Ananova reports that actors have attacked TV networks for "rushing" end-of-programme credits which list their names. The actors' union, Equity, says there are increasing examples of the names of actors and actresses being run through too quickly or even dropped entirely. Equity Council member Jean Rogers had a flood of responses condemning TV networks when she wrote in the union magazine about "inadequate" credits. Actors complained that rushing through credits was insulting and sent out the message that artists were "inconsequential". An Equity spokesman told the BBC the issue was with TV policy-makers "undervaluing" artists rather than with programme producers who did attach credits. He cited BBC sitcom ‘The Vicar of Dibley’ as an example of how credits could be used "creatively". A final joke always follows the credits, and most viewers stay in order to watch it. The BBC adds that, in its written guidelines on commissioning, credits are important to programme-makers:

"but with few exceptions they are of limited interest to our audience. The BBC's credit policy balances our willingness to reflect significant creative contributions with a recognition that too many credits make viewers switch over or switch off".

The BBC has said that "channel surfing" increases by up to 400% when credits are shown as viewers lose interest. An ITV spokeswoman said there was no industry standard for size or speed of end-of-programme credits. "However, where it is within our control, ITV ensures that its end credits, including those that are split screen, are clear and legible," she said.

The IPKat is proud that both his masters make a particular point of reading the credits, which contain information that is always valuable and often amusing. Unlike authors, who have a moral right to be acknowledged as creators of their respective works, actors have no such legal entitlement and what acknowledgement they get depends on what their union can negotiate.

To find out what the people who aren’t actors actually do, click here
How to become an actor here or here

A CREDIT TO THE ACTING PROFESSION A CREDIT TO THE ACTING PROFESSION Reviewed by Jeremy on Thursday, January 22, 2004 Rating: 5

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