Video Game Voice Actor Strike Reaches a Tentative Agreement

Video Game Voice Actor Strike Reaches a Tentative Agreement

Since Oct. 21, 2016, videogame voice actors represented by union SAG-AFTRA have been on strike against 11 videogame companies.

Nearly a year after a union of voice actors down tools and began a boycott of several video game companies, comes news that the strike is (tentatively!) finally over. The strike was the longest in SAG history.

A new bonus structure that "provides an addition payment to performers". Included in the agreement is a new bonus structure that provides "additional payment to performers", a bonus that is calculated based on the number of sessions worked on each game. After almost a year, many of these talented people will finally be receiving bonus payments according to each project they've worked on. But that isn't happening, it seems.

In regards to the issue of transparency, SAG-AFTRA back in October cited cases where voice actors performed scenes with sensitive (sexual or violent) content without their prior knowledge or permission.

Perhaps more importantly, it revived important questions about whether or not game industry workers should receive bonus payments based on how well the games they work on sell. "We are always stronger together".

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We've reached out to SAG-AFTRA to clarify a few points of this agreement, such as whether or not the strike should continue if it were to fall through for any reason next month.

Ray Rodriguez, the lead negotiator for this deal, said in a statement that another win is that it improves transparency, which in turn should help union members bargain. There are also some items in the contract that the voice actors did not seek including fines for performers that are late or distracted. Voice actors had been seeking royalty payments for performances in multimillion-selling games - a share of the profits from particularly successful titles - with the payouts rising as a game's sales increased. The National Board will vote on the contract at its October meeting.

The actors began a strike against several video game companies, including Activision Productions Inc., Electronic Arts Productions Inc., Take 2 Productions Inc. and WB Games. We also have asked if this is he first step for the union in securing benefits and safeties for video game performers. Under these new terms, companies are required to disclose more details about the game and lines. The deal also doesn't allow gaming companies to use their permanent staff in lieu of union voice actors for "covered work outside of the collective bargaining agreement".

The absence was because Ashly Burch was part of the strike and therefore couldn't reprise her role; although she still contributed to the game as a writer.

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