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Whedonesque - a community weblog about Joss Whedon
"Maybe where you're from all the children play walk through the walls. I never learned it."
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November 05 2007

Members of support the WGA writers' strike. To show our support for WGA writers currently on strike, members of delivered pizza to the picket lines at Universal, L.A.: "You fed our minds, we'd like to return the favor."

Thanks to C.A. Bridges, dreamlogic and others dreaming this up.

Ooh, an even better looking poster...
thanks for doing that--afterall without words our shows would be lacking communication
This is one of the coolest Whedonesque days. And it's had many.
I'm looking forward to Jane's mention of lunch today with extra enthusiasm!
Damn good idea.
Hugs and kudos to C.A. and dreamlogic for mad organization skills and carrying 10 heavy-ass pizzas to our favorite writer-dudes. ;)
Well, keep in mind we don't know if she ever got her pizza or heard it was available.

Doesn't matter. We acted, and at least some of the writers there know that fans support what they're doing.

I'd be up for doing this again -- if we can do so without killing poor dreamlogic, find someone else to help out or just order deliveries -- for the other strike lines if this continues.
Very, very cool. Let's them know, if they were in any doubt, that we are behind them and stops those annoying hunger pangs all in one tasty move. ;)
I'm in awe. Go team for pulling this off pretty much overnight and on the 1st day of the strike. You guys set the precident. With pizza. First to come up with the idea, then to implement it. Just: wow.

Applause, applause to all those who donated, C.A. Bridges, dreamlogic, and others.

*honks from TX*
we should definitely do this again, i'd bet there were other whedonesque-ers (besides me) who missed it the first time around and would love to help out.
I would definitely pitch in a few dollars(all I can afford). I know someone( was it Ravenu ?) put up an idea of buying an ad in variety... that would be something I could also pitch in a few bucks more. It would be cool actually if there are several ads in the same publication purchased by fans of different fandoms(BSG, whedon shows, Heroes, House etc...).. .although someone would have to be clearly insane to help organize that....
I'm thinking about it kurya, although I'm still trying to figure out all the issues surrounding it. Allyson suggested elsewhere the idea of one advert sponsored between many different sites and fandoms in Variety, which is a solid idea.
What a great way to show our support! You guys rock.
I too would love to donate for the next round. Or for an ad, which ever.
Or both.

*honks from SF*
That would be a solid idea... in my own uninformed opinion,as long as there is an expression of solidarity with the writers and this is an issue important for the fans, of all fandoms. A unified statement would speak volumes.

I previously thought that several ads would be great, but one ad would be more economical. How much did a full one page ad in Variety cost? Anyone remember?

[ edited by kurya on 2007-11-05 23:20 ]
Kudos to everyone on the pizza!

I'm more than willing to contribute money to anything will help show the fan support for the writers. A Variety ad is a great idea.

My question is what else can fans do to help? Will sending emails/letters/faxes to the networks and studios help? Maybe we put all the experience we have saving shows to good use showing our support of the writers.

[ edited by FaithFan on 2007-11-05 23:25 ]
Hi all! Yes, Jet and I were with Jane. She wasn't with the main group in front of the studio. For some reason, the guild decided to put the Battlestar Galactica writers at the public entrance to City Walk, and that's where we were. Luckily, as we came up from the subway, a couple of writers approached us and asked us what show we were with. We explained we were fans of Jane who were supporting the strike, and they kindly drove us to her location. Sadly, Jane did not get her pizza, but we figured something happened because we were the only two Browncoats who showed up (though two other people who read her blog were also there). If you want to send pizzas to her and the other writers of Battlestar Galactica, they will be in the same location tomorrow. Jane said they are expected to work a four hour shift everyday, and in the hot sun and on your feet, it's hard work. I'm sure pizza or anything else would be very welcome.

It was a wonderful experience. I highly recommend anyone who can work the strike to do so--it's supporting the people who create the work we all love so much.

And Jane? Made of pure awesome. :)
although someone would have to be clearly insane to help organize that....

Well I would advise a central website or something like that. Then get in touch with the likes of TV Guide's Ausiello, E! Online's Kristin, AICN's Herc, Pop Candy's Whitney etc to see if they would spread the word. Then find the biggest fandom communities on LJ and get in touch with the admins to see if they would be willing to post a news item about it (as the last thing you would want to do is spam all over the place). And you could Digg it and see if the Slashdot crowd would run with it on their site.

Though if you want to get other fandoms involved there will be a strong element of distrust as the names running the site will not be known to other fandoms. I've seen too many fan campaigns grind to a halt as a result of accusations of distrust and "who are you exactly?". So the organisers would have to tread very carefully.
But Dizzy, where are the photos? I was counting on photos!
I'm going to see if Jet can post a few--no promises right now, because we are both flying out soon, and we may not have access to a computer to download them to. We'll try, I promise! :)
Just to re-iterate, if there's another run i'm more than happy to chuck a few quid in the pot (and heaps of kudos to the rapid-reaction squad that sorted the original run).

Moreso than for an advert to be honest which always strike me as a nice sentiment but not much more - better the fish and chips than the paper it's wrapped in IMO ;). Or when it gets hot, ice cream, cos when's that not welcome ?

(though in a month, when maybe people start to flag a bit or feel isolated and attention starts to waver, then's the time to reaffrim support with a big splash in the trades)
The "who are you?" would definitely be a factor. I guess it was enough of a problem in the firefly fandom for that Variety ad.

I guess maybe, if one has several ads, instead of one, someone organizes the info, and ask a volunteer, one person trusted from each fandom to collect the money for themselves , make up their own ad, or copy a template, and submit their own ad.

All the central website would do is have a common template and information and help coordinate the info, much like the CSTS screenings.

Maybe instead of a one page ad, you can have 4 quarter page ads.

ETA: Well Saje, I am sure something like this would take much longer to organize than a pizza run, especially with the amount of money involved. And it seems everyone is thinking this will be going into the longhaul. In my mind(although I have no experience_ its better to show the solidarity sooner than later to demonstrate to both the writers and to the studios that the fans are on the side of the writers. Not that it would do much(and pizza has a more concrete impact for sure :P), it could be just a little something to motivate both sides.

[ edited by kurya on 2007-11-05 23:48 ]
I'm willing to buy a pizza too, if there's a second wave.
Massive applause for dreamlogic and everyone who made this happen so quickly. Whedonesquers are a wonder.

I was too late for this, but would be happy to contribute to future pizzas, an ad--anything to show support.

