SAG-AFTRA Members Vote Sure To Authorize Video Sport Strike

SAG-AFTRA Members Vote Sure To Authorize Video Sport Strike

SAG-AFTRA union members have voted sure to authorize a online game strike. It did so with a 98.72% vote in favor of authorizing a strike on the Interactive Media Settlement that covers its members’ work within the video games business. In whole, 34,687 members solid ballots, which represents 27.47% of eligible voters, SAG-AFTRA writes in a press launch. 

This vote doesn’t imply SAG-AFTRA is putting, however provides the union leverage in its ongoing negotiations and, if wanted, permits the union to start a strike instantly. The union hopes this strike authorization will work as added leverage, compelling the businesses it’s bargaining with “to make important motion on essential points the place we’re nonetheless far aside.”

As for why, SAG-AFTRA has been in Interactive Media Settlement negotiations with “signatory online game corporations,” together with Activision Productions Inc., Disney Character Voices Inc., Digital Arts Productions Inc., Insomniac Video games Inc., Epic Video games, Take 2 Productions Inc., WB Video games Inc., and extra, since October of final 12 months. SAG-AFTRA says, “All through the negotiations, the businesses have refused to supply acceptable phrases on a few of the points most important to our members, together with wages that sustain with inflation, protections round exploitative makes use of of synthetic intelligence, and fundamental security precautions.” 

The subsequent bargaining session begins right now and is scheduled for tomorrow, September 27, and Thursday, September 28, as properly. 

“It is time for the online game corporations to cease enjoying video games and get critical about reaching an settlement on this contract,” SAG-AFTRA president Fran Drescher writes in a press launch. “The results of this vote exhibits our membership understands the existential nature of those negotiations, and that the time is now for these corporations – that are making billions of {dollars} and paying CEOs lavishly – to provide our performers an settlement that retains performing in video video games as a viable profession.” 

SAG-AFTRA nationwide govt director and chief negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Eire says it has change into clear to the union after 5 rounds of bargaining that online game corporations aren’t prepared to meaningfully have interaction on essential points like compensation undercut by inflation, unregulated use of AI, and security. “I stay hopeful that we can attain an settlement that meets members’ wants, however our members are accomplished being exploited, and if these firms aren’t prepared to supply a good deal, our subsequent cease shall be on the picket traces,” Crabtree-Eire says within the press launch. 

“Between the exploitative makes use of of AI and lagging wages, those that work in video video games are dealing with lots of the identical points as those that work in movie and tv,” chief contracts officer Ray Rodriguez writes within the press launch. “This strike authorization makes an emphatic assertion that we should attain an settlement that can pretty compensate these gifted performers, present commonsense security measures, and permit them to work with dignity. Our members’ livelihoods rely upon it.” 

After a unanimous suggestion of the SAG-AFTRA Interactive Media Settlement Negotiating Committee and Nationwide Board earlier this month, voting data was despatched to eligible members on September 5. The ultimate deadline to vote was yesterday. 

Beforehand, SAG-AFTRA known as for a strike for its members performing online game work again in October of 2016. The strike lasted virtually a 12 months earlier than a brand new contract was signed in November 2017. It went into impact on November 8, 2017, and was anticipated to run by way of November 7, 2020. Nevertheless, an settlement was reached between member workers and their employers that prolonged this contract to November 7, 2022, as reported by Variety

“We’re happy to have reached this settlement with the employers,” then SAG-AFTRA president Gabrielle Carteris mentioned in a press release. “The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the leisure business, however work on video video games, a lot of which may be accomplished remotely, has continued. This extension permits members to maintain working and have some certainty throughout an unsure time.” 

This extension elevated wages by 3% annually, with well being and retirement contributions growing .5%, in line with Selection

Forward of the contract’s expiration in November 2022, bargaining started in October 2022. It continues this week, now with a strike authorization in play. 

This SAG-AFTRA strike authorization comes shortly after the Writers Guild of America (WGA) union reached a tentative settlement in Hollywood. It has but to be ratified however is anticipated to be and can finish an almost five-month strike that started in Could of this 12 months. SAG-AFTRA’s tv and movie arm started putting in July; it’s nonetheless putting right now. 

SAG-AFTRA says the Interactive Media Settlement negotiations “do not have an effect on the timing or anticipated progress of negotiations or our strike on the TV/Theatrical contract” and that this strike authorization vote doesn’t influence the continued TV/Theatrical strike. 


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