Thursday, August 26, 2004

The Awful Truth 

Tonight I'm going to the Writer's Guild after work for a meeting aimed at giving reality story editors and assistants recognition for their work. Suffice it to say, we deserve our due.

This excerpt from a recent interview in a trade magazine:

On reality shows, story editors, whose job is where writers say most of their work is done, make between $1,200 and $3,500 a week. For a writer on a half-hour prime-time network show covered by the guild, the minimum base pay is $3,376 a week, plus big perks if first drafts are used. Such a writer whose story and teleplay are used pulls in a minimum of $19,603. Plus there are the benefits: health care and pensions, which the reality shows do not offer.

"The overwhelming majority of writers on these shows are not guild members -- they're in their mid-twenties to thirties. It's a young genre and young person's genre, and the level of exploitation inflicted on them is real," said Petrie of the WGA. "They're being used."

Did you catch that last sentence? Used. Preach on! How chincy is my company? Put it this way, the minimum earning listed above for a reality show seems like a good chunk of change.

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