Striking Writers Unite — on Producers' Website

As the Hollywood writers strike goes into its sixth week, the strangest message has popped up on the website AMPTP.org. The letters stand for. . .Alliance of Motion Pictures and Television Producers.

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ALISON STEWART, host:

The television and film writers' strike is going into its sixth week, and a weird message just popped up on the Web site, AMPTP.com - that stands for Alliance of Motion Pictures and Television Producers.

LUKE BURBANK, host:

Yeah, the producers claim to have done everything to try to mend fences with the writers. They say on the Web site, they've sent a muffin basket. They made a mix CD. They even stood outside the writers' windows with a boom box playing "In Your Eyes."

STEWART: Luke, I'm supposed to picture some well-tanned, Prius-driving Paramount exec standing in a long trench coat all Lloyd Dobler style, pining for the head writer of "Reba" to come back to work?

BURBANK: Yes, you are.

STEWART: All right. You know, maybe. It's Hollyweird, after all. But then, the producers claim on this site that their proposal is the greatest document since the Magna Carta, and they plan to destroy the industry through accident and incompetence.

BURBANK: Yeah, and things start to get kind of even more weird, and you start to realize something's not right, the frequent Judd Apatow references, the claim by the producers that they have enough reality TV shows to choke a horse.

STEWART: And that one of those reality TV shows will actually be titled "Can You Choke a Horse?"

BURBANK: Yes, my friends, looks like we're dealing with a good, old-fashioned hoax here. You see, the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers -that's AMPTP.org - is their real Web site, not AMPTP.com, which is what we were reading.

STEWART: Well, looks like the writers have found a place to, shall we say, get their creativity out without having to cross a picket line.

BURBANK: Yeah, the L.A. Times reports that AMPTP.com and .net belong to a guy named Bill Davis who says he's owned of the site names for more than a year. And he says last week, someone, who he won't name, approached him with money, asking if they could use the URLs, and he obliged.

STEWART: Snarky writers with not a lot to do entertainment-wise. AMPTP.com, not a new episode of "30 Rock," but these lean times, it'll have to do as a way to get some giggles.

(Soundbite of song, "In Your Eyes")

Mr. PETER GABRIEL (Singer): (Singing) Love, I don't like to see so much pain. So much wasted, and this moment keeps slipping away. I get so tired, working so hard for our survival. I look to the time with you to keep me awake and alive. But all my instincts, they return. And the grand facade…

BURBANK: Oh, remember when Peter Gabriel didn't look like Dr. Evil? He's become a completely different person, but we love you, Peter.

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