Thursday, July 27, 2006

Can't fool me

Picket-lines today:

Workers at a Rotorua timber mill have walked off the job for 24 hours, to protest the company's pay offer. They're going for 5% this year - given the level of inflation that's barely a pay-rise at all. The company wants to give them a 3 year deal. It sounds like this is just the beginning of their negotiations. Saw mill workers are generally in quite a strong position to negotiate, if they're well organised, so it's really important that they use their strength.

The writers on 'America's Next Top Model' have gone on strike. You may wonder what the writers do on a reality television show, but it takes a lot of work to turn a whole bunch of raw footage into a coherent narrative about talking to ferns, red bull and museli bars. The twelve writers on the show are unanimous about seeking representation, and one of their main demands is health insurance(currently one writer has to pay $600 a month for health insurance). If you want to know more TWoP has an excellent interview with one of the striking writers. What these writers are doing is unprecedented, and it's a huge step forward for organising an unorganised industry.

2 comments:

  1. I saw an interesting film in the Film Festival called This Film Not Yet Rated, which looked at the role of the rating system in the USA in basically bolstering the power of the studios, including against organised labour.

    Very interesting indeed, if you get a chance to see it.

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  2. Talk about a stark contrast! Makes you think...

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