Actors Now Fighting For Royalties That Will Make It Harder For Big Studios To Compete

from the short-sighted dept

After the TV writers' strike from earlier this year, we noted that the final settlement actually was not in the best interest of the writers, even though they got much of what they wanted in demanding royalties from online usage of their content. The actors unions are now gearing up for that same battle, as well, as they, too, are demanding rights over online usage, including royalties and the right to demand permission before any of the works they appear in can be used online. It's difficult to feel sorry for Hollywood producers here -- as they very much brought this on themselves, convincing lots of people that they should get paid every single time any of their content was used. Thus, it's no surprise that the writers and the actors are now demanding the same rights.

However, just as it was wrong for the producers to be demanding a fee for every usage, so is it wrong for the writers and the actors to be demanding such a fee. All it will do is make it much more difficult, time consuming and expensive for any of that content to go online. And that will open up much wider opportunities for other content to go online instead, decreasing the overall value of the content made under these agreements. It's hard to fault the actors (like the writers) for looking out for their short-term interests and demanding the same sorts of things that the producers have demanded of everyone else -- but it's setting up a bad situation over the long-term, where the studios under these agreements won't be able to adapt to the changing media landscape.

Filed Under: actors, entertainment industry, hollywood, online, producers, royalties, streaming, strike


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  1. identicon
    mobiGeek, 12 May 2008 @ 9:24am

    Where's their risk?

    I don't support most of the way that Hollywood does business, but I gotta wonder what it is that the actors/writers are risking that makes them deserve this?

    The producers (typically) are the ones putting up money to have a work of art created. The writers/actors/support crew are all paid for their time. But they have no risk, no investment in the effort.

    If these folks want to yield gains, then let them invest in the risk. Drop your wages for a percentage of the return, or make a lump-sum investment. That's what I've done in the software sector. I don't turn around and demand that my company give me a cut of the profits for something I produced under salary.

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