Writers strike coast to coast

first_imgBURBANK – Carrying red and black signs reading, “Writers Guild of America On Strike,” and chanting, “On strike, shut it down. Hollywood’s a union town,” hundreds picketed outside studios in and around Los Angeles and New York this morning on the first day of the strike. In Burbank, under overcast skies, scores of picketers geared up for what could be days or weeks of a strike. They hauled coolers filled with food and water and staged at Johnny Carson Park in Burbank, before heading out to walk in processions in front of every entrance and exit of all the major studios in Burbank – Disney, Warner Bros., and NBC. Amid the gaggle of news vans, TV crews and reporters, Jay Leno even rode up on his Harley to pass out Krispy Kreme Doughnuts. “The mood among us is good,” said Peter Sears, a writer for “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.” “The union is united. The public can sense that we’re all together. It’s for a very just cause.” “I was here for the ’88 strike and I’ve never seen our union more together,” he said. At Sony Pictures in Culver City, Steve Skrovan, a writer for the sitcom, “Til Death,” said that he didn’t expect there to be much sympathy for writers, who he acknowledged do make good livings, with some earning triple digits, but he said he and others were fighting for future generations of writers. “They can make it because others have fought,” said the 50-year-old from La Crescenta. He said he has money saved up and was was prepared to picket for several months. Writers Guild of America members began picketing at 15 large studios from Burbank to Manhattan Beach at 9 today. Writers will reportedly be walking four-hour shifts beginning either at 9 a.m. or 1 p.m. Guild officials have set up a network of strike captains to coordinate picket line activities. It was the first strike by Hollywood writers in nearly 20 years, with noisy pickets on both coasts. The walkout threatens to disrupt everything from late-night talk shows to soap operas. The strike apparently so far has forced the Leno, David Letterman shows into reruns. At the CBS lot in Studio City, about 40 people hoisted signs and applauded when midmorning picketing began. Robert Port, a writer for the TV show “Numb3rs,” said he was as ready as possible for what could be a long walkout. “We live in Los Angeles, your bank account can never really for ready for this,” he said. Only about half of the picketers wore their official red strike T-shirts. “Writers aren’t the easiest cats to coral,” said Don McGill, another writer for “Numb3rs.” Across town at the Paramount Pictures lot on Melrose Avenue, about 50 strikers dressed in jeans, athletic shoes and red strike T-shirts carried signs reading, “Writers Guild of America on Strike.” Drivers honked their horns as they passed the studio’s landmark gate. The strike began after daylong talks Sunday failed to produce an agreement on payment to writers from shows offered on he Internet. The first noisy strikers appeared outside the “Today” show set at Rockefeller Center in New York, where NBC is headquartered. The “Today Show” is not directly affected by the strike because news writers are part of a different union. A giant, inflated rat was displayed, as about 40 people shouted, “No contract, no shows!” “They claim that the new media is still too new to structure a model for compensation,” said Jose Arroyo, a writer for “Late Night with Conan O’Brien.” “We say give us a percentage so if they make money, we make money,” Arroyo said. Diana Son, a writer for “Law & Order: Criminal Intent,” said she has three children and getting residuals was the only way she could take time off after giving birth. “It’s an extremely volatile industry,” said Son. “There’s no job security. Residuals are an important part of our income. There’s no cushion.” Millie Kapzen of Memphis, Tenn., who watched the New York pickets from across the street, said she was “disgusted. … I really think they should try harder to negotiate.” Kapzen said she sells advertising for radio stations. “We’ve already had cancellations of sweeps weeks ads” by the networks. The strike is the first walkout by writers since 1988. That work stoppage lasted 22 weeks and cost the industry more than $500 million. The first casualties this time around will be late-night talk shows, which are dependent on current events to fuel monologues and other entertainment. “The Tonight Show” on NBC will immediately go into reruns, according to a network official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the person lacked authorization to comment publicly. KTLA-TV reported that fans of the “Ellen” talk show were told at the NBC lot in Burbank that there would be no taping on Monday. Comedy Central previously said “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” and “The Colbert Report” would likely go into repeats as well. The strike will not immediately impact production of movies or prime-time TV programs. Most studios have stockpiled dozens of movie scripts, and TV shows have enough scripts or completed shows in hand to last until early next year. Talks began in July and continued after the contract expired Wednesday. Writers and producers gathered for last-minute negotiations Sunday at the request of a federal mediator. They met for nearly 11 hours before East Coast members of the writers union announced on their Web site that the strike had begun for their 4,000 members. The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers said writers refused a request to “stop the clock” on the planned strike while talks continued. “It is unfortunate that they choose to take this irresponsible action,” the alliance said in a statement. Producers said writers were not willing to compromise on major issues. Writers said they withdrew a proposal to increase their share of revenue from the sale of DVDs that had been a stumbling block for producers. They also said proposals by producers in the area of Internet reuse of TV episodes and films were unacceptable. “The AMPTP made no response to any of the other proposals that the WGA has made since July,” writers said in a statement. In Los Angeles, writers planned to picket 14 studio locations in four-hour shifts from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day until a new deal is reached. Security was stepped up at the Bob Hope Drive gate, across from Johnny Carson Park, in Burbank. Guards were on duty and Burbank police squad cars cruised past the site. One key factor that could determine the damage caused by the strike is whether members of a powerful Hollywood Teamsters local honor the picket lines. Local 399, which represents truck drivers, casting directors and location managers, had told its members that as a union, it has a legal obligation to honor its contracts with producers. But the clause does not apply to individuals, who are protected by federal law from employer retribution if they decide to honor picket lines, the local said. The battle has broad implications for the way Hollywood does business, since whatever deal is struck by writers will likely be used as a template for talks with actors and directors, whose contracts expire next June. “We’ll get what they get,” Screen Actors Guild president Alan Rosenberg told The Associated Press. ————————————— Daily News Wire Services contributed to this report.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREStriving toward a more perfect me: Doug McIntyre Later, outside the parking lot at NBC, Jim Shaughnessy, 38, a writer on “The Tonight Show,” was non-commital about how the strike was going so far. “I think we’re doing a lot of good out here, but then again I don’t really know,” said the Westlake Village resident. “It’s hard to tell right now. It’s impossible to tell so far but we’ve gotten some good doughnuts,” he joked. “I dont think they’re studio doughnuts. This is all kicking in together to impress them with our walking in circles.” Outside the Disney lot, the creator and executive producer of “Lost,” Damon Lindeloff, 34, of Studio City, was among about 40 picketers at the Alameda Avenue gate. “I think we all feel very strongly about why we’re here and we’re digging in for the marathon, not the sprint,” he said. Screenwriter Larry Karaszewski, 45, of Hollywood, wore a corduroy jacket with a T-shirt bearing a newspaper headline reading, “Viacom’s profits were up 80%.”last_img read more

