Hollywood Writers Go On Strike After Negotiations Fail


Often the butt of late-night jokes, and in general, thousands of unionized writers have gone on strike. These writers have stated that they are not being paid fairly in an era of Streaming, and now, the looming threat of AI-Generated content is beginning to surface.

The strike began early Tuesday morning, bringing television production to a screeching halt. This news comes after high-stakes negotiations between a top guild and a trade association representing Hollywood’s Marquee Studios failed to avert the first walk-out in 15 Years.

The board of directors for the Writers Guild of America, which includes the East and West branches, voted unanimously to call for a walkout and said that writers were facing an Existential Crisis.

The companies’ behavior has created a gig economy inside a union work force, and their immovable stance in this negotiation has betrayed a commitment to further devaluing the profession of writing.

From their refusal to guarantee any level of weekly employment in episodic television, to the creation of a “day rate” in comedy variety, to their stonewalling on free work for screenwriters and on AI for all writers, they have closed the door on their labor force and opened the door to writing as an entirely freelance profession. No such deal could ever be contemplated by this membership.

Writers Guild of America Statement Excerpt

The Alliance of Motion Pictures and Television Producers, a trade association that bargains on behalf of studios, television networks, and streaming platforms, said in a statement that its offer included generous increases in compensation for writers.

The main sticking points, according to entertainment giants, include union proposals that would require companies to staff television shows with a certain number of writers for a specific period, whether needed or not.

The strike has brought production on broadcast programs, streaming services, and potentially some films to a screeching halt, upending the entertainment industry. In most cases, the impact will be immediately felt. For example, Late-Night Talk Shows will be going dark this week. Then there are other cases, as producers involved in scripted drama and comedy series might be forced to cut their seasons short or delay them altogether.


This weekend’s episode of Saturday Night Live (NBC) will be canceled because of the Strike, and repeat episodes of SNL will air in its place until further notice. The work stoppage comes amid intense economic and technological upheaval in Hollywood, which is in the midst of a struggle between the ever-increasing dominance of streaming services, the decline of traditional broadcast viewership, and the rise of AI-Generated Content, which has stoked anxiety in the future of the creative profession.

WGA Members are seeking pay increases and structural changes to a business model that has become increasingly difficult to make a living. In recent years, amid the explosion of streaming platforms such as Netflix, and Disney+, median writer-producer pay has declined 4%, or 23% when adjusted for inflation, according to WGA statistics.

In a bulletin from March 14th, the WGA said The companies have used the transition to streaming to cut writer pay and separate writing from production, worsening working conditions for series writers at all levels, Writers Are Not Keeping Up. The Guild also added that more writers are working at a minimum regardless of experience.


The writers in the union are frustrated that streaming-era shows are running for fewer episodes than their traditional broadcast counterparts, making it harder to maintain consistent income. In addition to this, residual fees (money paid when a show is put into syndication or aired overseas — have all but disappeared as more content is hosted exclusively on streaming platforms.)

According to AP News, The WGA strike may only be the beginning. Contracts for both the Directors Guild of America and SAG-AFTRA, the actors union, expire in June. Some of the same issues around the business model of streaming will factor into those bargaining sessions.

Source: NBC NEWS, AP News

Thanks for reading! If you have any suggestions, news tips, or questions, email them to: webmaster@bigrednerd.com.

Thank you for reading what I’m offering, be sure to visit the Ko-Fi page and support the website!

One thought on “Hollywood Writers Go On Strike After Negotiations Fail

Comments are closed.