According to Twitter user Marcus DiPaola, CNN sent a letter to freelancers this week stating that as of June 17 of this year, it would extend payment terms to “Net 90” (payment 90 days after invoice). The letter also said that Turner is currently working with Citi on providing an optional program that uses a financing tool for suppliers — which would allow them to get paid before 90 days. On that, it said more details would be provided soon.
CNN claims that it is making this change to be “better aligned with its corporate interests,” and that it will be implemented as contracts expire. But Net 90 is NOT a reasonable payment term for people who must pay rent every 30 days. And in NYC, CNN’s new policy challenges the Freelance Isn’t Free law, which set a 30-day standard for payment and protects freelancers from accepting reduced rates in order to receive faster payment.
Freelancers have taken to social media to protest the announcement. Because make no mistake, Net 90 hurts independent workers’ financial stability. CNN is effectively asking freelancers to finance the cash flow of a multi-billion dollar company by waiting one quarter of a year for payment. We cannot allow businesses who employ freelancers to lower the bar, and circumvent the Freelance Isn’t Free law with predatory payment practices.
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We will update this story as it develops.