Freelancing as a word is being used more and more nowadays. But it was not like this always. The history of Freelancing is very surprising and the gradual increase in popularity has some clear reasons behind it. People have some wrong ideas about Freelancing. We tend to think of Freelancing from a very narrow point of view. Though the Freelancing spectrum is much broader than you might have imagined. So let’s take a look at the history of Freelancing and why Freelancing work getting famous.
History Of Freelancing
As I told before the history of Freelancing is very interesting. The word ‘freelance’ first came into the English language around the early 1800s. The word referred to a medieval mercenary. They fought for whoever paid them the most. The oldest written use of this word was found in Sir Walter Scott’s novel, ‘Ivanhoe’.
The word took a broader meaning very quickly. The word ‘freelancer’ is relatively new than the word ‘freelance’. It refers to someone who does any kind of work for someone without any long-term commitment to the employer.
Why It’s Getting Famous?
In the mid and late 90’s the world saw a boom in the number of freelancers actively working. At that time people saw it as something that young people should do for their pocket money. Though it saw a popularity decline in 2005. After 2013 it has now grown again and rapidly.
People usually think of freelancers as a content writer which is in fact half true. Half of the freelance population work as content writers. Though any work that you would do for money will fall into the freelancing category.
In USA, 1 in 3 person claim that they work as a freelancer. The freelancers association suggests that there are approximately 55 million freelancers in the USA.
Developing nations like India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and some African nations have seen the biggest growth in freelancers. The main reason behind this is the lack of well-paying job and serious job crisis. Freelancing has given people opportunity to work freely and earn relatively well.
Also, freelancing gives you ample opportunity to do whatever you are passionate about. A lot of people who started working as a freelancer manage to start their own firm. The conventional jobs won’t give you this flexibility and even if you are working on a day to day job you can easily find some time to do some freelancing work.
It is also a big opportunity for someone who can’t get a conventional job.
Drawbacks Of Freelancing
Now I won’t say that freelancing is all good. There are some serious problems with it too. The lack of job security is one the biggest problem of freelancing. You might even have to go for months without getting any job. Some people also say that they had to deal with late paying employers. You also won’t get the benefits of a regular job, like a pension or casual and sick leaves. Also, there is a wage gap between people who are working as a freelancer and someone who is doing a conventional job.
Though I think freelancing is a great opportunity for someone who wants to progress and do something they really like.
Also published on Medium.