Well, that happened...

Theresa May secures a Brexit deal!

Well, that happened...

The problem is that everyone hates it. 

The document outlining the deal is 599 pages long, but the headline details is that the transition period will begin on 29 March 2019 and will last until 31 December 2020. That transition period can be extended, but only if both parties agree, and that must occur before 1 July 2020.

During that time, the UK will remain in the single market and the customs union, and will have to follow every EU law, but have relinquished the right to have any say in making or amending laws. The UK no longer has a seat at the table, either in European Parliament, the European Commission, or the European Court of Justice. It will also have to pay a divorce bill, expected to be in the region of £39bn, although exact figures weren’t outlined on paper. 

Northern Ireland remains, and has always been, the main point of contention with Brexit. The Good Friday Agreement treaty dictates that there can be no hard border with the Republic of Ireland, and if a solution has not been reached by the end of 2020 it will trigger a backstop that creates a “single customs territory between the (European) Union and the United Kingdom.” While in effect, the UK will be subject to “level playing field conditions” that ensure we can’t gain a competitive advantage while inside the customs territory, and we will not be able to leave the backstop without EU agreement. 

Mrs May now has the challenge of getting enough votes in Parliament to get the deal approved. The chances are very slim that she will though, given that people on both side of the debate are opposed to it. In the likely event it is voted down, the options are, realistically, a general election or a second referendum. A ‘no deal’ Brexit has even less support, so isn’t likely to happen, but no-one can say anything with certainty nowadays. 

Mrs May has also challenged Jeremy Corbyn to a Brexit debate, but the two are still battling over whether it will be aired on ITV or the BBC. May prefers the offer presented by the BBC, while Corbyn would rather it be on ITV before the final of I’m a Celebrity. 

90% of arts internships are unpaid


New research has found that nearly 90% of arts internships are unpaid, and are trapping young people “in cycles of unpaid internships without significant benefits to their career”. Young people who are wanting a career in the arts industry are generally expected to take on multiple internships, and 86% of them are unpaid. The report also found that internships are not necessarily a route to higher pay. Graduates earned £26,100 if they completed a paid internship, which then fell £24,600 if they had done one or two unpaid internships, which fell further to £23,200 if they had done three or more. 

Sir Peter Lampl, founder of the Sutton Trust - which commissioned the research - described the situation as a “huge social mobility issue”, compounded by the fact that internships are often offered as ‘favours’ to staff and their families.

Source: Arts Professional

Almost two-thirds of actors earned less than £5,000 from the profession last year 

caf388f5851b8478851aa02ec516fb325f78c925.jpg63% of actors say they earned less than £5,000 from their profession in the last year. That comes from a new survey conducted by The Mandy Network, an entertainment recruitment firm that spoke to actors, musicians and dancers. The figure is down from 2014, where it was 77%, but over half of the 3,000 members asked took on unpaid roles every year, and 60% had to have second jobs to make ends meet. 

Furthermore, one in five had not had a job in the industry in the last six months, and only 13% brought home more than £20,000 per year. It also showed a gender inequality within the industry, with 82% of women earning less than £10,000 a year compared with 69% of men, while only 57% of men have to have a second job compared to 69% of women.

Source: BBC

SpongeBob SquarePants creator died, aged 57

22c3a4be1a6bb7efd2176f2e768ee84661f71781.jpgStephen Hillenburg, creator of SpongeBob Squarepants has died aged 57 as a result of motor neurone disease. The former marine biology teacher first moved into TV when he worked on Rocko’s Modern Life before creating SpongeBob Squarepants. The show first aired in 1999 and became a hit across the world, being dubbed in over 60 languages. The SpongeBob SquarePants movie, which Hillenburg wrote, produced and directed, made $140m worldwide. 

Source: Sky News | Image: clubodioso

Facebook donates £4.5m to help train UK newspaper reporters 

59ecf4eecb04eb737a946c8f1d361395bf38ae99.jpgThe social media giant is attempting to build bridges with the news industry by offering a £4.5m donation to subsidise 80 trainee journalists at local newspapers within the UK. The money was given to the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) to be allocated among publishers. 

