Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Anatomy of a Shambles

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  • DexterX,

    The rally, which I have just returned from, wasn't anti union.

    There was no politicisation – it was pro the two Hobbit films being made here, pro jobs, against influence from Australia in the NZ Film industry and supportive of Peter Jackson as a film maker who makes films in NZ.

    If you see a union (and the industry) as the body of workers and not the executive committee then the behaviour of NZAE – MEAA (NZ) Incorporated as supported by the CTU can be regarded as witless, anti-union and anti industry

    The blacklisting that stirred all this should be referred to as the Cave Troll Ultimatum – in reference also to the role of the CTU and NZEA.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1224 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX,

    Oh yeah four people rode horses to the rally - I wish I had taken my daugher it would have made her day.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1224 posts Report Reply

  • Jacqui Dunn,

    Heavens! Pages ago! but Webweaver - can't let you get away with saying this:

    But it's inaccurate for Whipp to claim that actors are the only ones in NZ that get offered unbalanced contractor agreements.

    because the quote didn't say actors were the only ones.

    Deepest, darkest Avondale… • Since Jul 2010 • 585 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    OTOH, I saw a Young Nats branch sending out invites on Facebook, and Kiwiblog was carrying ads for it ...

    Shows quite nicely that it doesn't matter a jot what the marchers were marching for. It will always be portraied and perceived as an anti-union march. Doesn't pay to be disingenuous about it.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Williams,

    The rally, which I have just returned from, wasn't anti union.

    There was no politicisation – it was pro the two Hobbit films being made here, pro jobs, against influence from Australia in the NZ Film industry and supportive of Peter Jackson as a film maker who makes films in NZ.

    Fantastic, thanks for the reports.

    Sydney • Since Nov 2006 • 2273 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    It will always be portraied and perceived as an anti-union march.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/entertainment/film/4270058/Hobbit-rallies-build-up-steam

    sigh

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 312 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    It will always be portraied and perceived as an anti-union march.

    I look forward to seeing intelligent counter-spin, beyond the tired 'evil capitalist conspiracy' bollocks that seems to be the only line put forward so far. Regaining public trust is important if the broader shift in politics we're seeing is not to be wasted.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I look forward to seeing intelligent counter-spin, beyond the tired 'evil capitalist conspiracy' bollocks that seems to be the only one put forward so far

    I don't. This thing can't be counter-spun. The CTU needed to come in, fix it and talk as little as possible, rather than making things worse with all manner of contradictory revisionist statements. Let Fairness at Work and the secondary teacher union campaign be the things that speak for the union movement and remove the bloody distraction of the one bungled campaign.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    In Auckland around 1500 people gathered in downtown Auckland in the "fight to save Middle Earth".

    Um, no. I stopped by on a ride and was there from about 12.25 to 12.45pm. There weren't 1500 people there. I thought I was being generous with 300.

    It's not that surprising. It's a beautiful day and the rally was being held, with little in the way of production, in the only space in the area that wasn't bathed in sunshine.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22850 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    This thing can't be counter-spun. The CTU needed to come in, fix it and talk as little as possible

    I'm talking broader than Hobbit and broader than CTU.

    Or are you arguing the left needs to stay quiet now just as the noise ramps up from opponents? I want to see some intelligent coordinated communications and other actions, not the disorganised amateur hour we've seen over this.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX,

    Giovanni Tiso - I have to say what utter bollocks that it was an anti union rally - at the Auckland rally the CTU and the NZEA - MEAA (NZ) incorporated were not mentioned.

    If people at other centres react to the blacklisting and the threat it has made to their lives then that is their right to voice an opinion against the stupidity of the CTU and the NZEA - MEAA (NZ) Incorporated in issuing the Cave Troll Ultimatum – the blacklisting – and then saying we only wanted to talk.

    The pieces in the NZ Herald this morning where Robyn Malcolm and the other women, whose name escapes me, were portrayed as the victims in all of this – Oh please – really??