Ban on TV betting ads during other live sports can be boost to racing

first_imgPremier League Horse racing The law of supply and demand suggests the value of the advertising opportunities around the sport can go only one way. As a result the value of racing’s media rights, for instance, should also increase and the terrestrial rights in particular could be a very interesting proposition for a number of bidders when ITV’s contract expires at the end of 2020.As things stand, and assuming the bookies’ agreement holds, racing could offer not just the best but the only significant space on mainstream TV to advertise betting brands around sport.The bookies’ greatest fear, of course, is racing’s nightmare, too. What if a future government decides that even stricter regulation is required and introduces a blanket ban on gambling advertising? Nothing seems impossible in politics these days but Labour’s proposal included an exemption for racing and the industry is such an important employer that it is difficult to see either major party going that far.The days when racing accounted for the overwhelming majority of the bookies’ turnover are long gone but the sport remains, in many respects, the best and most compelling of all betting mediums.Any move that increases racing’s significance for the bookies can work only in the sport’s favour, because, like it or not – and there are still plenty who try to pretend otherwise – betting will always be vital for racing’s popularity and prosperity. Talking Horses: Eight tracks sign up to be part of team horse racing Share on Facebook Read more Share on Messenger Support The Guardian … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay. Whether we are up close or further away, the Guardian brings our readers a global perspective on the most critical issues of our lifetimes – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. We believe complex stories need context in order for us to truly understand them. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Sportblog Topics Sport betting It is not often that bookmakers give in to pressure from anti-gambling groups without being forced to, so Thursday’s news that the biggest names in online betting will soon introduce a whistle-to-whistle ban on television advertising around sporting events is a collector’s item. Ray Winstone’s loss, many will feel, is the armchair fan’s gain.The market leaders in online gambling, including Bet365, SkyBet and Paddy Power Betfair, are all signed up to the voluntary ban, from which TV coverage of horse racing will be exempt. So, too, are the firms with big retail estates, such as Ladbrokes, Coral and William Hill, who may – perhaps – have learned a lesson from their long, bitter and ultimately futile campaign to resist pressure for a cut in stakes on fixed‑odds betting terminals. Share via Email The agreement announced on Thursday in effect implements a proposal that was expected to feature in the next Labour manifesto, and does so, in all likelihood, at least three and a half years in advance of any legal requirement to do so.So, has the UK’s gambling industry suddenly decided that its opponents were right all along? Of course not. Their decision will have been taken after careful consideration of its long-term effect on profitability, versus the possible impact of even stricter regulation further down the line. The clear concern seems to be that, if they do not do something themselves, the alternative could be much, much worse.It is a calculated move, not a climbdown. And when it comes to football, which dominates the online market, it is also far from complete as it does not cover shirt sponsorships, for instance.But again this could have knock-on benefits for some British firms at least, since the overwhelming majority of betting‑related shirt sponsors are Asian firms with no significant customer base in the UK. If there are no gambling ads in the breaks, the Premier League could feel that the time is right to ban shirt sponsorships for gambling businesses, too – which would be no bad thing for high-profile UK-based bookies that operate in the Asian market.It is also significant that the bookies’ self-imposed ban covers the entirety of any sporting event bar racing that starts before 9pm, so there will be no blitz of ads post‑watershed. This means racing will soon find itself in the happy position of being the only sport around which the biggest names in betting are able to advertise, which could prove a significant boost for the only sport that has been intertwined with betting from its earliest days. Gambling comment Share on LinkedIn Reuse this content Share on WhatsApp Since you’re here… Share on Pinterest Share on Twitter Read more The Recap: sign up for the best of the Guardian’s sport coveragelast_img read more

