Take a look at this distasteful work-for-free ad that Virgin Records posted on the Anime Studio Forum under the title “Volunteer your work for Virgin’s new online music show”:
Hi, I’m one of the producers of Virgin’s new global online music show Red Room. The show is aiming to be community-based and feature lots of user-generated content. Each week we feature new titles to go over new title music supplied by unsigned bands wanting a bit of exposure.
So-oooo – we are on the look out for animators who want to create a 4-8 second title sequence in turn for full credit and something to add to your showreel. Sorry we can’t pay you – but we’ve hardly any money oursleves right now to produce the show! The show has just started so it’s early days but we are aiming to get it shown around the world on different Virgin platforms as well as YouTube etc
If you’re up for it – let me know! To prove I’m real – here we are:
The company is part of EMI, the third largest music company in the world, and not affiliated with Richard Branson’s Virgin company which owns the airlines and mobile service providers. Yet when it comes to paying a few bucks to an animation artist, they have the gall to claim that “we’ve hardly any money ourselves right now.”
The readers of Anime Studio Forum are way too smart for this, and immediately called out Virgin for its embarrassing ploy to take advantage of the animation community. Forum user Rylleman wrote, “Isn’t Virgin one of the largest music companies of the world? To ask for free work in that position sounds greedy to me. Call a school and get an intern if you can’t afford to pay people for their work,” while Parker wrote, “I dont want to be rude but dont expect users work for you for free, please offer some money.”