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Mpaa Reviews

Updated July 12, 2017
26 reviews

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Christopher J. Dodd
14 Ratings

26 Employee Reviews

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  1. "Pretty Good Company, Terrible Executive Management"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Manager in Los Angeles, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Mpaa full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Hardworking employees and staff that work very hard. Excellent benefits and time off. Decent salary. For the most part, strong middle managers.

    Cons

    The absolute worst and out of touch executive management, especially the COO and CEO. No communication or transparency into issues the MPAA faces with studios, external environment or even matters that are internal --- there are several big issues occurring internally that are pretty exciting, yet there has not even been a drop of an announcement ---- things spread pretty much through word of mouth. Trust with the executive team is at an all time low --- either they know it and ignore it or they are so out of touch that are completely oblivious.

    Advice to Management

    Thankfully a new CEO is starting soon. Hopefully he will reach out to staff and managers to hear first hand how we are feeling and not allow current executives to put a "spin" on things as they usually do. Advice to executive management, find a new place to work.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Some Good People, A lot of Bad People. Toxic Atmosphere, No Vision"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Mpaa full-time

    Pros

    I'll start off saying that there are a good number of good and genuine people at the MPAA. Unfortunately, they tend to be drown out and overshadowed by the bad ones.

    The Healthcare benefits are very good and super cheap. They piggyback on the Entertainment Union benefit plans, so thats a good plus.

    Time off is reasonable, average vacation accumulation, standard holidays off plus one "float" holiday of choice. Additionally, during the latter part of the year, roughly 10 paid days off from end of Dec to Jan when most of the studios shut down for the year.

    Finance has their stuff together in the LA office. That department is very tight with one another and they often do things as a group to upkeep morale and comraderie. In addition, they always seem to be trying to carry over their good will to everyone else in the LA office with cupcake days, small parties on holidays, contests on holidays like halloween and such.

    The current HR VP is also very good. He clearly tries to keep things going smooth and pleasant but its pretty clear his hands are tied a lot of the time by the senior folks. MPAA got very lucky with him and he does a good job along with some others in the office in planning events during the year for entertainment. Office parties, contests, the yearly holiday party; all of these things clearly take effort to plan and coordinate and so those folks deserve credit for trying to keep spirits up.

    Cons

    I'm not sure there is enough space for this but I'll give it a try...

    The current CEO is absolutely clueless about what transpires day to day. I can guess that's why the studios decided to replace him. It came on so unexpectedly that the LA Times knew about his removal before he and the employees did and so there was a scramble to break the news to the staff. Because of his blindness in running the operations, the COO pretty much has free reign to do whatever she wants and effectively does so. The woman is a micro-manager to the fullest extend of the term and has her hands in every aspect of the business even though she is not experienced in most of it. That however does not stop her from dictating how she wants things to be done, even if advised by the hired experts that those directions might end badly. The studio members have constantly expressed an extreme dislike for her and her ideas and concepts yet somehow she has managed to retain her job. Additionally, the senior management dislikes her as well for much of the reasons I mentioned above and this manifests itself in ways that are detrimental to the lower echelon employees. Often department Managers/Directors are used as fodder in the infighting that takes place on the senior level to try and make the COO look bad or to rile her up. As some other posting on here stated, the woman is insane and is running the place into the ground. A good COO will take charge only when needed and allow the hired experts under them in each department to do the navigating. It's pretty clear she has no clue how to be a good leader by constantly meddling in just about every aspect and demanding things be done her way. Every time one of the department heads has left and there has been a gap during the hiring process, she has insisted on filling in the position herself and ends up making a mess of things.

    If you're looking for telecommuting opportunities here, move on. COO has clearly stated she doesn't believe in such a thing and honestly with the state of IT, I don't think they could allow it to be done effectively if they tried (more on that further down). The only people who get to work from home on occasion are senior level people and its questionable if they even actually do anything work related when home.

    Despite comments made to the effect that they embrace "change", nothing could be further from the truth. There is a culture of "this is how it has always been" that permeates the environment. More often new employees come on board with the enticement of improving things, changing processes, etc, only to be stifled and silenced in favor of the old ways. MPAA has a revolving door for most departments due to this issue. In fact, a survey of the employees was done about a year ago and the metrics showed that the vast amount of employees were either 1-3yrs employees or 10+yrs employees with very very few in between. No one on the senior staff seemed to show any concern for this despite it showing clearly that most new employees don't make it past a few years and end up leaving in frustration or disgust.

