WGA Ratifies AMPTP Contract


The Writers Guild of America (WGA) members have voted in favor of ratifying the 2023 MBA, with 99 percent in agreement.

Of the 8,525 valid votes cast, there were 8,435 “yes” votes and 90 “no” votes.

The term of the agreement is from September 25, 2023, through May 1, 2026.

“We would not have been able to achieve this industry-changing contract without WGA Chief Negotiator Ellen Stutzman, Negotiating Committee Co-chairs Chris Keyser and David Goodman, the entire WGA Negotiating Committee, strike captains, lot coordinators and the staff that supported every part of the negotiation and strike action,” said Meredith Stiehm, WGAW president, and Lisa Takeuchi Cullen, WGAE president, in a statement.

“As our negotiations come to an end, we won’t forget our SAG-AFTRA siblings who have supported writers every step of the way. We call upon the AMPTP to negotiate a deal that addresses the needs of performers and, until they do, we ask WGA members who can to continue to show up on their picket lines in solidarity.”

In terms of the deal, most MBA minimums will increase by 5 percent on ratification of the contract, 4 percent on May 2, 2024, and 3.5 percent on May 2, 2025. Some minimums and rates increase less, mostly by 3 percent each year, while a few rates increase only once or do not increase over the contract.

Additionally, regulations have been established for the use of artificial intelligence (AI) on MBA-covered projects. AI can’t write or rewrite literary material, and AI-generated material will not be considered source material under the MBA, meaning that AI-generated material can’t be used to undermine a writer’s credit or separated rights. A writer can choose to use AI when performing writing services, if the company consents and provided that the writer follows applicable company policies, but the company can’t require the writer to use AI software when performing writing services. The company must disclose to the writer if any materials given to the writer have been generated by AI or incorporate AI-generated material. The WGA reserves the right to assert that exploitation of writers’ material to train AI is prohibited by MBA or other law.

Regarding high-budget SVOD (HBSVOD), foreign streaming residuals will now be based on the streaming service’s number of foreign subscribers for services available globally, amounting to a 76 percent increase (including a 2.5 percent base increase) to the foreign residual for the services with the largest global subscriber bases over three years.

The Guild also negotiated a new residual based on viewership. Made-for HBSVOD series and films that are viewed by 20 percent or more of the service’s domestic subscribers in the first 90 days of release, or in the first 90 days in any subsequent exhibition year, get a bonus equal to 50 percent of the fixed domestic and foreign residual, with views calculated as hours streamed domestically of the season or film divided by runtime. The bonus structure will take effect for projects released on or after January 1, 2024.

The companies agree to provide the Guild, subject to a confidentiality agreement, the total number of hours streamed, both domestically and internationally, of self-produced high budget streaming programs. The Guild may share information with the membership in aggregated form.

Also, a 150 percent pilot premium and 115 percent backup script premiums will now apply to programs made for HBSVOD.

High-budget programs made for ad-supported streaming services (including FAST) get the same initial compensation terms as the equivalent programs made for subscription streaming services, including network primetime script fees for the highest-budget series, as well as protections like span (using the basic cable span cap of $375,000) and premium rates for pilots and backup scripts. These programs will also receive a 2 percent residual for reuse on the AVOD service.