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Bon Appétit cast say they won’t film until salary issues are resolved

Bon Appétit cast say they won't film until salary issues are resolved


Bon Appétit cast say they won’t film until salary issues are resolved

Josh Rivera
USA TODAYPublished 5:33 PM EDT Jun 9, 2020Things got too hot and cast members got out of the BA Test Kitchen.On Monday, Bon Appétit’s editor in chief Adam Rapoport resigned after a 2013 Instagram post resurfaced with him in what some called “brown face.”The resurfaced post prompted some members of the BA Test Kitchen to speak out about their experiences, including test kitchen assistant editor Sohla El-Waylly, who joined the calls for Rapoport to resign. El-Waylly also claimed she was brought on to assist white editors with “significantly less experience” than her and “only white editors are paid for their video appearances.”Recap: Here’s what’s going on with ‘Bon Appétit’ and why editor in chief Adam Rapoport resignedBon Appétit’s Test Kitchen is the YouTube component of Condé Nast’s food and entertainment glossy magazine. With more than 6 million subscribers, it’s an online success bringing in its own income stream. Some Test Kitchen editors are on contracts with Condé Nast Entertainment, the video arm of the parent company.Following the public resignation of Rapoport and comments from El-Waylly, many Test Kitchen members announced they would not appear in videos until compensation issues are addressed.Contributing editor, and breakout star, Claire Saffitz posted an Instagram Story where she acknowledged her “implicit acceptance of the status quo” and “asked (Bon Appétit) not to release any videos” of filmed videos of her that haven’t aired. She went on to add: “I am not currently under contract with (Bon Appétit) and have not been filming new videos since June 1.”Senior food editor Molly Baz posted an Instagram Story asking others to commit to not appear in videos until their “BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) colleagues receive equal pay and are fairly compensated for their appearances.”Senior food editor Andy Baraghani, Test Kitchen director Chris Morocco, and chef Brad Leone made similar statements on Instagram.Associate editor Christina Chaey and food editor at large Carla Lalli Music made similar statements on Twitter.In an interview with BuzzFeed News, El-Waylly said when she applied for the assistant food editor position she asked for $65,000 a year, but Human Resources said the company only had $50,000 for the position.”It would be one thing if one person was saying, ‘I deserve a higher wage’ but what you have is a group of people forming a coalition asking for a higher wage. And they’re doing it a time where the optics would look really bad for the organization were they to fire these people or just say no,” says Malia Mason, professor of business management at Columbia Business School.The company, Condé Nast, posted on Twitter late Monday: “As a global media company, Condé Nast is dedicated to creating a diverse, inclusive and equitable workplace. We have a zero-tolerance policy toward discrimination and harassment in any forms. Consistent with that, we go to great lengths to ensure that employees are paid fairly, in accordance with their roles and experience, across the entire company. We take the well-being of our employees seriously and prioritize a people-first approach to our culture.”Nevertheless, salaries negotiations get murkier as they go above minimum wage, with bias creeping in depending on the parties involved, as Mason notes.”What starts to really shrink the gap between blacks and whites is if you control for the job role that people are performing. However, it ignores the fact that whites get promoted to higher paying jobs at a higher rate than blacks do,” added Mason. “There’s a lot of evidence to suggest that non-whites are being paid less than whites, on average.”USA TODAY reached out to Condé Nast for comment.Follow Josh Rivera on Twitter: @Josh1Rivera.

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