Sunday, August 23, 2009

Priorities of Value (RM)

I was told that a singer was paid RM18,000 for 4 songs recently. If this is true, I find it to be irritating, but I guess that's where the value is placed.
When lecturers ask to be paid for commercial coursework, as per rules set, it is condemned and laughed at. "Ini tugas hakiki" (Its your job). Lecturers get paid a pittance. We don't get pay raises as what teachers get (the answer I got was that I could always have the possibility of getting a J Scale salary and therefore shouldn't ask for a pay raise. Ya right, the possibility.. and I pay my bills with a possibility as well).
I am lucky to get RM200 an hour for a commercial coursework lecture, that I must spend hours to prepare. Nevertheless I must say that I am extremely thankful for that RM200 and that class. Its better than nothing, or compared to a stupid figure from RM60 onwards that some other lecturers get teaching elsewhere. Yup, that's the value of a lecturer.
Yet with this piece of news, its saddens me. Spoils my mood. Not because the singer gets so much. Nope. That's the singer's 'rezeki' (God given income) and I don't begrudge that. What saddens me is that Knowledge is seen as so cheap. Its not wanted if it has to be paid for. Companies and individuals want me to give them my knowledge for free and don't place value on my years of experience, hard work, trials and tribulations in order to gain that know how. That saddens me.

Ernest
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