New CMG video promotes Guide to Working in Canadian Factual TV Production

The Canadian Media Guild released a new video today to promote a factual TV industry guide produced in collaboration with Canadian factual TV workers.

The Guide to Working in Canadian Factual TV Production offers information and advice to people working in non-fiction, reality, documentary and lifestyle television.

CMG organizer Karen Wirsig says the guide was first proposed by a factual TV worker who had come out to a couple of CMG events.

“She got a colleague involved. Between them, they have many years of experience in the industry and work in a supervisory capacity and have often wanted some kind of manual they could refer to as they do their work,” says Wirsig.

“They thought it would be a good fit for the union, since we are trying to help workers improve the working standards in the industry. We wrote the guide collaboratively, and sought information when we needed it from others in the industry. It is truly the first of its kind,” she says.

The factual television production industry has grown rapidly over the past fifteen years but Wirsig says that, because it is relatively new, it’s not very well understood.

“You might even say it’s not very transparent,” she says.

“The guide is meant to help workers and the people who hire them better understand how factual production works, good practices for hiring, decent working standards and healthy workplaces.”

In addition to outlining the structure of the industry, the guide also provides average day rates for a variety of positions within factual TV production.

“It’s pretty easy to read and designed to make it easy to find that little nugget of information you might be looking for at the last minute. We’re really proud of it, and of the workers who were involved in creating it,” says Wirsig.

You can download a copy of the guide on this page on the CMG website.

Last year, the CMG started a campaign to push for collective bargaining in factual TV. To find out more about that campaign click here, or email Karen Wirsig at


Posted on June 2, 2015 at 9:00 am by editor · · Tagged with: , ,

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