The New York Times has an article about the increase in demand for internships during the crisis and those who take advantage of young graduates who are even more vulnerable than usual to charge them for unpaid internships that are actually unpaid jobs.
With paying jobs so hard to get in this weak market, a lot of college graduates would gladly settle for a nonpaying internship. But even then, they are competing with laid-off employees with far more experience.
To quote a quoted professor of education at Standford University: “This is just ratcheting it up another notch, which is quite frightening.”
And if you wonder why a mainstream media had the guts to cover unfair internships, for a rare time, the explanation is in the byline: “Gerry Shih is a summer intern at The Times. He is paid.” This being said, there is no mention of the legality of it all, even though unfair internships are an illegal practice hidden in plain sight.