Contact theSOPAbout theSOPSupport theSOPWritersEditorsManaging Editors
theSOP logo
Published:February 4th, 2008 17:17 EST
Media is the Masses: The Show Must Go On... line!

Media is the Masses: The Show Must Go On... line!

By Sean Stubblefield

As a result of the Writers strike, The Alliance of Motion Picture & Television Producers and Writers Guild of America are redefining the form and function of online productions-- illustrating the symbiotic nature of the relationship between Man and Media. The writers and the internet are altering each other, as the changes caused by one... initiates or facilitates changes in the other, co-reciprocating indefinitely.

In ironic subversion, AMPTP attempting to exclude writers from the financial benefits of the studios` internet ventures has inadvertently provided the means, motive and opportunity through which writers may eventually or potentially acquire said benefits-- even if that includes the strike negotiation somehow resolving satisfactorily for the WGA. By trying to force writers away from the internet, AMPTP has instead forced them further and faster into it, as many writers transfer their talents to web productions.

And consequently, possibly increasing and advancing the general transition from offline studio productions to online, in a kind of evolutionary leap or growth spurt.

As more people leave the typical studio model of doing business- literally and figuratively, some studios will realize they`ve hurt themselves in their obstinance.

The strike (and by extension the internet) has, in addition to publicizing WGA`s cause, given many script writers a platform to not only publicly defend their rights, skills and careers, but also to inform people of the conditions of being a writer, as well as open other creative avenues online for writers.

Some writers-- along with other sympathetic personnel in and outside the Hollywood arena-- have joined forces and purposes in expressions of creative promotion, combining artistry with advocacy:

Watch the many strike related Youtube videos.

This is only a sampling, and beginning. There will be a necessary period of redefining, restructuring and readjustment in this transition.

With the expansion of online productions and their general acceptance, writers may have increasing alternative options for bypassing conventional "Corporate" production studios. So could many others in the vast array of production and support staff, usually employed by the major studios, who are out of work during the strike. Rather than relying on the (at least for now) dominant traditional big name studios, Hollywood creatives may be able to go independent with studios involved in online projects, plus take more control over the means of production.

Although in many cases this may be creatively and logistically feasible, it might (at least initially) not be financially prudent for some individuals to go with smaller, less funded independent studios.

Even if production staff cannot or choose not to participate with online efforts, there are many independent and smaller studios interested in available talent.

Agencies like United Artists, World Wide Pants and Weinstein demonstrate-- and set precedent-- that WGA members may find work with producers at smaller studios that are willing and able to negotiate fair deals, which are incompatible with the apparently uncompromising greed of Conglomerates.

Writers could also try scripting and pitching for short stories, comic books and graphic novels.


Currently based in Houston Texas, Sean Stubblefield graduated Sam Houston State University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Television Production. A philosopher poet, Stubblefield has been writing non-fiction for 15 years, and has penned eight books to date. His first book, Paradox: A Journey Inside Out is available today at

For More Information:` target=_new>