Thursday, November 22, 2007
Is The Internet Too New ?
"The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, representing the major studios, says the Internet is too new to value. Like home video 20 years ago, the AMPTP doesn't want to set residuals until the studios can establish viable business models for Internet content. But its arguments seem disingenuous.
If there's no money in online content now, why did Viacom sue YouTube for $1 billion, accusing Google of illegally profiting off clips of its shows? WGA supporters compiled damning clips of CEOs like News Corp.'s Rupert Murdoch and Viacom's Sumner Redstone trumpeting the current and future revenue their firms earn from Internet broadcasts.
On its website, the AMPTP states that writers want a 700% increase in their download residuals. That's true. The writers are currently getting the 22-year-old 0.3% rate, and they're asking for the original 2.5%.
The AMPTP says it offered writers a cut of streaming revenue. That's also true, but the WGA counters that the AMPTP proposed no residuals until six weeks after the episode went online. In other words, the time when the most number of people would likely watch that episode, and when the network would earn the most from it. "