Anonymous Reddit community launched called Transparency for TV Crew, sharing experiences of the slowdown 


An anonymous freelancer has quit the industry after reaching “breaking point” and has written an open letter on Reddit that has generated passionate responses.  

The freelancer, who over the past decade has worked for notable indies including Blast! Dragonfly, and Wildstar Films but has been out of work for most of 2023, posted the letter two days ago on a rapidly growing new Reddit community called Transparency for TV Crew.   

The community, which was set up two weeks ago in response to the struggles many are facing amid the commissioning slowdown, has 683 members and describes itself as being a place for UK freelancers “to share their stories, thoughts and advice in a safe, anonymous environment”.  

 “In the last year, I have reached my breaking point,” read the letter.  


“It hurts to say it because I have invested so much of my time, energy and money in what was once my dream… I honestly cannot continue here. Having such a volatile career, despite being respected and well liked in the industry, has spun my mental health into a constant place of fear, anxiety, and complete self-doubt.” 

 The freelancer said they felt they had “nothing to show” for working 18-hour days, seven days a week “to meet the demands of the production company and their limited staffing”.  

The effort had taken a toll both mentally and physically, they said.  

“There’s no time to exercise nor eat properly… the relationships I have invested heavily in don’t mean a lot when the production companies themselves don’t have the financial means.” 

Plea for support 

The freelancer went on to call for increased support for the freelance community, who are “isolated” in times of crisis and must “navigate an industry that only protects those we work for”.  

“To me, it emphasises the massive hole in our industry, where there is no continual connection between us all,” they said.  

 “Like the TV Access Project where broadcasters have come together for a joined goal on diversity, the industry would benefit from a similar project to support all freelancers.”  

The author thanked several “good egg” production companies including The Garden, Blast! Dragonfly, and Wildstar Films who they said treated them well in terms of hours, rates and consideration for wellbeing. 

The letter has also been shared on a runners Facebook group and the TV Mindset page and also prompted multiple responses within the Transparency for TV Crew community.  

Numerous freelancers revealed similar experiences and struggles, with several saying they too had decided to leave the industry this year.  

“This has really struck a chord with me,” said one, who said 2023 had been “worse than Covid.” 

“I’m currently feeling like quitting myself. This feels like there’s multiple factors and no end in sight, we’ve been left in the dark with no explanation.” 

They added: “I’m at a point in my life where I’m wanting to settle down but I don’t have the years of consistent earnings under my belt for a mortgage. I don’t have the stability of work either so I’m second guessing why I’m even holding on for hope?” 

Another said: “That feeling of self-doubt when the network you thought you had is quiet for so long it really eats into your self-esteem and makes you feel helpless. I know that feeling and it is getting to me too.” 

Someone else revealed they had also quit the industry this year “after years of bending over backwards for people, trying my hardest to succeed and loving it for so long.” 

They said: “I was tired of feeling unsafe from my mental and physical exhaustion, and being discarded and feeling like I was desperately trying to get the attention of companies I’d worked so hard for not caring at all…I’m trying to work through my own anger towards the industry, and struggling to maintain the friendships as it feels like I was actually just alone the whole time.” 

Yet another responder said: “It’s amazing how less stressful my life has become since leaving TV… You’ll miss the money but you have enough time to have friends, see your partner and get treated with respect in the workplace - all things that every other industry takes for granted.” 

The Reddit post, which has 160 upvotes and 47 comments at the time of publication, comes days after Bectu revealed that the majority of film and TV workers are currently not working and nearly a quarter of workers do not see themselves working in the industry in the next five years. 

Broadcast reported the personal slowdown experiences of five anonymous TV workers last month, revealing its impact on their careers and livelihoods.