Should I Write “Test” Articles For This Firm?

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You’ve given warnings in your newsletter about writing for companies that require “test” articles. I received the following email from (a website). I sent a six-page pubs list of links to numerous published articles and manuscripts, so I know they know my writing style. Then they sent me an email mentioning test articles. A red flag went up inside me; but then again, this may be a legitimate request on their part. I haven’t come across this before, and though the pay isn’t great, I’m retired and I have no desire to get burned.

My question is: Have you come across this company and do you have anything positive or negative to say about them? Any other advice about dealing with them or others like them?

Thank you, Angela, and please keep up the good work. Even though I’ve been a writer for ages, I always seem to learn something new from your newsletter.

I reviewed the contract material sent to me. This part gives them the right to pay you nothing while taking all rights to your articles:

“Any articles you submit will become our property. While we’ll give you credit, you can’t distribute or sell the articles elsewhere.”

Run as fast as you can away from these jerks. They’re getting free articles through the auspices of an “employment” ad. I’d be willing to bet they never really hire anyone at all.