On 5 Apr 2015 at 9:42pm Localbod wrote:
Charlie, you state that you are happy reading Viva Lewes. That is fine, good for you. You then rudely, and un-necessarily insult people who don't like Viva Lewes. Why? I think that is a shame. Anyway, I am more interested in better written articles, a balanced political spectrum that is paid for openly, and ethically, and I also like journalists and designers to be paid properly. I would have thought Norman Baker would too.
On 5 Apr 2015 at 9:59pm Charlie wrote:
I just say what I think. If it offends, tough. Man up or keep quiet.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 2:19am montycute wrote:
This thread staarted out as one of the most amusing and original that I have seen on the Lewes Forum. Then certain contributors get hold of it and it turns all bitter and angry . . . again. Such a shame.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 9:32am Charlie wrote:
I quite agree montycute. All these angry and bitter anti-VL posters should be ashamed of themselves.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 10:50am Claire wrote:
The anti VL lot are the same narrow minded people who think lewes should be for lewesians only and have never left the town to (God forbid) widen their horizons. I'm not a huge fan of the publication but I am a fan of tolerance and open mindedness.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 11:12am Jane S wrote:
Aren't we allowed to say constructively that we don't enjoy something, Charlie? (This is me 'woman-ing up') Isn't it public-spirited and helpful to make suggestions to improve a formerly-enjoyed local publication which some of us believe has gone downhill?
On 6 Apr 2015 at 11:12am Not from Lewes wrote:
Claire - I do not like Viva Lewes and I have lived in many parts of Britain. I find Viva Lewes very pretentious and if you are so open minded you should not assume that the only people who are against it are ones that have never left the town!
On 6 Apr 2015 at 11:23am FGS wrote:
It's free. If you don't like it, put it in the bin. I would suggest that people who find it annoying object to how Lewes has changed over the past twenty years. That's not the fault of a magazine, however much it might represent something that you dislike.
On and by the way, just because you were born here doesn't mean you own the place. Towns change -- and Lewes has actually changed less than many places.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 11:30am LewesResident wrote:
I dislike it, because it is sums up almost everything I do not like about blinkered privilege and self-indulgent coffee-table journalism. It is a magazine for sheep, who think they are shepherds. I find the question of unpaid contributions very disturbing (why don't its readers?) and why an independent, non-biased 'community asset' would fail to include any regular content from the many local political characters in the town, is very odd. It is also an enormous waste of paper delivering it to the many people who do not want it, and I am amazed that VL readers have done nothing about that, but will happily read a prettily illustrated article about what to do with re-cycled quail egg-shells.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 11:33am Lewes Resident wrote:
PS, it is however very funny to see how angry the VL brigade are getting about some criticism. Their response is not as pretty as the apparently unpaid-for VL illustrations. Are the artist and interns paid?
On 6 Apr 2015 at 12:43pm Viva Unbeliever wrote:
Come to think of it, I'm not a massive fan either. It certainly paints the wrong impression of the typical Lewesian. No wonder we get a reputation for being up our own backsides. Where are the articles on people struggling and using one of Lewes's three food banks, where are the articles on the lack of mainstream retail, where are the articles and real issues that effect locals (no affordable housing and crap parking around town). No more tweeness please and stop flattering the local MP and give other people the chance to talk about political issues. I hope that was constructive enough for the editorial to consider better features very soon!
On 6 Apr 2015 at 1:54pm old bike wrote:
Without wanting to be too indelicate, I usually read VL whilst having a tom-tit.
I have found that articles and adverts for businesses named Closet and Botts, Grace and Favour and other here today gone tomorrow vanity projects help immeasurably with my excrimeditation.
If only VL could make its inner pages more absorbant then they could be put to better use than simply recycling.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 3:19pm John Stockdale wrote:
I make no apology for liking VL. It is a matter of my taste that is clearly not shared by everyone. I respect the moderately expressed views of those who don't like it. Local takes me to task for being someone "who does not comment on threads about Racism, St Annes, or Council House Tenants". I check the Forum site quite often, but not all the time. I have commented on St Anne's several times. With Linda Drabble, I arranged a meeting about it through the Forum. But, you're right I haven't contributed on the other two subjects.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 5:01pm Lib Dem Mum wrote:
I`m rather twee and pretentious and I love V.L.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 8:14pm DFL wrote:
I moved down from London 10 years ago and I think that Viva Lewes has, in the last year, gone right up it's own bottom. The original poster (in the original thread) got it right - it has gone too far to be the magazine of the privileged. I'm not poor, I commute to London each day on the 7.42 still to earn a decent salary, but VL is just off-putting.
