{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "Freelancers beware! Watch out for Publicis—specifically Digitas. After a few weeks there, and a a couple of quiet days (client is taking their time w/comments, etc) I was told that even though I was booked for that short week, I was only going to get paid for time actually worked—the 3 daily status meetings. Yes, that’s correct. 24 hours waiting patiently for the client comments and they’re paying me for 3 hours.", "post_id": "60f71df6169bac0020191702", "reply_count": 60, "vote_count": 22, "bowl_id": "591a223804ff130016b983f4", "bowl_name": "Copywriters" }

Freelancers beware! Watch out for Publicis—specifically Digitas. After a few weeks there, and a a couple of quiet days (client is taking their time w/comments, etc) I was told that even though I was booked for that short week, I was only going to get paid for time actually worked—the 3 daily status meetings. Yes, that’s correct. 24 hours waiting patiently for the client comments and they’re paying me for 3 hours.

likehelpful
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Akqa tried to do this to me last year after taking advantage of the pandemic and lowballing my rate. Don’t let them get away with it. They aren’t stupid. They know how this works. And they’re part of a large corporation, not some small startup.

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Agree. I used to freelance remotely pre-pandemic and it would be how OP is describing- I would bill for what I worked. I was never booked for a whole day to sit at home. On the flip side, I wasn’t always available (ie, I was not sitting at a computer all day), so this made sense. If they pinged me at 2pm and I was out- sorry, they were out of luck. It seems like companies are now trying to apply that structure to all FL, taking advantage of remote.

smart

Use this as a learning experience. For EVERY gig, even if you trust them, clarify that they are booking your time, not work. And it’s up to them to fill that time with work tasks. Also explain that you have a 4-hour daily minimum. Throw the language in your response to a gig confirmation email and you’ll lock it in.

likesmarthelpful

If they wrote some BS into their contract where they only pay you when your hand is actually typing or clicking a mouse, I’d be surprised. It’s always good to cover your rear.

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I’d push back on that. You turned down other gigs to be on hold for them. Bill it.

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I feel bad because I REALLY liked the CD, but I just can’t afford to work for them.

Digitas was always a joke, but that is unheard of and utterly reprehensible. They secured your time from other jobs. Bill them.

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Not to hijack your post, but after reading all these comments it’s just so crazy to me that agencies are trying to pull this right now with such a hot freelance market. It’s like someone trying to put an offer in on a house for 200k under the asking price with exceptions. GTFO of here!

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Want me to contact them as “your attorney”?

funnylikehelpful

You think I’m joking

likesmart

Is this a remote work issue? No agency would have dreamed of this when freelancers were sitting at a desk for 8 hours pre covid

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I clarified above- before the pandemic, this was common for remote freelancers. Most remote freelancers didn’t actually want to be tied to a desk all day, anyway. I was a remote freelancer for a year while I was overseas years ago, and I certainly my didn’t want to be stuck in my apt 10-6 ET. I would work when my schedule corresponded to their needs. Now things are different with everyone being remote, but companies aren’t adapting accordingly.

FCB. Notorious.

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The Notorious F.C.B.

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Whatever you do, don’t put downtime on your timesheets. Bill 40 hours to a spread of your jobs on hold. This is where some novices get caught.

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You’re not getting it, even if they’re on hold… you’re not faking it, disperse your time evenly between them. If asked, tell them those are those jobs you are brought it on and should be billed to. Tell them it’s up to the AD to reconcile on the back end but there’s no way you’re submitting non billable time for something outside what was spoke about. If you submit your timesheets to non billable time you have no recourse in changing the hours. Take this tip from someone who’s been freelancing for a lot longer than you.

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Lol. When I freelanced at Digitas I billed 8 hours a day every day. Not my fault if they didn’t fill my time. Never got questioned.

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I mean technically you can’t do that ‘on the record’ — doing a second job while under a freelance contract even on downtime gives that company legal recourse. Don’t ever mention this point — I’ve seen HR get all Gangnam style over one freelancer who publicly disclosed they were doing a second gig while in a holding loop. We all double dip but never disclose this publicly.

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Virtue does this as well. Only paid me one day when they should have paid me a week. And it took them two weeks to pay me for that one day after several follow ups. Don’t work there, it’s a mess.

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SEVERELY UNDERPAID

This is why the bad agencies are dying a swift death. They can’t win new clients because good talent won’t work there. And good talent won’t work there because they have no money from new clients.

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We don’t roll that way. Reach out to the HR person and you will get paid.

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P1, I’m looking into this, thx.

And as the follow up: spoke to the higher ups/HR and they refused to pay me for the three days spent waiting for work. Moral of the story? Avoid Digitas. You’re welcome,

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I mean Digitas is a dog of an agency. Anyone with a pulse deserves better. But seriously, as said, as soon as you submit a non-billable report it’s like you’ve signed a contract that says, “I didn’t work”. Digitas or any other agency has to stand behind that as company policy. Now you know. Never assign anything to the non billable code outside of bank holidays.

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Which city/office is this?

Actually, Concentric is guilty of this too. A few years back they said they weren’t going to pay me got the 40 hours I was on site bc it was quiet. Managed to get 1/2 the time/$ I was due.

Wow.

If you agreed to a day rate, you are owed that day rate. This is why I usually have a full amount for the gig laid out in my contract.

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