Human Rights will be protected in zones of Special Operations

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#Jamaica, August 16, 2017 – Kingston – National Security Advisor, Major General Antony Anderson, says the protection of human rights will be guaranteed in the Zones of Special Operations (ZOSO).Speaking in an ‘Issues and Answers’ interview recently, Mr. Anderson informed that human rights training for the security forces is a requirement under the Law Reform (Zones of Special Operations) (Special Security and Community Development Measures) Act.“The law requires selection of the commanders on the ground (and) there is a requirement in the law for them to receive human rights training. The joint forces have received training, and that is ongoing to prepare people to operate within the zones,” he said.Mr. Anderson assured that the philosophy undergirding the Act “is not to target communities but to target criminals holding communities to ransom”.“The idea is to go in and leave the criminals with the least opportunity to carry out what they want to do, and provide as much protection to the population there,” he said.The law gives the Prime Minister power to declare an area a Zone of Special Operations in order to tackle increased crime and volatility in a community.   This is in consultation with the National Security Council.The zone can only be established after the Police Commissioner and the Chief of Defence Staff make a request for such a declaration in writing to the Prime Minister.   Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, has assured that the special crime zones will not be used to infringe the rights of citizens.   He also said that the law would not give powers equivalent to a state of emergency.Justice Minister, Hon. Delroy Chuck, said custodes and justices of the peace (JPs) have a critical role to play in ensuring the protection of citizens’ rights, once an area has been designated a special crime zone.He said once a person has been detained, the police will have to convince the JPs that the person is suspected to have committed a crime.   “If the JPs disagree, then the person must be released.   If the JPs agree, within 24 hours that person must be taken before a parish judge,” he said.Mr. Chuck said that the JPs should also be present, especially when the security forces are conducting searches. Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Related Items:last_img read more

POLICE LOG for July 24 Tractor Trailer Involved In Hit Run Billerica

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Here are highlights of the Wilmington Police Log for Wednesday, July 24, 2019:A Lowell Street resident was concerned about the well-being of a bird in their yard. Animal Control Office responded and retrieved bird. (8:36am)A caller reported a tractor trailer unit rear-ended his vehicle and pushed it 30 feet before continuing north on Ballardvale Street. Caller refused ambulance for himself and passenger. No airbag deployment. Police located tractor trailer unit and operator at Interra Innovation on Junction Road in Andover. Police filled out crash report and assisted with paperwork exchange. (9:30am)A 2-vehicle crash occurred on Lowell Street at 93 North ramp. One driver transported to hospital with back pain. (1:30pm)A caller wished the police log that at some time in February, he was verbally assaulted by an RMV employee. Caller had minimal information. Caller will come to station tomorrow to provide additional information. (2:07pm)Shelton J. Oliver (61, Billerica) was issued a summons for Operating A Motor Vehicle With A Suspended License and Motor Vehicle Not Meeting RMV Safety Standards. Oliver was pulled over on Shawsheen Avenue. (5:18pm)(DISCLAIMER: This information is public information.  An arrest does not constitute a conviction.  Any arrested person is innocent until proven guilty.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedPOLICE LOG for August 26: Wilmington Man Arrested For OUI; Tractor Trailer Takes Out Wall, Signs & HydrantIn “Police Log”POLICE LOG for September 5: Train Conductor Helps Locate Missing Puppy; Rented Trucks Not Returned To UHaulIn “Police Log”POLICE LOG for July 12: 2 Juveniles Laying On Train Tracks; Motorcycle Crash; Tractor Trailer vs. PoleIn “Police Log”last_img read more

