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PostPosted: February 9th, 2014, 1:12 pm 
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Joined: October 11th, 2011, 2:29 pm
Posts: 24
(These difficulties have been so ongoing it might require 2 posts to explain it- I hope that's o.k.)
A company asked for blog posts, first by one of their people posting on various forums, and then on their own site. In both instances, writers were basically told material that fit into the site's viewpoints & categories would be accepted, & payment would be rather prompt. The problem, as I see it, is the company has at least 3 people on staff, so communications between a writer & any one person do not necessarily make it to the other staff members.

When I submitted my first post to the individual asking for posts, it took awhile for them to figure out some people had been paid for posts and some of us had not. As writers who had been paid didn't have the decency to say so, some of us made the mistake of thinking the individual was a scammer. Eventually, though, they sorted out the confusions, and payments were made.

Next, as they were getting their forum up&running, they asked for forum posts. I, at least, was told payment would be made as soon as they verified the posts were on the forum. It took approximately a week before the payment was made.

The current issue: I submitted two more posts in Dec. While there was no reference to this on the site, the person told me there was a queue, and they'd be getting around to new submissions in Jan. When I heard nothing after that, I sent a couple of emails, but received no response. Eventually, I posted a question about it on the forum- and after deleting my question, they emailed me saying they 'had no record' of the submissions. I tried to contact the person I'd sent them to, but no response. I don't see any other explanation other than he lost my posts. I'm aware that without a contract, even "nearly sure things" aren't 100% guaranteed, but considering the way they advertise for material and his 'getting to them in Jan.' I take it as me losing out on $40 because this person misplaced my material. But it seems to me they should make some effort to locate my material, as he SAID they'd be getting to it in January.

There is no contact info for the main editor; the person who appears to be in charge said there's no record of my submissions; & the person I sent them to didn't reply to my emails asking about the material. Does anyone here have advice or input?


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PostPosted: February 16th, 2014, 7:33 pm 
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Joined: March 4th, 2004, 9:36 pm
Posts: 778
Location: Murphy, NC Copy Desk
Hi starmom,
I'm not sure how to resolve the situation. But I would suggest if you haven't been using a backup device for your computer(s), that you buy one and become accustomed to copying to it any work-related file whenever you "save" it. Such devices have become quite inexpensive. A USB-compatible "thumb drive" with a 1 GB capacity can be bought for $10 or less.

Hope this helps,
Dave

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PostPosted: February 22nd, 2014, 11:41 pm 
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Joined: October 11th, 2011, 2:29 pm
Posts: 24
Thanks, Dave.
But do you think they owe me for the material, since they lost it?


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PostPosted: February 23rd, 2014, 1:45 pm 
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Joined: March 4th, 2004, 9:36 pm
Posts: 778
Location: Murphy, NC Copy Desk
starmom wrote:
Thanks, Dave.
But do you think they owe me for the material, since they lost it?

Hi starmom,
I seem to recall that your original post in this topic said that you would have resubmitted your material to the client, but a problem with your primary computer had resulted in your having to compose material using a second computer, and you were unable to find your material on either computer. If this content were not in your original post, then my initial reply would have been inexplicably out of context.

Being that I could be mistaken about your original post, I'll elaborate on my suggestion in a way not meant to be specific to your situation. I think it's reasonable for a client to expect a contractor to be able to resend material when necessary. I don't see how a contractor's inability to do this can be construed as the client's fault. The contractor would be advised to store material on his/her computer(s) and backup drive using the same hierarchy of folders (or directories, if one prefers that term).

Here's one way to do this. Let's denote a drive (whether a hard drive or a backup device) by "X:". The first folder under X: might be the contractor's name, such as "PERIWINKLE" (in case other people in the household might also use the device). The next folder down might be "WRITING". The next folder down might be "CLIENTS". The next folder down might be for a specific client, such as "AARDVARK_CO". An assignment from AARDVARK_CO might be placed in a folder called JOB_yymmdd (e.g., JOB_140223 if the job were received on the date that I posted this). If an additional assignment were to arrive from a particular client on the date I posted this, its folder might be called JOB_140223A. The resulting "paths" for these jobs might be X:\PERIWINKLE\WRITING\CLIENTS\AARDVARK_CO\JOB_140223 and X:\PERIWINKLE\WRITING\CLIENTS\AARDVARK_CO\JOB_140223A.

When this scheme is first adopted, the contractor could create the chain of folders X:\PERIWINKLE\WRITING\CLIENTS on each computer and on the backup device. With each new client or job, the contractor could create the appropriate folder(s) on both the primary PC and the backup device (and if extra redundancy is desired, the secondary PC). Any composed material or correspondence could also be saved on at least one PC and on the backup drive. It's also prudent to use a distinct filename for any significant revision to the material and to save that distinct filename to the backup drive, as this creates and preserves a "history."

If the need should arise to retrieve a particular document from one's PC, the above scheme should make it fairly easy to find.

Dave

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