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I see your "race to the bottom" and raise it with
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Andy
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2005 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh gawd, Kevin! Are you saying we're being outsourced to India, too. That's it. One phonic voice processor, Sennheiser 421 mic, Apex 435 condenser, Mackie mixer and a bunch of other stuff to the highest bidder. Cashin' in my chips. Where's my shovel! :lol:
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jeffgad
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2005 2:37 pm    Post subject: Low low low VO Reply with quote

While I can certainly understand someone-a newcomer- accepting a REALLY small fee for a REALLY small project, I think it's important to look at the big picture just as a matter of self respect. Sure, it's a personal choice, but if say, an agency is charging to create a spot and the radio station is charging to air it, the talent deserves fair renumeration, too. You can bet no one else in the process is settling for $20! While I don't consider the voiceover business an art form or anything, I do think they deserve a fair portion of the ad's budget for their contribution.
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den
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2005 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmmm.

Not to pick on ya Jeff, but gotta disagree with you on the "voiceover business is not an art form" point. (And that's the only point I want to pick at.)

The actual "business" may or may not be an art form, but the skill of being able to communicate the intended message to the desired audience, through effective use of voiceover acting, is very much an art form. Otherwise, use the receptionist. (With ALL due respect - and I mean that - to receptionists!)

If a TV repair guy comes into my place to 'fix' my TV, finds it is un-plugged, and plugs it in, then charges me $50 for the hour - or portion of, he deserves it! I didn't think to look there! I didn't pay $$ to get trained in proper TV maintenence, etc. That is equal to an art form.

Actors, writers, painters, and all the many "art forms" are usually not appreciated in the balance from which they should be perceived, (in my opinion). Yes, the agents, agencies, and finally the client's, are possibly making millions, but think "did they do that because of YOUR voice"? Could they not have done that using someone else?" Outside of Mel Blanc, I highly doubt your person on the street could name a voiceover person (maybe Tom Hanks or Eddie Murphy). However, if you asked them if they've ever heard the intro to Law & Order, many film trailers, etc. they'd say "yeah! Guys's great!

It IS an art form, and those that are good are good and should be respected for it. Those that "settle" for the $20 gigs have the right. Who cares what the company is making - if you agreed to it. Until you are the Tom Cruise of voicing (meaning that your voice alone - is bringing in millions), you can't really argue about what is offered, and what others accept.

I honestly believe that it's only going to get watered down, if you allow your career (this being freelance) to water itself down. Let them bottom feeders feed!
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Deirdre
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 5:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

James McNeil Whistler was questioned about the cost of a painting:

How long did it take you to paint this?
About 10 hours.

And you think it's reasonable to be paid $500 for 10 hours' work?
One does not buy the 10 hours--what one buys is a lifetime of effort.
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Last edited by Deirdre on Sat Jul 02, 2005 7:22 am; edited 1 time in total
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Philip Banks
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Joined: 20 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 7:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The client thinks so badly of his own product that he is only prepared to spend $20 to sell it. It's not that he has a low opinion of the voice, he has a low opinion of himself too!

The internet, voices with studios in their homes and ISDN has raised the bar, not lowered it. There is a problem for voice artists who have relied on their local market for the bulk of their work particularly if they are adequate for the job and no more. If competition was about price and price alone, Skoda would be breaking sales records and Ferrari would be shutting up shop and going home.
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Andy
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 7:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Phil, that's probably the case. No doubt, they're also thinking that if they "crash" the market with ridiculously low prices they'll generate a lot of initial volume. It might work in the short run. But down the road they'll have to raise their rates and then what happens to the client base?

If they do so in small, less painful increments, some clients will probably stay. But do they have the seed money to sustain themselves in the meantime? More important, with regard to the VO talent, will these guys have the integrity to pass their "good fortune" on to the VO's? Hard to tell based on a blind ad on Allaccess.
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Philip Banks
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Joined: 20 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 8:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

True in life, true in business and probably true in the voice over business...

"It is extremely difficult to ski uphill"

As it's the day of Live8 may be this global persepctive will help. If as a voice over your average income exceeds $2 US per day you are in the top 20% of earners on this planet. Methinks we all doth protest, too much!
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Bailey
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the bottom line in this discussion will be the client. Contrary to what some would say, it is quality that attracts a client... not cheap labor. They know quality when they hear it, and the returns on their investment will prove it. The sudden appearance of cheap voice overs will eventually disappear... let's just call it a flash in the pan. The same thing happened about 25 years ago (in California) during the real estate boom. Everyone and his brother wanted to get a license to sell real estate. When the dust settled... and rates started to climb... these RE newbies fell off quicker than leaves on a Fall day. The "oldtime" Realtors are still standing. What does this have to do with voice overs... probably nothing (I lost my train of thought).

Industry standards for voice overs have been set. The entertainment industry knows it... Big business knows it... and the guy who owns the small tire shop on the corner knows it. Quality sells... quality works... quality lasts. :wink:
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Philip Banks
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 10:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Amen! Preach it, I say, PREACH IT!!! Testify, Brother Bailey TESTIFY!!!!!
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 12:26 pm    Post subject: Nah. We Ain't So Hot Reply with quote

The cemetary's full of people who thought they were irreplaceable, guys. With a few notable exceptions, for every VO you do there are a thousand-or million-who could do it just as well. Assuming they want quality at all, that is. Here's the nutty part: lots of ad people are turned off by polished voice talent. They want to hear something different. Bad is good. Just listen to all the big-budget ads with crappo voice tracks.
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Philip Banks
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Joined: 20 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Who says they are bad? Not me. All part of the creative process and more important the voice heard is the one the agency wanted. One thing none of us can influence is the buyers decision. When the buyer decides on polished, irreplaceable me, he pays ....Far too much to be honest but I accept it with good grace. I'm just a martyr to my own genrosity.
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 1:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's pretty obvious (to me) that most of the "guests" that visit this site, haven't got a clue as to what makes for a good voice over.
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jeffgad
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 2:41 pm    Post subject: Zing...guess that one's meant for me. Reply with quote

Sorry, I just realized I'd left my name off my previous post. I'm the inadvertant "guest." You can dismiss my comments if you want, but not because I'm clueless. Freelance VO is all I've ever done, and I've raised three kids on it.
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Philip Banks
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Joined: 20 Jun 2005
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 02, 2005 3:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not sure which "guest" post was yours, Jeff but both were equally valid points.
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PJHawke
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2005 10:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

While only time will tell, the lowering of rates effect brought on by the Internet and home studios and all the other techno-whatever might only end up a temporary surge until ppl (clients) realize that a lotta crap is being offered by VOs who cant produce good product.

Look at independent cinema: Digital video came out, people in the film industry panicked because any Bozo with a few hundred bucks could make a movie. And what happened? Thousands of Bozos with a few hundred bucks made movies...really, really crappy movies. That no one watched. And the real filmmakers are surviving. The ones with talent now have ways to cut their personal costs a bit, but they still make money and still support their crews and families because they're good, and a "competitor" hack with the latest high tech gear is still just a hack. The market figures it out and equilibrium returns.
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