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Why I said ‘no’ to the old ‘get paid by exposure’ trick

September 20, 2016

Matthew Wright

I drew a line in the sand the other day. Or chipped it in granite. Or something.

Writing fuel! Writing fuel!

It was the same line Will Wheaton drew with the HuffPo last year – saying ‘no’ to commercial enterprise offering ‘exposure’ in lieu of actual payment to authors.

I’m approached reasonably often to contribute to publications or give a talk or appear on TV shows or other stuff, as a subject expert on some historical topic or other. Until recently that’s always been on a professional basis. But the last couple of TV approaches carried on the ‘well, it’s exposure’ line.

My reply? If you hired a plumber to fix the toilet and said ‘well, I can’t pay you, but I’ll tell all my friends about you’, they’d laugh.

And expert knowledge is expert knowledge. Go to a medical specialist who has 30 years experience? You’ll pay $300 or more for…

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