2016 SAG-AFTRA Commercials Contract Interpretive Disagreements

Dear 4A’s Friend:

It has come to the JPC’s attention that there are some areas of confusion related to SAG-AFTRA’s interpretation of particular terms of the Commercials Contract (as amended by the 2016 Memorandum of Agreement (“MOA”), the “Contract”).

A JPC is bulletin posted on the JPS website [http://www.jointpolicycommittee.org/bulletin-jpc-and-sag-aftra-commercials-contract-interpretive-disagreements/] and provided below:

Please notify the JPC in the event that you receive correspondence from SAG-AFTRA related to any of the issues identified below by contacting Kim Stevens at [[email protected]].

  1. Scope. The JPC is aware of an increased number of inquiries/claims related to stock footage, stock photography, and/or music produced outside of the scope of the Contract. These claims are frequently made under Section 24. It is the JPC’s position that the Contract does not apply to commercials (including, without limitation, licensed footage, photography or music included therein) that were produced or recorded outside the scope of the Contract as defined in Section 5.
  2. Experimental Waiver for Social Media–Integration. The JPC is aware that SAG-AFTRA is taking the position that utilization of the Social Media Waiver is only possible for new productions, and that such productions may not include footage previously produced. It is the JPC’s position that the Social Media Waiver permits the creation of new commercials from existing footage at the rates established by the waiver in the MOA.
  3. Stock Footage. The JPC is aware of an increased number of inquiries/claims related to stock photography and stock footage regarding whether the stock photography or footage was “made for any advertising purposes,” as that phrase is used in Section 7 of the Contract.
    The JPC conferred with SAG-AFTRA, and the union agrees that, while a stock photograph or stock footage license or release may include language that allows “use for any advertising purpose” or other similar boiler plate language, that is not the single determining factor as for whether the photograph or footage was, in fact, produced for advertising purposes (which, if it was, would trigger payment obligations under the Contract). SAG-AFTRA agreed to advise its business representatives accordingly.

The JPC is taking these issues very seriously. As with any issue regarding the interpretation of the Contract, your primary source for guidance should be Kim Stevens and Stacy Marcus.

Reminder: If you have not already done so you may want to sign up to receive automatic JPC updates: http://www.jointpolicycommittee.org/contact/


If you have questions about the JPC Town Hall session or questions about commercial talent union matters please reach out to Kim Stevens, JPC Director of Industry Relations: [email protected]

Kim Stevens
Director of Industry Relations
Joint Policy Committee on Broadcast Talent Union Relations
[email protected]
599 Lexington Ave
New York, NY 10022