The Hollywood Superunion: SAG-AFTRA Merger

 On Friday, March 30, 2012, it became official that the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) would become one union. After 80 years of going back and forth, this historic vote has made SAG-AFTRA the largest entertainment union in Hollywood.

In order for the merger to pass, each union needed to agree with 60 percent, and the votes in favor surpassed that number by quite a bit. SAG members voted “yes” with 82 percent and AFTRA with 86 percent.

Today the mega-union now represents over 150,000 actors, announcers, broadcasters, singers, stunt performers and many more in film, radio, television, the Internet, etc.

“You have said loud and clear that this is not a fractured group — no, this is a united group. This is the largest, most powerful union in the entertainment and media industries and we are now united in a our commitment to improve the wages and working conditions, residuals and benefits that our members depend on,” said SAG President Ken Howard.

In October, the first contract negotiation between the unions will begin for work in commercials. National officers will be elected by the guild members in the summer or 2013. Ken Howard and AFTRA President, Roberta Reardon, have each appointed six members to serve on the 24-panel along with 12 national officers.

To learn more about SAG-AFTRA, visit http://www.sagaftra.org

Sources:

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/sag-aftra-merger-passes-sag-306398

http://articles.latimes.com/2012/mar/31/business/la-fi-ct-sag-aftra-merger-20120331

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2012-04-12/entertainment/sns-201204120002reedbusivarietynvr1118052552apr12_1_roberta-reardon-aftra-todd-hissong

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Follow the Tweeter

What in the world can you say in 140 characters? The answer: A LOT!

According to an article that I read, one of the most common reasons that people don’t use Twitter is because they think there is nothing to say in 140 characters (I admittedly thought the same thing when I first joined). The rebuttle to these reasons is that Twitter is a conversation and can actually be a very valuable tool.

Twitter is a great social medium for people to keep up and find out more about topics that interest them. Who you choose to “follow” is completely personalized to you! Sports teams/figures, entertainment news, political figures and job searches are just a few of the people and topics that you can get involved with. If you are looking for a job, you can follow an account that tweets about job openings in your field. Many live TV shows suggest tweeting during the show and they will display what you have to say (Dancing with the Stars) or even answer your questions (Giuliana & Bill).

Sometimes long pieces of information (like some blog posts) can take people longer to read and Twitter gets the message out in 140 characters which can be a good thing. Your interest in topics will grow the more involved you are with Twitter and you can even get involved with all sorts of conversations.

Here are some ways to get the most out of Twitter:

  1. Use the hashtag “#”: The # is a great way to get involved with topics you are interested in. Say you are a big AmericanIdol fan; you can tweet something like “#StevenTyler has a crazy outfit on #AmericanIdol tonight.” You can click on your hashtag is and see who else is tweeting about American Idol or Steven Tyler. People can see what you have to say and start a conversation.
  2. Check out trending topics: To see what people are talking about around you, check out the trending topics around your city. People might me talking about the latest baseball game or the new iPhone. Get involved with a great cause that you are passionate about and see what the latest news is. Maybe you’re really interested in your animal shelter. Maybe they have some news you want to spread or you want to tweet about them. Use your # to share your thoughts or retweet their tweet to spread the word. You can look and get involved with worldwide topics as well. Pretty neat isn’t it?
  3. Put some thought into your bio: Personalizing your bio with your interests encourages people to follow your tweets. If you are interested in healthcare, put it in your bio. It will be a useful tool when Twitter users want to see what you have to say. If you love Nascar, put that in your bio too and you will get more followers also interested inNascar. A bio is a short but really great tool to connect with the world.

To read more about getting the most out of Twitter, check out this article in the New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/04/technology/04basics.html 

Go Grab Your Dream Job

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What’s your dream job? For some, a dream job has been brewing from a young age. For others, it may be something fairly new or an interest that has been developing over the years. Or maybe you still aren’t quite sure. People might find careers that they have wanted their whole life whereas others end up in jobs that they love that are completely different than their original dream job. Either way, that dream job is out there!

I think that the image below pretty much sums up what most of us would like to find in a job and there are ways to make that possible. The key concept is to be proactive. Below are a few ways to figure out what is the right niche for you:

  • Take a variety of classes in college to see what sparks your interest
  • Do internships in fields that you are interested in and you can get a better idea of what that job could actually be like
  • Browse around online to look at different career options and employers in that field
  • Find a way to get involved in the community. If your dream is to work with animals, volunteer at a local shelter. If you want to be an actor or director, give some time at theater in your area. This way you are giving back and learning more about what you want to do.

