Question for the Game Mag editors

I need an answer from a pro on this. :)

What is the difference, if any, between a contributing writer and a freelance writer? Is there any difference in terms of the sort of duties these writers have? Is a contributing writer more bound to a specific publication, as opposed to a freelancer who’s name may appear in a myriad of publications in a given month? Is it all just a matter of semantics?

Anyway, if any of you game mag editors on the board can clear this up for me, that would be great. Thanks! :D

Two names for the same thing, typically.

A contributing editor typically has a closer relationship with the pub, and may be exclusive.

But there’s no textbook definition for any of these jobs. What’s Editor at one mag may be Editor-in-Chief at another.

And then PCG has that horrid “Deputy Editor” title…

“Oh, deputy. Depyooooootee!”

I was a contributing editor when I was interning at Max PC, for a few issues. PCG always had me listed as editorial intern :(

Yeah, it’s based on the mag. All the titles you see in a masthead are usually subjective to the magazine. We have a departments editor who functions like a managing editor.

Typically, I think most publishers have a set pay rate for specific editorial titles, and the amount they feel yer worth is where you’re slotted.

But contributing editors are typically freelancers who do a lot of work, like a columnist, or someone who reviews each month. It can be an easy and free way to compensate a good writer who otherwise gets paid shit.

The PC Gamer Deputy Editor title is a hold-over from the original UK edition. Deputy Editor is the usual title for the #2 spot on most UK game mags. At least it was when I was still there.

And I’ve worked on mags where even Contributing Editor is just a glorified name for a freelance writer, even though they don’t actually edit anything.

Yeah, I’m a contributing editor for CGW, and I can verify that I don’t edit anything. Or really contribute much for that matter.

Then there’s the ever popular “Art director is too lazy to modify the masthead” scenario…