By having this debate, for free, on Twitter.com, Branch.com and Tumblr.com, are we devaluing the work of professional writers who might write about it for a publisher that is paying them?
If you wrote a print magazine story for a publisher, then asked that publisher to “unlock it on the web for free,” are you undercutting or devaluing the work of those who write exclusively for the web?
If you only share free content on Twitter and Facebook, versus paywalled content or ebooks, are you undercutting or devaluing the work of publishers who paywall their content?
If you publish free content on the web, are you killing the ancillary revenue that a writer could bring in from future reprint rights for those stories, or the ability to repurpose those stories into a book?
If you pay freelancers, are you killing the opportunity to provide healthcare and stability to a full-time writer instead?
I’m not trying to be flip, but I think we, the Internet, are all somewhat responsible for the sorry state of freelance writing. I hope we can take steps to improve it.