    It does matter a more than a "jot" for those in the industry that turned up and those that turned up to support them.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1224 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    ** re this:

    sigh

    They've rather sensibly changed the picture that accompanied that article now. I do hope the media continue to report sensibly on the reality of the tone rather than picking up on the odd kiwiblog/youngnat asshole who tries to take advantage of it for their own idiotic ideology.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 312 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    Giovanni Tiso - I have to say what utter bollocks that it was an anti union rally - at the Auckland rally the CTU and the NZEA - MEAA (NZ) incorporated were not mentioned.

    To reiterate: it's got nothing to do with the substance of the debate, it's just how it will be spun. Why else would young nats and farrar want to see a lot of people at those marches? And it's not a hideously long bow either: the marches are a response to a bungled union action, on Labour Day, and in solidarity with an employer. It doesn't take a lot of spin. And I say that with the utmost sympathy for the cause of the people who are justly afraid for their jobs. I wouldn't dream to call them traitors.

    Or are you arguing the left needs to stay quiet now just as the noise ramps up from opponents? I want to see some intelligent coordinated communications and other actions, not the disorganised amateur hour we've seen over this.

    Yes, I'm arguing that the left needs to stay silent. Or more precisely, talk about something else. There's no way to spin this thing.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    I'd be interested to hear what someone like Conor Roberts would advise. Seems to know what he's doing.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    No shit. I'd take advice from Conor on how to make pizza right about now.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    I have to say what utter bollocks

    Glad you feel so strongly but in reality we have this attitude that many follow and believe. That's the perception, which is why I believe it has become so controversial. Yes, the motives to march are about PJ and movie making, but the media can spin it whichever way suits.As it has been portrayed all week is how it will continue, I suspect.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX,

    Russell with regard to the numbers - the address to the "meeting" didn't start till 1.00 PM and at that time I would have put the numbers present at over 500 but below 1000 people.

    Which by me is OK for a thing that came about the days/nights before.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1224 posts Report Reply

  • Jonathan King,

    There's no way to spin this thing.

    That message obviously hasn't got to Helen Kelly. From Q&A:

    Helen Kelly: "I got involved in this dispute, and within a week, we had a process for settlement, and it's now fully resolved."

    Riiiight ... So the actors have no more grievances to discuss, then? That'll free SPADA up ...

    Since Sep 2010 • 185 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    IMHO the most sensible thing the unions could have done is take part ownership of today's rally and join the rest of the workers. AE members should have been there and made a point to be there, but shut up about the recent past and just simply said: 'let's keep the hobbit in nz'/keep NZ strong, and nothing else. Everyone, including the unions, CTU rep should have been there in contrite support, and saying: unions can be good things for keeping nz strong, let's work together for everyone. Philippa Boyens was the NZWG Executive Director for years FFS. She's not anti-union. Enlist her, get her onboard with helping the union image, by pulling your socks up and showing some maturity even if it means biting your lip a bit. Keep it positive. And for all that is sane: whether you believe it or not, don't frgging attack Peter Jackson; which means forget the 'all we wanted is a meeting he could have solved it with that but he didn't' line.

    If the debate is about positive national identity, put the unions on the positive side of that debate instead of f**king Gery Brownlee/John Key.

    Hint: attacking John Key for taking advantage of the situation will not do it.

    But yeah, as Gio says, resist the temptation to pull this revisionist spin conspiracy BS. Saying 'all we wanted was a meeting'/'it was never boycott' is not a great move when there's letters out there in the public sphere that quite clearly say the opposite.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 312 posts Report Reply

  • DexterX,

    Helen Kelly: "I got involved in this dispute, and within a week, we had a process for settlement, and it's now fully resolved."

    What - back the truck up.

    What matters now is Warners’ assessment of the situation and if that assessment does not favour production in NZ then it will come down to what Jackson can do to save the situation.

    That outcome won’t be know for a few days.

