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It’s hard out there for a freelancer. But that’s what you get for wearing your pajamas to work, right? Yesterday, we would have said yes. Today, we say show me the Ebyline.

Giving Freelancers an Ebyline

Ebyline, which launched this week, aims to give freelance writers a safe place from which to market their content to publishers, while making it easier to manage the logistics of payments and deadlines that come with it. Although freelance writers can revel in the freedom of writing what they want when they want, most of the time they find themselves spending too much time generating invoices and trying to follow up for subsequent payments.

Ebyline lets freelancers self-syndicate through an online platform, which allows them the freedom and ability to pitch ideas, sell finished work to news organizations and negotiate fees with publishers. The service provides access for professional journalists only, which Ebyline defines as freelancers with a track record in the business.

Giving Publishers More Opportunities

But enough about freelancers, it’s publishers who really benefit. Ebyline affords them new opportunities to make money, save money, while giving them the ability to buy stories á la carte from freelance writers, and to buy and sell their news content directly with publishers.

So far, Variety Magazine, ProPublica, Minnpost.com and the Texas Observer have signed on to provide content, as well as a number of freelancers from places like The Journalism Shop and The Sports Media Exchange, which help accomplished journalists find freelance work.

Like publishers and freelancers alike, Ebyline also relies on funding to stay alive. First round funding has come from angel investors. As the marketplace grows, so does the hope that it can be self-sustained.

At present, there are no subscription fees or no upfront costs -- which makes it free for all who sign up. Buyers pay an 8 percent transaction fee only once an individual sale is final and partners are likely to price stories between $US$ 25 - $300.