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The WGA Reached a Deal to End the Writers Strike. What Does This Mean for Binge-Watchers?

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at FSU chapter.

As celebrities were slaying their looks at the MET Gala on May 1, the negotiating committee of the Writers Guild of America (WGA) decided that they had had enough and went on strike. In a combined post, WGA East and West took to Instagram to announce that they had “voted unanimously to call a strike, effective 12:01 AM, Tuesday, May 2…following six weeks of negotiating with Netflix, Amazon, Apple, Disney, Warner Brothers, NBC Universal, Paramount, and Sony under the umbrella of the AMPTP [Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producer].” At that moment, my poor binge-watching, movie-loving, celebrity-gossip-fan heart broke because I knew that my favorite shows were going to suffer for the foreseeable future.

Why were they striking?

What conditions were these writers under that made them choose to put their livelihoods on the line? In simple terms, they were asking for better contracts, better wages, and protection from artificial intelligence.

According to CBS News, “the Writers Guild wants total pay increases for members amounting to about $429 million per year,” but the AMPTP’s counteroffer “would run $86 million per year.” Do you realize the difference between $86 million and $429 million? Many TV screenwriters (who you probably don’t even realize you are a fan of!) don’t get any residuals for the shows that audience members watch on repeat. In an X post, Valentina Garza, a writer for Jane the Virgin, showed that she received $0.03 in residuals for two episodes she wrote. Three cents — not even enough money to get something out of a vending machine!

Writers used to make their money from the number of times their episodes would air on cable due to pay from ads and commercials. Now, as an avid binge-watcher, I hate commercials as much as the next person, but without them, writers are not getting their bags. Even though streaming has ultimately made my life easier, it’s also caused screenwriters to struggle. When it comes to artificial intelligence (AI), writers just want to know that AI won’t steal their jobs and their income. What would you do if your post-college graduation girlboss job got taken away from you because of ChatGPT?


One of my favorite pastimes is devoting an entire weekend (or if I’m really skilled, an entire day) to whatever show makes me cry my eyes out over a silly plotline that I could see coming from miles away. This strike has changed that. Below is an abridged list that displays some of the shows affected by the WGA strike:

  • Abbott Elementary
  • Stranger Things
  • Late-night talk shows
    The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
    ○ Late Night with Seth Meyers*
    ○ The Late Show with Stephen Colbert
    ○ Jimmy Kimmel Live!
  • The Handmaid’s Tale
  • The Last of Us*
  • Loot
  • Sinking Man
  • Wonder Man
  • Daredevil: Born Again*
  • Severance
  • Yellowjackets*
  • Good Trouble*

*The shows that are starred are the ones that have either made me cry or scream at the companies who refuse to pay their writers.

This strike has made even Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez go out on the picket lines! You know you’re on the wrong side of history when the U.S. Congresswoman and part-time Twitch Streamer is putting her busy Capitol schedule to the side to yell at you.

My personal biggest heartbreak was when Pete Davidson was supposed to host Saturday Night Live on May 6 for the first time since he left the cast, and it was canceled! Pete Davidson (aka my biggest celebrity crush… well, at least in my top five celebrity crushes) hosting one of my favorite television shows was within reach; it was right there!

Now, don’t misunderstand what I mean. I support the writers 110 percent and believe they are doing the absolute best thing given the awful circumstances they have been given… but come on. I feel like the Stranger Things cast is going to be 30 years old and still playing high school students by the time they finally finish filming.

At first, the effects of the strike were ensured to only influence TV production because only the WGA was on strike. However, since the Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) joined the strike due to poor working conditions on July 14, movies stopped filming too. Bye-bye Deadpool 3! I was really looking forward to that movie too.


The WGA’s negotiating committee struck a deal with the AMPTP on Sept. 24 after meeting with the AMPTP’s executives for five consecutive days. This was the last time the AMPTP would meet the WGA at the negotiating table, as if to say this was their last offer: “Take it or leave it.” After five months of picketing from beginner screenwriters and A-list celebrities, the AMPTP certainly felt pressured by the public and its employees to reach a deal. The details of the contract have yet to be revealed since it still needs to be ratified by the 11,500 members of the WGA, but writer’s guild claims that it is an exceptional deal. The tentative agreement aims to protect writers from AI, create better working conditions, and implement better pay.


Now, we wait to see. After the deal is ratified, SAG-AFTRA is next in line to enter the negotiations to make sure they are receiving fair pay and better working conditions.

As a devoted binge-watcher, the WGA’s deal does not mean that I’ll be seeing my favorite TV shows anytime soon though. These writers have been out of work for five months. Even though you probably haven’t been feeling the effects of this strike quite yet, you will. Take the 2007-2008 WGA strike as an example. Many shows during this time either hired non-unionized writers (causing the shows to not be well-received) or cut their seasons short.

The film and television industry functions because there are a lot of moving parts, but production takes a couple of months. These past five months have had nothing going on. In a few months, we will most likely see an increase in trashy Netflix reality shows that didn’t require WGA writers. We will also see our favorite TV shows come out way later than expected. I mean, my roommate has already voiced her concerns about the next season of Grey’s Anatomy not coming out until 2024 at the earliest. I am certainly looking forward to Wednesday season 2, but they haven’t even had the chance to start writing it, much less start filming.

As a huge TV and movie nerd, I am disappointed in this break of entertainment, but I am so proud of the WGA. This unity and solidarity are a perfect example of how beneficial unions can be for our country. In my opinion, the WGA and SAG-AFTRA are some of the best unions we have in America. Because of the WGA strikes, many other unions have followed in their footsteps. The WGA set the path in making others realize the power of collective bargaining and what happens when the majority stands up to the minority in power. They did not let CEOs and corporations intimidate them into accepting a deal that did not validate their worth. As someone who wants to be a writer, I want to thank them. They are sticking up for the future generations of writers who will not let themselves be taken advantage of.

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This is my first year writing with Her Campus and am so excited! I'm a junior at FSU and a double major in Political Science and English: Editing, Writing & Media. In my free time, I love reading books (shocker right!), spending time with my family, and watching and re-watching countless rom-coms. If you want me to talk endlessly for hours ask me about my opinion on any romance book trope.