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Thread: WGA Strike & all related issues

  1. #21
    Fool... but no pity. Krom's Avatar
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    Re: WGA Strike & all related issues

    The Tonight Show stuff getting ugly is just a sign of more to come.

    NBC is doing all kinds of crazy talk. Guest hosts, for example, who will pretty much be any celeb they can con into crossing the picket lines. Balanced against some bogus claim that they, NBC, are only doing this to "spare the show's staff being fired".

    Incidentally, Conan O'Brian and his staff are apparently getting the same kind of firing threats as Leno. And its of historical note that in 1988 (the sixth month long strike), both Johnny Carson and David Letterman (then both on NBC) folded and came back on the air, unscripted, under precisely this kind of "the staff will get fired otherwise" pressure. Except in that case, the network didn't apply that hammer until the strike had gone on for months, not days.

    This is going to start to affect everything. Talk shows still airing, talk shows the networks want to get back on, reality shows, scripted shows where scripts are complete but they haven't shot them yet but where actors refuse to show up. Lawsuits and firings will be lofted around like missiles. And its not like the threats will all be coming from one side--the tactics are getting ugly on both sides. Ellen Degeneres has apparently already gotten ripped a new one by the WGA for going back on the air sans writers (because contractually her show has syndication contracts which can't be circumvented). The WGA says they are planning to specifically picket Ellen's show if she stays on the air. Degeneris' representation says that she's essentially in the same position as Oprah, Dr. Phil, Regis and Kelly, and other shows of that ilk, and none of them are being pressured off the air.

    Here's an interesting tidbit: Courtney Cox apparently walked off the set of "Dirt", a show SHE produces. While a lot of producers have done that because they are hyphenates (writer-producers, I mean... think Tim Kring or Damon Lindelof), Cox is probably the first hyphenated-producer (in her case, actor-producer) to walk off their show strictly from sympathy, rather than being a WGA member.
    Last edited by Krom; 11-10-2007 at 04:34 AM.

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  2. #22
    Crazy Shutterbug Harmony2000's Avatar
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    Re: WGA Strike & all related issues

    Well I already went on NetFlix and ordered the season sets of a bunch of shows I never watched but had meant to.. my way of battening down the hatches so to speak and also because to be honest so many of the shows on right now just aren't interesting me.

    I can understand some of these people crossing the picket lines especially when being threatened. One of the networks issued letters that they are in breech of contract and if they don't come back they will be fired and replaced by those willing to cross the lines.

    There are some shows that I think can actually benefit from having new writers. I haven't decided yet how I feel about the whole thing because I can see where the writers are coming from BUT as a viewer who will be paying the price? Yeah.... haven't decided yet ask me again in January when there is absolutely nothing on TV.

  3. #23
    FORT Fogey Florimel's Avatar
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    Re: WGA Strike & all related issues

    I am a strong liberal and someone who used to work in television, so one might think I support the writers' union. That assumption would be wrong.

    This is about greed on both sides. Unions, so needed when they were first formed, have become as greedy and corrupt as the management they oppose. It's not about the writers; it's about power as it is with most large organizations whether they be business, government, military, or religious. In general, I do not support strikes.

    Of course the actors and techical people support the writers strike; they have very strong unions of their own (SAG, AFTRA, AGVA, IATSE, DGA,) to contend with if they don't. Networks and sponsors are no better; they care only for their bottom line and nothing about the viewers who support them.

    What the entertainment industry needs to learn is that they are recretation, not necessity. I love television and films, but I can survive without them. We can talk, we can rent DVD's, we can play cards or games at home or online, we can read books.

    Viewers are customers. Annoy them enough and many will not come back.
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  4. #24
    Crazy Shutterbug Harmony2000's Avatar
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    Re: WGA Strike & all related issues

    Exactly Florimel, I've already started making the move towards watching more DVD's and that was because of my hate of most of the shows on right now. So how about they strike and take away the couple of shows I like? Yeah.. watch if I end up not coming back to scripted TV and bet I won't be the only one.

    Its a basic tenet of business.. keep the customers happy and in like you said the greed on both sides they have completely overlooked that.

  5. #25
    FORT Fogey Tigerusty's Avatar
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    Re: WGA Strike & all related issues

    Quote Originally Posted by Florimel;2659818;
    I am a strong liberal and someone who used to work in television, so one might think I support the writers' union. That assumption would be wrong.

    This is about greed on both sides. Unions, so needed when they were first formed, have become as greedy and corrupt as the management they oppose. It's not about the writers; it's about power as it is with most large organizations whether they be business, government, military, or religious. In general, I do not support strikes.

    Of course the actors and techical people support the writers strike; they have very strong unions of their own (SAG, AFTRA, AGVA, IATSE, DGA,) to contend with if they don't. Networks and sponsors are no better; they care only for their bottom line and nothing about the viewers who support them.

    What the entertainment industry needs to learn is that they are recretation, not necessity. I love television and films, but I can survive without them. We can talk, we can rent DVD's, we can play cards or games at home or online, we can read books.

