California Dreamin: SB 98 and Freelancer Protections

California Senate Bill 98 heated up as we entered the summer months. The author of the legislation, state Senator Mike McGuire, intended to grant access to the media to protests and other such actions despite pushback from law enforcement. The bill is meant to provide unfettered access without police authorization because many times it is […]

Poison Pill Threatens Good Legislation

At least 322 journalists have been assaulted, 122 have been arrested or detained and more than 980 have reported press freedoms violations since the beginning of the year, according to the US Press Freedom Tracker. First Amendment Groups and Journalists in California were encouraged when state Senator Mike McGuire reintroduced SB 98 last year following […]

Worse Case Scenario: An Election Story

Like Charles Dickens with his Pickwick Papers novel, I have been publishing my work in progress, Worst Case Scenario: Election Night 2020, in serial form on a website.  The president was impressed with the smooth transition America was making to this new form of government. He knew with a cold certainty that the Democrats had […]

Prop 22: Contractor or Employee?

Defining who is an employee and who is an independent contractor is a critical labor topic being addressed by Congress, the Trump administration, the courts, and state legislatures. It has particular relevance for writers of all types.  In California, the National Writers Union has supported AB 5 and AB 2257 and now opposes Proposition 22 […]

Reboot book sales with a webinar

After “attending” something called the Movement Makes Five Day Challenge online, I was inspired by host Pedro Adeo to create my own “challenge” and maybe generate some book sales. My idea was to make the first one free: the Building Union 3-Day Challenge to follow up with the Unrig the System Five-Day Seminar for $27 […]

Postcard From Morocco

Morocco will dispel many stereotypes about this country. Though 97% Muslim, burkas are in relatively short supply. Western clothes proliferate, especially in the large cities. The landscape is surprisingly green except for the Sahara desert in the south. From the cities teeming with shopkeepers and laborers to the fields and villages where men gather to watch […]

Year of the Teacher

The south rose again in 2018, this time in a wave of teacher strikes that began in West Virginia. Local teachers convinced the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) and the National Education Association (NEA) to hold a strike vote. The strike swept across the state and resulted in a five percent raise. It also inspired […]

IFJ Secretary Meets With NWU Secretary

On a recent trip to Belgium, I was fortunate to meet with Jeremy Dear, Deputy General Secretary of the International Federation of Journalists. NWU is a member of this organization that represents over 600,000 journalists in more than 140 countries. Dear points to shining examples of government support for journalists in Sweden and Germany, but […]

What Shall We Call Ourselves?

The BizTech Division was formed to represent those who write for the business community, as well as what once was the burgeoning Silicon Valley tech world. BizTech writing assignments were works for hire, where copyrights belonged to the employers— rather than individual writers—for such items as user manuals and PR releases. BizTech was a catchy […]

Banned Books Week

For Banned Books Week—Sept. 27 – Oct 3—the American Library Association released a list of the 10 most frequently challenged books of 2014, citing the reason they’d been ousted. 1) The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie Reasons: anti-family; cultural insensitivity; drugs/alcohol/smoking; gambling; offensive language; sex education; sexually explicit; unsuited for age […]