It’s a bad day for Ebony. The iconic magazine just became a hashtag on Twitter, but not a good one. Apparently word got around that the publication wasn’t paying its Black writers and now we have #EbonyOwes.
It all got started after online site The Establishment published a story about Ebony’s penchant for not paying its freelance writers of color, and many of them relished the opportunity to put Ebony on blast via social media.
“So my chapter of the
#EbonyOwes saga goes a little something like this: I’ve got invoices going back to July 2016 and haven’t seen a DIME,” wrote @JustAnt1914.
Meanwhile, throngs of other writers chimed in using the hashtag as a form of solidarity.
But it isn’t just disgruntled freelance writers, some other Twitter users have chimed in about the situation.
Ebony hasn’t publicly responded to the backlash. Jagger Blaec, who wrote the initial article, posted his text message response from Clear View co-founder and Vice President Willard Johnson in an article on The Root.com.
“Love to chat. I hear you are one of those reporters that like to tear down black businesses.” he said. When asked if there were any plans to recoup the missing funds for all of the freelancers affected by these delayed payments, Johnson claimed to have no knowledge of unpaid compensation. “Missing funds? Exploited? Of course they are all getting paid. We bought the business to turn around all this stuff,” he messaged.
Ebony had a very public buyout by private-equity firm Clear View Group LLC last year in June 2016. According to Ebony, the group took over Ebony magazine, ebony.com and jetmag.com.
If you tally up all the folks venting on Twitter, it looks like Clear View owes thousands of dollars. We hope they pay these folks fast; ya’ll know how ruthless Black Twitter can be.
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