If this thing drags on, the writers will really need that support when the strike becomes "old news." (Hoping it doesn't get there, but everyone seems to be preparing for the long haul.)
I like the idea of each fandom doing its own ad. What we need is a uniform "Fans support their Writers" logo that would be recognizable across the individual efforts. Some thing that would show there is unified movement even though each group is organizing their own ad.

I'm in for a donation to this as well.
To steal from Dizzy, I think this fandom is made of awesome!

Kudos to everyone who made The Pizza Job happen!
I missed out on donating to it, but I'm in for an ad or another pizza run, or both.

*honks from Nashville*
Dang, I missed out on the excitement when it was happening - you know I've just got to stop letting work interfere with reading Whedonesque.

More kudos to all of the rapid response team, and especially Dreamlogic. If there's another pizza run, I'm in.

I think this is the coolest group I've ever been part of.
As a big fan and a former actress I don't support this strike. They are not just putting themselves out of work, they are putting a lot of other people out of work too. I wish they would have stayed at the table and negotiated.
(Dancing, waving) Terrific idea. Many, many thanks.
"I like the idea of each fandom doing its own ad. What we need is a uniform "Fans support their Writers" logo that would be recognizable across the individual efforts. Some thing that would show there is unified movement even though each group is organizing their own ad."

I like that. I like that a lot. That way we avoid the hassle of forming alliances involving lots of money, which rarely works well, but still present a unified force.
Dietcoke - they did stay at the table. The Companies walked out on them, even though the item that they had previously said was holding them up -- the DVD residual increase -- was taken off the table. The writers still wanted the New Media (online) residuals, which don't currently exist, left on the table and the Companies walked out.
jcs: "If this thing drags on, the writers will really need that support when the strike becomes 'old news.' "

I've been thinking about that myself... it's like when you're sick for a while, and you could really use that visitor with the pile of magazines and new DVDs during the third week. I'm thinking some folks should save up some juice for then...

*and freaks mildly at the thought of all the organizing time involved in the cross-fandom Variety ad project.*

I'm in for a donation for ad or food or other support, though. And I'm wondering if folks can contribute to a WGA strike fund to help those whose immediate financial health is threatened by the strike... but the ten minutes I spent looking for something like that online has left me no wiser.
Dietcoke: They did try to stay at the table, it was posted in the other thread, but, here's what showrunner Shawn Ryan posted: Blog post
Very cool, you guys! Nice job.
Well all one needs(and I am a total dunce so please don't take my word for it, if anyone involved in the previous variety ad campaign can give their ideas it would be cool) is a central template "fan support writers, insert your own site/fandom" and a specific date , and info on who to contact at Variety, as well as a dollar amount target to fundraise for a 1/4 page (or 1/8 page ad).

Then have people go to particular fandoms in the fashion that Simon mentioned above, and ask for a volunteer, someone people in general trust and who is slightly crazy to undertake the task, to collect the money together and submit their adjusted template on the agreed upon date. Is it deceptively simple or is there more to it?

[ edited by kurya on 2007-11-06 00:32 ]
Like others, I'm willing to toss in some money for more pizza, although I'd rather do it a little later since the immediate future seems good as far as donations. Now we just need to find another willing victim to handle it this time.
Way to go guys.
*honks from Toronto*
dietcoke: The writers aren't just doing this for themselves. The results of this strike will impact negotiations regarding new media residuals for actors and directors when their contracts come up next year, which is why SAG has voiced support for the WGA. Obviously, no one wants there to be a strike, but hopefully it will be a short one and the results will benefit the industry as a whole.
I want to add my kudos to those who put this together. When I signed off last night, things were just being proposed -- and when I got online today, it was essentially all over. So I just wanted to thank those who did the work and made our fandome look good (again).

And k8cre8, thanks for the link to Shawn Ryan's blog post. This is going to go on for awhile--and don't the actors' contracts (with respect to residuals, etc.) expire in June? I'm sure they will be asking for the same things the writers are asking for in terms of the income from internet downloads, new media, etc. So this is clearly going to be a lean year for all in the business until the companies decide that they are willing to negotiate and give the creative folks upon which they have built their industry fair compensation for their efforts.

ETA: oops, Lady Brick beat me to the punch.

[ edited by palehorse on 2007-11-06 01:00 ]
So... pizza again on Wednesday, maybe? Strategize in the interim? Or are certain writers out on certain days and daily is better? I'll admit that the quest to deliver anchovy pizza to Jane Espenson is a high priority in my mind. It shall be done.
Just before this thread falls off the main page Jane says on her blog:
And, get this -- pizzas were delivered to me and to the other strikers down by the main gate by the generous readers of! Whoo! Pizza! Thank you, my people! You're making this bad sitch a lot more comfortable.
and ends, as usual, with lunch:
Lunch: pizza with anchovies, delivered specially for me to the picket line. Beautiful! Thank you!

You're welcome!

Edited to add, meant to write this on the original thread. My bad.

[ edited by zz9 on 2007-11-06 01:17 ]
Doing the happy dance now! I am thrilled that Jane got some of her pizza, kudos again to dreamlogic for making it happen. Dizzy, I will wait patiently hoping for pictures. I really do need to take a trip to Los Angeles.....
I just sent Dreamlogic some money - hopefully, there will be another round! Hate that I missed it the first time. Funny how easy it is around here to trust people with your money :) But I do - Thanks much DL!
Well, they don't call me "a day late and a dollar short" for nothing!

I keep thinking of studios filming sets, on which absolutely nothing happens -- how much would people want to watch that? I've always thought the writing was ultimately what it's all about. At least, that's what I've always cared about: plot, dialog, characters.

So, although the news of Joss having a TV show -- which had me so excited I could barely contain myself -- immediately followed by the realization that it would be a while, possibly a long while (no, no, no, no, no) I can't not support the strike.

I'm sorry they felt they had to take DVD resids off the table, as they should get more per. And I'm sorry this is going to be hard, not only on them and their families, but all the other people effected, too.

But it just ain't right that the people with all them money get all the profit from the work of the people who actually, uh, DO the work.

Lacking same myself (work, that is), I can't even offer to help buy pizzas or other tokens of support -- but I'm very happy that so many of you are pitching in with money, and especially TIME and sweat. So, thanks to all you ultra-cool guys for doing all your things, and a virtual honk from northern California (and that's vocalized, as I don't have a car).

The irony, of course, is that this is the first year in many that I've actually been regularly watching new-run stuff. I'd been on a diet of reruns and DVD until recently. Hmmmm. Given that this is how my life generally goes -- oh, no! This whole strike is MY fault!!!

