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Upcoming San Francisco Forums

Date: Thursday, August 20
Time: 7:00 - 8:30 pm
Location: Zoom presentation; Zoom log-in details emailed to active BAEF members on 7/28/2020 and 8/20/2020.

We are pleased to present this joint member meeting of Bay Area Editors' Forum (BAEF) and Editorial Freelancers Association (EFA).

A Look at CA AB-5: Editors as Independent Contractors or Employees?

California Regulation AB-5 was signed into law by Governor Newsom, effective January 1, 2020. The law, sponsored by state Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, intends to extend the protection of existing labor laws (regarding minimum wage, overtime pay, workers' compensation, etc.) to some types of independent contractors by reclassifying them as employees under criteria defined in the new legislation. While a few current freelancer categories (e.g., graphic designers, musicians) have since secured various exemptions, some organized groups have advocated AB-5's repeal or amendment. At the same time, additional states and the House of Representatives are reportedly viewing AB-5 as a possible model for their own legislation.

Both freelancers and employers are unsure of AB-5's practical effects—it's confusing. Our members have reported actual and potential loss of work. The law's foggy criteria for classifying workers and its limit of "35 jobs annually per client" for some gig work appear to have stimulated a noticeable preference among out-of-state clients to pass over California freelancers as a whole.

Since the time we initially planned this forum in March 2020, a proposed AB-1850 is now moving through the legislature and may offer some "remedy" to AB-5 issues.

Our two attorney speakers specializing in labor law are William Sokol (Weinberg, Roger & Rosenfeld), who mainly counsels employees and unions, and Sharon Ongerth Rossi (Rogers Joseph O'Donnell), who mainly counsels employers.

With their contrasting perspectives, our speakers will cover pertinent background and details of AB-5, as well as further legislation being considered. We'll also discuss what we editors should keep in mind for new and ongoing employer/client relationships as we continue to enjoy our livelihood as independent contractors.

Note: This forum won't be the venue for focused individual legal advice or for political strategizing to repeal or amend the law, accessible through other resources.

Hope to see you there!

Date: POSTPONED - New date pending
Location: Mechanics' Institute, 57 Post Street, 4th Floor, San Francisco, CA 94104
(a half-block walk from Montgomery BART station)

Talking about Tech

With the ever-increasing pervasiveness of technology in the publishing industry, editors must keep up with new hardware and software to stay competitive.

In this "digital potluck" discussion (an encore of our recent South Bay forum), we will look at our writing and editing tools; software to perform more rudimentary tasks; computer gear to optimize our workflow; blogs, blasts, and social media; and other geeky but essential tech aspects with which every editor should be familiar.

ACTION REQUEST: If you've used a handy program or helpful online tech resource, bring along your laptop or even just the URL, so you can share a short (5 min?) informal, low-pressure review or demo with us. We'll have a laptop connected to the room projector so everyone can see.

IMPORTANT: Please shoot a brief note to our moderator David Couzens before the meeting to let him know what you'd like to share (no exceptions), so he can add you to the list and keep our discussion flow organized. Thanks!

We can expect to walk away with some new tools and ideas, plus the always-helpful perspectives shared among fellow members.

Hope to see you there!

General Notes:

Next South Bay Forum

Date: TBA
Time: TBA
Location: Community Room, Campbell Public Library, 77 Harrison Ave., Campbell, CA 95008

Next forum topic: TBD. Any topic suggestions? See below.

General Notes:



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