ben4847 wrote:If the firm paid, then some kid from a better school with a better GPA would have taken the job and you'd be stuck trying to twist your starbucks summer into "legal experience".
This is probably true (but we need to know more about OP first to know for sure).
ben4847 wrote:I don't see what you are upset about.
This is asinine. Just because being exploited puts you in a better off position does not mean that you should not be upset about being exploited. If my options were: starve or be enslaved, I might take the enslavement, but I think I'd be a little upset about it.
Well, sure you'd be upset if your choice was starve or be a slave. But the question is not whether OP should be upset, but whether he should be upset at his employer.
If you were starving, and an employer offered to hire you as a slave for a job that you were otherwise less qualified than the other candidates for, you would be upset at the employer? Why? Would OP really be happier if the job paid 10k for the summer and went to a different candidate?