November 8, 2007
The WGA strike
A handy video [via Shakes] that explains why writers are striking:
And here, Joss Whedon takes the New York Times to task for its unsympathetic coverage of the strike. A sampling:
“The trappings of a union protest…” You see how that works? Since we aren’t real workers, this isn’t a real union issue. (We’re just a guild!) And that’s where all my ‘what is a writer’ rambling becomes important. Because this IS a union issue, one that will affect not just artists but every member of a community that could find itself at the mercy of a machine that absolutely and unhesitatingly would dismantle every union, remove every benefit, turn every worker into a cowed wage-slave in the singular pursuit of profit. (There is a machine. Its program is ‘profit’. This is not a myth.) This is about a fair wage for our work. No different than any other union. The teamsters have recognized the importance of this strike, for which I’m deeply grateful. Hopefully the Times will too.
Finally, regular updates and lots of information are available at the United Hollywood blog — which is where the above video originated. I learned through that blog that the WGA actually conceded the demand for the additional 4 cents (i.e. 0.6% instead of 0.3%) on DVD sales at the eleventh hour, to no avail.
I don’t mind watching reruns (even if this goes on as long or longer than the 1988 strike: 22 weeks — and 22 weeks without The Daily Show during election season would seriously suck) and waiting longer for movies I want to see if it ultimately means writers will get paid more.