New Media and Labor in Hollywood at Zocalo/Public Square

The LA based Zocalo site hosted a panel discussion last evening that I highly recommend to readers interested in current developments in entertainment, new media and labor relations.

The panel includes my friend Jonathan Handel, an entertainment lawyer who blogs at Digital Media Law, as well as Kim Roberts Hedgepeth, the NED of AFTRA, actors Kathy Joosten and Ron Ostrow, as well as a producer sympathetic lecturer from UCLA (who uses every opportunity to shil for the studios) and the head of Veoh, a non union new media website, who claims that he does not know anything about unions. Hopefully, Hedgepeth took some time to explain unions to him after the panel!

I was particularly impressed by the comments of Ostrow and Joosten. Ostrow makes clear why a collective labor body like SAG or AFTRA makes a real difference in the lives of most working actors – the unions can do things for individual actors that their agents cannot. Joosten points out the global nature of the film business has undermined the power of SAG.

This is a must see event. The link to the video is here.