Currently, 53 million people in the US workforce are freelancers. But there are downsides to working from home; the lack of social interaction, including that dreaded small talk, can make you physically and mentally ill. That said, you do get to work naked.
Take journalism, for example. A recent survey, carried out by the UK’s Press Gazette, suggests that freelancers are happier with their jobs than staff journalists. One journalist, who earns as much as £40,000 ($58,000) from freelancing at national newspapers, said he liked it because “I can work naked, unshaven, and when I like.” Another added: “I start when I want, I go out for dog walks when phasing out, the coffee is awesome and I frequently type in the nip.”
More than 94% said they enjoy their job, pointing to the flexibility that came with working from home. By comparison, 87.6% of staffers were happy with their job.
Though many were happy with their jobs, the overwhelming majority still expressed significant concerns over pay. Two-thirds of people who earned between nothing and £15,000 a year in the survey were freelancers. One freelancer, who earns £15-20,000, said: “Freelancing has never been more precarious. Fees are at rock bottom and it’s not uncommon to be treated with utter disdain by commissioning editors—or completely ignored.”
The pressure of on freelancers is felt among staff journalists, too. A growing number of journalists working in the newsroom struggle with the increasing pressure of productivity—they’ve hit peak content exhaustion.