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Burning and sinking word job in water surface over white as a result of the financial crisis.
I know several people who are in the midst of job searches. Every once in awhile a friend will forward me a job that they think I might be interested in. Last week I received a email from a friend that had some job postings for a literary magazine, one that has actually sent me some very nice rejection letters for the several submissions I have sent over the last few years.

A couple of the jobs sounded like they were right up my alley and I was intrigued. Then I read a little further on:

All currently available positions are externships. This is like an internship, but you don’t have to be enrolled in a university or college program to apply. You can be a student (graduate or undergrad), in between jobs/ schools, or retired. Experience is useful, but passion, creativity, and determination will impress us too.
Okay, this sounds great, and I read on:
However, these positions aren’t paid. While we want to be a lucrative business with a perky HR director, paid staff, and benefits, we’re not there yet. We’re trying and getting closer every year. These externships will play a crucial role in developing [Literary Magazine Name], so naturally, if you’re in one of these positions, you’ll be at the top of the list when paid positions become available.
Now they are asking for five hours a week and a minimum six-month commitment which on the surface doesn't sound that bad; however, shouldn't your work be compensated in some way? I would love to apply for one of the available positions; however, my time and effort are worth something. Especially if, as you read later in the posting, you have very specific assigned duties that could overwhelm someone only expecting to work five hours a week.

Now I get that this magazine is a non-profit and they are trying to become bigger than they currently are—but that does not mean they should be offering "externships" or "internships." They should be honest and call them volunteer opportunities—because that is what they really are. The sad thing about this is I see this more and more often and not just from small non-profit literary magazines. If you work, you should be paid. It is just that simple. If you want to ask for volunteers that is great, just call the "jobs" what they really are: "volunteer opportunities."

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