According to Boston.com, here are some of the Top 20 Dream Jobs:

  • Actor
  • Nonprofit Director
  • Photographer
  • TV Producer
  • Wedding Planner
  • Fashion Buyer/Designer
  • Writer/Publisher
  • Interior Designer

The great news is that dream jobs are attainable. Be positive, proactive and go out there and get it!

Social Media: How to Make a Difference

Social Media: How to Make a Difference

“Be the change you want to see in the world” – Mahatma Gandhi

If you could make a change in the world, what would it be? Maybe you would like to see world peace or stop world hunger. Maybe you would like to start smaller and raise money for a local shelter or get the community more involved in “going green.” Regardless of the change you want to see, you can make it happen! Everyone can make a difference in the world, whether it is big or small.

Social Media has given the world so much more than a simple status update. Those updates can be anything from what you are doing on the weekend to learning that life on another planet has just been found. In today’s world, WE make the news and WE can make a difference.

Through Facebook, you can let friends and family know about events in the community and learn how to become more involved, join groups that you are interested in, and watch videos to fill you in. Through Twitter, you can let your followers know about important issues in a short Tweet. Through blogs, you can bring more awareness to the world about the news and your stance on various topics. These are just some of the social media outlets that can be used to make your voice known.

My Experience: In the Spring of 2011 I saw a post on Twitter from a celebrity that I was following for Arm The Animals. I have always been a very strong animals rights advocate so I decided to check out the organization. Arm The Animals is a company that designs t-shirts to generate awareness and raise funds for struggling animals. I thought that if I could buy a t-shirt and a percentage would help animals shelters then ABSOLUTELY! After purchasing the t-shirt and posting about Arm The Animals on Twitter and Facebook, one of the founders reached out to me. He asked if I would tell my friends about the company and let them know about the cause. I was so excited to be able to spread the word and make a statement for something that I believe in. Since then, I have continued to let people know that they can support a great cause by wearing a cool t-shirt. Although I probably didn’t change the world, I know that I am a small part in spreading awareness for a very important issue. All animals deserve to be treated well and have a loving home and I will continue to support Arm The Animals and be involved in way to help animals.

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So there you have it; everyone can make a change, big or small. Make the most you can out of the Social Media that is accessible to you. Today the sky is the limit and you can be the change you want to be in the world. Go out there and tell people what you think!

More ways to make a difference with Social Media:

http://blogs.volunteermatch.org/engagingvolunteers/2012/02/29/5-ways-to-use-social-media-to-spark-social-change/

http://www.armtheanimals.com/

http://www.mediaministryblog.com/2011/07/social-media-is-changing-the-world-are-we/

 

A Little Entertainment PR In Hollywood

Entertainment PR in Hollywood

Hollywood & Entertainment

What is it really like in the entertainment industry?  A question that has endless answers depending on what field you are working in.  It goes without saying that PR has many different fields in communication and is going to be different depending on the business you want to work in.  I have always been interested in the entertainment industry and wonder what a day in the life of a publicist is like.  Or maybe someone who does PR for major film companies or TV networks.

In an article that I read, it sounds like being a Hollywood publicist involves making a lot of connections.  That really doesn’t sound so bad, especially when you are helping someones career.  In order to promote clients and make them more known to the public it is important to build strong relationships with people in the media (magazines, TV, radio, etc).

With Young Hollywood talent emerging everyday, they need to make their presence known; for their career as well as public awareness  If you think about it, we may see these young people in movies but learn much more about who they are when their personal lives are displayed in magazine and television interviews.  PR helps us relate to them.

Jennifer Lawrence in Glamour 2012

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Another job with publicists is to keep celebrities that have been around for a while in the spotlight.  This may seem easy, but think about all of the competition today with celebrities and who is on top.  They, as well as new talent, need to be in the media because as much as some of us may hate to admit it, we like to know whats going on with the rich and the famous.

Jennifer Aniston in InStlye 2012

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Public relations may not be the first thing you think of when it comes to someone in the spotlight. Although publicists may appear to be behind the scenes, they are a huge influence on careers and reputations.

Thanks for reading!