[beats head on wall, gnashes teeth, rends garments]

P.S. I'd love to hear that Jane got her fishies. Anyone know?
It's events like this that make me proud to be part of this fandom! I'm more then happy to pitch in a few bucks if something else gets planned.
Ah! That's what I get for dawdling over writing and proofing my comments! I'm so pleased Jane got the fishie love.
Here's the link to Jane's blog entry. "Lunch: pizza with anchovies, delivered specially for me to the picket line. Beautiful!"

I am happy.
In the words of America's most-beloved permanent child star Rusty van Reddick "All-rye-tee! Woah-ho-ho!"

Wish I could make a few barrels of my Fried Chicken Ravana recipe and get it to them. That spicy curry flavor helps you sweat more effectively in warm California sun.
I'm actually not Beth'll, I'm jetflair but I don't have an account here, so posting under her user name.

These are the pictures with Jane Espenson, DizzyEllie, and one of the two of her blog readers who attended the strike during her shift. The fourth photo is *not* at the location where Jane Espenson was, it's the main strike area in front of Universal - I thought some might be interested in seeing them.


Jane with fans

Jane with fans

The main strike area at Universal.
Thanks jetflair.

(The link goes to the wrong pictures, but I found them eventually.)
Well done everyone, especially dreamlogic. Great that Jane got her pizza.

jetflair - I think your links are slightly wrong, but I found your pictures of Jane anyway - thanks.
I was told the money I sent dreamlogic would be returned. It can instead be used for an ad, OR, if the guild has a strike fund, perhaps sent there. It wasn't a lot of money, but I would like to see it go to support the strike in whatever way deemed doable.
This is soooo awesome, bravo everyone!!!
You guys really are great.

Maybe Jane Esp or some of the other Whedonverse writers will be able to explain while they are on the picket line, how writers end up with fans in their world. ;-)
Strikes are like wars. Each side tries to hurt the other so they get their own way. Yep, someone will win, sort of, but like war, everyone is worse off because of it.
What we need is a uniform "Fans support their Writers" logo that would be recognizable across the individual efforts.

Let me know if you need my help.
tehabwa, I was on a strictly DVD diet until this year as well. I'd never seen a show until at least a year after it aired, often more. I only started watching them as they aired in September, and now that may not happen. I'm totally okay with it, because I've got other shows to catch up on, and I'm still not used to the whole TV thing anyways. *grin*

That, and I completely support the strike. If anyone with some creative talent makes just a general 'I support the strike' kind of flyer (instead of the pizza one), I'm sure I could find a place to put one.
dietcoke, that's a terrible analogy. This strike is, by the WGA's admission, a regrettable action. But it's the only power left to them when months of negotiations came to nothing. There were discussions held up until the contract expired. There were last minute negotiations made prior to pencils down at midnight on Monday morning.

Suggesting that everyone will be worse off is completely disingenuous. At the moment there is a very real imbalance between the revenue stream and who is being compensated and how. The studios have all the power - as has been true since the beginning of Hollywood. The writers are on strike now, but SAG supports them, as does the DGA - in theory. Actors and directors continue to be contracturally obliged to turn up to work, whereas the WGA contract has expired.

If writers continued to work without a contract, they lose all bargaining power. It's the only thing left open to them. Staying at the table in perpetuity means nothing. Showing the AMPTP what they are missing out when services are withdrawn is the only step they could take. Twenty years ago the writers folded - now they can see the future, and if they don't take this action now, it is bleak for writers, actors and directors.

Of course, if this strike continues on for a lengthy period, the WGA will lose support from lots of places - possibly within its own ranks, too. But they are negotiating for their workers' futures and the future of the industry, in part.

[ edited by crossoverman on 2007-11-10 11:21 ]

Sick as a dog but proud as a noble and much healthier dog, I made my way to the picket lines outside of Fox studios today. I’m really glad I did. In addition to carrying the banner, it was a chance to talk with other writers, get more perspectives and more information about what’s happening, and to see a surprising number of old friends. David Fury and Mere Smith were there, as well as many non-mutant enemies that I know. We were all caught in that giddy first burst of solidarity and fear. Nobody thinks this is going to be easy. But everybody there knows that, as things stand, it has to be.

A particularly gratifying and unexpected sight was that of Aly and Alexis, along with Cobie Smulders, marching shoulder to shoulder with the HIMYM scribes. Aly and Alexis even brought boxes of candy bars to hand out to the flagging marchers (actually, I was the only one who appeared to be flagging – even the pregnant writer outlasted me). Mere told me young Boreanaz had also been there earlier that day. I was really touched, but my actor-friends were very matter-of-fact about the whole thing. They understand that the issues at hand affect the future of the entire creative community here, and that the writers, by virtue of being first, will set a precedent that affects all the guilds. That is why we writers have to be firm, intractable and absolute in our dedication to getting a fair deal. And that’s all we’re talking about: a fair deal. For us, and for generations of artists to come.

Sounds pretty damn pompous, no? “Generations to come…”? Yeesh. But it’s true. Our culture, our government, our corporate structures have all gotten pretty used to taking care of ourselves at the expense of our children and their children. Part of this is simple greed, part is immediate practicality trumping long-view perspective, and part is perfectly understandable fear. It’s easier to take what you’e given, not protest, not make a fuss. A lot of people will suffer grievously if this strike isn’t quickly resolved, and the men and women who voted for it know that. But like so many things – our eco-system being the most obvious – if we don’t make it work now, what’s to come will be much worse.

Let me be clear on one point: I know I have it easy. I’ve done well, and I’m grateful that I can weather a long winter. Compared to what the studios have made off me my share is tiny and cute, but I’m in no position to complain. But take that differential, apply it to someone who’s just getting by when they deserve better. Now take it and… well, just take it, ‘cause when it comes to the internet and the emerging media there’s nothing there for the artists. There’s no precedent; these media didn’t exist the last time a contract was negotiated. We’re not just talking about an unfair deal, we’re talking about no deal at all. Four cents from the sale of a DVD (the standing WGA deal) sounds exactly as paltry as it is, but in a decade DVD may have gone the way of the eight-track. We have to protect the rights of the people who tell the stories, however they’re told. I’m never gonna be as articulate as Shawn or Brian (both of whom have been linked here, I believe), but I am just as committed. And a lot phlegmier.

