More Adrian Chiles (this time, it’s IR35)

This is an unprecedented second post in one day about Adrian Chiles. Tony Lennon has been in touch to nod me towards Chiles’ legal vindication against HMRC where his appeal has established that – in working through his media-based company, Basic Broadcasting Ltd (“BBL”), they were contracts for services and not contracts of employment, and therefore IR35 did not apply.

It seems that the initial appearance of the contracts was that they were contracts of employment, but once the whole picture was taken into account, Chiles’ appeal against a hefty tax bill (different newspapers have different figures).

Contractor Calculator has a very good, full report on this. The factors that they report include things like…. Continue reading

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Pensions Auto-Enrolment – the basics for freelancers

The short version of this article: Employers may try to postpone the ‘auto-enrolment’ of people into their pension scheme and they may try to do it for people who are only on short-term contracts.

But it is almost always in the interests of a worker who could qualify for enrolment in such a scheme to get enrolled. The good news is, that you can often insist on it! So always do it if you can!!

The slightly longer version: As implied in a few previous posts, workplace pension schemes are almost unequivocally a good thing from the worker’s point of view.

Employers deduct something from your salary and pay it into a pension savings pot where it is invested and gathers value. If the employer didn’t do this and paid the money directly to you, you’d pay tax on it.

So you could almost put this into the free money category when thinking about your budgets. Continue reading

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Adrian Chiles on the value of good sound recordists

From here:

“….the sound is monitored and adjusted remotely on a heavy, pricey mixer slung around someone’s neck. This is how it’s been done for decades. The unusual thing here was that we actually had a specialist sound recordist on the job – they’re a dying breed. Usually, the camera operator somehow has to do it these days. Cuts, you see.

This is bonkers, because in the edit you can find ways of working around poor pictures, but there’s next to nothing you can do if the sound’s no good.”

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What does “supervision, direction and control” mean?

Supervision, direction and control” are key factors in determining employment status. Summarising HMRC’s Employment Status Manual (ESM2055 – Agency and temporary workers),  Contractor Calculator has a more succinct explanation – here.

The main problem that Bectu is seeking to get across to HMRC, and to employers, is that the answers to these questions look very different depending upon your point of view. An engager often overestimates the degree to which they supervise and direct their freelance workers. (In film and TV, the control question is a bit less of an issue as people are generally hired to work on a specific production).

I’ve covered this here and in a very broad way, here.

There’s a very useful illustrative case – Staples v Secretary of State for Social Services (scroll down the page) – a chef who had a good deal of discretion about menus was deemed to show that he wasn’t under much supervision or direction from the management.

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I summed this problem up to colleagues a few months ago thus (for reference): Continue reading

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IR35 in the public sector – HMRC criticised

The National Audit Office (NAO) has published its report on the rollout of IR35 reforms to tax rules for off-payroll working in the public sector.

Readers may recall that this happened in 2017 (as distinct from the extension of the reforms to the private and third sectors in 2021). For Bectu members, this primarily means that IR35 affected freelancers working for the BBC initially (the BBC being an ’emanation of the state’ in this respect), but hit the bulk of freelance members who work in the private sector in April 2021.

The key points in the report are that

  • the aim of reducing non-compliance with a duty to determine tax status was achieved, thereby increasing tax revenue
  • the 2017 reforms were rushed – public bodies had little time to prepare
  • the original CEST guidance tool wasn’t up to scratch (our recollection is that it actually got worse before it got better)
  • the estimate for how long it would take for engages to get it right was on the low side
  • … so some public bodies made mistakes

Continue reading

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January’s inflation figures

Today’s UK inflation figures show cost-of-living increases that reach the highest rate for over 30 years.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) reported that the consumer prices index (CPI) measure of inflation increased to 5.5% in January from 5.4% a month earlier, driven by prices for clothing, footwear, and furniture. All of these problems are multiplied by rising energy and fuel bills (which also feed into higher costs for a wider range of goods and services).

Once again, the rates have gone ahead of economists’ predictions. City forecasts were that the inflation rate would remain at 5.4%.

An alternative measure of inflation – one which unions have always pushed as being more relevant in calculating wage demands – is the retail prices index (RPI). This is now running at 7.8%, again, considerably higher than anticipated in last October’s budget.

The last time the UK had a higher rate of inflation was in March 1992, when it stood at 7.1%.

