Nate Houghteling

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11/09/2020 @ 03:48 am

DO NOT WORK HERE IF YOU VALUE YOURSELF AS AN EDITOR Where do I even begin with this place? This is probably one of the worst places I've ever worked as a freelance editor. The moment I started here I regretted it immediately. This place is a truly bizarre. On the surface, they appear to be, and they probably like to think that they are a young, hip, forward-thinking media company. In reality, it's a stuffy, oppressive, stingy, and overly-micromanaged company that underpays its workers. It's hard to explain but a heavy dreariness hangs over the air of this place, almost as if its run by a cheap, uptight, overly-stern school principal. The moment you arrive you're stuffed in a small, dark, dirty room with 4-5 other editors. They pay you a low rate and they work you to the bone the whole time you're there, sometimes over the "normal" 10 hour shift. The most bizarre part was when they call you into the conference room to screen your edits. They would call in editors one by one to individually screen their cuts. The moment you enter, its dark and you see several miserable, bored, tired-looking staff members lazily strewn out about in the conference room, and you have to sit there uncomfortably while they view your hard work with utter indifference. The moment it's done they call "next" and they call in the next editor and you're "excused." The whole procedure felt very odd, and a little demeaning. It's like, did I just get in trouble and was I called into the principal's office? Because that's exactly what it felt like. The most funny part is at the end of the day, someone will come into the dirty edit cave and "excuse" you so that you can go home. I'm sorry, am I at work or am I at school? In all my time as a freelancer I've never ever witnessed this, and it was truly bizarre. This place is also located in downtown LA in a secure building, but they did not provide me a keycard to get into the elevator. All I was told was that freelancers don't get a keycard. Gee thanks. So every time I leave I have to ask the security guard to let me into the elevator? Some times the security guard was busy elsewhere and wasn't there, so there were times when I literally had to wait, or just be lucky enough to spot a "normal" staff member who happened to be going up to the office. Not the best way to encourage productivity if you ask me. They have a kitchen, but they don't provide any coffee or snacks like any normal company. If you want some coffee or if you're hungry, that's too bad, because you'll probably have to hop across the street to the Whole Foods, and yeah, when you come back, you'll have to bug the security guard to let you into the elevator because THEY DON'T PROVIDE YOU WITH A KEYCARD! This is also the first place ever that told me that I had to make my own music-cue sheets for my edits. ARE YOU SERIOUS?! I'm sure all editors know what music-cue sheets are, this is a task normally delegated to assistant editors. Let me just tell you, EDITORS DO NOT DO MUSIC CUE SHEETS. I've never in my time as an editor ever been asked to do a music cue sheet. But by this point, I wasn't surprised, because they probably didn't properly budget enough for an assistant editor to handle this task. The most insulting part was when they told me that they would reimburse me for my parking. Since its in downtown LA, you have to park at a paid lot, take photos of all your tickets, and send it to them at the end so that they can reimburse you. And yes, I did get reimbursed, but you know what? They asked me to send them an expense report to get my reimbursement with a signed W-9 form. ARE YOU SERIOUS? It's almost like they purposely make it hard for you to get reimbursed. So on top of the low rate that you're already paying me, you want me to get taxed on the reimbursement that I receive from the parking that you told me would be fully reimbursed? WOW. So yeah, be prepared to get paid a low rate, and also partially pay for your parking. The only bright spot was that most of the people I encountered there were friendly. Though some I encountered were very indifferent, almost dead inside, and some were overly power tripping, and probably thought they were some kind of hot-shot. If you're an editor with any decent amount of experience, please avoid this place at all costs. If you're in a tight spot, or you're just starting out, or you're ok with a low rate and a lack of even the most basic of necessities that most companies provide, then sure, it might be worth a go for a short while. I worked here because I was in a tight situation at that time, but even still, I should not have worked there, and I regret doing so. But looking back, it's also very funny to know that a place like this even exists. But hey, I guess it could always be worse.

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