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SA Guild of Actors

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September 2014

“So, what’s your real job?”

When the long-running soap-opera ‘Generations’ went off air, the 16 actors at the centre of the storm filed papers with the CCMA, challenging their dismissal. The first question the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration had to answer is whether or not it has jurisdiction at all in the matter: are the actors ‘employees’ as defined in the labour legislation, or are they in fact common law ‘independent contractors’.

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Who pulls the strings as the puppets dance?

The recent Generations debacle elicited much heated discussion on the social media with lengthy threads of self-replicating spirogyra clogging the pond for days. Strong opinions sprouted from all corners but very few hard facts emerged amid the bluster: everyone had an answer but it seemed that no one was willing to ask the right questions. Now, as the thunder rumbles on beyond the horizon and mop-up operations get underway, perhaps it’s time to reflect on some lessons learned.

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