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The Grizzly Gazette

The Grizzly Gazette

The Grizzly Gazette

What’s Going On With the Writer’s Strike?

Photo Credit: SAG-AFTRA


The Writers Guild of America (WGA) has been on an official strike since May 2, 2023. The WGA is the alliance between two labor unions and represents more than 11,000 films, news, etc. At the center of the strike is the want for better and stable pay structures.

This strike is not new, for six weeks writers have been negotiating with Hollywood’s major studios and production companies. The failure to meet the writer’s requests for higher compensation is what ultimately led to the strike.

Writers claim that streaming services have increased the difficulty of finding and maintaining a well-paying job in the industry. During the “cable era”, which was much more prevalent before streaming services gained popularity, writers found it easier to have a consistent job due to successful shows’ abilities to produce multiple seasons. It is common to find that shows on streaming services have a significantly shorter run-time and renewing them isn’t always reliable.

Streaming services pay fewer residuals, which are long-term financial compensations for workers involved in TV shows and movies for reruns after initial release. These residuals have become a problem for writers as half of these individuals work in streaming.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is another issue that prompted the writer’s strike. As the abilities of AI grow, the tech industry is promoting a future with its inclusion in every part of film production.

Those in favor of this involvement advertise it as a way to liberate creators by taking away the necessary painstaking tasks, allowing them to turn ideas into finished work at a quicker and cheaper rate.

However, most writers do not have the same outlook on the situation. They view it as an opportunity to replace real workers with acquiescent robots, which increases mediocre art and takes jobs away from real people. 

Production in Hollywood has been halted for two reasons, the first being writers have stopped working for months now, and the other deals with actors.

On July 14, 2023, actors decided to join screenwriters on strike. The dual strike within the two unions is the first in over six decades as actors haven’t been on strike since the 50s.

Actors have also expressed complaints regarding the streaming industry, “Union leaders say the streaming model that has taken over the industry in recent years has cheated actors of their share of income and funneled money to executives, and proposals of the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, which represents the studios, streamers. and production companies in negotiations, did not even begin to meet their needs,” said Andre Dalton in an APNews article.

Due to the failure to accept actors’ negotiations, there were 65,000 actors who voted for union leaders to send them into a strike.

Union rules include no promotion of work on podcasts or premiers, no auditions, rehearsals, wardrobe fittings, or any other form of production work.

There has been no movement on the strike, and it is likely that this will continue for an extensive amount of time.


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