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Old December 11th, 2007, 04:06 PM   #91
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Hello, reality TV!

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Old December 12th, 2007, 02:58 PM   #92
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This is amusing...

On the AMPTP website they have a live counter showing how much the Screenwriters are loosing per second. It's up to 105.5 million as of this writing...

"Estimated losses are based on data supplied by WGA West on initial compensation paid to its members in 2006."

It's dodgey math at best but it seems like a effective way of communicating whats at stake.
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Last edited by Theodore McNeil; December 12th, 2007 at 02:58 PM. Reason: grammar
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Old December 12th, 2007, 04:53 PM   #93
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In the world of wiki's there is an interesting wikipedia page about how many episodes of all the shows that are left.
quite interesting, in so many words in about 6-8 weeks we'll be out of new content on television.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Effect_..._on_television
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Old December 12th, 2007, 06:10 PM   #94
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And how much are the studios loosing per second? If their profits exceed the payment to writers, (And they must by a great deal) Then the loss to the studios at this point must be ten times what the loss to the writers counter indicates.


Dodgy math indeed.


Writers don't COST the studios money... they MAKE THE STUDIOS money.


(The counter is more indicative of delayed payments... that money will still be paid, but at a later date.)
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Old December 12th, 2007, 08:54 PM   #95
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Although my sympathies are with the writers, I really don't have a dog in this fight. What I'm really fascinated is how cleverly the writers are using web and specifically web video to win the public over.

Example: the horror writers organized exorcism of Warner Bros.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W2A3ha6N6NA

Check out this video, where fans of Joss Whedon travelled from all over the world just to picket with their hero:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Ze0orUIToM

They've even got the fans organizing a web site: www.fans4writers.com

I think it's something we can learn from, because (imho) it's one the best guerilla ad campaigns ever put together.
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Old December 12th, 2007, 10:56 PM   #96
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Originally Posted by Richard Alvarez View Post
And how much are the studios losing per second? If their profits exceed the payment to writers, (And they must by a great deal) Then the loss to the studios at this point must be ten times what the loss to the writers counter indicates.
The studios really shouldn't be losing all that much money yet. Most of their shows are still on the air and generating advertising revenue. Movies are still going into theaters and will for some time. DVDs are still being released, etc.

When the strike started, writers stopped earning immediately, but it takes time for the studios to start to feel the pinch. In television far sooner than in film.

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(The counter is more indicative of delayed payments... that money will still be paid, but at a later date.)
Not necessarily. The television writers who were on staff won't get back pay for the weeks they were on strike. There's a pretty good chance that some episodes won't be made up, either. There are also rewrites that might have been commissioned before that won't be now because of the strike because studios are more-or-less forced to go with what they have.

And that doesn't even include the fact that studios buy far more scripts than they ever make. It's not likely that the studios will buy more pitches, specs, etc. to make up for the time writers were on strike.

There's a decent bit of money that writers will never be able to get back (and, at this point, it seems unlikely that the resulting residual deal for new media will be any better than what we could've gotten had we not struck. So it's not even a matter of short-term sacrifice for long-term gain).
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Old December 13th, 2007, 10:58 AM   #97
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Well, I know some comic companies are looking for screenwriters to submit work. And I doubt the WGA would try to get in on it--it's too low paying vs. what the screenwriters and TV writers/producers are doing.

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Old December 13th, 2007, 11:20 AM   #98
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I don't really think the WGA as a whole should try and guide its members into different lines of work. The Guild really isn't designed for getting its members jobs. It's designed to set minimum standards for employment, but members get jobs on their own both inside and outside film and television.

I'd certainly write comics if any comic company wanted me to do it, but I'm not one of the A-listers or B-listers these companies are talking about hiring.
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Old December 13th, 2007, 11:58 AM   #99
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The WGA isn't guiding them, but they want to get in on the web (I think on shows that studios finance, or big production companies, like quarterlife, on MySpace and now, NBC). What I meant was, writers can write for comics now with no worries of WGA reprisals, but the web may be dicey, if they have a studio/major prod. co. backing it.

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Old December 13th, 2007, 12:41 PM   #100
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That's part of creating a minimum standard, though. We, as a Guild, want to cover filmed entertainment in its many forms, and Internet-related video is part of that.

There's nothing in our contract right now that would prevent any of us from writing material directly for the web. First-run web videos aren't covered by the WGA MBA, so the WGA doesn't have jurisdiction.

Just like we could write for non-Guild animated shows or movies or we could take jobs on reality shows, the stuff that isn't covered is fair game (the only complication is the strike rules, which prevent writing for a struck company even in a non-covered capacity, but it would be difficult to punish a member for doing work that isn't covered by the WGA MBA. And writing Internet-related stuff for non-struck companies would be perfectly kosher).

We can write comic books (even for DC). We could write novels. We can write television commercials. We could go to work for Rupert Murdoch at the Wall Street Journal if we could get the job simply because all of that isn't covered stuff.
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Old December 13th, 2007, 12:45 PM   #101
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Thanks for clearing that up, Ryan. I'm sure the web is gonna be a tough one in negotiations!

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Old December 13th, 2007, 01:02 PM   #102
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the only complication is the strike rules, which prevent writing for a struck company even in a non-covered capacity,
Quoting myself here, I realize this part isn't 100% correct. The strike rules do allow exceptions for some animated stuff largely because a different union generally has jurisdiction over writing for animated films and a lot of animated television (a handful of animated TV shows are WGA-covered) - and by "writing" I mean screenwriting. WGA members could write a novel for HarperCollins, for example, even though they're a subsidiary of a struck company.

There's also the complications illustrated by something like quarterlife. The show is being shown on FOX-owned MySpace, but the show itself is owned and produced by the creators. So, somehow, that makes it okay.

It's entirely too complicated for my feeble little brain to keep up with.
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Old December 14th, 2007, 11:14 PM   #103
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Ending the writers' strike hinges on pact divvying up online-video revenue

http://www.marketwatch.com/news/stor...BF2A882EB6D%7D

Quote:
Writers still believe they were cheated out of their fair share of home-video residuals negotiated in the 1980s, and they worry a similar fate awaits them in the Internet age.
Under existing arrangements, writers receive 1.2% of gross revenue from shows streamed on the Web. In the most recent talks, the writers proposed that in the first year of their new contract, they should receive 3% of applicable revenue for every 100,000 hits generated, each quarter, for a TV show streamed over the Internet. In the second year, this percentage would drop to 2.5%.
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Old December 15th, 2007, 10:13 AM   #104
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We don't actually receive 1.2% of streaming video. We get 1.2% on online video rentals under existing agreements. Some of the studios have also been paying the home video rate (roughly .36% on most Hollywood movies) for downloaded movies and TV shows, but there's no agreement on that (and the WGA has sought arbitration on every instance in which they've paid the home video rate for downloads absent any agreement).

They've offered a flat $250 for streaming video. We countered with a flat fee per 100,000 (that was based on our wanted 2.5% rate) that worked out to roughly $600 per 100,000 views, but that was immediately rejected.

We've not made any movement on downloads.

I don't know how we say we were cheated on the home video rate. It's not a cheat if we agree to it (we even dropped a big arbitration over the issue at the end of the 1985 strike).

And if we believe the "fair rate" for Internet to be 1.5% or 1.8% of the distributor's gross, then we're going to be disappointed with whatever streaming or download rate we get since it's unlikely to be that high.
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Old December 15th, 2007, 10:18 AM   #105
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I don't think anyone makes money off streaming video. I know I don't.

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