Monthly Archives: October 2021

National Living Wage will rise to £9.50 an hour

The 59p increase for workers over 23 – up 6.6% from £8.91 reflects the inflationary pressure outlined here a few weeks ago. The new rates will rise from 1 April 2022 as follows: National Living Wage for over-23s: From £8.91 … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Inflation, Low pay, Minimum wage rates, National Insurance Contributions (NICs), Pay & inflation, Tax, Trades Unions, Wages and Pay-rates, Wealth inequality | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Drivers particularly badly hit by soaring costs

In news that will particularly hit film freelancers, car costs are soaring. Secondhand cars are costing up to 60% more than they did in 2019, and the price of petrol is climbing rapidly. The weekly road fuel prices stats on … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Environment & Sustainability, Inflation, Pay & inflation | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Busy industry = unsafe industry?

An Australian study has revealed that economic growth following a period of recession has an impact on workplace injuries. This is particularly interesting in two respects for us at Bectu. The issue of skills fade in theatre and live events … Continue reading

Posted in Coronavirus, Health & Safety, Safe working practices, Safe working standards | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Devaluing arts education

I don’t want to get too diverted into a focus into the general question of arts education, its status, and funding (we’re fighting on enough fronts already at the moment), but one of the post-Brexit realignments that are being talked … Continue reading

Posted in Culture policy, Economics, Skills & capacity | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Halyna Hutchins – the latest film set tragedy

The BBC is rightly focusing on Halyna Hutchins, the cinematographer who died when reporting the incident involving Alec Baldwin and a prop gun in the latest tragedy on a film set. Halyna Hutchins, the cinematographer who died when Alec Baldwin … Continue reading

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Bluffer’s guide: Cabotage

Everyone interested in touring or doing work abroad is likely to start talking about ‘cabotage’ at some point soon (if they haven’t already). See also ‘Carnet’ (watch this space!) As a Seasoned Professional, you will need to be able to … Continue reading

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IATSE briefs members on the proposed deal

The union is hosting a series of town hall meetings with members, along with this briefing on three key issues in a Twitter thread: NEW: We are releasing our first three one page documents explaining how the new tentative Basic … Continue reading

Posted in Factual & Entertainment sector data, Feature film data, Film & TV industry data, High End TV data, Trades Unions | Tagged | Leave a comment

Piracy of films is still a thing

The commonplace (one I’m occasionally guilty of repeating) that online piracy of movies is almost a non-issue now thanks to the emergence of competitively-priced streaming platforms is wrong, it seems. The Global Innovation Policy Center is claiming that worldwide online piracy … Continue reading

Posted in Copyright and piracy, Feature film data, Film & TV industry data, High End TV data | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

UK radio to get ‘discoverability’ boost on smart speakers

Regulators have a number of tools at their fingertips. They can offer tax breaks linked to cultural tests. They can tell TV channels that a percentage of their content should be made within a particular jurisdiction. They can oblige distribution … Continue reading

Posted in BBC, Quotas, Radio, Regulation | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

General sense of wellbeing fell during the pandemic

The latest in a type of report that is best filed under “probably interesting in the long run, but hopelessly distorted by the pandemic” is the latest report from the ONS on levels of wellbeing and happiness in the UK … Continue reading

Posted in Coronavirus, Coronavirus, Wellbeing | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Comprehensive European figures on women’s representation in TV drama

Women still under-represented in the #TVfiction industry in Europe🚺Find out more in our report ➡ https://t.co/hjdMgTDNP4 #womeninfilm #diversitymatters #womendirectors #genderequity pic.twitter.com/hqMu7fHIw6 — Europ AV Observatory (@EuAvObservatory) October 20, 2021 The key insights contained in the report are that, beyond obvious … Continue reading

Posted in Diversity of representation, Equality, Film & TV industry data, Gender equality, Gender representation, High End TV data, Management, Skills & capacity, Wellbeing, Work-life balance | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Public Service Broadcasting – contestable funds under threat?

The dust has long settled on the Public Service Broadcasting Contestable Funds Consultation [pdf] from 2016 (the outgoing culture team were fairly keen on them but Nadine Dorries may not be), and the Times [£] has a worrying set of … Continue reading

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Netflix global strategy on films

More fuel to the debate about how the SVoD boom will affect the cultural diversity of film and TV, and on that whole ‘cinema to sofa’ question will play out. Here, their international film Boss David Kosse talks about how … Continue reading

Posted in Culture policy, Feature film data, Film & TV industry data, Film & TV industry policy, SVoD | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

IATSE update – strike averted – members consider a deal

IATSE have reached an eleventh-hour deal over the weekend to avoid a US film and TV strike. The fine details are yet to be published and Variety are reporting that townhall meetings will be held, along with first reactions. Deadline … Continue reading

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Visa-free short-term touring allowed in 20 EU countries

The government website is saying that… “20 Member States have confirmed they offer visa and work permit free routes for UK musicians and performers. These countries are: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, … Continue reading

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Flexible working – Arup explore the seven-day week

From Arup’s website: “Arup, the employee-owned global engineering and design firm, has today announced it is adopting an innovative hybrid model – known as Work Unbound – that will give its 15,500 employees, known as members, greater flexibility in deciding … Continue reading

Posted in Employment, Employment Law and Rights, Family rights, Gender equality, Remote working, Work-life balance | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Protecting mental health in the workplace – TUC webinar

With the TUC’s Anna Kalsi alongside Peter Kelly, Senior Psychologist at the Health and Safety Executive, discussing what employers should be doing to prevent work-related stress and to protect the mental wellbeing of their employees. Details here. You can register … Continue reading

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UK commissioned productions losing crew talent to streamers