    Vision for the future is something that no one seems to have at the MPAA as well. It is currently struggling to find a value for the member studios for the future with constant questioning coming from those studios as to what is actually provided for the money each year. Much of what was done previously has been downsized tremendously in the last few years due to the studios losing faith or not seeing value and deciding to undertake the efforts on their own. No department has been hit harder in that than Content Security, which the bulk of which now operates outside the US as much of the US efforts are done by the studios themselves. Additionally, the constant shutting down of public torrent and or piracy sites has succeeded in pushing the hardcore piracy efforts further underground and made them entrenched to the point of which now we see active studio hacks and ransoming of unreleased content. It's kind of like the "War on Drugs" where you keep shutting down the small offenders to the point where no one but the experts are left. About the only value I think the studios feel they get anymore is the legal services which is the bulk of MPAA. The studios have even expressed dislike of the ratings system and you don't have to travel far in Hollywood to hear a director or producer with some negative choice words for the antiquated system.

    Speaking of antiquated systems, this leads us to the IT department. While there have been good people who have come and gone and there are still 1 or 2 good people in that department now, the bulk is a joke. It's currently headed by an incompetent who previously came from Sony during the whole hack fiasco, because that was a wonderful idea. Having sat in meetings with him when working with IT on projects for the department, its clear he is great at saying absolutely nothing with substance. No technical knowledge whatsoever is apparent from the conversations and statements. Occasionally he will bring a group of his "engineers" with him which 99% of the time they say nothing and just sit in the meeting with heads down or nod in agreement with the blatant lies and nonsense he spews. When something goes wrong, its almost always the fault of someone else or something else and often the employees are never given straight answers to what the issues where or if they will happen again. Promise after promise is made about new systems or improvements to existing systems and constantly they are delayed or pushed back. Security is a joke since the new guy took over as well. His concepts on security are more theatrical than actually effective, he should consider his next job with the TSA. He has a paranoia of "security" but no actual understanding of it that he will dismiss ideas or requests on projects but give no logical rationale as to why they cant or shouldn't be done. Additionally, much of his concepts of what is "secure" are based on concepts seen 10+ years ago and most modern companies don't or rarely even do anymore. I guess that's to be expected of someone who presided at a studio that didn't take security seriously until it was too late. The department has become so much of a joke that people opt to seek out external consultants on most projects before working with IT. Most of the foreign offices have opted to just do things on their own as well due to a lack of faith in IT. It's sad too because when the last CSO was there, she was actually seeming to improve things as to how that department provided for the rest of the organization.

    Politics is rampant in this place and with the oncoming new CEO I do hope it changes for the sake of the good employees that exist. Right now its toxic and its more about who you know and who's behind you kiss than what you do. It may as well be a full on government operation because it seems rarely do the poor employees ever get let go, they stick around for years and the good ones get fed up and leave far too soon.

    Advice to Management

    - New CEO is incoming soon, replace the COO.
    - Stop retaining the bad employees for so long.
    - Look at the employee survey results for what they are and enact things to remedy what people have complained about.
    - Embrace modern business techniques such as telecommuting / work from home opportunities.
    - Listen to the employees concerns and ideas instead of stiffing and discouraging them.
    - Figure out what the long term of the MPAA is.

  3. Helpful (2)

    "Poisonous working conditions and management is poor"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - IT Consultant in Woodland, CA
    Former Employee - IT Consultant in Woodland, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Mpaa (More than a year)

    Pros

    You get paid every two weeks (if employed)
    they have a ton of bathrooms and kitchens (eat / do your business with no issues)

    Cons

    management is poor
    Politics is so engraved into the culture it is hostile
    sexual harassment and allowed behavior is permitted
    Distrust between department is deep
    Studios hate the "c" level executive that has ruined relationships and tasks on hand
    Everyone plays dumb
    Everyone will back stab you
    They will fire you for no real cause other than politics or management maneuvering and or budgets (cuts are plenty)
    The Washington DC office has no idea what is going on and kept in the dark until it is too late
    no upward mobility
    technology is old

    Advice to Management

    Honestly you don't listen so won't waste my breathe.


  4. "Analyst"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Mpaa full-time

    Pros

    Great benefits, nice staff, great life/work balance.

    Cons

    Unsteady in certain departments. Lot's of business politics. No room for upward growth.


