) is a woman, though John Taff is indeed, a man. She has personally reached out to Barbara (via telephone and e-mail) and has expressed a desire to pay not only Barbara, but the other writers as well. Let's see if the commitments made come true before any wild speculation continues to occur.

    While I do not understand why some may think this thread is "wrong,'" - please note that my purpose in starting it was to ask for the support of my fellow framers in NOT writing for prestiege until the writers who have written for pay have been paid. How else would I get the word out of the "new" DECOR writer's policy?
  17. Jay H

    Jay H PFG, Picture Framing God

    It seems like only yesterday that Decor was heavily supported as it's rebirth was ushered in with all the pomp of a new bride. A few bucks later....
  18. CAframer

    CAframer SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Yep ... so often the sizzle surpasses the steak! And talking of brides, pretty much the same with women too! So why would a magazine be any different!
  19. pwalters

    pwalters SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    More like a lack of a few bucks I suppose. Oh well, I guess alls well that ends well. Kudos.
  20. nikfrz

    nikfrz SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Good Grief!!

    I think I will just go back and watch the WCAF video. That made me smile :)
  21. Kirstie

    Kirstie PFG, Picture Framing God

    As one of the writers in question, I have been thinking this over for some time, and I feel the need to respond. I understand that the magazine may feel that it has "helped" writers develop over the years, but I beg to differ. The quality of a trade magazine depends upon the excellence of its written content, not that of its advertising content. I am baffled by the assertion that it is a privilege to write for a trade magazine and that such a privilege should be enough to sustain a contributor. Those of us who write for the art and framing trade magazines know how much time, effort, perseverence, and experience a good article takes.

    A good writer needs to formulate an idea. A good writer needs to outline his thoughts, research his topic, write and rewrite, edit, take and add photographs, edit these photos, and finally submit the article. This process can take hours, if not days, of the writer's time. Consider recent articles for Decor by David Lantrip or Baer Charlton. Look at last year's PFM articles by Jim Miller and many others. Note the attention to detail, the expert photography, the carefully edited and throughly considered progression of ideas. Such writing does not happen in odd moments of one's spare time. Writing like this takes concentrated and dedicated amounts of time because such writers respect their audience enough to consistently give their best. In return, we as writers expect those who purchase our work to respect us enough to honor their commitments with regard to previously agreed upon payment for our hard work and the sharing of our expertise. Payment, I should add, that often equates to less than $10.00 per hour for the work expended. You don't get rich writing for trade magazines.

    To expect a magazine to remain afloat with contributions by unpaid writers is unrealistic, and it shows a lack of respect for the tremendous effort it takes to produce articles that sustain a well-respected trade magazine and further the education of our industry as a whole.
  22. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Thanks for the succinct summation of the work and effort to provide quality
    articles based on experience and hands-on knowledge. Among the writers, and
    editorial advisory roster, there is not a single "writer"; we are all framers first,
    who happen to write.

    A few years ago, a certain editor of one of the magazines tried to pass
    themselves off as "knowledgeable" about a certain area of framing. They hired
    a freelance professional writer out of the Los Angeles area who had cobbled
    together articles before (but admits that he had never been in a frame shop, or
    had any framing on his walls). The article was as expected; bland pablum with
    lots of framing faux pas. It was a glaring example why the magazines don't
    have a "letter to the editor" section.

    An interesting side note; my "benefit" of being a "contributing editor" has been
    listed on my resume as I have been making the rounds this year looking for
    gainful employment. One would think that because I have been applying for
    positions that are directly or indirectly connected to writing, that it would be a
    point of "interest" with the interviewers.

    The points that have drawn the most interest of questions and depth of inquiries would be:
    1) The fact that I carry a commercial drivers license
    2) World travel (especially my photo shoots in Rwanda and Tanzania
    3) Teaching/lecturing especially at sea with a follow-up at the museum in Lisboa
    4) Published textbooks
    5) Past writer for motorcycle magazines (lots more glory than pay)
    6) Writing for a dredging magazine (which pays more per article)
    7) Writing for woodworking magazines (pays about twice more)
    8) Teaching hand making of picture frame moulding with hand planes and tools
    and finally, that I was from Bishop, CA (the guy raised mules as a kid.... knew all about Mule Days).

