I responded to a job listing for an audio engineer position at a podcast startup, offering fairly good pay.
After an encouraging call with the founder I went along to be shown the studio. As well as running audio for the podcasts, which is all the listing had discussed, he needed me to edit them all. He also needed my help to make the studio sound good – despite wanting to offer professional audio services to podcasters, the flat he had rented mainly consisted of a large, echoey room with two armchairs in it.
I was up for the challenge, but thought I could negotiate a better rate given the extra work. I opened my mouth to say something along the lines of “great! about my pay…”
Client: I can see what you’re thinking. This is actually an unpaid position. I only put the pay rate in the listing because the form wouldn’t let me leave it blank. I don’t really have the budget for a team right now.
He told me this while we sat in a London flat he was renting out for a studio, along with around £5,000 of audio equipment he had purchased (and had no idea how to use).
I smiled and nodded until I got home. I eventually emailed him to let him know that for 40+ hours of specialist work a week people expect to be paid.
I still wonder if he found an audio engineer/editor, and if any podcasters hired out his studio that sounded worse than most bedrooms.