Whatever the measure, household living standards are facing a noticeable squeeze. One Guardian columnist sees this as point at which our relationship with consumer spending fundamentally changes.

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Looking Glass ’21 report

The Film and TV Charity have published their Looking Glass ’21 report. This is a follow-up from their research in 2019 into working conditions in the film and TV industry, and how these impact workers based on responses from more than 2,000 workers.

Bectu shares the report’s concerns around major issues including working hours, harassment, talent retention, and the continuation of the industry’s ‘mental health crisis’ uncovered in the 2019 findings.

However, important notes of hope are evident in this new research and demonstrate the continued need for concerted collaboration to secure a better future for the industry and its workforce. Bectu echoes the report’s assertion that change comes from action and urges the industry to commit to lasting change.

Bectu’s soon-to-be-released mental health and wellbeing policy for companies working in the film and TV sector, written by and for members of Bectu, is an important step towards this change. Continue reading

Posted in Coronavirus, Film & TV industry data, Freelance working, Health & Safety, Long hours, Management, Mental Health, Skills & capacity, Wellbeing, Work-life balance | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Understanding self-employed pension tax relief

I occasionally have contact from freelance members who aren’t happy that they have been enrolled into a pension scheme as a result of the statutory auto-enrolment. My normal response is – firstly – to remind members that they are turning down more money than they may realise. As this very useful guidance from Penfold says….

“For most people, this works out as 25% on top of whatever you pay in. Contribute £100 into your pension, the government will automatically add £25 themselves via tax relief. If you’re a higher earner, you may be able to claim even more back.”

The whole guide on Penfold’s site is worth reading though.

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Actors and tax

I’ve not had any queries across my desk asking about the tax position of actors, though it is something that could be pertinent to our FAA members (though I don’t think that there’s much question that people on relatively short engagements are totally ‘self employed’ by most definitions).

If a producer or a director is hiring an actor, they would have one real concern that arises from IR35…

“…will HMRC look at the employment relations that I have with these actors and accuse me of incorrectly determining their employment status?”

The reason they may ask this is that paying people as Sole Traders (i.e. invoice) means that no Employers NICs are paid, the employee’s NICs are slightly lower and the actors can also treat some of their expenses as liabilities in their personal business balance sheet when calculating their ‘profits’ which are taxable (HMRC treat everyone who is a sole trader effectively as an unincorporated personal business that pays tax on profits, not total income).

This isn’t a minor issue. HMRC can lose a very large amount of money on someone earning £40-£50k a year if they go off PAYE and onto working as a Sole Trader – and even worse if they go through a Personal Service Company.

I wouldn’t offer any direct advice to anyone on this – you’ll have to satisfy yourself that you’re doing the right thing if you’re hiring actors. Equity would have more detailed advice for actors and one could complete a CEST test for an imaginary actor and check this.

This article on Backstage may also help?

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Food shopping costs soar

Behind a lot of the headlines on inflation (soaring energy and fuel costs in particular), there’s one other important factor to bear in mind – particularly for people on low incomes.

While the CPIH inflation rate puts the impact of inflation on food costs at 4.8%, for people on low incomes, this figure is masked by the fact that more expensive foods have barely changed in price. High-quality ready meals, for example, can be bought for the same price as they were some years ago, but food staples like Rice (344% increase) and Pasta (141% increase) have gone up dramatically.

Continue reading

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Shepperton update: Now Prime Video have agreed a deal.

Further to a recent post here about Shepperton (which outlined the way that Netflix were treating the studio as it’s UK production base), The Pinewood Group (Shepperton’s owners) have today confirmed that the new facilities under development will be given over to the exclusive use of Prime Video (Amazon’s SVoD) for production. Quoting the press release….

“The new facilities will comprise 9 sound stages, workshops and office accommodation, totalling approximately 450,000 square feet, and forming part of the wider redevelopment and expansion of Shepperton Studios, which will deliver approximately 1.2 million square feet of new studio space.”

The Guardian seem to have got more than was in the press release:

“While details of the deal have not been disclosed, it is understood that Amazon’s lease is for well over 10 years – longer than similar deals struck by Netflix and Disney, which has secured space at Pinewood Studios, the parent of Shepperton – which makes it the biggest vote of confidence to date in the UK’s booming £6bn TV and film production industry.”

 

Posted in Film & TV industry policy, High End TV data, SVoD, Tax incentives, UK studios | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Some holiday pay legal rulings

A few bookmarks here on claims for unpaid holiday pay.

