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EDITORIAL: SAG-Strike, was it worth it?

Jasmine Ortiz-Richardson
“Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse,” and “Family Guy” were two shows that were restricted by the SAG-AFTRA strike.

Being able just to relax and enjoy a show or movie is one thing many look forward to after a long day, but what if these forms of entertainment many love were to suddenly stop being created? 

On July 13, 2023, the American actors’ union, SAG-AFTRA (Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists), made history when they went on strike for the first time in 63 years.

However, was this really the right decision?

While the progression of  “Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse,” and “Family Guy” was put to a halt, it made huge strides for the entertainment industry. 

After 118 days of strike, a deal was settled in a unanimous vote on Nov 9, 2023. There were many agreements made in the deal, but a few key details included: over one billion dollars in new wages and benefit plan funding, raised pension and health caps, consent and compensation guardrails on artificial intelligence, along with critical protections for diverse communities.

This was an immense deal to the SAG-AFTRA members. They were finally able to guarantee being put first, before AI and money. This was a great step forward, giving more protection to the workers and their jobs since the last strike in 1959. 

According to Fran Drescher, SAG-AFTRA president, This revolutionary agreement achieves major breakthroughs in addressing compensation via residuals and protections from generative artificial intelligence technology while reaffirming the role human performers play in the production of film, television, and streaming entertainment.”

As Drescher described it, this was a revolutionary moment. Although the continuation of films was postponed for a while and several companies had a decline in stocks,  the strike in itself was greatly effective. Considering everything the entertainment industry gained in the deal, all the effort the workers put in was worth it. 

Actors, writers, directors, and everyone else in the industry went out of work for 118 days. Those 118 days of the strike led to an improvement in actors’ rights, which led to 118 days of history in the making.


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