I don’t think of the studio heads as a bunch of grinning tycoons sitting in a smoke-filled club and drumming their fingers like Montgomery Burns. I know some of those guys. I think they’re worried about the future as much as anyone. But they are beholden to their corporations, and that inevitably causes entrenchment and shortsightedness. They can’t afford that. This is an era of change, and for the giant conglomo-tainment empires, it will either be the Renaissance or the Ice Age. Because we will not stand down. Writers can be replaced, as we are constantly reminded. But so can companies. Power is on the move, and though in this town it’s been hoarded by very few, there are other companies with newer ideas about how to make money off of – or possibly, wonderfully, with – the story-tellers. Personally, I like things almost the way they are. I truly hope the executives negotiating for the AMPTP make the few simple concessions that will allow us to work with them again. I want to work. I have this idea, for a show about a girl… I even have the actress for it. And if we strike effectively, maybe she won’t have to.

I honestly started this post because of Aly and Alexis and their candy bars. But… well… there’s a lot going on. Huge props to the pizza people. Your support during this strike means more than I can express. (Note to self: picket near Jane.) I hope it won’t be long. I watched my Father strike, back in ’88. It was hard. But I was proud. I’m proud now.

Sincerely, -joss.
At Fox, Diane English, Jim Brooks and Callie Khouri were all picketing as well as actors Peter MacNichol (Numbers), David Boreanaz (Bones), Lorraine Newman (ex-SNL), and Anne Dudek and Olivia Wilde from House. "It was a great first day," one writer told me tonight. "By Friday, I promise you, I'm not going to be so enamored of it."

Thank you for dropping by and giving your 2'cents worth!(or 4 cents...) Joss!
I'm so glad Jane got some pizza! I'm willing to do another run, though it really would be great if someone could help me carry. I want to make clear, though, that if people just wanted support today's run, there is some excess money, just send me an email and I'll refund you. Otherwise I'll apply it to the next time, and if there's extra after that, to the ad campaign. I'll contribute to the ad, too. I think ads with a common logo are a great idea.
Prediction: producers next step - outsourcing writing of scripts to India, China, and Malaysia. Result - severe outbreak of Bollywood musical chop-socky epics as mid-season replacement series, and How I Met Your Dalai Lama.
Caught an excellent link to a succinct quote on my LJ Flist:

"Isn't it kind of hypocritical that on one hand the studios and networks say that unauthorized downloading or copying of content is "stealing," because you're taking something of value -- but on the other hand, they say the writers don't deserve residuals, because the content is valueless?

Or now they're even saying that downloads are "promotional" -- in which case they should be paying hackers to copy DVDs and redistribute content on the Net."

-Big Ted, a commenter on What's Alan Watching?

Proud of you, Joss. And I'm proud of all the other writers on strike and all the supporters out there, actors and fans alike.
Just for information sake, can someone call Variety tomorrow to find out the cost for a 1/4 page ad, and a full page ad?
In order to save wear and tear on any one person, how about establishing "Whedonesque Pizza Mondays" and rotate it amongst those in LA willing to do the leg work? Even if only 2 or 3 people volunteer, that would cut way down on the hardship if they only have to do it every couple of weeks.

Also, if this strike isn't resolved in November it will almost definitely last through January, and once a week pizza would be a lot easier to maintain over a period of months.
Great job gang! I'll try to help out in the next round.
Excellent post, Joss! Feel better!

Solidarity forever!
I like the idea of doing pizza once a week. Spreads the burden on those in the area who are actually doing the deliveries as well as those who are financially able to give. And, it shows continued support to the writers. Showing lots of support early on is great and I'm sure that everyone involves really appreciates it. But, if this strike continues as long as it sounds like it may (that being "a long time"), I'm guessing that continued, consistent, regular support (in the form of pizza once a week. We do what we can) would make a more lasting impact and help lift spirits should the weeks drag on.
Very, very happy and proud to be a member of Whedonesque today. I love you guys!!

ETA: And extremely proud of you, Joss!!

[ edited by Harmalicious on 2007-11-06 04:43 ]
We're proud of you too, Joss.
Keep it up, and feel better soon.
Joss, your post. I just love you to death (no, don't die, just be phlegmy for awhile). Reading the posts from writers, the fans, the enormous amount of respect everyone obviously has for each other, this fandom, this mutual admiration society we all have with each other does not bring me to tears or to my knees. Like you, I just feel proud. That we get it. In for a penny, in for a pound. All or nothing, we are all behind you.
I think the war analogy is actually proper, but I draw different conclusions than Dietcoke does.

I don't think there is such a thing as a good war. There are sometimes necessary wars. And I think one might say, "just" wars. I never questioned the necessity of that war. And I still do not question it. It was something that had to be done.
--Samuel Hynes, WWII vet, in Ken Burns' "The War"

While Haynes spoke more about the necessity and justness, in the film it was clear he also was trying to emphasize the point that there is no good war. (The entire film is largely about this point, removing the veneer that has glorified and sanitized WWII.)

What I'm saying is I agree that the strike will have many sad consequenses. But that doesn't mean it's not necessary.
Thanks so much for the update and everything you and all the other writers are doing, Joss.

I would love to volunteer for pizza delivery, but my schedule just can't take it. I did pick up plenty of stuff to bake up something nummy for picketers, though.
Costs for Variety ads vary, depending on the issue, whether it's 4 color, black and white, full bleed...

They're expensive.
I am still willing to help anyway I can, is there a place and time we can all be online to lob ideas around and get more organized. We have the ablity,the will, we just need to create the foundation and structure. I have a site and I have an open domain, a little time and minisule talent to offer. We can make this work. Whose in and where should we meet?

Any ideas, you can reach mt at my address whichis on my profile.

OMG Alyson you gave me a great idea for a full page ad or a poster. I don't think I have the artistic talent to pull it off but I might try.

[ edited by RavenU on 2007-11-06 05:10 ]
How about creating a thread(or several threads) on I am in for helping out in terms of contacting folk in the Babylon 5 fandom(I am a member of a moderated google group where JMS posts), and contribute a bit financially.

And in terms of ad costs, I can imagine them not being cheap, I am sure that a simple black and white should be sufficient(dunno what the other options mean not exactly all that knowledgable about advertising). Can do a variation of that poster printed up for the pizzas?

[ edited by kurya on 2007-11-06 05:07 ]

[ edited by kurya on 2007-11-06 05:08 ]
RavenU, I'm in!! Anything I can do to help, you got it!
Thanks, oh purple one! For future reference, what toppings do you like?
Also , create a simple central website with easy to remember name, to post info of the cost of variety ads, contact info, a template logo for the ad that can be downloaded and adjusted.... and contact info for people who are collecting money in each fandom... that would be a start I would imagine.
Whedonesque is a great place, folks.
I think you'd be better served creating a new site where other fandoms could check in. Don't need to coordinate with them, necessarily, but a clearing house for suggestions and support tips would be helpful to everyone.
Kurya, ya beat me to it.

