85% of freelance graphic designers were asked to work for free last year

A new survey has revealed an attitude of ‘corporate entitlement’ when it comes to how freelancers are treated.

When is it okay to work for ‘exposure’? It’s a question that’s sure to make the blood of thousands of freelance graphic designers boil. But according to research by Manchester startup Approve.io, more people are willing to work for free than you might think.

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Out of a poll of 1009 UK adults who engaged in freelance work in the past five years, research found that 85 per cent of graphic designers had been asked to work for free in 2016, and that 9 per cent agreed to do so.

The only sector asked to work for free more often than graphic designers were photographers, of whom 87 per cent were asked to work for nothing and 16 per cent agreed. Also in the results were illustrators (81 per cent asked, 8 per cent complied), front-end developers (74 per cent asked to work for £0, with 5 per cent agreeing to) and back-end developers (71 per cent asked, 4 per cent up for it).

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