Here is a job posting at the prestigious Foreign Policy magazine. It’s for an “editorial researcher” position.
They want you to write, pitch, fact-check and research, five days a week, for at least 35 hours a week. A full-time job, in other words.
How much are they willing to pay? Nothing at all. They want your labor, for free. And what do they offer in return? Experience. That’s it.
If you’re wondering why it’s hard to find people from low-income backgrounds in elite journalism—which, disproportionately, means people of color—look no further than this. The only people who can afford to work full-time for free come from wealth, and generally, if you’re wealthy in America, you’re white.
It’s a barrier to entry that keeps the field closed to everyone but our affluent, (almost certainly) Ivy-educated elites. That’s a problem.