I suggest It's available and says exactly what we mean. A blog on the front would do for news updates, and a forum would allow different fandoms to share tips and coordinate when needed. Add links to WGAe and WGAw, some of the writer bloggers who are doing updates. Also info on the strikes themselves, where they are, times, how to help. And some logos we could share.

A "Fans Support the Writers" logo would work for everyone, and a different version could be made where a specific show title (or writer, or genre) could go above it, i.e. "BSG Fans Support the Writers," "House Fans Support the Writers," "Whedon Fans Support the Writers," etc.

[ edited by C. A. Bridges on 2007-11-06 05:22 ]
How about '' is that simple enough. I have started a thread over at > here.
CA Bridges, that is a great domain name in my uninformed opinion.... and link to various writer blogs that have posted their reasons for this strike etc. Nothing too complicated. And we should aim for a date to have all of the ads in the paper... like 3 weeks from now? Enough time to get financial support and time to submit the ad for a deadline? I mean the ads dont have to be in the same issue, but it would be nice for a full united effect.
Thanks, Joss. Future generations truly appreciate the sacrifice. And also really want to see Dollhouse, so here's to quick dealmaking.
I really think this ad is a great idea, and I want us to move forward on it, but it is a lot of money and will take a while to organize and get the thousands of dollars raised. Is there anyone here who was involved in the previous ads for Variety? It would be good to have some experienced people helping out.
Well, he wants to picket near Jane, so he must like anchovies. :-)

My schedule also won't allow me to help right now (I'm about an hour away), but if this continues into January (PTB forbid), I'll be available then.
quotergal or gossi might be good folks to set up such a site (if it hasn't already been done).
i know whedon-folk have a reputation as being kinda nutty, but this kind of response and support makes me all warm and fuzzy!
yeah they would be good peeps to help with the site, and hey hey...I like my fandom a little nutty... being normal is so highly overrated :P(I jest of course). I am sure gossi will speak up once he wakes up.
I started a new job today. I had to cross picket lines. It made me sick. I'm sorry, WGA.
"Anchovies, anchovies, you're so delicious
I like you more than all the other fishes!" - Dawn Summers

Just wondering (because I know nothing about the semantics of any of this, except that I'm all for the writers getting the big fairness), are there other cities these picket lines are taking place? Or is it all centered in Los Angeles. Does New York have a picket line? I know they have writers. What about Phoenix? Or Seattle?

I'm so proud of you guys.
*honks from New Orleans*

This is awesome, ya'll. The ad sounds like a great idea, especially if we could get other fandoms involved in a coherent manor. And next time there's a pizza mission, I'll be sure to chip in.
Picket lines are at all of the studios in LA. New York has a smaller writing community, so they're moving from place to place each day. Monday it was Rockefeller Center, today it's at Silvercup Studios ("30 Rock," "Gossip Girl," "Cashmere Mafia," etc) in Long Island City.
I just watched my local news, and their story about the strike just made me mad. They ran the studio lines about how much writers get paid, and how the "sticking point" is the DVD residuals, and that it was the writers who left the table. It makes me even prouder to have contributed pizza funds. I'm looking into registering that domain, RavenU.
According to the WGA, the DVD residuals was taken off the table in the last minute negotiations and the focus was purely on internet downloads - and the AMPTP didn't move a muscle.

This video at the WGA You Tube channel is simple and informative.

There is also an LJ community called wga_supporters blogging links to articles across the web.
I just wanted to say thanks for all the support. I was at Fox today but I had friends who were over at Universal. Everyone thinks you're awesome for sending the pizza. It was much appreciated.
There also was a WGA picketline in NYC, at Rockefeller Center -- that's the only location on the East coast I know of, but surely there are/will be others.

I've set aside some money for our cause, ready to send once I know where to send it for the next wave.

*honks from CT*

[ edited by Love's Bitch on 2007-11-06 07:27 ]
This is such a great idea. I'd love to help out. I'd better make sure I come here extra often so I don't miss the next chance. Yay writers! And yay to all the great people at Whedonesque. I'm new and extremely glad to be a part of it.
If ever a reason to de-lurk...

It's really great to hear about what you've all done and are doing. I'd love to pitch in where I can. So here it is: I work down the street from Universal (I've walked there, up the giant hill, over the bridge, into city walk, ordered food, and walked back while eating all on my lunch break) and can easily make deliveries before 10 am and during my lunch hour. And I'm stronger than I look, so massive pizza lifting is something I can handle.

That said, I'm a hop from CBS Studios on Radner, and a hop and skip from NBC Studios and Warner Bros Studios, and a hop skip and a jump from Disney. Don't go expectin' me to be all those places in one day though!

However, I work at a motion picture camera rental house and I don't exactly have tenure, so if the strike lasts I face the very real possibility of losing my job. So, you know, may not be able to contribute so much monetarily or delivery-wise if and when that happens. But unlike some of my more selfish, uninformed co-workers, I fully support the strike, or more accurately it's purpose.

I'll be following along, if I can do anything just let me know.

And Joss, if I do lose my job, once the strike is over I hear you'll have this show what needs crew...
Joss Whedon fans are the best. You all inspire me. :)
I thought people might like to know that Whedonesque got some thank you emails from striking writers who were very touched and grateful for the pizza. It was greatly appreciated by them. So kudos to those who came up with the idea and donated money.

And I think I will use my discretionary powers and link to Joss' post from the front page.
Operation Pizza also got covered in the latest strike update at Nikki Finke's blog. :D

This is great. FANTASTIC. The AMPTP strategy partially depends on PR -- and they're throwing heaping piles of money and favor at spinning this thing against the writers. If they see that the fans of these shows are showing up at the picket lines in support of the strike, their PR strategy against the WGA suffers a big hit.

You all rock.
Much kudos to all those involved with the pizza plan.

I support the writers. I see it like this: you can't take the writing out of a show. If I chose to watch a show, via whatever media, my enjoyment is conditioned by the writing. If it wasn't there then, well there wouldn't be a show. So the writer of that show deserves to get paid for his/her hard work.

Oh, and get well soon, Joss.
I love how hardship is (so far) bringing people together rather than apart. It's one of the more inspiring things about the human race, I think.

