As of right now, a strike is not imminent and it is believed that the strong support from the WGA membership may actually go a long way in preventing that from happening. That said, the deadline is fast approaching with the date set for May 1, just a couple of weeks from now. If the WGA and AMPTP can’t reach an agreement by that time, the full membership of 11,500 TV and movie writers could very well go on strike. A similar situation was narrowly avoided in 2017.
The goal of the WGA in the negotiations is to secure better pay for streaming shows and to raise the floor for base pay. In traditional TV, syndication and other revenue streams helped writers get by well after a job concluded. Royalties have changed radically thanks to the advent of streaming. Other factors, such as declines at the box office and a decline in the home video market, have also impacted pay. Concerns have also been raised regarding AI and the role it may play in the future, with programs like ChatGPT rising to prominence in recent months.
The AMPTP did respond to the strike authorization vote, saying the following:
“Our goal is, and continues to be, to reach a fair and reasonable agreement. An agreement is only possible if the Guild is committed to turning its focus to serious bargaining by engaging in full discussions of the issues with the Companies and searching for reasonable compromises.”