The Smith/Pimlico Plumbers judgment makes clear that workers who have taken leave but have not been paid for it, or have been denied the opportunity to take leave, can claim holiday pay for the whole period of their employment. The Court of Appeal also cast doubt on the restriction to claims for holiday pay being limited to a 3 months period as decided in Bear Scotland.

Prospect’s legal team has circulated a briefing to officials about this and members would be strongly advised to get advice from the legal team for claims which may fall into this category.

Posted in Freelance working, Freelancer rights | Tagged | Leave a comment

Understanding ‘Umbrella Companies’

I’ve just been preparing an explanation of how Umbrella Companies work to a Bectu member. Just writing it down is a reminder of what an obnoxious arrangement this is when you move people onto these – and this is what employers are doing in response to IR35 tax changes.

The key thing to understand: this is a needlessly complicated way of employing someone. Employers offload tax-investigation liabilities & quietly put costs onto employees -in my experience, many workers can’t get their head around this complexity and just say “whatever”….

To understand this properly, let’s look at how an ordinary PAYE worker is paid (these are my own, slightly shonky graphics so please bear with me on this)
Emploee Status explained
As you can see, it’s actually quite complicated but most workers aren’t bothered by that because they only need to worry about what happens with the ‘payslip’ – in that picture. An ordinary payslip makes employment very easy to understand. Continue reading

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Bectu’s Script Registration Scheme – what it is and how it works

Some years ago, Bectu established a Script Registration Scheme to provide some protections that are not available because of a gap in the concept of Copyright.

The scheme offers some protection to someone who has come up with a concept that hasn’t yet been developed into something that can be protected by copyright in a conventional way.

The APC Code of Practice

You can copyright and assign ownership to lots of things. Jo Bloggs can write anything on a bit of paper and then say “this document is copyright of Jo Bloggs 2022 – all rights reserved.”

The problem comes with enforcement. Copyright law makes it easy to protect tightly defined things that have an obvious value. You can copyright a document – for example, a script if it is actually a proper film or play script with dialogue etc.

You can copyright the lyrics to a song, or a musical score (sheet music). You can copyright a film, or a recording of music, a painting, a photograph etc. Continue reading

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Travelling to work in the EU (updated)

Post updated 27/01/22

I started writing this post because I was quite annoyed that there wasn’t any straightforward advice on travelling to work from the UK to the EU. Also, as far as I can see, Brexit will hit freelancers a good deal harder than employees for two reasons:

  1. employees don’t need to scramble around for work in the first place so the impact of Brexit is limited to the impact on their employers, and
  2. because some countries are looking for evidence that you have been employed by a particular employer for a long period of time before even considering a visa application. For example (quoting the .gov website)…. .

If your UK employer sends you to work on an assignment or secondment to Spain you need an ICT work and residence permit for the provision of transnational services (cross-border services).

To qualify you must:

  • provide services specified in a contract between the UK employer and the company in Spain
  • have a bachelor’s level degree or at least 5 years’ relevant work experience
    have provided services for the UK company for at least 9 months and at least 1 year in the UK
  • be paid at least the minimum salary according to the relevant collective bargaining agreement (depends on what the company does)
  • keep your UK employment contract
  • stay on UK payroll

This permit takes 3 to 9 months to get. It’s valid for up to 1 year and you can extend it for up to 2 years. (from here)

But back to the question of finding straightforward advice: A few hours later and I now know why no one has published any straightforward advice on travelling to work from the UK to the EU. David Thomas, he’s done about as good a job as is possible here.

In the area of live touring, as has already been noted here, the issue of working in the EU has been somewhat clouded by claims from the UK to have sorted something out without necessarily offering much detail on what it is they have agreed. Continue reading

Posted in EU & Brexit, Film & TV industry policy, Freelance working, Theatre and Live Events data | Tagged , | 2 Comments

BBC as an antidote to social media competitors

A good post from Diana Coyle on the need for “a publicly-funded, public purpose and independent competitor of scale” in online markets such as social media.”

“…foreign observers find it impossible to understand why UK governments are so keen to weaken one of the country’s principal elements of soft power, especially at a time of misinformation and polarization. The BBC has also been a keystone of in effect a century-long successful industrial policy to keep Britain at the forefront of the creative industries.

