After a nearly five-month-long strike, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) has reached a tentative agreement with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, prompting the WGA to recommend its members to end the strike. The agreement, set to last from September 25th, 2023 through May 1st, 2026, includes regulations on the use of generative AI tools and specific rules regarding streaming data and calculating bonuses based on viewership. Notably, AI-generated material will not be considered source material under the agreement, and companies cannot require writers to use AI software. Despite this development, productions may not fully return to normal as the Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) is still on strike until both writers and actors resume working.
The agreement between the WGA and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers marks the end of a long and contentious strike that lasted close to five months. The WGA’s Negotiating Committee, WGAW Board, and WGAE Council voted unanimously to recommend the three-year agreement, and a ratification vote is scheduled for early October. The deal includes a viewership-based bonus structure for streaming content, as well as provisions for studios to share streaming data with the Guild. Additionally, the agreement sets boundaries for the use of generative AI tools, stating that AI-generated material will not be considered source material under the agreement, and writers cannot be compelled to use AI software. However, the situation remains uncertain as the ongoing strike by SAG-AFTRA, representing actors in the entertainment industry, means that productions may not fully return to normal until both writers and actors have resumed work.
While the resolution of the writers’ strike is a significant step forward for the entertainment industry, the situation is far from settled. The Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), representing over 160,000 performers, is still on strike. This means that despite the writers’ return to work, the entertainment industry may not see a complete return to normalcy until both writers and actors are back on set. The strike by SAG-AFTRA has impacted various productions, and the final resolution of the labor dispute will be crucial for the industry’s recovery. The agreement reached by the Writers Guild of America provides insights into the future of AI-generated content and streaming data, but additional negotiations and agreements will be necessary to ensure a comprehensive and stable industry-wide settlement.