The magazine industry is hard enough for college graduates to jump into, but it just got a little bit harder.
Unpaid internships have become somewhat of a norm in the journalism and communications industry, but some interns are just unable to accept that. A couple of former Condé Nast unpaid interns are among that group and they decided to take their anger and sue Condé Nast. The top magazine company decided to altogether cancel its internship program because of it.
The whole point of internships are to learn what one does and does not like about a specific career or industry, to gain experience in her field of interest and to network with those already in established positions within that field. If the internship is paid, that is simply icing on top of the necessary cake.
With magazine jobs few-and-far between, having internships on a resume puts a job applicant in the lead compared to applicants that do not. Unfortunately, it is getting harder for college students to participate in internships because upset unpaid interns are complaining that they are doing a lot of work for no money.
Some companies are deciding to start paying their interns (woohoo!), but others, like Condé Nast, are simply canceling their programs and not hiring any interns (boo!). In such a competitive field, aspiring magazine journalists need every chance they can get and former interns complaining about money are ruining it for them.
Internships may be work, but they are not jobs. Interns may be “hired,” but they are not employees. Industry connections and story bylines are all the payment interns should need, but apparently this isn’t the case for the upset few ruining it for the eager plenty.
If an intern doesn’t want an unpaid internship, then they simply shouldn’t apply for one. They shouldn’t go through with the whole internship, which they themselves applied for and accepted, and then complain about it in the form of a lawsuit.
Pay your dues as an intern, then you can fight for your salary when you get that first job position because you will have the prior industry experience to back it up.
What do you think about unpaid internships? Do you think they should be gotten rid of or taken advantage of? Let me know in the comments below