free·​lanc·​er | \ ˈfrē-ˌlan(t)-sər How to pronounce freelancer (audio) \
plural freelancers

Definition of freelancer

1 : a person who pursues a profession without a long-term commitment to any one employer : freelance sense 1 hired a freelancer to write the article … there were hundreds of photographers on the scene, some on assignment, some freelancers, most of them amateurs.— Garrison Keillor But while Renzo is the ultimate company man, a lifetime employee who reports to the same office every morning, Riccardo is the prototypical freelancer, a peripatetic problem-solver with five-dozen clients.— Bruce Schoenfeld
2 : a person who acts independently without being affiliated with or authorized by an organization : freelance sense 2b [Anthony] Grafton contrasts public intellectuals outside and inside the universities, and he takes note of today's nostalgia for the freethinkers who lived and wrote independently of deans and classrooms. But it is good to be reminded that in that golden era of freelancers such as Wilson, H. L. Mencken, and Mary McCarthy, voices like theirs were also raised in universities.— G. W. Bowersock

Examples of freelancer in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Nahman wrote that her first day as a freelancer had also been the first day many New Yorkers went into quarantine. Anna Wiener, The New Yorker, "Is Substack the Media Future We Want?," 28 Dec. 2020 Knobler covered baseball as a freelancer for Bleacher Report for five years. Mike Digiovanna, Los Angeles Times, "Former sportswriter lives the good life after opening a bar in Thailand," 25 Dec. 2020 Challenger Matthew Simpson, listed as a contractor/freelancer by the San Diego County Registrar of Voters, could not be reached for comment. Deborah Sullivan Brennan, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Vista voters will choose three school board members," 14 Oct. 2020 Jones subsequently reinvented himself as a genre writer, and his work caught the attention of Pixar, who brought him in as a freelancer in 2013. Nate Jones, Vulture, "So You Want to Be a Working Screenwriter …," 20 Jan. 2021 Marketing freelancer Mariam Staunton ordered two sit-to-stand desks and a Herman Miller chair from Rework delivered to her Chicago home in the spring. Ryan Ori Chicago Tribune, Star Tribune, "For office furniture sellers during a pandemic, there's no place like home," 15 Nov. 2020 His son has no idea why the freelancer took so few pictures at such a memorable and marketable event. Bruce Selcraig,, "Lost trove: TV reporter finds his father’s Beatles photos in San Antonio," 16 Jan. 2021 On the cusp: Mentor, Stow, Brunswick, Solon, Berkshire, Streetsboro. Dan Gilles is a freelancer from Lorain. cleveland, "Who’s No. 1 in prep wrestling? St. Edward stakes claim, with several challengers to 2021 throne," 28 Dec. 2020 She was laid off from her job at a recreation center last December and stopped doing hair as a freelancer in March. Ava Kofman, oregonlive, "Small error leaves out-of-work Washington state man with demand to pay back $14k in unemployment benefits," 31 Oct. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'freelancer.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of freelancer

1924, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of freelancer was in 1924

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Last Updated

23 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Freelancer.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Mar. 2021.

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Nglish: Translation of freelancer for Spanish Speakers

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