You guys, so much pride for the site, J-fans and pizza-donaters. And, of course, the writers have all my support. Unions rule. I'm actually of the belief that if unions were a much more powerful force in the U.S., we'd all be better off.
AICN updated their strike report to include a note about the pizza delivery. :) I originally linked it over at the strike thread for the showrunner mentions, but I thought it'd be nice if everyone here knew other folk are taking notice.

Are we a fan club? o.O I guess I never really thought of it that way...
Hee. We're getting credit for more pizza than we actually brought. Get there first...

Obviously this was a great, press-friendly idea of yours, C.A. Bridges.
I like the idea of Whedonesque Pizza Mondays. Glad to hear yesterday's pizza run was so successful.
I'm very very proud to be a Whedonesquer right now. :-)

(I'm also supposed to be working, so *relurk*)
orphea said:
Operation Pizza also got covered in the latest strike update at Nikki Finke's blog. :D

Here's the link:
On The Line, Part II: More Strike News

I'm guessing "Part I" is linked here somewhere, but I must've missed it.
Wow, so about a quarter of the union members picketed ? That seems like a pretty healthy number, good for them.

Shouldn't be surprised but the clearly underhanded shenanigans from the studios are a bit irksome - seems like DVD residuals only came off the table because someone led the WGA guys to believe that the new-media stuff would follow if the DVD stuff went away. Then that didn't happen, then the studios pulled out and blamed the WGA. Divide and conquer, valid tactic I suppose but nasty nonetheless.

(and clearly we need a pizza with extra Lemsip for Joss, get well soon fella - and i'm sure it's tantamount to plague and would fell any normal bloke so don't listen to the inevitable accusations of "man-flu" ;)

Costs for Variety ads vary, depending on the issue, whether it's 4 color, black and white, full bleed...

They're expensive.

S'what i'm sayin'. *pulls figure out of arse* $10,000 (for example) buys a lot of pizza/hot coffee/ice-cream/bottles of whisky (I know they're picketing in the morning/daytime but they're writers, they have a reputation to maintain ;).

I'll go with the consensus though, however that plays out.
Dearest Joss, please get well before you do too much picket line walking. There will be more pizza ;-)

It's a new day indeed when writers have fans who support them in such an inspiring way, rather than just believing the studio's party line press releases and mainstream media coverage. I'm honored to be a part of this, if only in spirit.

*Honks from Hawaii*
S'what i'm sayin'. *pulls figure out of arse* $10,000 (for example) buys a lot of pizza/hot coffee/ice-cream/bottles of whisky (I know they're picketing in the morning/daytime but they're writers, they have a reputation to maintain ;).

I like both the pizza as a direct support of the writers and the ads as a direct public message to the studios. Fan support of the writers means that writers know we support them, and fans are aware of the writers, and spreading awareness. The ads would say specifically to the studios that we know who makes our shows, so we won't be accepting substitutes. I think both efforts running concurrently would be stronger than either would be separately.
As someone currently trying to break into the TV writing business, this is something I've been keeping updated on quite a bit.

I'm on the East Coast, about a two hour train ride from NYC and depending on some things, I might be headed up that way to see if I can join in and show my support for the writers. Anyone else?
People who want to support these efforts should go to under T.V. various. If you're not registered on, you won't be able to see the thread. But it's quick and painless to register, unlike some boards ;)
*honks from Colorado* Joss, Jane, BKV, you all rock, ALL the writers rock, and dreamlogic and all pizza payers, you all rock like a hurricane! :-D

I was glad to read on Nikki Finke's blog that it looks like, now that the producers rejected the offer from the Writers Guild to take away the request for more DVD residuals, the writers are going to add that back to the list. Stay strong, writers! :-)

(This is totally a different subject, but I read a blog with a hi-larious name for our favorite network -- the Faux Network.)
I have no idea about ad costs, etc., but wonder whether it would be more, or less, expensive to advertise in newspapers-LAtimes and/or NYTimes, for example? Because the broader publicity would be nice, and this is certainly not an issue with industry-only interest.
I'm sure the involved parties, as well as the general public, are following the mainstream media coverage. It would be nice to reach members of the public suffering from the "they make more than I do; how dare they inconvenience me?" fallacy.

[ edited by toast on 2007-11-06 14:11 ]
I think an ad is a good idea, but sending what we can in the way of food and refreshments to the strike participants seems a more tangible and direct show of support. Personally I place higher priority on supporting the writers themselves than on showing the studios that we support them (although that is a close second priority). I think bolstering people's spirits is very important, and will be even more important if the tv news keeps reporting the studio lines and the strike wears on. Actors have the power of visibility (and are using it well), and we have the power of being a connected network of committed people. So I think organization and people power is our strength, and that's best used to help the people on the lines more directly.

That said, I would be interested to know what any WGA members here think about which would be the stronger message-- food or an ad, since the expensiveness of the ad may preclude doing both. And I am not experienced in the world of tv, more in other activism, so I could be very wrong.

Visible support as a secondary objective is also why I like a weekly plan for food-- do it regularly, and with enough quantity to make the message clear. And as much as I value accuracy in reporting, if pizza deliveries are a bit larger in rumor than in actuality, then that's even better for the writers. As long as the real pizza is still of a quantity that really helps people out-- I'm not suggesting sending less, rather, don't bother to correct any rumors of there having been even more of it. Hearing that fans are repeatedly delivering pizza "to every gate" has to throw some doubts on the studio.

How many gates are there? Can we cover all of them for real next time? I will chip in on the next pizza fund, when details have been settled.

On preview: newspapers seem a good idea too, toast. I also do not get the feeling that most people in the U.S. see the writers as other than "rich Hollywood people asking for more money and denying me The Office." So reading about fans delivering food would counter expectations.
Simon and/or Caroline, any chance we could see some of the writer e-mails (or quotes)?
You guys are amazing!

Seriously, we're the bestest fandom ever ;)

On behalf of Israeli fans, who are monitoring the strike very closely even though we are geographically far away - it's so good to know that you guys are right there and coming up with serious fan-action.
I think both efforts running concurrently would be stronger than either would be separately.

Yeah, I agree. It's like when 'Airwolf' used to run just before 'Knightrider'. Double bubble ... I mean, maybe not exactly like that, sorta though ... um ... It's nothing like that is it ? Damn.

(but if it's either/or then I vote for food/drink instead, certainly in the short-term, it just peps folks' spirits up to have a full belly or a hot cuppa and enjoying a meal in a group is also great for reinforcing solidarity)
This has seriously made my week. I love us.

I like both the pizza as a direct support of the writers and the ads as a direct public message to the studios.

What dreamlogic said.

