After a nearly five-month-long strike, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) is instructing its members to end their picketing. The WGA announced a unanimous recommendation from its negotiation committee, board, and council to accept a three-year agreement with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. The strike will officially conclude at 12:01 AM on Wednesday, allowing writers to return to work. A vote for ratification of the agreement is scheduled between October 2nd and October 9th. Details of the agreement, including regulations on the use of generative AI tools and rules regarding streaming data and viewership-based bonuses, have been made available to members.
One notable aspect of the agreement is the new bonus structure based on viewership for series and films made for streaming platforms. The studios have also agreed to provide streaming data to the Writers Guild, enabling them to track the number of hours streamed for projects such as Netflix’s original series. Regarding the use of AI, the agreement outlines that AI tools cannot be used to write or rewrite literary material, and any AI-generated material will not be considered source material. Writers cannot be forced to use AI software like ChatGPT, and if any materials provided to them were generated by AI or contain AI-generated material, the writers must be informed.
However, despite the end of the strike, the entertainment industry’s return to normalcy may still be hindered. The Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), representing around 160,000 performers in the industry, is still on strike. Until both writers and actors resume working, the full restoration of productions may not be realized.