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    Posted September 19, 2008

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New Media is Focus of North American Confab

Streaming video. Social networking. A videogame release that made half a billion dollars in its first week. These and other concerns were discussed at the FIANA Technicians' Meetings in New York in September.

FIANA is the North American arm of the Federation of International Actors, an organization that promotes global cooperation among performer unions. The meeting focused on the virtual mountain of New Technology that has flourished in recent years. Representatives from AEA, Canadian AEA, UK Equity, as well as SAG, AFTRA and ACTRA attended the meetings. Equity was represented by Executive Director John P. Connolly, Senior Business Representative Lawrence Lorczak, Film/Taping Rep Dwane Upp and Councillor James Ludwig.

The atmosphere was cordial and productive, reports Mr. Ludwig. Of particular interest was discussion about continuing to develop means to communicate between organizations, to assist in bargaining across international borders. "As Unions, we are dealing with multi-national conglomerates in entertainment media, and in particular in the videogame industry, which has turned incredible profits in recent years," said Mr. Ludwig, who Chairs Equity's Committee on New Media and New Technology, and observed some of the meetings. "Being able to negotiate on a global scale is a must," he added.

The meetings ended with the drafting of a New Media Motion, which will be presented at the full FIA Congress being held in Marrakesh this Fall.

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