Wed. Sep 27th, 2023

Writers want to stop AI from taking jobs

Writers strike focuses on whether AI could take jobs from screenwriters


Striking Hollywood writers have asked their fellow Writers Guild of America members who are up for Tony Awards not to attend the ceremony on June 11, according to The Hollywood Reporter. 

The WGA recently sent an email to guild members who are nominated for Tonys asking them to boycott the event, according to the report. The WGA is requesting that instead of attending, they pre-tape acceptance speeches or ask a non-member to accept the award on their behalf in the event that they win, The Hollywood Reporter said, citing sources close to the matter. 

The WGA did not immediately reply to a request for comment from CBS MoneyWatch. 

The WGA previously said it would not picket the event, provided that Tony Awards organizers host an unscripted awards ceremony, allowing the event recognizing excellence on Broadway to go on next month.

The WGA has not negotiated an interim agreement or a waiver to contribute to the Tony Awards. But Tony Awards Productions, which hosts the celebration, conceded to specific WGA requests, the union previously. said in a statement to CBS MoneyWatch. 

“Tony Awards Productions (a joint venture of the Broadway League and the American Theatre Wing) has communicated with us that they are altering this year’s show to conform with specific requests from the WGA, and therefore the WGA will not be picketing the show,” the statement read in part. 

Striking writers are seeking fair pay and more job security amid the rise of streaming services, which the WGA says have reduced writers’ pay through shorter seasons and smaller staffs. They also want strict limits on how studios use artificial intelligence to generate scripts. They don’t want to rewrite material generated by AI, nor for studios to hire AI to rewrite their own scripts. They also want all union-covered material to be excluded from training AI models. 

Studios, meanwhile, haven’t made any guarantees other than offering “annual meetings to discuss advancements in technology.”

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