Can technology save creatives?

Freelancers UnionOur partner, The Freelancers Union, is pitching a panel idea for SXSW 2012 (South by Southwest, a Music/Film/Interactive conference in Austin, Texas) and needs your vote.

The idea,“Frontier Justice: Can Technology Save Creatives?” proposes a panel featuring awesome thinkers and doers like Etsy, Loosecubes, SnapGoods, Jim Gilliam, and Sara Horowitz, founder of Freelancers Union.

Here’s the pitch:
Frontier Justice: Can Technology Save Creatives?
It’s not a jungle out there—it’s actually a frontier being pioneered by creative and entrepreneurial trailblazers. In the economic Wild West, we frontiersmen (or freelancers) lack things like laws that protect us from outlaw clients who don’t pay, affordable health insurance, or unemployment if we don’t strike gold. Luckily, nobody’s more creative than us, and the homesteading movement we’re leading is set to make the creative, mobile workforce one of the most exciting and liberating places to work. Technology is empowering those of us who currently have the least power—the freelancers, the self-employed creative professionals, and the lone rangers without a traditional career track—to make new versions of the age-old practice of mutual support. We’re using the internet to make online and offline communities, and using those communities to build market power, organize politically, and form connections. It’s a cross between a saloon, a chat room, and a union hall.

With over 35,000 people attending the creative gathering next year in Austin, the panel will bring attention to the growing freelance sector and the needs of independent workers. Competition is stiff, so if you dig the idea, vote here!

More details here.