Jurisdiction

The Guild represents a range of professional writers.

Our members are the creators of much of what is seen on television and in film, as well as a growing number of web series and digital media outlets.

Our members are covered by one of two primary types of Guild contracts based on their field of work:

I. Freelance contracts and the Minimum Basic Agreement (MBA)

“Freelance” members work in the film and television industries, and in the entertainment industry more broadly. Each employer of freelance members is a signatory to the same contract—the Minimum Basic Agreement (“MBA”), which is renegotiated every four years—or, in some cases, is a signatory to one of several truncated versions of the MBA.

These members work under what are known as “freelance” contracts in the following areas:

  • Animation
  • Children’s television
  • Daytime drama
  • Digital/new media (e.g. web series, videogames, etc.)
  • Documentaries—film and television
  • Film
  • Nonfiction
  • Television comedy/variety
  • Television episodic comedy and drama

II. Staff news contracts or collective bargaining agreements

“Staff” contracts cover workplaces where members all work in one location, or “shop” — such as radio/television news broadcasting, digital-first news outlets, and public television stations. Employers of Staff members are signatories to shop-specific collective bargaining agreements (CBAs).

“Staff” news positions include, but are not limited to:

  • Assignment Editors
  • Assistant Producers
  • Associate Producers
  • Digital News Writers
  • Graphic Artists
  • News Desk Assistants
  • News Desk Associates
  • News Editors
  • News writers
  • On-air Promotion Writers
  • Production Assistants
  • Reporters
  • Researchers
  • Service Aides

Some of our members are also “hyphenates,” who take on a number of different roles. These include writer-directors, writer-producers, and writer-director-producers. A few of our members, mostly in the digital realm, own their own independent production companies, which are signatory to the MBA. Once their production company becomes a signatory, the writer joins the Guild as a member.

The path to Guild membership works differently depending on which of these two broad categories

In just over two years, hundreds of digital media employees have come together to unionize their workplaces and negotiate union contracts. Fundamentally, the demand of any group of workers forming a union is the same – to win a formal seat at the table in order to negotiate over the future of their workplace. Each group decides what to advocate for at the bargaining table as a union.

Relevant Links

Back to top