A professional science writer is asked to write for free. She declines, the editor calls her a whore. She writes about it, her home blog network pulls her post. Twitter storm ensues. ETA: Scientific American finally gets to a keyboard to explain their censoring.
Everything is feeding into a massive ball of rage right now, but the points stand:
Biology-Online disrespects its writers for not paying them for their work, and was unbelievably unprofessional in their communication.
Trying to make it as a writer in the current era is as ridiculous with all the “We’ll pay you with exposure” or “Intern for 2 years and maybe we’ll hire you at minimum wage.” Working for free isn’t working. Biology isn’t my beat, but if it’s yours, beware: Biology-Online is not worth your effort.
Why do I say anything, when so many others have already said it? Because the practice of science is rough, figuring out which career matches the lifestyle you want to have, navigating industry-academia balances, and everything else. If we can share lessons with each other, it’s a bit easier to cope. Now you’ve been warned off a predatory site, know this isn’t considered normal or acceptable behaviour, and won’t be blindsided quite as hard if something like this happens to you.