Some of the policy instruments have included obvious ones: training for the whole sector; procurement rules that favour British suppliers, from composers and bands to production companies; and investment in technological innovation diffused to the whole sector either for free or through open licences.”

If you add the observation that the BBC is a fantastic incubator for independent productions, the argument is a bit of a slam dunk. But it’s not about arguments, is it? It’s about politics.

 

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Production growing in the nations and regions

Back in September, I posted here about The Pact Census (as carried out by Oliver and Ohlbaum). I’ve been meaning to pull out something about the impact on regional production from that for a while. So here goes.

Pact chose to highlight this here:
Pact Census 2021

At the moment, the trends are gradually away from London in percentage terms – you can see the Nations and Regions annex to the census – here, but in summary, there is an increasing proportion of commissioning value is spent outside of London – 55% of the total is happening in London, with 45% outside. Continue reading

Posted in BBC, Factual & Entertainment sector data, Film & TV industry data, High End TV data, Public Service Broadcasting, Skills & capacity, Tax incentives, UK studios | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Inflation update (spoiler alert: it’s not good news)

Towards the end of last year, economic forecasters could safely have been described as ‘alarmed’ by inflation figures. I don’t post on this every month (the last real mention was here) and I was briefing members towards the end of the year that inflationary figures were bad, and made worse by the fact that they were going sharply ahead of economists’ predictions.

Earlier in 2021, Bank of England anticipated that CPI inflation would start to rise sharply towards 2% through the spring and remain there for the next couple of years. Those estimates were, it seems, wildly optimistic – driven particularly by rising energy and transport prices, renewed economic growth, inflationary skills shortages and supply chain and wage-increase driven cost increases. Continue reading

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BBC funding statment from the VLV

The Voice of the Listener and Viewer has published the following Briefing note and press release in response to yesterday’s BBC funding settlement.The briefing includes the claim that, on current projections, the BBC will be in deficit by between approximately £3bn and £5bn in 2027.

The exec summary makes a number of points – the one that may leap out for freelancers – particularly those who work in drama for both the BBC and its competitors – is marked in bold (below) – it seems one of the factors that may cause a perfect storm of the kind that has been sketched out here – one that ordinary viewers (and voters) may notice. Continue reading

Posted in BBC, Film & TV industry policy, Politics, Public Service Broadcasting, Regulation, SVoD, Tax incentives, The Conservative Party | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Group decision-making – a guide

Just a bookmark for now – a way of deciding how to make a group decision, and an outline of how and when particular ways of making decisions can work and when they don’t.

Posted in Organising Skills, Recruitment and organising, Workplace conflict | Tagged | Leave a comment

UK Screen issues new guidance following UK government’s ‘Plan B’ announcement

Update – 5th Jan 2022 – the info on the links below has been updated again.

Following tonight’s ‘Plan B’ announcement on CoViD working, my colleague at Bectu, Spencer MacDonald has had this email from Neil Hatton of UK Screen Alliance that we have agreed to share as widely as we can.

Dear Spencer,

This evening the Prime Minister has announced that the government will be enacting Plan B measures in the face of rapidly increasing cases of the Omicron variant, thought to be doubling every three days. The risk of serious illness from Omicron is as yet uncertain. Continue reading

Posted in Coronavirus, Coronavirus, Safe working practices | Tagged | Leave a comment

Lord Bragg: The BBC is an institution that is being damaged for political purposes

I can’t find it on the Radio Times website, but the Times is quoting Melvyn Bragg’s article there, saying…

“…as the BBC entered its centenary year, it found itself “sniped at, disparaged and blamed for every current malaise from culture wars to Covid fears”. He said that it was in danger of becoming part of a surrender to “creeping deterioration” as “our great institutions are increasingly damaged for political purposes”.

 

I mention this as it appears to be part of a growing narrative that the UK’s global standing – and its ability to survive as a single political entity – is being damaged by British politicians as a consequence of Brexit among other factors. Continue reading

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Atypical workers – employment status, tax status, modus operandi – some links

I’m preparing a talk on freelance contracts, and I find that looking at the way different organisations explain things is useful for a number of reasons.

Firstly, their emphasis may give some insight into how they regard the issue differently to someone primarily concerned with the worker’s rights. But secondly, a complex issues are often quite badly explained and it helps to look at the way different orgs do it.

