AFL club cops it over ‘disgusting’ ad
Melbourne has admitted a job advertisement seeking three or four people for an 11-month unpaid role in its football department was "poorly-worded".
The Demons sparked an uproar with their attempt to find volunteers to work in their Football Technology Pathway Progam from December 2020 to October 2021 with contact hours varying from 10-25 hours per week.
"An exciting opportunity has become available for 3-4 individuals to volunteer within the club's football department for the 2021 season," the advertisement read.
"Reporting to the football analysis team, the successful individuals will contribute to a broad range of areas within all four of our teams in the AFL, VFL, AFLW and VFLW.
"This program would best suit students or graduates from either an exercise and sports science, information technology, statistical and multimedia background, who have a strong interest and understanding of AFL football."
The advertisement was circulated on social media on Tuesday and drew an angry reaction.
"Hey Melbourne - don't do this," sports journo Paige Cardona wrote. "Do not ask people to work for you for free for 10-25 hours per week in your football department. That is disgusting."
"Mind-blowing any professional organisation could try and get away with this," added the AAP's Oliver Caffrey.
An AFL club advertising for volunteers to work "10-25 hours per week" in an area of a football department shouldn't be happening in 2021 with the money now in footy. It's not work experience its an 11 month part time job with no pay.— Ryan Reynolds (@Reynolds_R) November 30, 2020
Melbourne chief executive Gary Pert quickly moved to explain the situation.
"The scope and intent of the program was to keep the time frame flexible, to allow us to accommodate students at any month of the proposed period," Pert told the Herald Sun.
"To be clear, this pathway program does not run for a total of 11 months. Instead, the duration of the program is predicated on the student's individual course requirements and no student's hours will exceed the amount they need to complete their university unit.
"The club accepts that there were elements of the advertisement that were worded poorly and lacked clarity, and we will ensure this does not occur again."
It follows a similar controversy in the lead-up to the Grand Final where the AFL was accused of attempting to exploit dancers.
Originally published as AFL club cops it over 'disgusting' ad
Imagine an AFL club advertising three to four 𝘨𝘳𝘢𝘥𝘶𝘢𝘵𝘦 𝘱𝘰𝘴𝘪𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯𝘴 in the football department worth up to 2.5 FTE between them for 𝘧𝘳𝘦𝘦. Totally unpaid. 'Volunteer'.— Michael Lamonato (@MichaelLamonato) December 1, 2020