This article was pointed out to me by @maryanndevine on Twitter a while back but somehow I missed it.

Corwin Christie, writing for Technology in the Arts, has a really good article and has spawned quite a bit of conversation in her comparison of the Google scandal to standard Non-profit arts practices.

Last week I wrote about the indignation I feel when I see a company like Google wanting to use art without financially compensating the artists. The post and ensuing discussion on Facebook generated some interesting feedback, and many people expressed the concern that perhaps artists have set the bar low themselves.

This got me thinking about how it is that artists begin accepting less than they are worth–and I think, unfortunately, it is because of the close collaboration that artists have with non-profit arts organizations. And this is much more difficult to get irate about. As I rail against Google for devaluing the work that artists do, I can’t help but think back on the numerous non-profit arts organizations with which I have either been involved or encountered as an artist.

Non-profit organizations, those bastions of hope, those doers of good, whose belief in the arts propels us through the darkest hours of our economic crises, are they immune to the tirade I so readily unleashed on Google?

Click here to keep reading on Technology in the Arts

I’m glad to see people talking about this issue.  I too find it an almost impossible conundrum.  But discussion is good.  What about you, the great wide internet world?  Have you found any examples of nonprofits recognizing this issue and changing the way that they do things so that they start paying the artists they show?  Or does the answer lie outside of the non-profit world, in the shall we say, “no-profit” or “not-for-profit” world?  There are people rethinking, but most of what I have seen comes from this latter world.  There will also always people who want to get their work out for free for a time.  It’s like internships.  I never understood all the people who took a year after they finished college to do an internship.  I had to support myself as, I think, most people do once their schooling is finished.

Art is valuable and everyone knows it. But somehow we just think that it should also be free.