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War of the words

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No new talks scheduled between SAG and the AMPTP, but the rumble over the actors’ contract flared up again today. This time the battleground was the Internet.

SAG sent out an e-mail titled, “It’s Not New Media – It’s Now Media” to its members explaining why the studio bosses’ final offer is not good enough. The e-mail from National Executive Director and Chief Negotiator Doug Allen explained why the so-called “new media template” worked for the DGA and the WGA, but not for actors. One reason, according to Allen is that “… the new media template negatively impacts actors … on residuals.”

Meanwhile over on the AMPTP website, the producers hammered SAG leaders for having the nerve to ask for a better offer in this shaky economy.  No mention in the statement of the robust business at the box office and the jump in spending of ad dollars on the Internet, this year. Also, the AMPTP ridiculed the contention by SAG leaders that the new media landscape has changed in the past six months.

The AMPTP claims its final offer has “… more than $250 million in increased compensation, groundbreaking new media rights, and pension and health protections that most Americans would envy.” The AMPTP points out that SAG members are continuing to work under an old contract, therefore, losing out on money and benefits.

Hmm, I’d call it a draw for today. Both sides got in some good punches. No telling where or when SAG and the AMPTP will come out swinging next.





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