The expected changes for 2022 are particularly interesting from a freelance point of view as it is expected to include changes arising from The Good Work Plan that came out of The Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices, including possible…

  • compensation for work cancelled without ‘reasonable notice’,
  • right to reasonable notice of working hours,
  • right to more predictable and stable contracts once you have 26 weeks continuous service
Posted in Freelance working, Freelancer rights, IR35, Personal Service Companies, Tax | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Round up – production in the UK

Anyone looking for a good roundup of the UK production landscape – investments, studios, facilities, etc, may find this article in KFTV useful.

A lot of it has been covered here already, though I’m aware I need to post more about non-M25 infrastructure.

Posted in Film & TV industry data, Film & TV industry policy, Tax incentives, UK studios | Tagged | Leave a comment

Flexible savings trials to bridge the freelance pensions gap

I’m going to simply cut-and-paste from the press release from Nest Insight here as I think it says everything that needs explaining well enough:

Nest Insight has launched two new pilots to trial flexible savings systems that are designed to fit with self-employed people’s “variable income and future uncertainty”.

Nest Insight is collaborating with PenFold and Moneyhub on the two pilots, which are also supported by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) as part of a multi-year programme of work testing ways to help self-employed people save for retirement.

The group emphasised that whilst automatic enrolment has greatly expanded workplace pension saving participation, some savers, such as the self-employed, are still not benefiting. Continue reading

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BFI Screen Business report details the scale of the UK production boom

Anyone who has any doubts about the size and scale of the UK production boom can have a look at the latest BFI Screen Business report (if the annual Pact Census most recently published in September wasn’t convincing enough!).

The highlights are that the report shows that record levels of production in the UK across film, high-end TV, video games, children’s TV, and animation sectors have also created the equivalent of 219,000 full-time jobs.

The report confirms that the UK is experiencing the highest ever return on investment to the UK economy of £13.48bn (Gross Value Added) from the UK’s Government’s screen tax reliefs from 2017-2019 across the UK’s nations and regions.

The use of GVA is an interesting one – the Return on Investment shows that – for every £1 of UK Film Tax Relief – it generates £8.30 back to the UK economy. Continue reading

Posted in BBC, Economics, Factual & Entertainment sector data, Feature film data, Film & TV industry data, Film & TV industry policy, High End TV data, Public Service Broadcasting, Quotas, Skills & capacity, SVoD, Tax incentives, UK studios | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

What do employers need to do to retain talent?

It’s something of a recurring theme from the Pensions & Investment Research Consultants (PIRC), but all of the research (including their own work with Autonomy and Survation – [pdf]) point to a need to pay people better, treat them with respect and offer better terms and conditions.

PIRC retention

Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Employment, Employment Law and Rights, Long hours, Low pay, Management, Mental Health, Productivity, Wellbeing, Work-life balance | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Shinfield Studios planning permission granted.

Shinfield Studios in Reading is another addition to the UK’s ever-mushrooming production capacity (for details of other recent developments see the UK Studio Watch tag on this site).

Located very close the M4 and nearly 5 miles away from the train station, it’s owned by affiliates of LA-based Commonwealth Asset Management, who are planning to create a global film studios operation (they’re also developing a 93-acre site in LA). It has now been granted full planning permission, with the studio is expected to be in full swing by the end of 2024, but many of the facilities will be in use well before then. Continue reading

Posted in Film & TV industry data, Film & TV industry policy, Skills & capacity, UK studios | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Production Safety Passport

In the new year, the union will be doing some promotion for the Health & Safety dimension of our work. This will include the re-constitution of the Bectu H&S committee that stopped meeting during the pandemic.

Each division can send two reps and that committee can then co-opt a number of specialist members.

One key contribution that the union makes is the support we give to the Production Safety Passport. This passport – co-ordinated by ScreenSkills allows freelancers to take their training and then be able to work for any production using it. Continue reading

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A distinctly British focus for TV programmes

David Tennant has been questioning some of the arguments around demands for ‘distinctly British programmes (or ‘lovely jubbly telly‘ as John Whittingdale didn’t say recently).

“Is there some inherent criticism within this plea for more Britishness?” he said in the Radio Times. “Did Britishness mean ‘made in Britain’ or programmes that have a certain political viewpoint?”

The Scottish actor questioned whether the government was actually pleading for artists to be more sympathetic towards it. “Why would the government feel they need more sympathy directed towards them? Perhaps that’s a question they should ask themselves, rather than trying to blame it on the television industry,” he said.