  5. Helpful (2)

    "Good Benefits, Poor Executive Leadership"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Mpaa full-time

    Pros

    Good health benefits, 401K, work life balance, friendly co-workers, a lot of paid vacation and sick time

    Cons

    Executive management fails to listen to employee feedback even after they survey them; Little chance for advancement; Stagnant wages; Mask cost of living increases as merit increases; No chance for employees to review the executives they report to

    Advice to Management

    Listen to employee feedback and act on that feedback. If you are asking people to take the time to fill out a survey, the least you could do is to implement some of their feedback.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Intelligence analyst"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Mpaa full-time

    Pros

    The office was nice and the location was good if you lived in the valley.

    Cons

    Too much to list here...

    Advice to Management

    Good luck


  7. Helpful (3)

    "Fake Reviews"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Sherman Oaks, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Sherman Oaks, CA
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Mpaa full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    The only good thing is the paid holiday time off that has been shrinking for years so it will eventually go away.

    Cons

    The positive reviews are so fake and obviously directed to by senior leadership or paid to do so. Don't believe any of it.

    Advice to Management

    Fire yourselves

  8. "Smart Passionate and Dedicated Talent"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Culture & Values
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Washington, DC
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Mpaa (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    MPAA's employees - especially in the policy and content protection / legal areas are incredibly talented and dedicated. It's great to work in an association where the people at the top, the bench strength under them and the staff are not only top in their class but super passionate and dedicated to the organization and its members. The last three years it's really become a more collaborative culture.

    Cons

    Like all associations, everything rolls down hill to you - to catch in front for your members or fix and enhance from behind; so it can be a challenge. Amazingly the employees remain very positive and committed.

    Advice to Management

    Find a simple compelling way to make all consumers understand the importance of protecting intellectual property. It's one of the few ways that all people - around the globe - can create wealth today without a lot of access to capital.


  9. Helpful (5)

    "A Director wouldn't want you to believe all the bad reviews!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Assistant in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Assistant in Washington, DC
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Mpaa full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Free food after some meetings, free coffee in the office kitchen (standard in most companies) the LA office is bad, but the DC office is much worse. The exception is that Accounting (LA office) is excellent and easy to work with.

    Cons

    Directors leave misleading "good reviews", management is under-qualified and therefore insecure, quasi-nepotism type of culture, people hire and promote their friends, managers and directors frequently miscommunicate to their staff, who often get the blame. You are told to do things and given no instruction on how. When you ask questions, you are treated like you are stupid. When you finish a project they correct you and wonder why you missed key things that you were never told about. There is no learning curve here. If having a job is like having a romantic relationship, MPAA is the partner who resorts to verbal abuse, emotional abuse, and gaslighting. After a month of working here I became severely depressed. Thank god I don't work here anymore.

    Advice to Management

    Improve communication. Stop treating lower level
    employees like crap. A member company VP approached my desk once, put a hand on my computer (I was in a cubicle), looked AWAY from me with her sunglasses still on and said "you. Tell me where So-and-so sits" it was my first month at MPAA and I didn't know, so I said that. She looked at me in disgust and said "how could you not know? They're the assistants to so and so" I apologized and said I would call someone to help her, which I did. She walked away without a word while I was in the middle of the call and I overheard her ask my manager (who has an office, so I'm guessing it meant office=be polite, whereas cubicle=be a witch) in a very sweet, polite voice "hi, how are you? I'm looking for so-and-so, Assistant to..."


  10. Helpful (4)

    "MPAA is a horrible & failing company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Mpaa full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    I honestly cannot think of one positive thing about this company. I've meet a few good friends there. That's about it. Don't believe any of the "positive" reviews about MPAA. They are written by upper management and HR to try to make the company not appear as bad as it truly is.

    Cons

    MPAA is a toxic organization with racism, sexism, and a toxic culture. Employees are treated as disposable objects. It's comparable to working in a sweatshop. I've never been disrespected, degraded, and treated like a child the way I have been at MPAA. Coming to work everyday is truly depressing. Upper management (especially those in Content Protection) know so little, do so little, and make so much more money. These same individuals travel across the world from country to country for two days racking up charges in excess of $8K. Meanwhile, those in Content Protection who actually do the work get paid pennies with no prospect of a raise. When an employee complains of HR-related issues (e.g., sexual harassment, regular harassment, etc.), they are laid off. You cannot trust HR. This is a lawsuit waiting to happen. However, there are completely inappropriate relationships between management (married individuals), yet HR does not seem to care about this. MPAA is toxic and disgusting.

    Advice to Management

    Treat employees with respect. HR functions only to protect the sexual harassment, indiscretions, and bullying of management. Hire HR leaders who are fair.


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