Kim ends China visit as Trump summit looms

first_imgA limousine in the motorcade believed to be carrying North Korean leader Kim Jong Un travels to an entrance to Beijing Railway Station in Beijing, China on 9 January 2019. Photo: ReutersKim Jong Un’s train left Beijing on Wednesday after the North Korean leader visited his key ally on a trip seen as a strategy session ahead of his expected summit with Donald Trump.Kim arrived in Beijing on Tuesday for his fourth visit to Pyongyang’s sole major diplomatic friend, meeting president Xi Jinping and reportedly visiting a factory.The North Korean leader’s motorcade was spotted entering the Beijing central railway station on Wednesday afternoon, and the train departed shortly after on a day-long ride back to the northeast border, according to AFP journalists.The unannounced trip was largely shrouded in secrecy. Beyond confirming his presence in Beijing, no details have been provided by either North Korea or China on his schedule, with no coverage in state media even in the nightly news broadcast hours after the train’s departure.Kim met for one hour with Chinese president Xi Jinping on Tuesday — believed to be the North Korean leader’s birthday — and the two later dined with their wives at Beijing’s Great Hall of the People, according to South Korea’s Yonhap news agency.”Chairman Kim Jong Un’s visit to China was at the invitation of president Xi Jinping, of course president Xi would hold meetings and talks with him,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said at a regular press briefing, adding that more details would be released later.Tuesday’s meeting focused on Kim’s expected meeting with Trump, according to Yonhap.In a New Year speech, Kim warned that Pyongyang may change its approach to nuclear talks if Washington persists with sanctions.Relations between China and North Korea had deteriorated in recent years over Pyongyang’s nuclear activities, but Kim has made sure to keep Xi informed about his dealings with the United States and South Korea as ties appear to have warmed.”In order to resist the high pressure of the US, he must communicate with Xi in advance to see what steps he can take to deal with Trump,” Beijing-based independent political commentator Hua Po told AFP.”Kim needs the support of Xi so as to ask the US to make substantial steps, such as providing assistance to North Korea and normalising relations with North Korea.”Kim chose China for his maiden official trip abroad last year before holding meetings with South Korean president Moon Jae-in and Trump.The American leader said Sunday that the United States and North Korea are negotiating the location of their next summit.Discussions between the US and North Korea over Pyongyang’s nuclear arsenal have stalled since Kim and Trump’s high-profile summit in Singapore in June where they issued a vaguely worded declaration about denuclearisation.The US insists that UN sanctions must remain in place until North Korea gives up its weapons, while Pyongyang wants them immediately eased. China also wants the sanctions to be relaxed.’Turning point’But Chinese officials also likely want to impress on Kim — who has so far pursued only limited reforms to his statist economy — the benefits the giant Communist country has enjoyed in its transformation from impoverished nation to economic powerhouse.Yonhap, citing unidentified sources, reported that Kim toured a factory operated by medicine firm Tongrentang for about half an hour in an economic zone in the Chinese capital.He then went to the Beijing Hotel, where he was expected to have lunch with Xi before his departure.”For North Korea itself, 2019 is his strategic turning point. If he wants to shift his focus to the development of the economy, he needs China’s cooperation,” said Lu Chao, a North Korea expert at China’s Liaoning Academy of Social Sciences.In the New Year speech, Kim focused on North Korea’s moribund economy, saying that improving people’s lives was his top priority and tackling energy shortages was an urgent task.Beijing-based analyst Hua said changes in the economic model will affect politics, “which poses new challenges to his control over the country.””For this point, he must ask for advice from China.”The visit coincided with negotiations between US and Chinese officials in Beijing to resolve a bruising trade war between the world’s two biggest economies.Some analysts say China could use its cooperation on the North Korean issue as a bargaining chip in the US trade talks.But Hua said Kim’s visit would have a “limited” effect on the trade negotiations.”The Sino-US trade negotiations are a matter between China and the US,” he said. “The weight of North Korea is limited and cannot play a decisive role.”last_img read more