The Writers Guild of America (WGA) has released a contract summary with significant wins for writers in the entertainment industry. One of the major victories is improved pay increases, especially for high-budget subscription video on demand platforms like Netflix and streaming films. The WGA also secured an agreement surrounding artificial intelligence (AI). According to the contract, AI will be prohibited from writing or rewriting literary material, and content generated by AI cannot be used as source material. The WGA also reserves the right to assert that the exploitation of writers’ material to train AI is prohibited by relevant laws.
In addition, the contract requires studios to provide the WGA with actual data on streaming performance, including the total number of hours streamed domestically and internationally for self-produced high-budget streaming programs. This move aims to address the lack of transparency in streaming data, which previously made it difficult for writers to determine the success of their projects. While the specific numbers may remain confidential due to nondisclosure agreements, the WGA will be able to release aggregated data, providing a more detailed understanding of the streaming business. This increased transparency will make it harder for streaming platforms to claim success for obscure projects that have not gained public recognition.
Overall, the WGA’s contract summary represents a historic achievement for writers, with significant pay increases and protections against AI exploitation. Moreover, the inclusion of real data on streaming performance will bring much-needed transparency to the industry and enable a fairer evaluation of project success.