We’ve been saying it will happen for a while, but the wider world is beginning to notice. This, from the FT[£]; “Seetha Kumar, chief executive of ScreenSkills, said the “pinch points” were particularly acute in mid-tier roles — for which … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, EU & Brexit, Film & TV industry data, High End TV data, Regulation, Skills & capacity | Tagged | Leave a comment

Energy bills to rise by 50% between 2020 and 2022

With the impacts of soaring global gas markets on the energy bills, and the price cap rising by 12 per cent on 1 October, The Resolution Foundation is briefing that energy bills are set to rise by 50% between 2020 … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Inflation | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Bectu: “Do Nothing To Undermine The IATSE Action,”

Bectu has, once again, come out strongly in support of IATSE’s threatened strike action next week, as reported in Deadline earlier today. Head of Bectu, Philippa Childs has urged members to “go further and show solidarity” posting photos with colleagues … Continue reading

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Vaccinated or a negative CoViD test – new guidance in Wales

From Monday 11th October new rules came into force in Wales requiring people attending large events and nightclubs (or similar premises) to prove they are either fully vaccinated or have had a negative COVID test. You can read guidance here … Continue reading

Posted in Coronavirus, Safe working practices, Theatre and Live Events data | Leave a comment

More on freelance pensions

Members who missed the seminar on freelancers and pensions a few weeks ago can view it here. Following this up, and looking at The Great British Retirement Survey annual report, On the one hand, people are hearing to retire as … Continue reading

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Yet another big streamer eyes European markets

This time, it’s Paramount +. “In the U.K., Ireland, Italy, Germany, Switzerland and Austria (GSA), for example, Paramount Plus will launch on Sky platforms. Craig explained that according to the deal, Paramount Plus and Comcast/ViacomCBS streaming co-venture SkyShowtime will be … Continue reading

Posted in EU & Brexit, Film & TV industry policy, Public Service Broadcasting, Quotas, Regulation, SVoD | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

BBC Studios Appoints Tom Fussell as CEO

As reported in Variety. “Fussell will oversee BBC Studio’s “ambitious” plans for global expansion, its focus on employee engagement and wellbeing as well as diversity, inclusion and sustainability.”

Posted in BBC, Diversity of representation, Environment & Sustainability, Wellbeing | Tagged , | Leave a comment

What is happening to self-employment in the UK

The tl;dr answer is that it’s too early to tell. As mentioned previously here, there’s a lot of job-switching going on, and there is a generally tight labour market in the UK (and globally, though the UK has the added spice … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Employment, EU & Brexit, Freelance working, Pay & inflation | Tagged , | Leave a comment

French cultural policy

France has always had an interesting, and different approach to cultural policy to the UK’s equivalent. In thinking about this last night, I remembered this 2013 document [pdf] from the Coalition Francaise and I thought I’d bookmark it here. This … Continue reading

Posted in Copyright & Intellectual Property, Culture policy, Diversity of representation, Film & TV industry policy, Public Service Broadcasting, Quotas, Regulation, Tax incentives | Tagged , | Leave a comment

IATSE ramps up the pressure: a deal – or a strike on Monday!

IATSE has ramped up the pressure, publishing a Strike Clock counting down to midnight on Monday morning. In a message circulating IATSE members, the line is…. “AMPTP has until Monday 18th at 12:01 am to make us a better offer. … Continue reading

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Basic income for artists and art-workers – Irish trial

The Irish Times [£] is reporting on a three-year pilot scheme on ‘basic income’ for artists and arts-sector workers. With an initial budget of €25 million it is targeted on people who were fell badly between the cracks during the … Continue reading

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Self employed workers using their own home as a workplace

This is an issue where I’d normally point members to Tax for Freelancers (the Bectu tax guide) but I do find that TaxAid often explains things very well – here’s their account of this issue.

Posted in Freelance working, Tax | Tagged | Leave a comment

There’s a lot of job-switching going on

Following on from two posts here this morning about inflation/pay, and the tight labour market, here’s a third on the trinity of issues that are creating a fair wind for union-type demands at the moment. Sarah O’Connor in the FT … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Employment, Low pay, Pay & inflation, Productivity, Wages and Pay-rates | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Got a pay claim coming up? Want advice on inflation, and stuff like that?

If you have a pay claim coming up and want advice on inflation, and stuff like that…. good luck! Firstly, the official, current inflation figures have not been as flimsy a guide as they are at the moment for a … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Employment, EU & Brexit, Inflation, Pay & inflation, Productivity, Skills & capacity | Tagged | 1 Comment

Directors Guild of America approach to diversity

Janice Turner has forwarded me some interesting stuff from one of our union kin in the US, The Directors Guild of America (DGA). Their mission statement includes a dual focus: Cultural diversity is reflected in the stories that Directors tell … Continue reading

Posted in Culture policy, Diversity of representation, Equality, Gender equality, Gender representation, Race equality, Wealth inequality | Tagged | Leave a comment

“The tightest labour market in modern times”

This Twitter thread (below) is really worth a careful read for everyone who wants to understand the current state of the labour market. Firstly, the fears about mass redundancies at the end of furlough are just not materialising – if … Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Employment, Productivity | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

How often do Freelancers need to opt out of the pension scheme with a regular employer?

This is another of those posts that we would urge you to act upon only after having read the footnote (below). We are periodically contacted by members who work multiple short contracts for the same engager (e.g. a national broadcaster) … Continue reading

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Women leaving the theatre sector after the pandemic?

An interesting-if-depressing report here (reported in The Guardian): “The research, conducted by playwright Jennifer Tuckett, in partnership with organisations such as The Writers’ Guild of Great Britain, Equity, Stage Directors UK and the December Group, found that more than 98% … Continue reading

Posted in Equality, Gender equality, Gender pay, Gender representation, Theatre and Live Events data | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment