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How much to pay a proofreader?

Posted: 17 Jul 2022, 20:53
by Chrisdee33rocks
I usually proof my own scores, but for an orchestration I'm doing I was going to hire someone as a second set of eyes to proofread, but I have no idea what the rate would be?

Anyone hire proofreaders, or work as a proofreader that might give me a ballpark? Full orchestra score, for a film. Around 50 3-10 pg a3 sized pg. orch. score, and then all the parts. Pg rate? Hourly? Package?

Thanks!!!

Chris

Re: How much to pay a proofreader?

Posted: 18 Jul 2022, 16:45
by JJP
In the USA, the American Federation of Musicians (AFM) negotiates minimum rates with film studios for proofreaders on films. Proofreaders are paid hourly under AFM agreements. (You don't want a proofreader rushing to get paid for more pages.)

There is a standard rate, and then reduced rates for low-budget projects. ("Low-budget" is determined by the budget for the entire film, which must be declared by the producer and verified by the AFM at the end of production.) The rates also assume the potential for residual income later, and there are premiums for overtime and night work. People doing work that is not part of an AFM agreement may ask for more to account for that loss of income and other benefits.

The following are basic proofreading rates, including health and pension contributions. (Normally, the health and pension component are paid to the health and pension funds in the USA and not directly to the proofreader.)

AFM theatrical film proofreading minimum rates (including benefits)
  • Standard = $55.88/hour
  • <$15 million = $49.19/hour
  • <$2 million = $43.47/hour
If orchestrators are hired to proofread, they are paid at the orchestrator hourly rate for miscellaneous tasks.

AFM theatrical film orchestrator proofreading minimum rates rates (including benefits)
  • Standard = $66.86/hour
  • <$15 million = $58.07/hour
  • <$2 million = $50.88/hour
The next motion picture negotiations are set for the end of 2022, so I'd expect these rates to rise by at least 2% next year.

You can find more information here:
https://www.afm.org/our-musicians/recor ... l/film-tv/

I don't have the UK rates handy at the moment, so perhaps someone else can chime in with their rates.

Re: How much to pay a proofreader?

Posted: 18 Jul 2022, 18:57
by David Ward
In the UK proofreading would come under ‘music preparation’

The Musicians’ Union minimum standard hourly rate for music preparation is £35.45 per hour (9am - 9pm and includes collection/delivery time and travel time if requested).

That was in 2021. With current inflation, 10% should probably be added to this.

Re: How much to pay a proofreader?

Posted: 18 Jul 2022, 21:21
by Fred G. Unn
In NYC the Local 802 AFM rates for proofreading mostly range from $40-$48 depending on contract/agreement. (Jingles and Pay TV are a bit less than that range) Plus, as JJP mentioned, the required heath and pension contributions are additional expenses for the client.

Re: How much to pay a proofreader?

Posted: 18 Jul 2022, 22:14
by JJP
Fred G. Unn wrote:
18 Jul 2022, 21:21
In NYC the Local 802 AFM rates for proofreading mostly range from $40-$48 depending on contract/agreement. (Jingles and Pay TV are a bit less than that range) Plus, as JJP mentioned, the required heath and pension contributions are additional expenses for the client.
To be clear, film is negotiated on a national level which means minimum rates are the same in any city in the USA. Otherwise you’d have film and TV studios trying to play all of us off each other like they do with states and tax breaks.

That reminds me of a story. I have a friend who used to be a production accountant at the Weinstein Company. While working there my friend told me, “When we decide which projects to produce, we consider three factors: tax breaks, tax breaks, and tax breaks.” ;)

Re: How much to pay a proofreader?

Posted: 19 Jul 2022, 08:04
by Chrisdee33rocks
Thanks for the replies!

I’ve looked over the AFM rates, and usually do when I have to quote someone a price for orchestrating/arranging/copy work, though I do always find them super confusing as they seem like they were all written in different era….

I’ve personally found that most people not doing union gigs charge lesss, not more than the union rates, though it would be great if musicians got paid a decent wage….

I should’ve said that this is a non union gig, and the budget is, as always, tight…

Maybe people only use proofreaders on union gigs? I can’t reallly seem to find anyone out there doing freelance proofreading. I know Joan Kane or a big copy house will have their own proofreaders, was just wondering what freelancer actually charges.

Also I know musicians and composers here in LA, but I don’t think I’ve ver met a proofreader though I know people use them.

It must just be one of those things.

Thanks!!!!

Re: How much to pay a proofreader?

Posted: 19 Jul 2022, 21:50
by JJP
Chrisdee33rocks wrote:
19 Jul 2022, 08:04
Maybe people only use proofreaders on union gigs? I can’t reallly seem to find anyone out there doing freelance proofreading. I know Joan Kane or a big copy house will have their own proofreaders, was just wondering what freelancer actually charges.

Also I know musicians and composers here in LA, but I don’t think I’ve ver met a proofreader though I know people use them.

It must just be one of those things.
I'm also here in LA. Those rates are freelance rates. There are a few orchestrators who use proofreaders. I have done a great amount of freelance proofreading over the years - mostly parts, but also scores. However, I currently only do union work. That's how I maintain my healthcare and ensure that the other people with whom I work are treated properly.

That said, I have a great amount of experience working with composers and producers to help them put their projects on a union contract and still work within their budgets.

If I can assist in any way, or if you'd just like to talk, here's my website...
https://SymbolsOfSound.com

Feel free to contact me via the website or DM me here.

Re: How much to pay a proofreader?

Posted: 23 Sep 2022, 09:17
by NeeraWM
Hello Chris,
I'm sure I am late to the party here, but I have just launched a dedicated proof-reading service in my general music engraving activity.
It is both a musical and a specifically engraving-quality proofreading service, according to the needs of the composer/arranger/else...
Ever since getting an iPad 12.9in in 2018 with the pencil, I started to proofread the PDF output of my scores and I was literally blown away by what a jump in quality I managed to achieve. I truly couldn't believe it at first. I now proofread even the least important score I produce, as I always find something.

I announced the service on my website here (a bit longer description to show why I got there): https://artisticscoreengraving.wordpres ... g-service/
For those not knowing me and my work I have set it up as a product where I sell my editions: https://artisticscoreng.gumroad.com/l/uihvx

In general I use my hourly rate (between EUR 30-35 / h) also to this, but in general I have so far used the "budget" tactics: the customer says, I have a maximum of EUR 100 to invest in this, and I will adjust my work to see what can be done in that. I usually work in layers of priority, so this gives me a range of flexibility.

I am sure JJP already covered your needs, but in case you or anyone else would like to try this out, there is still a chance to try this out for free (1 page per entry). I wrote this out on my FB page but I don't want to force you to go there, just PM me and I'll do it.

PS: is it possible to change the forum name somehow? I would like to use my full name!

Re: How much to pay a proofreader?

Posted: 15 Oct 2022, 20:26
by OCTO
NeeraWM wrote:
23 Sep 2022, 09:17

PS: is it possible to change the forum name somehow? I would like to use my full name!
Yes, send the message to Agent007.