Being a TV writer has changed — and so have the wages, says ‘The Wire’ creator

TV writer David Simon discusses the ongoing Hollywood writers’ strike and the changing nature of the industry.

Background: It’s been over three weeks since Hollywood writers began their strike, which has put late night shows and soap operas into reruns.
* David Simon, creator of The Wire and Treme, and a member of the Writers Guild of America’s negotiating committee, suggests that many of the same issues that led to the 2007 strike still remain, such as how technology is reshaping the profession.

Challenges in the industry: Simon argues that studios are hiring writers on shorter contracts, making it difficult for them to maintain a steady income.
* “You can’t live on three weeks’ salary. That’s what’s happening now,” he says.

Views on AI: Simon doubts that artificial intelligence (AI) can replicate genuine human creativity in storytelling.
* “I don’t think AI can remotely challenge what writers do at a fundamentally creative level… If that’s where this industry is going, it’s going to infantilize itself.”

Bigger picture: The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers has offered “generous increases in compensation” to the writers, but some proposals are considered “incompatible with the creative nature” of the industry.

View original article on NPR

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