Friday, July 8th, 2016 #MEAAEquity
MEAA Online

Australian performers have overwhelmingly backed bringing their rights and residuals into the 21st century.

More than 98.5 per cent of Equity members who participated in a recent online vote are in favour of the new Australian Television Repeats and Residuals Agreement (ATRRA).

The complex agreement was negotiated between Equity and Screen Producers Australia (SPA) over three years. While the agreement continues to cover Australian TV programs, Equity was adamant the digital landscape and changed audience patterns of consumption be properly addressed.

Equity director Zoe Angus says: “The agreement that Australian performers have resoundingly endorsed is a ground-breaking re-imagining of value of performer's image in the digital age. We are now at the forefront of recognising and embracing technological innovation and what that means for content creators. This is a momentous day for our industry.”

Some of the big wins for Australian performers:

-A new 10% loading when your work is played on an associated free streaming service such as iView.
-A 70% loading (over three years) if your work is made for premiere release on SVoD platforms such as Netflix and Presto, bringing it into line with broadcast TV.
-New rigorous reporting, requiring producers to disclose sales, licence fees and the amount of claimed recoupment prior to payment of residuals.
-For the first time, web productions will be included in the agreement. You will receive a 57.5% upfront loading for a three year term and will share in 10% of any revenue generated after 12 months.

Australian performers were consulted extensively throughout the negotiation process via an online survey, cast meetings, direct phone calls, email bulletins and text message.

The agreement was approved by the National Performers’ Committee, before all members were given the opportunity to have their final say.

“The ATRRA was in need of a complete overhaul because it was last negotiated back in 2004 when TV was still king. There was no iView, no Presto, no Australian Netflix,” says Angus.

“It’s easy to forget how quickly and drastically things have changed. Performers’ work is now consumed anywhere, at any time and on any device. I am extremely proud that our membership has given us a clear mandate to bring their rights and residuals into the 21st century.”

The new agreement comes into effect for new programs today, July 12, 2016 although existing programs (including subsequent seasons) remain on the old ATRRA unless otherwise agreed to allow for a transition period.

To download a factsheet about the new agreement or the terms of the new agreement in full please click here.