The Writers Guild of America (WGA) has decided to end its strike order after more than six months of halting work and pushing for a better contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP). Although the final ratification vote has not taken place yet, writers can return to work starting from September 27. The decision comes following negotiation sessions with producers, resulting in a tentative agreement. One of the major concerns addressed in the new contract is the use of generative AI in the writing process.
The WGA has released a summary of the terms in the new contract, highlighting measures taken to protect writers against the use of generative AI. The agreement states that generative AI cannot be used to create or alter literary material, and any output from AI cannot be considered as source material. Companies or studios must obtain consent from writers if they wish to utilize AI, with writers having the right to refuse the use of AI software like ChatGPT. Studios are also required to disclose if any materials provided to writers contain AI-generated content, and the exploitation of writers’ work to train AI is strictly prohibited.
In addition to AI-related protections, the new contract includes improved compensation for writers, increased contributions towards their pension and health plans, and higher payments and residuals for streaming projects. Foreign streaming residuals will be determined based on the number of global subscribers, while domestic projects’ residuals will be calculated according to the hours streamed in the US. This three-year agreement will remain valid until May 1, 2026. While the WGA strike has concluded, SAG-AFTRA’s strike involving performers in the video game industry is still ongoing, with the organization recently voting in favor of a strike authorization to strengthen its position in negotiations with video game producers.