What is the Writers Strike?


The 2023 writers strike(GQ)

Addison Bowen, Journalist

Tv shows have become a very influential and important part of everyday life in the past few decades. Shows like “Stranger Things,” “Abbot Elementary,” “The Last of Us,” and “The Handmaid’s Tale” are enjoyed by many. Unfortunately, these shows, and many more, are being postponed due to the 2023 writers strike. 

As TV and movie production skyrockets, companies invest more and more into streaming services, yet the writers of said shows and movies salary has stayed the same. As streaming has become more popular and has allowed companies to drop entire seasons of a show at once, TV shows have gone from maybe twenty episodes to only eight. This has widely caused writers to be paid less per season. By paying writers less for their work, streaming services and CEO’s are making more and more money. 

Studios themselves don’t have much to say beyond “too bad, deal with it.” Studios have debt to pay which has caused them to make the cutbacks they have to writers, while still making an immense prophet themselves. The money that is being made as a prophet from shows and movies is being pocketed by these giant studios instead of rightfully paying the writers what they deserve for literally writing the scripts for your beloved movies and TV shows.

The goal the writers are trying to reach with the strike is to negotiate with the AMPTP, who are the entertainment industry’s official collective bargaining representative. The goal is to reach an agreement about what the minimum writers can be paid should be changed to. These terms will hopefully last three years and be renegotiated every three years in order to update and make sure the pay is still fair and is adequate pay for living a comfortable life.

You may be thinking, will this writer’s strike affect me at all though? The answer is yes. The writers’ strike probably won’t affect TV for about a year, as the shows that will be released relatively soon have already been written. But in the next few years, it will become obvious that something is going on. The next seasons of your favorite shows may be delayed and the Movie you’ve been really looking forward to might altogether be canceled.  On another note, the writing in shows and movies we are going to see in the future, because of the writers’ strike, is not going to be good. By paying writers less than they deserve, the quality of the writing is going to go down. This has already happened once before in 2007, writers weren’t getting paid what they deserved so when next season of shows were released the characters didn’t sound like themselves. The writers strike is going to cause a lot of popular media to flop because the care that was originally put into its characters and storyline can no longer be put in.

The recent writers strike is a very important issue for everyone who enjoys TV or cares about people being paid fairly for their work. Unfortunately there isn’t much everyday consumers and supporters of the writers can do. The best thing would be to follow the WGA East and WGA West accounts so that you can get regularly updated on news related to the strike, and show support for the strikers where you can.