2/05/2008

Letter To Membership From WGA Presidents

This was sent today to WGA members from Presidents Verrone and Winship. Emphasis is mine -- because I think it's incredibly important. --LK

To Our Fellow Members,

As Negotiating Committee Chair John Bowman wrote you last night, we are continuing to negotiate the terms of a tentative agreement with the AMPTP. We anticipate that we will be able to present the terms of that agreement to you in the next few days. In order to have a full discussion with you of the terms and how they were reached, and in order to get your input before making recommendations or decisions, we have scheduled membership meetings for current-active members only for this Saturday, February 9, in New York and Los Angeles.

The New York meeting will take place at 2 pm ET in the Broadway Ballroom of the Crowne Plaza Hotel at Times Square, 1606 Broadway (Broadway and 49th Street).

The Los Angeles meeting will take place at 7 pm PT in the Shrine Auditorium (665 W. Jefferson Blvd.).

We urge you to attend. We have gotten to this point in our negotiation as the direct result of the power of this strike, which each of you has generated. Neither the Negotiating Committee, nor the West Board or the East Council, will take action on any contract until after the membership meetings are held and your voices have been heard. We are all in this together.

Best,

Patric M. Verrone
President
Writers Guild of America, West

Michael Winship
President
Writers Guild of America, East

19 comments:

Caitlin said...

Very nice. If those terms are good, this could be wonderful. I hope they are- or at least good enough to give writers what they deserve.

jimmy said...

Fingers crossed for all the writers.

Bill said...

done

Skyfleur said...

Well, I hope what's going to be laid out is going to be better than what is leaking in the press cause that doesn't sound like the WGA did use its leverage.
I want them back to the table and use Jabaley's method instead. See if they'll cave with the oscars looming.

And what about those 300 or so writers who are pressuring the WGA ? do they really count compared to the 10.500 members ?

slightly sober said...

Hey leaders - Every member of this guild should get to vote before it's decided if the strike is called off!

You're going to decide by reading a room full of 3000 writers at the shrine to decide?

What if just a handful of people spoke at the Superbowl and a panel of ten then decided who the next president of the United States was?

If it is true that the board is going to vote and decide this, then YOU HAD NO RIGHT TO INCLUDE THAT IN YOUR NEGOTIATIONS! ARE WE OR AREN'T WE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER?!!!!

Dan said...

Slightly Sober -

Instead of typing in all CAPS, maybe you should volunteer to run the phone banks to ensure there's a majority turn out on saturday.


You know what a phone bank is, right, a tried and true form of communication between union members?

2u said...

You have to make a deal that you can live with - This industry can not endure one more day of this strike. If you do not vote to end the strike then you will be holding this industry hostage with you greed and arrogance. Why do you expect your guild to do what an agent is supposed to do. If you want better deals then make your agents work harder! I am an IATSE member and my show is down because of this strike. My future is on the line so I can't stand with you any longer and fight for your future. As far as I am concerned, the WGA has exhausted the generosity of everyone who works in the industry. We need to go back to work. We are not in a financial position to stay home while you fight with the studios. As long as the studios pick the projects and finance them, they will always be in control. This is the reality for all of us. If you hold out you will not get a better deal you will just create more dissension.

dp said...

The leaders are coming to you now because they feel this is the best deal that they could get. It's not that they are tired and want you to tell them they can be finished, like some kid asking if he is done eating his lima beans. This is their best deal.

You can't contradict yourselves now. You have to dance with the one who brought you as the saying goes. You can't have total support for your leaders to the point of being unreasonably obstinate towards anyone with an opposing view, calling them shills etc... then vote against their best deal.

As far as I am concerned and unless the WGA is full of hypocrites, which I hope it isn't, the strike is over and everyone votes yes on Saturday.

Lets get back to work.

2u said...