    The spin means nothing it is irrelevant the outcome is what matters.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1224 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    Canadian Equity reports that:

    **Member Advisory - The Hobbit**
    On the advice of our sister union New Zealand Actors Equity (NZ Equity), Equity members may now accept engagements on the feature film production The Hobbit.

    ACTRA (Canada's Association of Cinema, Television and Radio Artists) also tells their members:
    ACTRA Members now permitted to work on The Hobbit
    October 21st, 2010 - Toronto – On the advice of our sister union, New Zealand Actors Equity (NZ Equity), ACTRA is now allowing its members to accept engagements on the feature film production The Hobbit. </quote>

    SAG also have a notice:

    **SAG MEMBERS MAY ACCEPT ENGAGEMENTS ON THE “THE HOBBIT”**
    Today, our sister union, New Zealand Actors Equity (NZ Equity) recommended that all international performers’ unions withdraw their advisories prohibiting members from accepting engagements on the feature film production The Hobbit.

    In light of this recommendation, Screen Actors Guild is notifying you that SAG members may now accept engagements, under Screen Actors Guild contract terms and conditions, on The Hobbit.

    AFTRA likewise have an advisory:

    **Do Not Work Notice for 'The Hobbit' Lifted**
    AFTRA Members May Now Accept Work on 'The Hobbit'

    NZ Actors' Equity today recommended that the international performer unions of FIA withdraw their respective member advisories prohibiting members from accepting employment on the theatrical motion picture "The Hobbit."

    In light of this advisory and the recommendation from NZ Actors' Equity, AFTRA hereby notifies all members that they may now accept employment on "The Hobbit," under Screen Actors Guild contract terms and conditions.

    We thank you for your show of solidarity with our international brothers and sisters.

    Actors Equity US (how many unions do these people need???) has a message deep on it's "Do not work" page:

    AEA Rescinds Hobbit 4As Do Not Work Order

    On October 20, 2010, NZ Actors' Equity recommended that the international performer unions of FIA withdraw their respective member advisories prohibiting members from accepting employment on the theatrical motion picture "The Hobbit."

    In light of this advisory and the recommendation from NZ Actors' Equity, Actors' Equity hereby notifies all members that they may now accept employment on "The Hobbit," under Screen Actors Guild contract terms and conditions.

    Thank you for your show of solidarity with our international brothers and sisters.

    Actor's Equity UK still has the old message and the MEAA has the Update newsletter they released last Thursday, where the relevant para about the ban being lifted is number 10, amidst lots of spin which seems to say "we didn't fuck this up, really we didn't!"

    Just FYI y'all

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2937 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    resist the temptation to pull this revisionist spin conspiracy BS. Saying 'all we wanted was a meeting'/'it was never boycott'

    Totally agree - I am talking about managing public perception of the broader battle, and intelligently resisting the spin that is piling on from the right.

    Seems a big loss if that is just abandoned, though I'm open to advice that supports what Gio is saying - to focus on positive communication about other things where the horse has not already bolted.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19745 posts Report Reply

  • Jonathan King,

    From AFTRA notice above:

    ... the international performer unions of FIA withdraw their respective member advisories prohibiting members from accepting employment on the theatrical motion picture "The Hobbit."

    Robyn Malcolm on Close Up on Friday:

    "We didn't threaten a boycott ... We sent a respectful letter, saying we would like to have a conversation with you ... There was no mention of banning people from the Hobbit."

    I mean, really. Really?

    Since Sep 2010 • 185 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    The faces that the wider public saw was JWL and RM and H Kelly. The media spun "Union,=trouble"
    Now JWL and RM are no where to be seen except to defend their stance which basically said pro union/ workers rights means probably wont get a job.
    Spin.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6796 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    Respectful letter requesting a conversation:

    http://www.alliance.org.au/documents/letter1.pdf

    As far as I can ascertain, this is the first one.

    If you were Peter Jackson, what would you say?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 312 posts Report Reply

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