Posts Tagged ‘rights’

EU Agrees Unwaivable Right to Fair Remuneration

11th July 2017 by Maura McHugh

This a joint press release from FERA, FSE, and SAA on “European Copyright: Parliament committees vote for an unwaivable right to fair remuneration for audiovisual authors.”

Today, the European Parliament Industry and Culture committees voted in favour of an unwaivable right to fair remuneration for authors and performers for the making available of their works. Supported by the European audiovisual authors’ community, such a remuneration right would ensure that screenwriters and directors receive royalties when their works are exploited on on-demand services, wherever in Europe, thanks to its collective mechanism.

The ITRE committee opinion, drafted by Polish ECR MEP Zdislaw Krasnodebski, was adopted including such an unwaivable right to fair remuneration introduced by S&D MEPs led by British MEP Theresa Griffin with the support from across the political spectrum. Drafted by French EPP MEP Marc Joulaud, the Culture committee adopted a compromise amendment with a similar positive provision for authors and performers based on amendments introduced by S&D, EPP and Greens but undermined by a possible derogation for original agreements which would raise the costs and sap the functioning of any collective agreement. Taking into account the weak individual bargaining power of audiovisual authors, such a derogation is not justified and will need to be reexamined.

The SAA encourages the European Council and the lead committee in the European Parliament, the Legal Affairs Committee, to support and adopt ITRE’s unwaivable right to remuneration.

The Legal Affairs committee, will discuss the Copyright Directive tomorrow and vote after the summer. The Council Intellectual Property Working Party held a meeting on this issue yesterday.

Quotes:

Cécile Despringre, SAA Executive Director said “The Culture and Industry opinions sends a clear and powerful message to the European Parliament’s lead committee and the Council. They have recognized that Europe’s screenwriters and directors must be financially rewarded when their works are successful online and have adopted the appropriate provisions to make sure that happens.

Pauline Durand-Vialle, FERA Chief Executive added “The unwaivable right to fair remuneration received support from across the political spectrum this morning. It’s great to see the European Parliament stepping up in support of the audiovisual creative community.

David Kavanagh, FSE Executive Officer said “This Directive is a unique opportunity to bring fairness to audiovisual authors by allowing them to share in the economic success of their works online: let’s hope this step forward in the EU Parliament paves the way for positive discussions in the Council.

FERA – Founded in 1980, the Federation of European Film Directors contains 39 directors’ associations from 29 countries. It speaks for approximately 20,000 European screen directors, representing their cultural, creative and economic interests both in Brussels and in the Member States. www.filmdirectors.eu @Film_directors

FSE – The Federation of Screenwriters Europe is a network of national and regional associations, guilds and unions of writers for the screen in Europe, created in June 2001. It comprises 25 members from 20 countries, representing more than 7,000 writers in Europe. www.scenaristes.com @ScreenwritersEU

SAA – Founded in 2010, the Society of Audiovisual Authors (SAA) is the association of European collective management organisations representing audiovisual authors. Its 31 members in 23 countries manage rights for over 120,000 film, television and multimedia European screenwriters and directors. www.saa-authors.eu @saabrussels

World Screenwriters’ Resolutions

14th October 2014 by Maura McHugh

At the recent World Conference of Screenwriters held in Warsaw, Poland, member guilds of the International Affiliation of Writers Guilds (IAWG) as well as members of the Federation of Screenwriters in Europe, passed two resolutions.

The first one, titled the Warsaw Women’s Resolution, calls on the television and film industry to address the issue of gender inequality in the industry. The resolution asks industry members to set a goal of having 50% of scripts across genres and at every budget level written by women. Jill Golick, president of the Writers Guild of Canada, and outgoing chair of the IAWG’s policy and research group, presented the resolution to the assembly, where it was adopted unanimously.

Statistics from writers’ organizations around the world clearly report that women write fewer scripts, receive fewer commissions, have shorter careers, and earn less money for their work than their male colleagues. As a report titled Focus on Women (2013) by Canadian Unions for Equality on Screen notes, in Canadian television alone 21 live-action programs receiving significant levels of funding from the Canada Media Fund (2010-11) were written by 65% male screenwriters, 35% female.

The full resolution follows:

Statistics from writers’ organizations around the world show clearly that women writers are under employed. We write fewer scripts, receive fewer commissions, have shorter careers and earn less than our male colleagues.

Women have the talent, experience and ambition to participate as equals in every aspect of the industry. What stands in our way is institutional gender bias.

We the 30 guilds and writers organizations present at the Warsaw Conference of Screenwriters 2014 representing 56,000 male and female screenwriters, call upon our commissioners, funders, studios, networks and broadcasters to set the goal of having 50% of scripts across genres and at every budget level written by women.

Let us reflect back to our audiences, and especially our children, worlds in which men and women are truly equal.

The second resolution, known as the Warsaw Final Resolution, stresses the need for broadcasters, digital service providers, financial institutions, producers, and film studios to respect the creative independence of screenwriters and other artists involved in production.

It reads as follows:

This golden age of television is created by writers. The season(s) long narrative arc allows unprecedented room for the development of multi-dimensional characters and intricate plots.

Investment in writers to allow them the creative and financial space to do what they do best is key to the strengthening and continuation of quality television which appeals to audiences both local and global.

Be it resolved that the 30 screenwriter guilds present in Warsaw at WCOS03, representing 56,000 writers, assert the essential role of the creator and his/her singular vision in the production of quality television. We propose the Danish model of “one vision”, which has respect for creators at its core, as the industry standard to be adopted by broadcasters, digital subscription services, funding agencies, producers and studios.

Writers must be provided with the time and resources to develop their plots and characters without either being rushed to camera or interfered with by executives who so often muddy the creative waters. We also resolve to focus on professionalizing the “Created By” credit in all our negotiations to ensure fair remuneration and respect are attached, and to create a global standard for this credit.