By Light Unseen Media is going on record as fully supporting the Writers Guild of America strike against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. The strike concerns the reluctance of the AMPTP to pay fair royalties to writers for DVD distribution of their work, and to pay any royalties for electronic distribution such as streaming video and Internet downloads of television episodes. I have signed the petition in support of the strike, and until writers are fairly compensated for Internet distribution, I will no longer be downloading films, television or commercial videos from iTunes or any other Internet marketplace. For a detailed explanation of the issues involved and the history of the strike, see the following sources:
United Hollywood Blog
Wikipedia, the Writers Guild of America Strike (if you mistrust Wikipedia, read the long list of primary sources linked at the bottom of the article)
“Scribe Vibe,” Variety’s WGA Strike Blog
The AMPTP is misunderstood by some to represent individual producers–the people whose names you see in the credits of movies. The AMPTP does no such hands-on work in the industry. It is an organization of six megaconglomerates: General Electric, Time-Warner, Walt Disney, News Corp., CBS and Viacom. These are huge, global corporations, each of which owns an enormous chunk of the film and broadcasting industry. To see just what each of them controls, go to Who Owns What in Big Media. The WGA strike represents a resistance movement against the incalculable control that the AMPTP wields over what you’re allowed to see in the movies and on television. Several of these corporations control huge percentages of the publishing industry, as well. Anyone who is concerned about independent publishers, artists and studios being squeezed out of existance by the Goliaths should be aware of the implications of the WGA strike. What the WGA wins or loses will affect what other industry unions will be able to demand in mid-2008 when their contracts expire.
By Light Unseen Media will always fairly compensate its authors, writers and other contributing artists for distribution of their work in any form. New methods of formatting and distributing information and entertainment will be invented and perfected, and when they are, By Light Unseen Media will be taking advantage of them, just as our books are already available for Amazon’s Kindle e-book service. Contracts will cover these new forms of distribution or be renegotiated. That’s our promise.