Writers, producers will talk again

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As week three of the Writers Guild of America strike begins, little has come of the picketing except for some name calling and the shuttering of some shows. That's because both sides are seemingly at an impasse; no one is talking as the writers are walking and the studios are biding their time.

Apparently a few weeks of strolling the sidewalks and juggling programming schedules was enough to bring both sides back to the negotiating tables for the first time since the strike began. Both the WGA and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) have agreed to resume talks on November 26, according to their official Web sites.

Neither side is issuing any official statement to the press, opting instead to withhold details from the media. Strike activities will continue as planned during the negotiations, resuming next Monday after breaking for the Thanksgiving holiday.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, WGA West president Patric Verrone e-mailed guild members over the weekend, saying, "This announcement is a direct result of your efforts...the hours you have spent on the picket lines, the days you've spent educating friends and colleagues, the boundless energy you've put into engaging with not only the Hollywood talent community but people all over the country and the world."

"We must remember that returning to the bargaining table is only a start," he continued. "Our work is not done until we achieve a good contract, and that is by no means assured. Accordingly, what we achieve in negotiations will be a direct result of how successfully we can keep up our determination and resolve."

The main point of contention in the strike are residual payments for revenue generated through DVD sales and online broadcasts. The writers currently make four cents per DVD sold (they're asking for eight) and nothing on online streams or sales. The producers countered by saying online broadcasts are for promotional use only--even though ads are placed in the stream--and that it's too early in the life of "new media" to concoct a reasonable contract.

For more on the writers strike, check out TV.com's Strike Source, featuring up-to-date statuses on shows, the latest information, and more.

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