Friday, November 16, 2007

Talks to resume!

It was just announced that the WGA and AMPTP will resume formal negotiations after Thanksgiving on November 26th. Let’s hope for an early Christmas present.


Richard Cooper said...

Support in the press and in the mind of the public has been heavily on the writers' side. I say ask for 10 cents per DVD instead of eight, because dimes are more compact and lighter than pennies. Ka-ching!

Rob said...

Wow, I thought that said, "Talks to resume" as though Ken had finally lost his mind and was talking to his list of accomplishments.

I hope you guys get your wish. I read in yesterday's Entertainment Weekly that Jim Belushi is soldiering ahead with his show, inexplicably apparently heading into its SEVENTH season. Of course, since that show appears to have no writers, I guess they'll be okay.

They also have a list of how many new episodes are in the pipeline for various shows before they run out. Some highlights:

Office: 0 Episodes
Two and a Half Men: 2 Episodes (it's tough writing them sex jokes)
Desperate Housewives: 3 Episodes
Boston Legal: 7 Episodes (David E. Kelly wrote them all in one weekend), Family Guy: 7 Episodes, American Dad: 13 episodes
Cavemen: 8 Episodes
The Simpsons: 10 episodes

Christina said...

I hope the strike is over soon. I'm scared all of the writers are gaining weight. I know writers and free food, and it sounds like the picket line has become a walking buffet.

Josh said...

Fingers crossed.

Anonymous said...

Let's see, the AMPTP has ben waging a campaign of "greedy schmucks with typewriters," trying paint the WGA as unwilling to negotiate, has stated emphatically since the strike started that they wouldn't be giving in to the requests for increases in DVD residuals or "new media" payments, right? And now they've just decided that, "Okay, we've willing to negotiate all this now..."

Well, color me skeptical. In fact, color me a disbeliever.

I'll go on record as saying I think this is just another tactic by the AMPTP to make the WGA look bad. They'll be able to say, "Look we went back to the table, but those greedy schmucks with typewriters are so unreasonable we just can't give in to their crazy demands."

Then they'll go on to say something like:

"In the interest of our many viewers and the poor writers out of work by the short sightedness of the WGA, we've decided that it's in the best interest of all to dissolve our relationship with the WGA and start a new joint venture with any writer willing to resigned from that unreasonable organization. We'll increase pay, pension benefits, and offer profit sharing on DVD and internet income...And in the future we'll re-visit how we pay our new employees and see if they need an increase in pay or benefits or if those things need to be decreased based on an income to profits ratio (Golly, I wonder what will happen then). And, of course, our new plan will require complete loyalty (each writer will have to sign an oath swearing to never unionize again) to the AMPTP and it goes without saying you can trust us. We're very honest folk and respect the work writers do completely."

And you know what? Some schmucks will buy it just so they can go back to work. What was it Lincoln said, something about "a house divided?" This is how it starts...

We'll see what happens, maybe the AMPTP can be trusted.

I doubt it though.

Color Me Skeptical

skiffywife said...

I posted this at the site frequented by members of Science Fiction Writers of America (SFWA), but thought it was worth repeating here:

I received an online poll about television last night. I usually don't fill such things out because I work for a TV station and it can be considered inappropriate. But I went ahead and completed it because it wasn't a ratings survey and I found it interesting in its subtext.

The poll was quite long and it soon became apparent it was discussing the NBC/Universal family of networks -- NBC, Bravo, USA, Sci-Fi, etc. It wanted to know in particular what kind of programming I was interested in, and mentioned entertainment news, reality shows, game shows, home improvement shows -- in other words, anything but scripted dramas or comedies. It sounds like NBC/Universal is looking at the possibility of a long strike.

So of course I praised scripted dramas and comedies, including specific shows such as Battlestar Galactica and the Law and Order shows, and when asked what their appeal was, made sure to mention the quality of the writing.

So there.

Dave Creek

rob! said...

i hope this turns out to be good news. its ridiculous its come to this, with the studios trying to make writers look like the bad guys in this.

i'm a freelance artist, and if any of my work appears re-pruposed anywhere, even on the web, i get a check. a small one, but a check nonetheless.

even i'm offended at the concept that i have more financial "rights" than the geniuses who craft the Office or 30 Rock.

Anonymous said...

I think the public is getting up to speed that the AMPTP's side is about union-busting.

Surf around, some sites it's still a few posts about what?, they get paid so much, the shows suck. But the WGA clips and internet efforts have been effective. Luckily, people log back on and say, well it's not what I thought; etc.

If the meeting ahead is just a shallow pose, the studios will end up revealing their own bottomless greed. And they'll finally reach that wider audience they seem to crave.

Anonymous said...

Interesting coincidence that both parties have agreed to meet just as November Sweeps is ending. Networks and studios are probably looking at how their ratings will have tanked with all the reruns that were aired this month.