I'm up for continuing to donate for regular food runs and I'm happy to donate more next time to cover gas, flyer production, etc., which is likely to get expensive after a while. I can't help deliver since I'm not local, but I'm also not above trying to rope some of my L.A.-based, non-Whedonesque friends into helping with deliveries, if needed. :)

As for the ad, I defer to those that have more experience with this than I do, but I'm happy to provide whatever support I can for that, as well.
I'm a freelance writer in Los Angeles (medical/technical writing and journalism, not scripts, alas), which means I usually have more time than money available. I'd be happy to help with pizza/food/water distribution next time out. I will keep checking the website to stay on top of it.
What's the currently sitch on donations? I'd love to contribute, but dreamlogic at one point asked people to stop donating as yesterday's run was fully booked. If dreamlogic, or anyone else, is collecting for a next run right now, let me know!
For regular donations -- and I'll say right here that I'm willing to commit to $5 a week for the duration of the strike -- we would either need a fund that volunteers could draw on, or the volunteers for that week would need to include someone with a PayPal account who would be willing to post the e-mail address for it (as dreamlogic did).
How about this? Get the Fans Support site up and add a page listing a schedule for pizza deliveries. Folks could volunteer for the week(s) they'd be available, and each week would have a contact e-mail for coordination and PayPal donations. Overages would pass forward to the next delivery.
The people here are good people. I count myself lucky to be included in your numbers. Alas, I do not have the budget to donate even $5 to this very worthy endeavor. You and the writers have my moral support. Way to go!

I have a list of books to read handy for the long haul.
C.A.B. - Go over to the page and we have a thread there to try to start it up.
Well on the .org site, Ravenu suggested the star for whedon account as a source for the donation money. Ravenu is also looking for help to design the basic site... if that can be set up... then it will be easier to approach other fandoms for help etc.

ETA: ooops, ravenu said it earlier... anyways.

[ edited by kurya on 2007-11-06 17:25 ]
Oh, wow. How do I love Let me count the, impossible. There are too many ways.

HUGE kudos to all who put their hard work and hard-earned dinero into this heroic enterprise. I'm so proud to call myself a fellow community weblog member of yours.
Just did a quick search of whedonesque, and I found a link to someone's sites about a previous attempt to put an ad in Variety, it was from the time Serenity came out. Here is the link

The price quoted is 3920(discounted apparently) for a full page ad, which seems achievable, although I have no idea what the price is now.
As usual, I'm late to the party (really wanted to contribute Sunday night, but came to to the thread too late), but let me add my pride at being a Whedonesquer (albeit a mostly quiet one) and pledge my monetary support to the pizza/ad fund for as long as the strike continues.
I live in LA, can I help? I have a working car and I know how to cook rice...

Seriously though, I would love to show my support for the people who have given so much to me in the form of entertainment and a whole lot more.
From the Nikki Finke blog that Love's Bitch linked to:

Best chant of the day was at CBS Radford: "MORE MONEY - LESS MOONVES!"

That made me pump my first in the air, "Power to the People"-style! Hellz yes!
Hey, I created a thread on of people volunteering so far, did I leave anyone out? Anyone want to volunteer? Can you post to the .org and maybe give contact info? When we eventually get organized, it would be nice to have a ready list of volunteers.

Go here for the thread

So far I have put down Shadylane and swanland (ETA: and bobw1o) anyone else?

ETA: the volunteers are for pizza distribution/handling.

[ edited by kurya on 2007-11-06 20:26 ]

[ edited by kurya on 2007-11-06 20:34 ]
I'm definitely in for weekly pizza for the writers as long as the strike continues!
I think some of TPTB would still be surprised at how savvy people are about the writers they like, and how committed they are to supporting them.

In the past, with the exceptions of shows like Twilight Zone with Rod Serling and well-known sci-fi writers present, your average viewer just knew they liked a show. They probably attributed that to the actors.

If the writers striked, they'd be less likely to know what the "big" was, but now I think they get it. They take the words seriously.

And not to brown nose, but Joss Whedon is one of the reasons for that; he is one of the name recognition people who viewers seek out.

I think people understand it now, know who is supplying the entertainment and thought-provoking work they enjoy -- and it aint good news for the execs.
There's a very illuminating sidebar in the L.A. Times business section today comparing what the writers get for DVDs to movie budgets and executive compensation. I couldn't find it online but it's short enough to type:

$56.5 million - DVD and videocassette residuals received in 2006 (by WGA)
$65.8 million - Average production cost for a studio movie in 2006
$60 million - Severance package of Viacom's ousted chief Tom Freston.
$28.6 miilion - 2006 compensation of CBS chief Leslie Moonves.

There's also an alarming bit saying that writers for Fox and CBS with "overall" and "pod production" deals were already having compensation for staffing and development suspended. Is "pod production" what Joss has for Dollhouse? Not that he's working on it, anyway, but if he hired people...does anybody know?
I'm a huge dork. I didn't see that you all are the ones that sent the pizza already! Ignore my thing in the other thread. (Jebuz, I need to read with my actual brain.)
Interesting figures dreamlogic. So the amount of money paid in residuals for every VHS and DVD sold in 2006 to every writer is less than what they gave one executive when he left his job.

Wow. Just wow.

And count me in on $5 every week towards pizza. I would suggest coffee as well but I don't know what their arrangements are concerning restroom breaks. Better not fill them full of liquids!
Wow, that really does put things in perspective - thanks, dreamlogic!
*airhorn cascade from the Great White North...Ontario, Canada if you want specifics :D*

Utterly, utterly awesome stuff here and it was both poignant and hilarious to read Joss' remarks on his first day of picketing. Almost makes one want to get the remarks copied out and framed for future posterity;)
Dreamlogic, found the LA Times details Here (Pdf)
Thanks, Kurya, for listing the volunteers. I suppose our leader and inspiration Dreamlogic should go on the list, too. :)
Nice, zz9. I knew I couldn't type the pie charts, which are also interesting.

In terms of what Fox is doing, Tim Minear has an overall deal with Fox, right? Does anybody know if he got one of those letters saying they wouldn't pay his staff?
Swanland, I figured our fearless leader Dream logic would not need to be on some list. Dreamlogic's participation is already certain :P

[ edited by kurya on 2007-11-06 23:03 ]
Interesting figures dreamlogic. So the amount of money paid in residuals for every VHS and DVD sold in 2006 to every writer is less than what they gave one executive when he left his job.

