Dispatches From The Picket Lines, Day 35: As Writers Take On Apple, WGA Chiefs React To DGA Deal

Apple It is possible 235408754/">today first entered the virtual reality field Launched with the help of Disney boss Bob Iger, along with the unveiling of a new platform and headset, but in the real world it spent the day being targeted by writers.

wga decided to hand out leaflets outside Apple’s headquarters as well as in various cities including LA, New York and Washington, DC.

In LA, several writers walked from protesting outside Television City to The Grove, where Apple has one of its stores, and informed consumers interested in new iPhones and laptops about the strike.

Former WGA president David Goodman told Deadline that it targeted Apple because the union’s demands would be a “bucket drop in terms of their earnings in a year”. The guild noted that its proposals would cost the company, which has annual revenues of about $400B, about $17M a year.

“If they want to be the company that hires writers, they have to pay us what we’re asking for,” Goodman said. “We wanted to give a special day [show] Apple customers, here’s this company that has a reputation for treating creators well, which is mistreating the creators of the television and movies they put on their platform.

Chris Keyser, co-chair of the WGA’s negotiating committee, agreed. “We are giving Apple leaflets to let people know that these companies whose public face is warm and creativity forward, behave the exact opposite when they treat their own employees, and especially us,” he told Deadline.

“Our demand for $17M a year has rounding error upon rounding error [for Apple],” He added.

Keyser, who executes the produced series like Julia And party of five Added that streamers didn’t invent the short order season. “People mistake the beginning of problems for the writers with the introduction of shorter-run seasons. That’s not really true. Cable and premium cable had shorter seasons for too many years, and we fixed that. The change really came when When tech companies got into business, Netflix, Amazon and Apple. That’s when they started applying a kind of productivity and efficiency standard to creativity that has no place in this business and to the way television and movies are made. There is no respect. Since that time, the life of writers has become almost untenable,” he said.

DGA deal

Keyser and Goodman also responded Compromised over the weekend by the DGAReiterating that this will not stop the WGA from doing what it is doing.

“We anticipated that the DGA was going to do the deal,” Keyser said. “The devil is in the details and what those proposals mean, really, is only known when we know what the language of the contract is. We’re going to wait and see what we’re trying to accomplish.” How does that intersect with the understanding that almost our entire agenda was separate from the director’s agenda, which is why we’ve always told our members and AMPTP that any deals for writers [us] And not through anyone, ”he said.

Goodman agreed that this does not change the WGA’s negotiating stance. “Until we see the specifics, I will not comment on whether they have created some patterns for us. But it really doesn’t matter, because I know the writers have very serious issues,” he said. . “Writers are facing a potential threat to their livelihood that if we do not reform the strike, writing as a career will go away.”

Nicole Yorkin, a member of the WGA Negotiating Committee, who served as show runner for Netflix hit run and execution produced the American version the killing, Besides residuals and AI, “most of the other proposals we’re working with are so specific to the writers that I don’t think the directors really care,” she said. “What we’re doing doesn’t stop. I think we’re as strong as ever, I think we’re ready for what we’re going to do, we’re not going to stop until we’ve achieved will grow [what we want],

In more New York, Apple Stores also got noticed.

Members and supporters of the striking Writers Guild of America East positioned themselves outside four Apple Stores in New York City on Monday afternoon, using flyers instead of picket signs.

Like people trying to get passersby in New York City to accept literature on any topic, Monday’s labor action found people with leaflets relatively few takers compared to the high volume of foot traffic.

“I think it helps if you don’t say anything,” said a WGA protester outside Apple’s flagship store in New York on Fifth Avenue near Central Park.

WGA member Melissa Salmons stood in the middle of the curb on Fifth Avenue, her striker’s outfit consisting of a WGA baseball cap and a blue T-shirt with logos such as Apple and text reading, “Pay Different (song).” – A spoof on “Think Different”. The slogan from the tech company’s pre-AppleTV+ and pre-iPhone days.

Salmons, a screenwriter for The Hallmark Channel who previously wrote for the soap opera the young and the Restless And guiding Light, Said that this is his third writers’ strike.

“I’m here because I’m the poster child for how this union should work,” Salmons said. “I’m a middle-class writer, not a showrunner. I’m fully insured [working] Thanks to the Life Writers Guild. Thanks to the Writers Guild, I will get a pension with which I will be able to live. I am here to pay it forward for all the young writers who are mainly starting streaming now who are struggling to pay their rent at the same time they are huge amounts for streamers Creating assets.

Salmons, who served on the guild’s negotiating committee during the 2007/08 strike, described a union that is functioning today, which was not the case in 2007.

“Now in later years, it’s become clear that this is where everything is happening,” Salmons said. The 2008 contract, as good as it was in many respects, did not have sufficient safeguards to prevent streaming, which ultimately cost producers “writer’s pay, power, [and] The ability to be on set,” she said. “I didn’t even realize until we started the member meetings how bad it was for people working in streaming, that you have people like kids [from] Bear who can’t pay his rent.

Salmons said that the producers appear to be engaged in “a systematic and concerted effort” to use streaming to turn writing into gig work.

“The really fatal flaw with that, other than just inhumanity,” she said, “is they’re eating their seed corn. They’re working for the showrunners who exist until death and perpetuating the system that created new show runners, which allowed writers to follow a show runner, to cover sets, learn how to work with directors, casting, props, actors, and then follow up on their episode in post. To learn how to run a show,” she said. “They’re killing a system that made great TV.”