Monday, November 19, 2007

Let the Writers Eat All the Cake

The writer’s strike seems to be trudging on, with no end in sight. The main point of contention is that writers are not getting a cut of the internet revenue generated from their work. The media companies claim there is no revenue to give.

If that’s the case, you have to wonder why media companies don’t just trick the writers and give them 100% of internet revenue. After all, 100% of zero is still zero. Writers are well-known for their lack of math skills, so it might seem like a good deal to them.

I can survive without most TV, but am really missing the Daily Show. Instead of the real thing, I’ll have to settle for segments like this:

With their usual devastating truth telling, they point out that Viacom is suing YouTube for a billion dollars of lost revenue. A different Viacom exec has publicly estimated that internet revenues for Viacom will reach $500 million dollars. “Of course, to a pessimist, that’s like half of NOT a billion dollars.”

My favorite strike-related quote is from Steve Bodow on the picket line: “Warren Leight—a playwright who’s now show-runner on Law & Order: Criminal Intent—was there, and he offered a protest chant: “What do we want? For the girls in high school who rejected us for the jocks to finally see how wrong they were! When do we want it? Then!” It didn’t quite catch on, but only because it doesn’t rhyme.”

If the Daily Show writers continue to produce segments like this, and put them up on YouTube, I would be willing to send them a check for one dollar per segment, and also try to convince a million of my friends to do the same.

1 comment:

snarkbutt said...

When I was a kid, I used to think the writers had to be the most important people in a movie. They're the ones who make up the story, right? What else matters? (This was before I knew about things like acting, directing, cinematography, and special effects.)

In a way, this isn't a fair fight at all. How are the producers supposed to argue their case when all the people who put words in their mouth are on strike? It really does illustrate the Power of the Pen.

I hope it ends soon, and the producers buckle under their own hypocrisy.