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Last Updated: Thursday, 29 November 2007, 10:56 GMT
UK writers show US strike support
Writers show their support in London
Similar demonstrations were held around the world
British film and TV writers have held a demonstration in London to show their support for striking US screenwriters.

Scores of writers rallied outside the Trades Union Congress building, holding red and black placards reading: "We support the Writers Guild of America."

Mark Burton, whose credits include Wallace and Gromit, said the issue at stake was how creative artists are paid in the digital world.

Further protests were held in Paris, Berlin and four Australian cities.

More money

The Writers Guild of America (WGA) has been on strike since 5 November, halting production on many TV shows and films, including Desperate Housewives and 24.

The WGA wants to renegotiate its contract with the Hollywood studios over the amount of money they receive from DVD sales.

Its 12,000 members also want more money from films and shows that can be downloaded onto computers, mobile phones and other devices.

Playwright David Edgar, president of the 2,000-strong Writers' Guild of Great Britain, said that without payment for internet use, writers' relationship to their work was like "the widget-maker's relationship to the widget once it is made - that is, none at all."

Meanwhile, the strike had led to the cancellation of a CBS News debate among Democratic White House hopefuls.

The debate, scheduled to take place in Los Angeles on 10 December, was scrapped after candidates including Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama said they would refuse to cross a picket line that the WGA had threatened to set up.

In a statement, CBS said it "regretted" the cancellation.

CBS news writers had been considering joining their entertainment counterparts on the picket line in an apparent bid to disrupt the debate.



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