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Rates for Video Journalists?

Hey Light Stalkers!

I’m currently working in Ghana, some fellow journalists and I are forming an independent production house that produces video journalism pieces for local and international use.

I know this is always a tricky question, but I’m interested in finding out what other people have charged for past work, payment standards, etc.

Although I know every job depends on negotiations with clients, we want to post rate cards on our website to give potential clients a general idea of pricing. We want to include prices for 5 minutes and under, 7 minutes, 10 minutes, 15 minutes, and 30 minutes. This will include filming and editing.

I’ve worked with an independent production house before that pays $1000 for a 3-5 min piece, and I know BBC pays 1,600(pounds) for the same thing. Also, since I’m working abroad, does it make most sense to charge in dollars, euros, or pounds? Obviously euros and pounds have greater exchange rates, but I’m American so I’m used to charging in dollars.

Any information on past payment experience or general ideas for standard rates would be EXTREMELY APPRECIATED. Thanks for your help, and check out our current site [loudsilencemedia.com] also [in-to-africa.tumblr.com]!

by Marisa Schwartz at 2012-11-21 14:50:31 UTC | Bookmark | | Report spam→

Hi Marisa,

Any luck on getting a response? I am curious about this as well…

All the best,


by Ari Jankelowitz | 27 Nov 2012 04:11 | New York, United States | | Report spam→

You might find this page interesting http://www.londonfreelance.org/rates/ a lot of fees are out of date though with budget cuts I wouldn’t be surprised if rates haven’t changed that much!

In terms of package prices, I find it helps to calculate how many days each package would take to complete and how many people would need to be involved. Then figure out what your day rate is. I imagine that it would be somewhere in the region of £350-500 per day per person (less for assistants etc) though this is in a so-called western country where daily living expenses are generally higher. You then need to add a production charge (overheads etc) on top and a note about reasonable expenses.

So, put slightly less confusingly(!):
Number of people x day rate x number of days + 5-10% production charge

I would also have another package under 5 mins – maybe 2 to 3 mins?

Kind regards

by Hanna Adcock | 27 Nov 2012 05:11 (ed. Nov 27 2012) | Bangkok, Thailand | | Report spam→
Rememebr you also have to work in a rental rate for gear. Obviously you’re going to charge less for something you shoot on your own Canon 5D than for something where you have to rent a big Sony F900 HD-CAM. The latter would depend on the daily rate and avialablility in-country for renting something (plus crew)of that level.


by BignoseTW | 27 Nov 2012 07:11 | Taipei, Taiwan | | Report spam→

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Marisa Schwartz, photographer Marisa Schwartz
New York, Ny , United States
Ari Jankelowitz, writer, photographer Ari Jankelowitz
writer, photographer
New York , United States
Hanna Adcock, photographer Hanna Adcock
Bangkok , Thailand
BignoseTW, Videographer/Photographer BignoseTW
(Tobie Openshaw)
Taipei , Taiwan


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