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TOPIC: Internships and the Industry

Internships and the Industry 28 Mar 2014 01:49 #4499

  • annalora.s
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This week I came across a very interesting article about internships, specifically in the film industry. The article outlines a correspondence between a professor teaching an arts management class and a representative from a local business looking to get a commercial made for free. A student in the Professor's class had recently done a presentation on the prevalence of free labor masquerading as internships in the art world. After the class the teacher returned to a mass email from a representative of a local business looking for a student to film the commercial for free, labeling it "an internship opportunity". The teacher took this opportunity to attempt to spread awareness of this unfair and overlooked practice.

It was particularly interesting to me because I have experienced these situations first hand in various different art fields between film making, acting, and fine art work. The arts are something that are constantly being neglected and looked down upon in our society. This is a huge problem! The interns as workers problem has been getting more and more attention and even beginning to be regulated by congress. This is a perfect time to look at our artists and begin to value them as the societal treasures that they are. I wanted to spread this article like wildfire because more than anything else it's reading a short correspondence and through these few emails, even people that are completely unfamiliar with any of these problems understand what we are doing to the artists in our country.

creativeinfrastructure.org/2014/03/21/just-say-no/
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Internships and the Industry 29 Mar 2014 22:04 #4511

  • ilan.a
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I'm really happy I came across this forum posting for many reasons. I am involved in a photography internship at a very prestigious company that has iconic photographers as head of the company leading the activity that transpires in the studio. I am not sure how far this will take me and I have to admit when it comes to arts there are no cutting corners because typically the arts demand attention focus and an overdrive of passion to be truly effective and perhaps gain notice. So far I've worked very hard and extremely long hours (let’s just put it this way; a 9-5 sounds like a slice of heaven in comparison) and at times it definitely gets overwhelming. I'd say that there are many elements fueling my ambition to continue on providing my free labor but I'd be lying if I didn't mention that I do reflect on all the other people around me at my work place that go home at the end of the day receiving compensation for their hard work where as to I do not. Money is one incontrovertible necessity so obviously my intentions are aimed accordingly, however above all I am just very glad to have the fortune and opportunity of getting such critical, on the field experience and not to come off cliché but I truly think this chance I have is priceless; I have to admit this experience is not only an amazing memory I will have to reminisce about one day but it is also more informative than any kind of education I can receive during the hours spent in a classroom. I have seen things and been part of major productions some that I can't stake but are on televisions highest ratings I've seen countless amounts of celebrities and have worked behind the scenes understanding and grasping the fundamentals of the grand picture made by a properly composed production. I would say that you have a great, great point though. For the most part it is tough to make 6:30 AM call times on set and if placed in the wrong atmosphere the internship could really prove to be not worth while. In my opinion I would say you are right to say what you are saying about free labor and the circumference of payment but I also have to acknowledge the true testament of the idea behind an internship. To me it is all based upon the ambiance of your position. If you are not learning as much as you would like to then maybe you would pursue payment more seriously but if you feel that you are truly gain knowledge then that alone should feel like payment. This goes with out saying, but I do wish to work at this place even for minimum wage, because it would validate me as an artist to be paid for my efforts. However for now I'm on break and thus far I have learned many valuable lessons and again I do want to get paid for my labor sooner than later!
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Internships and the Industry 30 Mar 2014 15:01 #4521

  • michael.t
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This is interesting. I think it's only fair that when creating or helping to create something epic in the world of Arts, that you should be compensated or awarded for your efforts. After all, the arts require a talent, a certain persona, and hard work to master your art. In the end what you hope for is a widely huge success and appreciation of your creation.

Now, I have to contradict myself and say, I'm a huge sports fan and there has been a huge uproar in college athletics as college athletes are seeking pay for play!! This absolutely turns me off to the college athletic programs because college always has and should be about your will to want more and what you will do to earn that degree, to get drafted to the pros, you feel me?? So I in turn look at the arts the same way to a degree. I know that people in the industry however WILL take your creative inserts and run with them without giving you anything in return and that my friend is very unfair. But ladies and gentlemen keep working hard, expect nothing but work for everything and I hope your talents are brought about into popularity one day. It's a tough business and I applaud you peoples will!
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Internships and the Industry 31 Mar 2014 02:49 #4551

  • cynthia.q
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This was an interesting find. I don't know very much about the arts, but you do make a valid point. Very seldom do I hear about the arts programs or opportunities for artists, but when I, its never a priority or paid well. For something that requires real skill which not everyone has, it is underappreciated. This was informative, thank you.
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Internships and the Industry 31 Mar 2014 03:08 #4554

  • annalora.s
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ilan.a: I'm so glad that you're participating in a rewarding internship and I'm also glad that you were able to share your experience with us. it is definitely important to remember the truly invaluable benefits of a genuine internship and not let the exploitation of some overshadow the education of others.

michael.t: I don't follow sports very closely so I'm not surprised I haven't heard of this new possible demand of college players. i think it is absolutely ridiculous. College isn't about being paid to play sports and in addition, many of these players receive large (if not full) scholarships, even without academic merit, and often times are afforded an easier curriculum throughout university. I'm glad you shared this, I hope things won't progress in that direction.
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Internships and the Industry 07 Apr 2014 01:27 #4626

  • kameron.d
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Well congrats to all of those who are working in an internship program.I'm majoring in Media Studies/Broadcasting and would eventually like to work for a TV/Film studio. I'm actually looking to land a good internship myself. Not being paid isn't a big deal breaker for me, although it would be nice. What I hope to gain is knowledge and experience and get my foot closer in the door. I do believe most companies now are starting to pay interns. Many companies have come under fire for not paying interns and many interns are starting to sue. I remember awhile back a couple of interns working for FOX studios were working on the film Black Swan and weren't compensated for the contributions so they sued Fox studios and actually won the court case.
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