Pierre Kattar On Having an LLC as an Independant Journalist

Pierre Kattar, filmmaker and longtime Washington Post journalist, was recently at Columbia College Chicago with Jill Drew to promote their short film “The Buzz and Beyond, Reporting the 2010 Midterm Elections.” The film was selected for the Chicago International Reel Shorts Festival.

In this short clip, Pierre talks about the importance of protecting yourself as a freelancer by setting up an LLC.  It’s an interesting point, because oftentimes as journalists we are more concerned with getting our work out there and less concerned about actually getting paid for it.

For instance, I was recently reporting a story in Albany Park and ended up talking to the owners of a medical clinic about potentially blogging for them. We started talking price, and not only did I learn that I don’t have much scope about what my work is worth, but I also realized that I don’t think of myself as a business and perhaps I should start to.

I didn’t end up taking the clinic blogging gig because my time (THESIS) does not allow for much wiggle room right now. But we did talk price, and at one point we even came to a verbal agreement. Looking back on it though, I think it would be smart to have something in writing, because working 20 hours a week and then not getting paid for it would be the ultimate fail.

Old Pierre is onto something.