But the magazine is now really put together for the advertisers, rather than the readers. The cover artists do not get paid (I know two of them, and the work hasn't shifted any work for them). Advertisers want to reach high income families with money to spend on bespoke furniture, endless complementary therapies and expensive pub lunches. The editorial is moving more to echo that demographic (hence the original poster's reference to the trustafarian and the multi-millionaire) and much less about the things that truly echo the local community (there's not much cash in that thar demographic).
VL used to bridge both worlds than it does now. The general complaint is that it now fails to do that. Ruth O' Keefe's Lewes News freebie has/had a good column that wrote about the life of an ordinary local - what a great thing to do; let's hear more about our teachers, our shop workers. Let's have less of the twaddle we're getting that will only appeal to about three people - the mum, dad and sister of the person whom they are about.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 8:23pm TDA wrote:
I like Viva Lewes.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 9:29pm Inca wrote:
I am from Poland, I am cleaner, what is tom tit ??
On 6 Apr 2015 at 9:48pm Stevie v wrote:
I like Viva Lewes and can't understand all this negativity towards something that is an interesting read and free. I suspect it is just someones spite with a few sheep following.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 9:48pm Fairmeadow wrote:
Tom tit is Cockney rhyming slang.
Just one of the things DFLs bring with them.
On 6 Apr 2015 at 9:51pm Charlie wrote:
On 6 Apr 2015 at 10:50pm Localresident wrote:
DFL, I agree with most of what you have written, although I think you may have confused the excellent Lewes News (which has a 'Lewes Life' each edition) with Cllr Ruth O'Keefe's self promotional news sheet, which looks very similar. Charlie, I am interested to know if you are involved with VL in any way, and what you think about not paying for a service provided by a service provider? would VL not pay the printers either? who else doesn't get paid?
On 6 Apr 2015 at 11:07pm Elvis wrote:
Viva Lewes?Return to sender! Uh Huh!
On 6 Apr 2015 at 11:27pm Charlie wrote:
I am in no way connected to VL. I don't care who pays for what. It's their business. I simply don't like totally unwarranted mindless jealous criticism of a local success story.
On 7 Apr 2015 at 12:19am Belladonna wrote:
The problem is that it's an advertising based listings mag that used to offer a bit more than listings , but has recently lost it's way and frankly become a bit mundane and uninspired. It's uncritical but pretends to be independently minded, but frankly just gushes in an 'inoffensive' way (mustnt annoy the advertisers) about anything going on in town. Why do they offer reviews of cafes and restaurants when they don't give an unbiased opinion but always say everything is lovely ? It's a sham magazine wanting to be radical and funky but coming across as trying too hard and smug. I've not liked it really since it started to use unpaid interns. And it's running out of steam because it's cross fertilising with articles and ads from the Brighton version. I suspect the editorial and production team have spread themselves too thin and that the two versions will soon merge.
It's a shame because it was quite unique to Lewes and used to be quite entertaining and useful
On 7 Apr 2015 at 12:24am Lewes wrote:
For a free publication, delivered though your door, you have the choice to read it, or not read it. VL represents a view point of what they think Lewes is. Lewes is a very mixed up town, and VL's demographic is not aimed at the low income spectrum. To some it is very Twee and Pretentious, to others it is a bible and guide to Lewes life. To me it is a guide to pubs and restaurants that are over priced, and must be avoided. Why is a pub providing a recipe every month? I don't get it, surely you want people to come into your pub and eat rather than making it at home? Perhaps it could be a page filler? Is the recipe from a chef that is Michelin starred? Does anyone actually make this at Home? I have only ever known two Local people that have had write ups. The rest I have never seen before in my life. Is the local person someone I should know? Were they born in Lewes? Do they work in a place I frequent? Why am I asking myself these questions? Do I really care? Time to flush, I have had my tom tit. Good night all
On 7 Apr 2015 at 12:33am Taxpayingemployer wrote:
Have a look at the Viva Brighton Lewes website. it claims an amazing number of readers and 'employees' yet we are told here that it does not pay some of them for their work. This does not exactly fit with the right-on Lewes demographic that it targets. (or does it , John Stockdale?) I don't care what the content is like if this is the way it operates. I presume it is not a hobby.
On 7 Apr 2015 at 9:09am Merlin Milner wrote:
I think that much of the ire against Viva Lewes is because the Sussex Express is a shadow of what it was. We do not have a local paper that discusses the issues, has reporters that go to Council meetings, take local politicians to task, review local events and places properly. John Eccles used to come to many of our Town Council meetings and report upon them. We are now expecting Viva Lewes to do in part what the Sussex Express should be doing. Sadly across the world we are seeing the demise of the press through lack of proper funding of investigative journalism and good editorial control. Now we now increasingly rely upon amateur blogs and sites like this for our information. Great shame.
