The State Of Freelancing in 2019
The aim of the Frontline Freelance Register (FFR) survey is to canvass the views of freelance journalists whose work exposes them to risk. The survey covers various issues from physical safety concerns to employment conditions, from mental health to digital security needs. FFR will use the survey results to inform its strategy and priorities. This will help FFR to better represent and support freelance journalists who are exposed to risk in their work.
For more information on FFR: https://www.frontlinefreelance.org/
Your Name
This survey includes questions which are sensitive. While we will not share any personal information you submit without seeking your express permission, you may still, if you wish, complete this survey anonymously. You also do not have to answer every question if you are not comfortable doing so.
Your answer
Your email address
Your answer
What gender do you identify with
Your answer
What is your age bracket
1. General Background Questions
How long have you been a freelance journalist for?
Your answer
Do you freelance by choice or by necessity?
What type of risk do you assume in the course of your journalistic work? Check as many as apply.
What country are you based in?
Your answer
Where do you mostly work?
Which of the following journalistic disciplines describe your work? Please choose as many as apply
How many jobs do you do within a 12 month period which are on spec?
How many jobs do you do within a 12 month period which are commissioned?
2. Income and Payment
Do you rely on journalism alone for your income?
If your income is supported by funds outside of freelance journalism, what are they?
Your answer
What are your main income streams from your journalism work? Check as many boxes as apply to you.
If you answered Other to the question above, please specify
Your answer
Do you feel that your current freelance career is sustainable financially?
What tier does your annual income from journalism fall under (after expenses)?
What is the average rate you charge when on assignment (if you have different rates for different roles please specify)?
Your answer
Do any of these payment related concerns apply to you? Please check as many boxes as are applicable to you.
I would ideally like fees and expenses paid within a maximum period of
Payment of expenses in full and before an assignment will positively impact my ability to keep myself and or my team safe while on assignment.
Fees and expenses paid later than 30 days of receipt of freelancer invoice should attract interest or penalty
Do you receive payment (a kill fee) for an assignment that is cancelled before publication
If you have received payment for a cancelled assignment, which of these statements apply to you, choose as many as are applicable
In your experience, list which media outlets have the best practice of paying expenses and fees on time and with a fair rate
Your answer
3. Relationship with Editors/ Executive Producer/Commissioner
During an assignment, are your editors/executive producers/commissioners:
The lack of communication with Editors/Executive Producer/Commissioner impacts my exposure to risks:
Do your Editors/Executive Producer/Commissioners understand the risks you face
Do your Editors/Executive Producer/Commissioners have the capacity to evaluate a risk assessment and discuss a robust communications plan?
Do your Editors/Executive Producer/Commissioners discuss contract and payment conditions that may impact safety provisions?
Do your Editors/Executive Producer/Commissioners have a good understanding of the psychological effects your work may have on your well being, and do they have the capacity to discuss this with you
Do you have an example to share of an interaction with an editor which gives context to any questions from this section? It can either be a positive or negative experience.
Your answer
4. Crediting Your Work
My work is properly credited
Check one or as many as these statements are true: when your work has been submitted for news industry awards
5. Contracts
Do you sign work contracts with your clients?
When you do sign contracts with your clients:
Have you ever been asked to indemnify a client for any legal claims arising out of your work for them
Are you aware of your copyright status when entering into contracts?
If your copyright has been infringed have you been able to successfully claim compensation
If no, was this due to:
Do you make any arrangements to what happens to your archive after death.
6. Insurance
Do you regularly take out insurance before an assignment
If no, what are the main reasons, check as many as may apply:
If other, what was the reason
Your answer
What would an ideal insurance policy cover:
If you answered other, please specify:
Your answer
Do you have an example to share which gives context to any questions from this section? It can either be a positive or negative experience.
Your answer
7. Legal Threats
Have you ever received a legal threat asking you to halt reporting?
On whose behalf was the threat made
Did you stop or alter your reporting on this issue?
If yes, what was the reason:
Your answer
Would you be prepared to discuss this in more detail with partner organisations looking at legal threats to journalists?
Do you have an example to share which gives context to any questions from this section? It can either be a positive or negative experience.
Your answer
8. Physical Safety
Have you completed a hostile environment safety training and first aid course in the last 3 years?
Have you attended a hostile environment safety training and first aid refresher course since completing your main HEFAT training?
What do you feel is the most beneficial aspect of these safety courses?
Your answer
What do you find is the biggest obstacle to attending these courses?
Do you currently own an up-to-date medical kit?
Do you own your own personal protection equipment?
Do you complete Risk Assessment, Communication Plan, Proof of Life, before each assignment?
Do you make repatriation arrangements in case of injury or death, before each assignment?
Do you need training on completing the above documentation?
Do financial considerations impact your ability to keep safe
If you answered yes to the above, would you like to give further details how it has impacted your safety:
Your answer
Does having a press card impact your ability to keep safe?
If you answered yes to the above, would you like to give further details how it has impacted your safety:
Your answer
Have you ever been injured while on assignment during an assignment?
If yes, please can you specify how many times, how severely and how long did it take you to recover and get back to work?
Your answer
9. Digital Security
Have you had any digital security training?
Have you had any digital security threats/issues?
If so, please give information below (for example, email was hacked/ trolling on Twitter).
Your answer
What methods do you use to communicate with your sources? Check as many as apply.
What methods do you use to secure your materials?
What do you consider to be your most important digital security needs?
10. Mental Health
Have you sought counselling in relation to your work since becoming a freelancer
What do you feel are the main barriers to accessing mental health treatment. Check as many as apply:
If you answered Other, please specify
Your answer
Do you feel you have the resources to support a colleague who is showing signs of emotional stress?
11. Sexual Harassment and Misconduct
While on assignment have you experienced any of the following
If you answered yes to the above, was the sexual misconduct perpetrated by:
If you experienced incidences of sexual misconduct, were you able to report it?
If you were not able to report it, was this because:
If you have reported it, was it dealt with to your satisfaction?
If no, what could have been done differently?
Your answer
12. Frontline Freelance Register Priorities
What for you are the most important issues that FFR should be focusing on?
If you have checked Other, please specify:
Your answer
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