View Full Version : Arbitration appeal?

Boobsie Malone
07-23-2004, 10:13 AM
When the WGA decides who wrote the piece, does the guy who lost out have any chance of appeal? Or is it set in stone?

07-23-2004, 11:08 AM
Has it been read by "three anonymous readers" yet?

Boobsie Malone
07-23-2004, 11:26 AM

07-23-2004, 03:50 PM
the arbitration system is one of the most contentious and controversial issues at the WGA right now. There's isn't an appeals process within the WGA but people can and do sue. A writer who was denied credit on The Last Samurai has a pending lawsuit against the guild.

more about it here:

www.eonline.com/News/Items/0,1,13229,00.html (http://www.eonline.com/News/Items/0,1,13229,00.html)

Boobsie Malone
07-23-2004, 07:39 PM
Thanks, Steve.

07-24-2004, 02:39 PM
The WGA arbitration system does have its detractors and many find it confusing --

However, there is an appeal that a writer can make if he or she is not happy with the initial decision made by the panel of arbiters.

This information is readily available from the WGA in a booklet that thoroughly describes the WGA credit arbitration process. It's surprisingly short and easy to read -- you can get through it in about 30 minutes.

And, for the record: As someone who's served on WGA arbitration panels, it's my observation that nearly everything written by non-WGA members on sites such as this about WGA arbitrations is -- wrong.

Even WGA members generally get the details of the arbitration process wrong. I can only guess that most are so afraid that it's going to be too complicated to understand that they don't bother to read the guidelines.

Jeff Schechter
07-24-2004, 09:45 PM
You can only appeal the procedure, not the result. If you think someone didn't follow the procedural rules during the arbitration process, you can appeal that. You CANNOT appeal the subjective determination of credit, however.

F'rinstance, you can go in and say that the readers didn't follow procedure, however you can't go in and say that the readers made a mistake because you obviously wrote more than 51% of the dialogue.

I've lost some really big arbitrations in my day and won some other ones. One of the ones I lost, however, took a few hundred thousand bucks out of my pocket. Ouch.