On 7 Apr 2015 at 9:23am John Stockdale wrote:
Taxpayingemployer, I think your query is about VL's treatment of interns rather than the 'right-on Lewes demographic'. Is that right? Have a look at the link for the rules. I don't know what kind of interns VL have but I would be surprised if they were breaking the rules. If U3A runs a journalism course that qualifies as 'a UK-based further or higher education course', perhaps I should apply?
Check it out here »
On 7 Apr 2015 at 10:39am Tory Mum wrote:
I`m a Tory mum .I am vicious,rich and shallow in equal measures My two children work as unpaid interns and I love Viva Lewes .My friends the Camerons read it when they occasionaly pop over here.
On 7 Apr 2015 at 10:56am Southover Queen wrote:
John, I'm fairly certain they are breaking the rules as far as unpaid interns go. We've had this discussion a couple of times over the last few years, and the answer from VL has always been that they don't have the funds to pay and that the magazine is run on a voluntary basis anyway. So technically they are, almost certainly, in breach of NMW legislation*. However since it requires the unpaid employee to report the "underpayment" to HMRC, and since HMRC have sacked most of their enforcement officers there's about as much chance as anything being done to challenge the status quo as there is of Nigel Farage being PM.
*Someone who would be an employee - that is someone of very junior grade in an organisation - should almost without exception be paid if they're given specific tasks and hours of work. Such a person cannot waive their right to the NMW either.
On 7 Apr 2015 at 12:12pm Artist wrote:
I can confirm that cover art is not paid for. To my mind, this is exploitative. Who else is not paid, based on an arguement that by generously allowing them some 'promotional space' (by requiring a specific piece of VL artwork) it will help the artist get work. Is anyone paid? The website does indeed boast of massive circulation figures, and has an advertising sales section for 2 magazine, and a list of 'directors'. The current edition has at least 160 adverts, some full page. If all averaged at just £40, this would create a revenue of £75,000 for 12 issues of VL Lewes. Is this really a non-profit voluntary based community benefit scheme? Are the Directors paid anything? How about the distribution? Do people deliver it for free, so that they can showcase their delivery skills? Does Norman Baker endorse this free employment, since he is happy to endorse such practise with his own PR page? If Tesco's defines vulnerable low paid staff as 'volunteers' can it also pay less than the legal minimum wage. The National Local Press is struggling at the moment, and one of the reasons in our area is that advertisers are moving to a competitor apparently benefitting from wage avoidance. I can remember a time when Labour, and Lib Dem would be campaigning against that kind of thing.
On 7 Apr 2015 at 12:37pm Ted wrote:
Whingers. The lot of you.
On 7 Apr 2015 at 1:13pm Local wrote:
actually , I am a taxpayer , so regardless of what I think about the Editorial, I am concerned with the legalities and ethics of this. 'all that glisters is not gold'.
On 7 Apr 2015 at 2:52pm Localresident wrote:
I am glad, Cllr Stockdale , that you have a view about the contents of a free magazine. However, as a Councillor, and political person, what is you view on not paying illustrators, relying on unpaid interns, and minimum wage/tax avoidance?
On 7 Apr 2015 at 3:48pm Merlin Milner wrote:
My personal opinion is that interns should be paid. If they are adding value to a company they should be paid. Simple.
Otherwise interns can only afford to work if they are subsidised by parents, another paid job or the state.
Sadly the worst at this are large companies who exploit young interns. For small companies it would be good if there were a way that the government could help by subsidising interns easily. The apprenticeship scheme is a start but is complicated for employees.
On 7 Apr 2015 at 4:50pm Employer wrote:
I think that it is the legal opinion too, in this instance. Perhaps Viva Lewes could create a nicely illustrated article , which explains who did, or didn't get paid for the various parts of it's production, and distribution?
On 7 Apr 2015 at 5:27pm Moniker Lewesky wrote:
Perhaps the inters get Paid in Kind
On 7 Apr 2015 at 11:45pm Belladonna wrote:
Unless they've changed their ways, VL definitely don't pay interns on the basis that they can't afford to. It's not a community not for profit venture, it's a business. Nick Williams and Alex Leith started it and earn a living from it. I suspect they have to pay their editor, art editor, sub and advertising manager. I think the ad rates are £70 for a quarter page. So it's at least £135k pa which might just pay six people a living wage.