Sunday, November 8, 2009

Authors Survey Will Be Mailed Soon -- It Brings In Half Of Union's Income

To: NWU members
From: Martin Zabell
Date: Oct. 27, 2009

NWU-Chicago membership:

I was informed today that something called an Authors Coalition survey brings in MORE THAN HALF of the National Writers' Union's annual income.

I don't recall filling out this survey myself in the past, but I'm told that membership participation is important. The more participants who have had their writing reproduced in foreign nations, the more money the union gets. I don't understand this entire program myself, but I hope to in the next several days. As I learn about it, I will send out the survey forms and urge all of you to fill it out.

I will keep you informed of this important matter in the ensuing days.

This matter was the highlight of the monthly national meeting, which ended about half an hour ago. In other news, we were told that the national newsletter would be revived soon, the NWU lost some sort of workmen’s compensation case, and the union has made such great progress in its battle against textbook companies that aren’t paying their authors that the UAW, our parent, is considering investing a lot of money in pursuing a company’s owners.
(Note that there was negative news in the above graph. I’m a longtime reporter and I hope to maintain my credibility by reporting good and bad news. If you want to know the real dope, don’t hesitate to call.)

Martin Zabell
Chicago chapter
National Writers Union

PS -- Below are the best explanations I have been given of the Authors Coalition. The first graph was written by national VP Ann Hoffman; the second graph by national president Larry Goldbetter of Chicago.

Authors Coalition Survey
For the past year, the National Writers Union has been working with many other author groups as part of the Authors Coalition to reclaim non-title specific royalties from photocopies made abroad. With your help, in the past year the National Writers Union has collected $335,000, which has allowed us to engage in the Google book situation, provide invaluable contract advice and in other ways to defend the rights of writers in their copyrights. Our share of the money collected is determined by the responses that we get from the genre survey below; your prompt and accurate answers will determine how much money we receive in the coming year.
(actual survey attached: I have been unable to copy it without distorting it)

The money comes from royalties collected by various authors groups and I believe government agencies for foreign authors whose works may have been reproduced in Europe. We ask our members if they have written anything that MIGHT have been copied in Europe. We need a 60 percent affirmative response, and the bigger the response the bigger the
check we receive.

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