Had a similar instance happen with me, only the project head wanted me to model 3 next gen characters for FREE. No thanks brah. He said that riches and fame would be the reward for helping with the project. Just remember what the Roman poet Ovid said, "Everyone is a millionaire where promises are concerned."
Cool story bro. But I dont get the point. There are idiots out there. Post all the articles you want and complain and act surprised all you want, it isn't going to make them change. My bit of advice is this: if you think your work (anyone here) is so good that it demands £500 per week- which is close to $1000 USD, and you get people who ask you to do stuff for 30, tell them to stop wasting your time and tying up your phone, and "That's the price!" and hang up. Don't get all involved in their lives, wondering what they are thinking or what makes them tick, finding out what they said on facebook to another asshole, obsessing over how 'stupid' you think they are, just let it go. They're a waste of time, so stop wasting your apparently valuable time on them.