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September 21, 2008

WGA calls Emmy reality focus an 'injustice'

Emmy_hosts_2 WGA president Patric Verrone, still looking for dragons to slay, slams the Television Academy's embrace of reality television this year at the Emmy awards as "an injustice."

From the AP: "I hesitate to call it an irony so much as an injustice" ... When the Emmy hosts, including Jeff Probst ("Survivor") and Heidi Klum ("Project Runway"), take the stage, their duties on the guild-covered ceremony will include "reading what somebody writes" under WGA contract pay and benefit terms, Verrone said."But when the hosts go back to their day job, they will be reading copy where writers don't get writing credit, much less benefits" ... the Emmy's emphasis "ignores the fact that this is a year that writers proved you can't do any other kind of television without us. We shut it (the industry) down for three months" and forced networks to rely on reality and reruns."

Yeah, you shut down the town. What do you want? An Emmy? You went on strike. The facts were on your side. You executed a smart campaign and won -- partly by agreeing to keep reality television off the negotiating table. So cheer up. This is like somebody who complains about the taxes from winning a new car on a game show -- it's the current price of your spoils. Or, if you're a WGA writer-type, like Cicero complaining about plebes in the Senate (Lauren Conrad presenting an Emmy award? Woe to the Republic!).

The Academy has done its best to largely ignore reality television professionals for years. Any focus now seems well past due. If anybody should be complaining, it's them.   

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