Writers & Directors Worldwide Establishes New First-Aid Funding Programme for Emerging Authors' Societies

Writers & Directors Worldwide has announced a new support program for emerging authors’ societies at its executive committee meeting in Buenos Aries; the first chaired by new president, director and screenwriter Horacio Maldonado. The council also shared news of three new appointments and the strengthening of its global partnership strategy. The new support program will take the form of a fundraising and first aid initiative for emerging audiovisual societies. Using recent examples of new society growth in Latin America, the council intends to set up a structured package of assistance to help authors all over the world to pull together and establish their own collective management organisations. The requirement for creator representation is particularly crucial in regions that have a growing audiovisual industry but where no dedicated structure exists or is able to operate properly such as Paraguay or India. The assistance will take a number of forms including the drafting of a methodology manual for the launch of new societies and the establishment of a special fund to provide initial advances to emerging societies. Emerging societies that are eligible for these funds will be mentored by an established partner society who will also manage the expenditure and guide them in their first steps. This will address the issue of how societies can fund their operations during the time before they begin collections and will complement the existing solidarity and support programmes provided by CISAC. It is anticipated that this first-aid assistance programme will be initially rolled out to one or two societies this year.


"This initiative represents a major step forward for Writers & Directors Worldwide. In the past, we have successfully brought our influence and expertise to the global discussion on authors’ remuneration. Now by supporting societies with funding, we can even more directly improve the ability of authors to be paid for their work." Horacio Maldonado – Director, Screenwriter and President of Writers & Directors Worldwide
In the same meeting, the council also made a number of new appointments and strengthened its global partnership strategy. Alexandra Restrepo, president of Red Colombiana de Escritores Audiovisuales (REDES) in Colombia, and Ricardo Pinto Da Silva, secretary general of Diretores Brasileiros de Cinema e do Audiovisual (DBCA) in Brazil were appointed as observers to the executive committee. Both of their countries have made significant authors’ rights advances in recent years with the Colombian “Pepe Sánchez Act” successfully passing into law and a similar achievement on the horizon in Brazil. Their experience will be invaluable in helping other nations to follow these examples. Also appointed as an observer was Peter Carpentier, executive board member of Bildkunst in Germany. With the draft EU Copyright Directive currently under consideration by the European Parliament and Council, audiovisual authors in this region are fighting hard for the adoption of measures in favour of fair remuneration. Mr Carpentier’s extensive experience on this continent will be invaluable in helping Writers & Directors Worldwide add its voice to this discussion. At an organisational level, the executive committee resolved to renew and strengthen the council’s active collaboration with its fellow representative bodies in Europe. In particular, these comprise the Federation of European Film Directors (FERA), the Federation of Screenwriters in Europe (FSE) and the Society of Audiovisual Authors (SAA). By elaborating a joint agenda and coordinating lobbying actions, the objective will be to increase the pressure on European lawmakers to stand up for creators’ rights, especially at this crucial time while the Copyright Directive is in discussion. Finally, the executive committee also committed to develop its communication channels to extend its reach even further and include other repertoires such as music and visual arts. It will aim to offer an enriched platform to gather global news and enable creators to communicate their concerns and projects to the outside world in a unified voice. The next meeting will be held on the 16 – 17 April 2018 in Algiers, Algeria to coincide with the Fair of Creativity organised by ONDA and the Algerian Ministry of Culture. This event will also consolidate Writers & Directors Worldwide’s new pan-African alliance with APASER.