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Real wage declines in the scribbling game

If you want to compare the value of a £125.00 Income or Wealth , in 2000 there are four choices. In 2021 the relative:
real wage or real wealth value of that income or wealth is £223.80
labour earnings of that income or wealth is £231.60
relative income value of that income or wealth is £225.30
relative output value of that income or wealth is £257.70

Nominal wages have stayed static in the scribbling game these past 23 years. Meaning that real wages have declined substantuially. As above.

Just a little note to any young whippersnappers thinking about entering it.

Note that this isn’t a complaint, it’s just an observation.

5 thoughts on “Real wage declines in the scribbling game”

  1. Supply and demand. The question is why do so many whippersnappers think that a job where they sit on their backside all day is the right career for them?

  2. Try arable farming where wheat prices have been lower in nominal terms at times in the last 10 years than they were 40 years ago. Oh and input prices only go one way – up. A tractor that would have cost 30-40k in 2000 now costs over 100k. Everyone we buy from raises their prices year on year, and the processors/retailers we sell to have raised their selling prices to the public. As JFK said:

    “For the farmer, is the only man in our economy who has to buy everything he buys at retail – sell everything he sells at wholesale – and pay the freight both ways.”

  3. Thing is, doesn’t all work decline in value over time? Like when I had a job in a record shop as a kid, the store manager had a company car and raised a family on the money from it. I had school friends whose dads managed a shop and that paid a mortgage and a car.

    Even software. Sure, we earn more, but it’s not the same job that it once was. I used to get paid to optimise code to be faster but no-one cares now. Just stick another server in the room. I can produce far more stuff today for less because I just tell AWS to do things rather than having to have a server/DBA guy do it for me.

  4. In 1961 a university advisor advised that scribbling (journalism) would not make one wealthy and medicine, law or capt’n of industry might be a better direction to take if a comfortable life was a goal. This was the US. Maybe nothing has changed.

  5. Journalism is a tournament game. The very top end (which, well, not necessarily entirely and wholly related to quality) gets paid very, very well indeed. Weekly column for someone at the top of their game might be £5k a week and take 2 to 3 hours to do (inc research). Boris on £250k a year was high but not out of order by the standards. Bernard Levin used to write his in 20 minutes. Then there’s book revenues etc on top.

    It fades away very swiftly, very swiftly indeed. I get £250 per thousand words at one national. Local papers are £90 a thousand. And that’s if you can even get into them with any regularity.

    Note this isn’t a complaint from me, it’s an observation. I do a lot of technical stuff that isn’t more generally seen and make a top 10% – couple of years, top 1% – income. It’s good to me. But that is because I’m specialist. And it’s only a couple of very small rungs below me that there’s more money at McDonald’s.

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