Although helpful, it will be difficult to see past Facebook’s direct involvement in the decimation of local newspapers who struggled with the move to digital. That also ignores Facebook’s more insidious involvement in the propagation of misinformation, including their own campaign-style attack on George Soros after he criticised them during a speech at the World Economic Forum. 

Source: Engadget 

BFI will no longer fund films where the villain has facial scarring

67ad04dc5400e0e02f114699be2dd260935a1ad8.jpgFilms with villains that have scars on their face will no longer receive funding from the British Film Institute. The decision follows, a successful campaign by Changing Faces, the leading UK charity for people with visible differences or disfigurements. The BFI is the first organisation to support #IAmNotYourVillain, and is working to remove the stigma surrounding facial disfigurement or scarring in the film industry. 

Scars and facial disfigurements in movies have long been associated with villains. For example, The Joker, Kylo Ren and the conveniently named Scar from the Lion King, have all had visible facial marking. 

Source: The TelegraphImage: Giphy

26-30 Railcard to be available from January

7d558102057773a5ec46c96ff6c950f043941bff.jpgThe awaited ‘Millennial Railcard’ has officially been given a release date - 2 January. First announced in November 2017, the railcard had a pilot rollout in December 2017, but only 10,000 were available. When it received its first national rollout in March 2018, again only 10,000 were available - one for every 500 people in the age range. The railcard was expected to be available to buy generally by the end of the year, but because that would have meant launching on a bank holiday, National Rail pushed the date back into next year. 

News of the railcard's final launch date arrived at the same time as the news that rail fares will increase next year by an average of 3.1%.

UK games industry has grown 150% since 2010

7c6776e340ef57b5075277ae371b702bb8248d27.jpgThe games industry contributed just over £1bn to the UK economy in 2017 according to the Department for Digital Culture, Media and Sport. The figures represent 7.3% growth from 2016, and a 148.9% increase from 2010. Although impressive, the game industry still accounts for just a tiny part of the UK’s £101.5bn creative industry economy.

However, the Association of UK Interactive Entertainment (Ukie) says that the Government figures are inaccurate because the data used ignored about half of UK game businesses. The BFI released the Screen Business report that found that the games industry contributed £2.87bn in 2016 instead of the £996m reported by the DCMS, as the report included games retail and esports.

Source: gameindustry.biz

Universal Music Group files lawsuit against PokerNews for music infringement

0d67d17853a3650ba121b782e40a206d19e09ef0.jpgUniversal Music Group have filed a lawsuit against PokerNews and their owner iBusMedia for $7m, accusing them of willfully infringing copyright within their podcasts. The music group have identified 253 PokerNews podcasts that feature infringing content, including Kanye West’s ‘Touch the Sky’, and Nas’ ‘I Can’. A total of 46 copyrighted songs have been identified. The lawsuit comes three years after iBusMedia were first informed that they were using licensed music, but the company appear to have made no attempt to rectify it. 

So, creatives out there, take note. Copyright infringement is definitely not something to ignore.

Source: Digital Music News

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Accessibility in theatres

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TheatreCraft 2018: How to build a career in theatre

Assistant editor Jack attended TheatreCraft, the UK’s biggest free careers fair for young theatre makers. In addition to the stalls and presence from representative bodies, there was also a number of interesting panels! Jack has done an excellent write-up outlining the insights and career advice that was offered during a panel comprised of Theatr Clwyd’s Artistic Director, Tamara Harvey, Griselda Yorke (Lead Producer, RSC), Indhu Rubasingham (Artistc Director, Kiln Theare), and Christopher Oram (Olivier and Tony-award winning designer).


Music Mark gives voice to young people in education

For the first time ever, Music Mark let young people from Voice do a social media takeover during their annual conference, in a move sponsored by Trinity College London. Sam Nead has written up her experience of being in control of the organisations Instagram, Twitter and Facebook accounts, but also reflected on the insights she gained around music education. 



Tom Inniss

Tom Inniss Voice Team

Tom is the Editor of Voice. He is a politics graduate and holds a masters in journalism, with particular interest in youth political engagement and technology. He is also a mentor to our Voice Contributors, and champions our festivals programme, including the reporter team at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe..

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