    Not one interviewer has asked anything about my writing for DECOR.... go figure

    One thing I find of interest: the amount of views on this little thread where there are only
    a few of us with a "dog in the fight"...... but I guess there are more than a few "leash holders".

    to all you "leash holders" . . . Thank you so much for your support.
  23. pwalters

    pwalters SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Same reason everyone stops to gawk at the traffic accident I would imagine.

    A dredging magazine? Interesting.

    GUMBY GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Yes it makes sense. I can see Baer has spent sometime time with the dredge of the earth....
  25. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Scratch the old guy and you never know what you might dredge up.....

    10 yard bucket.... will hold four Suburbans fresh out of a crusher, with a VW or two on top.... They were using the 15 yard due to sandy conditions that day.

    I'm ignoring you Gumby...... nah nah nah nah....
  26. Kirstie

    Kirstie PFG, Picture Framing God

    This is a very good point, Baer.
  27. Rick Granick

    Rick Granick SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Baer, that thing reminds me of Ronny Cox's evil law-enforcement machine in Robocop.
    :popc: Rick
  28. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Except the "teeth" on the enforcer "hand" only weighed about a pound.... those three big teeth in the middle are 140lbs each.... of solid molybdenum poly stainless steel - - about $3000 each, and good for about a week of the dredging they were doing there (blasted Basalt). Even the buckets have a life expectancy of a "maintained" year.
  29. Tom Reigle

    Tom Reigle Guest

    My, how time does fly ............

    I saved a few old issues of Decor because they were kind enough to do some writing on my gallery when it was up in IL. I was curious as to how much and when the magazine started its downsizing and how it compared to what it was last year. It was an interesting walk through some of my old memories and I thought I would share some of my findings with you who may be newer to the framing field.

    The size of the Decor magazine, back in mid-1993 was about 300+ pages counting everything but the subscription cards and a few one page inserts. There were 18 articles in the Art and the Framing sections. There were 18 Departments including the Classified section and the Ad Index in the back of the magazine.

    By the Fall of 1996, the size of the magazine had shrunk down to about 190 pages. There were 6 articles each in the Art section and in the Framing section. There were still 15 different Departments which showed an apparent interest in the writings of the Department writers which included Kistler's Journal, Ask the Experts, and Frame of the Month.

    Moving on to the beginning of 1998, the size had dropped to 150 pages. Articles, well, there were 5 in the Art section and 4 in the Framing section. The number of Departments had increased to 16.

    And, by the middle of 2001, the magazine bore little resemblance to The 1993 model!! It had dwindled down to a mere 120 pages. There were a total of just 3 Art articles and only 3 Framing articles to be found!! In the area of the Departments, there were still 15 of those although most of the well written articles had already fallen by the wayside!!

    I might add that during those years, the majority of which were put together by Alice Gibson who was the editor through 1998, the magazine had shrunk to half its 1993 size!! John Taff took over sometime between '98 and 2001 and I had always thought that he was doing a pretty good job of turning the magazine around and realigning its focus back to Art and Framing related content. So, that's how it was back then, you can form your own conclusions about how it compared to what it has been turned into lately.

    Just as an aside, someone mentioned that John Taff had registered just to post that letter from the muckety mucks at Decor but John, if memory serves, was a member of the Grumble when I joined in the Spring of 1991 so he is well versed in the workings of the G as a forum both then and I am sure now.

    I wish him good luck in a monumental task of pulling the magazine out and making it just a fraction of the quality it was back when he was a Vice President of Commerce Publishing and later on as a respected Editor of Decor magazine.

    Go and get 'er done, John!!

    Edit: Well, I suppose John either re-registered in 2000 or I am having a brain fart about him being a member when I joined. But he was here from long ago, however long "ago" is!!
  30. Mike Labbe

    Mike Labbe Member, Former moderator team volunteer

    He did have another account, but we have since merged them together into one. He misplaced the password/login name, and the old one was registered to an email address that is no longer valid. This is why there were two, for just a couple days.
  31. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Interesting side note:

    I just got in the mail two notices that Summit Business Media just filed bankruptcy.