This issue matters for Bectu members because it would be reasonable to assume that – at some point in the near future, overtures will be made to crew to work on UK-commissioned drama instead of on the more global SVoD content that has the capacity to use up all of UK crew skills for the foreseeable future.

Posted in Diversity of representation, EU & Brexit, Film & TV industry policy, High End TV data, Public Service Broadcasting, Quotas, Regulation, SVoD, Tax incentives | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Tax avoidance and Umbrella Companies

I’ve been to a presentation from HMRC about a website that they have launched that is aimed substantially at people who are being asked to work through an Umbrella Company.

It tells them how they can avoid charges of tax avoidance by understanding their deal, outlining some of the ways that unscrupulous employers or umbrella companies structure payments. There’s a particular issue with people being offered loans instead of wages are a way of circumventing some tax obligations.

Other examples include employers asking people to reduce their wages to minimum wage so that they can get the income in other more tax-efficient ways. In reality, these schemes are often set up mainly for the benefit of the umbrella company rather than the workers.

The website’ message is “don’t get caught“, and this usually means “don’t get inadvertently get caught up in someone else’s tax-avoidance scheme that doesn’t even offer you any benefits in the first place.”

Posted in Employment Contracts, Employment intermediaries, Employment Law and Rights, Employment status, Gig economy workers, IR35, Loan arrangements, Tax | Tagged | 1 Comment

Knowing how much retirement income you need

Bectu is going to keep nagging freelance members to get a pension because freelancers in the UK generally have shockingly underfunded retirements. There are lots of other posts on this site about pensions if you want to read into this.

But in the meantime, there is a really useful website – ‘Picture Your Future’ – that allows you to calculate what different levels of retirement income mean in terms of your standard of living.

So if you are single, and you want to be able to spend £47 on your weekly shop, have a three-year-old car that is replaced every ten years, spend two weeks a year on holiday in Europe (and a long weekend in the UK as well), have £730 to spend on clothes and shoes, and be able to buy decent birthday presents for loved ones, you are going to need to plan to have an income of £20,800 a year. Continue reading

Posted in Freelance working, Low pay, Pensions, Wages and Pay-rates, Welfare and benefits | Tagged | Leave a comment

Stephen Follows research site

For anyone who hasn’t already found this at some point, via Google, Stephen Follows runs a fine website full of industry research that answers many questions that you have, and a few you didn’t know you have.

Here are some samples…

Posted in Factual & Entertainment sector data, Feature film data, Film & TV industry data, Gender representation, High End TV data, Low budget features, Skills & capacity | Tagged | Leave a comment

Working terms in Swedish productions

It’s always worth looking at how other countries do work hours in the film and TV industry, and it is a commonplace view that the Swedish drama sector manages a high quality of production on working hours that also give their crew a work-life balance.

To get to the bottom of this, I called Bectu’s a sister union in Sweden – Scen and Film – The Swedish Union for Performing Arts and Film Sweden.

I gave Eleonor Fahlén there a call to discuss how their productions work. Eleonor tells me that there is an elected paid union rep on each production. In theory, they do their union work during the normal working day, but they sometimes have to do some of it in their own time. They are working on the production but getting some money from the union for their extra work. The productions pay 0.2% of their total freelance wage bill to the union to cover this money. Continue reading

Posted in Bectu Agreements, Employment Law and Rights, EU & Brexit, Factual & Entertainment sector data, Feature film data, Film & TV industry data, Health & Safety, High End TV data, Long hours, Major Motion Picture Agreement, Productivity, SVoD, Tax incentives, Trades Unions, TV Drama Agreement, Work-life balance | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

BARB to monitor SVoD viewing figures

The rapid rise of Streaming Video on Demand (SVoD)  – with 18.8m UK homes (66%) having at least one SVoD account – has been a particularly rough disruption for traditional linear TV broadcasters for two obvious reasons.

The first is that they have not been able to gauge how far SVoD has eaten into / expanded the size of their market because they’ve not had access to the quality of data that the SVoDs themselves have.

The second challenge is that SVoDs have a significantly better set of feedback loops that they can use to monitor how their product is consumed.

As previously reported here, the British Audience Research Board (BARB) has been surveying and is now ready to share that data – at a price. It will, at least, help to solve the first of those two problems (though smaller indy companies may not be able to afford the £40k starting price. Continue reading

Posted in Film & TV industry data, High End TV data, SVoD, TV Advertising | Tagged | Leave a comment