I would say that's really effin' sad, but honestly? It's way, way beyond that.
I was thinking that for us who can't personally go to help the picketers, on account if being in a foreign country and all, we could send emails to the studios with "In Support of the WGA Strike" as the subject and leaving the message part empty.

That should help at least some, right?
Interesting figures dreamlogic. So the amount of money paid in residuals for every VHS and DVD sold in 2006 to every writer is less than what they gave one executive when he left his job.

I would say that's really effin' sad, but honestly? It's way, way beyond that.

Hey, maybe he left his job really well, that's worth $60 million, surely ?

Like, he tangoed out of the building while juggling geese. With chainsaws in their beaks. Burning chainsaws. Blindfolded (him not the geese, or the chainsaws). He may also have whistled, possibly something patriotic.

Nope, I can't get it over about $1500 and change.

Gold burning chainsaws ?
If we're being serious about showing fan support, at some stage we will have to start planning for the long haul. Donating to hardship funds for writers may have to be an option, I would imagine a lot of the writers are going to be financially crippled/ruined by a result of long term industrial action.
Interesting figures dreamlogic. So the amount of money paid in residuals for every VHS and DVD sold in 2006 to every writer is less than what they gave one executive when he left his job.

I would say that's really effin' sad, but honestly? It's way, way beyond that.

It's not sad; it's obscene.
Simon and mods: Is there any way to get these strike effort threads on .org out of "TV-Various" and maybe into a specific strike subforum so they will all be easier to find?
Ah, good point, Kurya. :)

Simon makes a great point, too. Does the WGA have an emergency fund for hardships? I would guess that the hardship funds should go to the people in the middle, not people like Joss, who acknowledged he can weather this storm. But it gets complicated, because people throughout the industry will be affected -- casting directors, cinematographers, crafts services, office staff, Teamsters, IA (on-set crafts like lighting, sets, props, etc.), and so on. Then there's the people whose jobs rely on the money spent by people working in film and TV, like cab and limo drivers, waiters, etc. As James Gunn pointed out in his blog, even Los Angeles area strippers rely on cash from writers and actors; the hardship fund might have to cover lots of us here in the City of Angels.
Simon and mods: Is there any way to get these strike effort threads on .org out of "TV-Various" and maybe into a specific strike subforum so they will all be easier to find?
Swanland, I believe it was onetruebix and jenskijen on the .org threads that have mentioned it would be a good idea that any leftover funds from the potential ad campaigns would be given to the and that disclaimer should be front and centre.

ETA: I do not know though if the WG foundation is related to the strike fund or to help writers who need financial assistance.

[ edited by kurya on 2007-11-07 00:19 ]
ETA: I do not know though if the WG foundation is related to the strike fund or to help writers who need financial assistance.

The WGF is their charitable/educational foundation. It's outreach and other programs. If there's a strike fund, I would presume it's got to be running separately.

WGE East does have a strike fund set up. I'm still looking for any others.
I believe there is a strike fund. One anonymous writer was quoted as saying: "I've got six months savings, six months from the Strike Fund and I'll live on credit cards for six months." So he/she is in for the long haul.

I think the focus should be on supporting the strike rather than the Strike Fund - which the WGA already has in place. As amazing as fandom is, I don't think our contributions would make much of a contribution to what is already in place for that eventuality.

So, yes to pizza and postcards and an ad, but hold off on contributing to the writer's personal funds for now...
Paypal subscriptions can be set up for various amounts and date ranges. Maybe even weekly. Works real well...until your Credit card expiration date pops up. The subscriptions could all be cancelled when the strike ends.

You can see an example of a Paypal Subcription at Click the +Aid+

[ edited by Anonymous1 on 2007-11-07 03:05 ]
Just to spread things a little wider, just started a Facebook group to support the writers strike. It won't have anything the upcoming website won't have in more detail, but it might be a good attention-getter and it's a good place to upload strike line photos, hint hint.

(Fixed link)

[ edited by C. A. Bridges on 2007-11-07 05:25 ]
Well, cant write much (working on a weird computer, as Im in the Yahoo Cafe in the Narita Airport waiting for another connecting flight - no free wireless, so I cant post from my laptop).
Just wanted to say great work guys, and thanks for Joss giving us his 2 cents on the matter.
Wish best of luck for the writers, I hope they know, we support their demands.
Once upon a time, someone told me a story about a guy who sold his soul for a truck. Okay. David Goodman wrote it.

I didn't get the story at first, but that truck kept him alive for awhile, kept his friends alive, and it was their means and their way in a time of turmoil, so he gave his soul to a demon, to keep the truck going for his friends, cuz he didn't think he had much of a future. And then he did.

I don't get striking at first. I get that sometimes negotiations break down. When they do, you walk away. They either find others more desperate who will accept their outrageous terms, or they simply go without. I don't see how a strike will make the opposition cave, but maybe it's not about making them cave. Maybe it's about bringing attention to the fact that a grave injustice is happening here, and writers are not being promised what they truly deserve - fair and equal compensation as befits their talent and service.

I trust that our nation's storytellers believe so much in their stories, they would do whatever it takes to insure those stories continue to get told. I also trust they would not sell their souls for a pittance, which is what they woulda done had they not gone on strike.

Charles Gunn's soul was worth more than a truck.

Our country's writers are too.
Apparently, the strike is all Steve Jobs fault:

I fully support the strike, but I now feel I have to go on strike myself here in Sweden, because the code I did while being a programmer is still used in new ways, and I don't get a nickle from it.
That bloody Jobs, I knew in my bones (as a long-time PC user) that he'd be behind it ! ;-)

From LucidMind's link:

The problem, Eisner said, is that the Writer's Guild is lobbying for a bigger cut of the profits from digital distribution--and according to the former Disney chief, those profits simply aren't there.

Right, but the way a percentage of profit works is, if there's no profit, your cut is, wait for it, zero. If the studios don't make a profit then the writer's cut costs them nothing so the only possible reason they're digging their heels in so deep over new-media residuals is because they think the profits are going to be huge (huge enough that a 2.5% share is worth all this cost - some estimates put it in the hundreds of millions of dollars - and hassle).

And the writers are negotiating now because a) their contracts are up now and b) because the longer you accept a state of affairs, the harder it is to protest them (even some WGA members think asking for higher DVD residuals is a hiding to nothing simply because the writers have accepted their current low cut for so long).

Eisner's presumably a smart guy but that's not smart thinking.
I just got a chance to read Joss's post, and I wanted to say thanks to him, and to everyone who is supporting this strike. I hope to break into this business one day, so I realize that what happens now will impact me someday. It's great to see so many people behind this.

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