    Viewers are customers. Annoy them enough and many will not come back.
    It's about getting paid more than zero when your product is being broadcast and re-broadcast on the internet when the companies are running commercials during the showing of those products. Also it was very greedy of the writers to take off the table a request to get 8 cents for every DVD sold up from the 4 cents they currently receive. Yeah what greedy hogs those writers are.
    "So, what is fame? It's lightening that strikes some people. It's lightening that some people seek." Jewel

  6. #26
    FORT Fogey Tigerusty's Avatar
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    Re: WGA Strike & all related issues

    I just saw a video on youtube that pretty much puts it all in perspective. Just type in "Tim Kazurinsky riffs on Writers Strike on WGN"
    "So, what is fame? It's lightening that strikes some people. It's lightening that some people seek." Jewel

  7. #27
    Crazy Shutterbug Harmony2000's Avatar
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    Re: WGA Strike & all related issues

    I think its a bad idea to be striking, no matter how you personally feel about the rightness of it or not, because ratings are down so low and the audience is so fickle unless its AI or something like that. I feel like they may regret striking and that TPTB may end up regretting letting it get to that point without agreeing to some sort of mediation.

    With so many other entertainment options and with so many disenchanted with scripted TV they may never come back.

    Heard a rumor (mind you its just a rumor so who knows) that if soaps and some shows are taken off or put into reruns that they may never come back. How can that be good for anybody? How can the loss of viewers permanently be good for anybody?

    (Again.. I have yet to take a side but I know that if my fav shows vanish I will more than likely lose all interest in them and won't watch when and if they come back)

  8. #28
    FORT Fogey Missyboxers's Avatar
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    Re: WGA Strike & all related issues

    Quote Originally Posted by Florimel;2659818;
    Of course the actors and techical people support the writers strike; they have very strong unions of their own (SAG, AFTRA, AGVA, IATSE, DGA,) to contend with if they don't. Networks and sponsors are no better; they care only for their bottom line and nothing about the viewers who support them.
    The actors and directors are supporting the writers because they will face the exact same issues in June that the writers are currently facing, not because they are being forced to do so by their unions.

    These people--writers, actors, directors-- are working overtime to create something which is ultimately helping their company's bottom line, and they're not being compensated in return. They are paid to produce x number of hours or half-hours of television-- that's their job. It may seem like a fun job, but it's a job. The internet content-- that's an additional responsibility or job that has been placed upon the staff. I don't know about everyone else here, but when I am "asked" to do something extra for work that isn't part of my job, particularly when it involves a great deal of extra time, or additional liability, I expect to receive something in return, even though I live comfortably on my current salary. Why shouldn't the writers receive something for their extra work?

    As for the networks and sponsors, of course they care about their bottom line (and it's precisely why they don't want to pay the writers, actors, directors, etc). They are or are part of publicly traded companies! Their responsibility to their shareholders is to keep growing their earnings, and when they don't, ultimately this can cost the heads of the companies their jobs. Not paying the writers, etc, is a way to keep expenses lower, and thus, profits higher. Which means that they don't have as much of an incentive to cave until the strike begins to cost them more than paying the writers will (as someone may have already mentioned).

    And in the interest of full disclosure, I'm a moderate, and fiscally conservative. I'm fully in support of the writers, and this is one of the first strikes I've ever supported.

  9. #29
    Fool... but no pity. Krom's Avatar
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    Re: WGA Strike & all related issues

    Quote Originally Posted by Tigerusty;2659980;
    I just saw a video on youtube that pretty much puts it all in perspective. Just type in "Tim Kazurinsky riffs on Writers Strike on WGN"
    Tim Kazurinsky is still alive? And working? (well, I mean "working" if there was no strike...)

    Ah heck. I actually saw Mary Gross on Boston Legal last week. I suppose if she's getting work, it's at least possible that Kazurinsky is too.

    Next thing you know, I'll hear that Robin Duke and Tony Rosato are still getting work too!
    Last edited by Krom; 11-10-2007 at 10:28 PM.

    "You don't rehearse Mr. T, you just turn him loose."
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  10. #30
    Fool... but no pity. Krom's Avatar
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    Re: WGA Strike & all related issues

    The problem for me is that while I agree that what the WGA is asking for is fair and proper, it's all too apparent that they are willing to climb up on the backs of countless other people to get their deal. They know full well that all of the other people affected (staff laid off from the shows, outside businesses which rely on shows being in production, shows with unbreakable syndication contracts) exist, but their strike preparations are only protecting their own members (and only SOME of them). What about the cameraman with two mortgages on his house? The deli owner who's business only stays afloat because they cater TV shoots? The wardrobe mistress who's going to have to take a job altering prom tuxedos to keep eating? And poor Ellen Degeneres!

    I support the strike as an idea. I just hope that not too many other people get hurt because of it. And yes, the lion's share of the blame still lies pretty much with the networks and production companies. With all the money they make normally they damn well should keep people on the payroll for a bit longer than less than a week into the strike.

    I really am curious though if lets say, the cameramen ever strike, do all WGA members go "pencils down" in sympathy? Somehow I doubt it. The choice to keep working doesn't exist for folks like the cameramen right now, whereas if the cameramen strike I bet writers normally have no problem keeping their writing going.
    Last edited by Krom; 11-11-2007 at 02:14 AM.

    "You don't rehearse Mr. T, you just turn him loose."
    -----Sylvester Stallone, on Mr. T-----

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