    For those that are scratching your head, or have large eyes and open mouth....
    SBM is the group who USED to own DECOR.

    SBM published "financial" trade journals..... guess we aren't the only industry....

    now back to our regular programing..... and in Madison today.... it's cold.
  32. FramerDave

    FramerDave PFG, Picture Framing God

    I got the same notice today. I freaked out a few minutes before I read it again.
  33. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    figured all of us that had sold an article or two during that time are named....

    took me about five minutes to talk my heart down off the ceiling and . . . well, you know the rest. :kaffeetrinker_2:
  34. Paul Cascio

    Paul Cascio SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Someone please clarify for me:

    Does Summit own Decor Magazine now?

    Is Summit the company that failed to pay the writers?

  35. Rob Markoff

    Rob Markoff PFG, Picture Framing God

  36. FramerDave

    FramerDave PFG, Picture Framing God

    Summit Business Media owned DECOR previously, before Kim Feager (and some inverstors, I believe) bought the company as Next Step Media.

    When Summit owned DECOR I always received payments according to the established terms.
  37. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Which was "Paid at the end of the month of publication (if not before)" Once I was paid before my subscription even arrived.

    I guess, that, is what we get to wax reminiscent about in our dotage as "the good old days."

    It kind of puts those teachers in Madison at $62K a year in perspective.
  38. Framar

    Framar SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

  39. Jay H

    Jay H PFG, Picture Framing God

    So the quality of the content on the Huffington Post is set to decline? I'm not sure that is possible.
  40. diyframer

    diyframer CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    They could always switch to overseas child labor.

    Although you're probably right, it might improve the quality.
  41. framah

    framah PFG, Picture Framing God

    Mar, I don't know if you noticed but that article was dated Sept 26, 2007.
    Just so you know.
    That's a long time ago.
  42. Framar

    Framar SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    They were discussing this on the radio this morning so I just searched for "Huffington Post paying bloggers".

    Apparently something new on the subject has popped up.

    I dunno.

    I do not follow that blog (HP) but I thought it was pertinent to our discussion since media outlets both large and small seem to think writers are valueless.

    As a writer I resent that deeply.

    OK - here is a more current article from Forbes:

  43. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I guess the 'HuffPo' story is pertinent to our discussion, to the extent that one can equate the daily rantings of bloggers to the articles in industry trade magazines, which often involve research, planning, and hands-on work far in excess of the key-pecking part.

    As a writer, I've never expected the media outlets in this discussion (our publishers) to value writers. Readers do that, and publishers respect - nay, worship - their readers' opinions. If a publisher could attract readers without paying writers, then there would be no reason to pay writers.

    This writer knows that readers value paid content, and hopes the publisher in question comes back to that realization before it's too late. A framing trade magazine is, after all, not like a political blog.
  44. Artrageous

    Artrageous PFG, Picture Framing God

    It's been 7 weeks now...has anyone involved received their payment?
  45. johnny

    johnny SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Or a new Decor issue? I think the last one was the October issue, released in December.
  46. FramerDave

    FramerDave PFG, Picture Framing God

    I have not.

  47. Kirstie

    Kirstie PFG, Picture Framing God

    No, David, and no word from Decor.

    I just finished another in-depth story for PFM. This one took several days of concentrated research and writing. It gives me great pleasure to submit an article that I feel will be helpful to the framing community, and I am happy to say that PFM is paying its writers on time.
  48. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    What appears to be a January issue appears on the website... kind of a curious run-up at best.

    Otherwise.... no word

    But it was interesting that we are still all contributing editors. I guess they find it
    an advantage to ride on the notoriety and fame of the writers...

    March 7th.... still waiting at the mail box for a check.
  49. FramerDave

    FramerDave PFG, Picture Framing God

    Really? Link?
  50. Baer Charlton

    Baer Charlton SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

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