A hacked email account! Anonymous phone calls! Strike scabs!
It’s just like a Law & Order episode, except it’s the real-life fallout of the 2007 writer’s strike.
LA Times: As a 20-year member of the Writers Guild of America, Jonathan Prince was startled to learn that his union was accusing him of being a scab during the writers strike.
But he was even more stunned when he learned that the guild had been relying on a secret informant, code-named Clyde, who he and his attorney said had gained unauthorised access to his private e-mails.
Prince, executive producer of recent TV dramas “Cane” and “The Cleaner,” was among a dozen writers who were investigated for picking up their pens and working — or failing to report those who did — during the 100-day writers strike that began in November 2007.
Read the story here.
“Clyde” also made anonymous phone calls to the guild’s member services to report what he said were Prince’s strike-violating activities.
The hearings over whether or not Prince was writing during the strike are over — the WGA found he did not violate strike rules — but now he’s telling his story because he is distressed about the tactics the WGA used.
During the strike, the WGA did not acknowledge that the emails were stolen, but a board member said he “thought it was the lesser of two evils” — meaning that weeding out scab-writing activity was more important than possible violations of Prince’s privacy, the LA Times reports.
Jack Lerner, a professor at USC’s law school told the paper that thought the federal Electronic Communications Privacy Act prohbits disclsoure of private electronic communications that are illegally obtained, but that the WGA may not be liable just for using the material. (The WGA hearings are private.)
But, Lerner said, “[I]t’s certainly shady and legally dubious at best.”
NOW WATCH: Briefing videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.