The Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW) is a labor union representing film, television, radio, and new media writers. It was formed in 1954 from five organizations representing writers, including the Screen Writers Guild. It has around 20,000 members.
The Screen Writers Guild (SWG) was formed in 1921 by a group of ten screenwriters in Hollywood angered over wage reductions announced by the major film studios. The group affiliated with the Authors Guild in 1933 and began representing TV writers in 1948. In 1954, the SWG was one of five groups who merged to represent professional writers on both coasts and became the Writers Guild of America, East (WGAe) and West (WGAw). Howard J. Green and John Howard Lawson were the first two presidents during the SWG era. Daniel Taradash was president of the WGAw from 1977 to 1979.
In 1952, the Guild authorized movie studios to delete onscreen credits for any writers who had not been cleared by Congress, as part of the industry's blacklisting of writers with alleged Communist or leftist leanings or affiliations.