Copy markers are also known as proofreaders, and must have strong attention to detail and grasp of the English language and grammar. A bachelor's degree is the typical academic requirement.
Copy marking is synonymous with proofreading since it involves meticulously checking documents for errors. Working as a copy marker is suitable for those who enjoy very detailed and precise work and who have a strong grasp of English grammar and spelling. A bachelor's degree in a related field is often needed in addition to the on-the-job training that may be provided by employers.
|Required Education||Bachelor's degree in a related field preferred; on-the-job training|
|Projected Job Growth (2018-2028)*||4% for copy markers and proofreaders|
|Median Salary (2018)*||$39,140 annually for copy markers and proofreaders|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
What is a Copy Marker?
Copy markers, also known as proofreaders, check transcripts, proofs and other written material for errors before publication. They scrutinize the writing for misspellings, typographical mistakes, left out words and misused punctuation, marking these mistakes as they go. They then reread the work after the corrections have been made to ensure the corrections were handled properly. Copy markers ensure an author's work is published with as few blemishes as possible.
According to O*Net, many copy markers and proofreaders have a bachelor's degree and undergo training on the job site. Although employers often prefer to hire those who hold a degree, one is not always required. Job listings showed a preference for a bachelor's degree, but did not specify a field. Attention to detail and in-depth knowledge of the rules of the English language are required.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) anticipates a 4% increase in employment for proofreaders and copy markers from 2018-2028. Forbes has listed copy markers as one of ten disappearing jobs for the middle class, citing advances in technology and diminishing media organizations as primary reasons. As more and more software is written to find and correct mistakes as authors write, fewer and fewer people will be needed to find the mistakes the computer can't handle.
Many copy markers and proofreaders work on a freelance basis. Joining a professional organization, such as a freelance writers' or proofreaders' association, may help in finding copy marking and proofreading jobs.
According to the BLS in May 2018, the mean annual wage for copy markers who worked for book and newspaper publishers was $38,020. Those who worked in public relation firms and advertising companies averaged $48,230, as reported by the BLS.
Copy markers typically have a bachelor's degree, and are often required to complete on-the-job training. This field is in decline, thanks to the increasing use of technology that can check for errors automatically. Advertising, publishing and journalism are fields that continue to hire copy markers.