The following came in SAG/AFTRA e-mail:
Sept. 6, 2018
Bartle Bogle Hegarty (BBH), an ad agency owned by Publicis Groupe, publicly announced this week they are no longer signatory to the SAG-AFTRA Commercials Contracts. In an open letter to actors, BBH claims their reason for trying to illegally abandon their obligations to you, the commercial performer, is because our union contract is outdated and we haven’t evolved with the ad industry.
That is simply not true.
If BBH had been paying attention, they would know SAG-AFTRA negotiated the Social Media Waiver into the contract two years ago. Even more noteworthy, the union launched the popular Low Budget Digital Waiver a year ago. These and other changes allow significant flexibility in the creation of social media and digital ads. The industry loves them. These changes have helped top agencies successfully adapt to an evolving ad industry.
BBH says “…this decision does not change our commitment to fair wages and working conditions.” Isn’t that interesting? In one of their recent non-union ads, they paid performers $150 to audition with a live bear. Other performers were paid $350 for a session fee and way under industry norms for residuals. Sorry, paying pennies on the dollar doesn’t sound like fair wages to us.
A SAG-AFTRA contract protects you from dangerous conditions and unacceptable rates. It stops employers from doing whatever the heck they want at the expense of their workers. (Did we mention the live bear?)
Don’t believe the lies. BBH is just trying to exploit talent so they can undercut their competition.
Faced with this, we will now use every tool at our disposal to bring BBH back to the table to negotiate a fair contact for our members.
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Hmmm…so Bartle is ready to Battle!
The Ol’ SAG Watchdog
*Headline photo selected by the Watchdog