You call yourselves United Hollywood, but you never post my comments. Just call yourselves what you are United Writers. You don't give a shit about the rest of us who work in the industry and are being held hostage by your strike. I am very angry and I agree with a statement I read that that all of us who have been hurt financially by this strike need to file a class action law suit against you and the amptp. This strike needs to be over now. Your arrogance and trying to bully the studios has gotten you very little. Take a deal that you can live with. If you want better demand that your agents do better!

Michael said...

I'm glad they've called the general meetings, but I don't really see how they're going to able to do any serious pulse-taking at them. I mean, are they going to call for an oral yea-or-nay vote? Or just try to get a sense of the pro-and-con ratio of the members who choose to speak, thus ignoring the silent majority

And really, I don't claim to know how the silent majority feels, but I'm just saying it's wrong to infer anything about the general sentiment of the WGA from comments at a general meeting. Or blog posts or what have you.

Anyway, should be an interesting night.

Susie S said...

The Los Angeles riots of 1992 reportedly cost the community over one billion dollars. The strike has now, we are told, cost more.

Time to end it.

Now.

just a thought said...

"Verrone, Young and Bowman may be about to experience the perpetual reality of revolutionary leaders everywhere…that the same mob that cheered you when you led them to the barricades will be the mob calling for you heads months later when you tell it what it doesn’t want to hear"

I truly hope that doesn't happen. The chances of those guys ever becoming working writers in this town is nil.
I'm starting to think that the 300 or the 30 that keeps getting thrown around are the hardliners. wouldn't that be a kick in the ass.

Rocky said...

2U,
Some tips for getting posts placed on the site:

Make sense.

Make an interesting, WELL THOUGHT OUT, argument.

Most of all, be informed on the issues before you post.

You are 0-3 in your latest effort.

As for winning a class action law suit against the writers guild, you have a better chance of being an astronaut on the next space shuttle mission.

Writers were left without a choice. Educate yourself and you'll realize that, though you may not like it, we were justified in our decision to strike. Sorry it has affected you and thousands of others. But for the 10,000th time, our decision to strike had nothing to do with you. It's all about the writers. That is who the WGA represents. Sorry.

Rocky said...

I will vote yes if the negotiating committee recommends approving the deal. Not because of the whining and sniping of others in the business but for the same reason I voted yes to authorize the strike.

I believed in the WGA leadership then so why wouldn't I believe in them now? What has changed. They are the same guys who have been fighting for us since the beginning. I will take them at their word that this was the best deal we could get.

That said: Everyone is entitled to their opinion and hopefully everyone will have a vote.

2u said...

Rocky - Yes I know, everyone knows that this strike is for writers only. My beef, and I know that many share my opinion, is that it didn't have to go on this long. If you take a temperature reading the industry is pissed off. We stood by YOU three months ago, but at this point, if you hold out, it will be hard for you to get support. In the event that there is ever an IASTE strike, I hope that management exhibits better negotiating skills than the WGA so that the industry doesn't get burned in the process. This is only my opinion and given that I am not a writer, I hope that it's well thought out enough for you.

Luzid said...

@ 2u:

Writers will not take a 90% residuals pay cut - not for you, not for anyone.

That's just not going to happen, no matter how much disinformation you spew here.

Dennis Wilson said...

My beef, and I know that many share my opinion, is that it didn't have to go on this long. -- 2u

Right, and it wouldn't have if the AMPTP -- your employers -- hadn't repeatedly walked away from negotiations for several weeks at a time.

2u said...

Dennis Wilson - Please correct me if I am mistaken, but didn't the AMPTP walk away because of issues revolving around animation and reality? After the AMPTP reached an agreement with the DGA, the reality and animation issues were removed. That got everyone back to the table. It seems to me that the initial dissension is what messed everything up and why the strike is now approaching 4 months. I am not a fan of the AMPTP. I am in fact a supporter of the writers. I just can support the lingering of this strike when my future and the future of 95% of the people I know looks bleaker each day.
Luzid - Please chime in if this is disinformation.

dp said...

Rocky-
" you have a better chance of being an astronaut on the next space shuttle mission."

Now that's some funny shit!!!

I don't like you picking on BTL but well written and funny, I kept laughing.