SAG-AFTRA Members Authorize Video Game Strike With 98% Yes Vote
Image via SAF-AFTRA

SAG-AFTRA Members Authorize Video Game Strike with 98% Yes Vote

Members of the Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, best known as SAG-AFTRA, voted to authorize a strike on the Interactive Media Agreement that allows their members to work on video games that utilize union actors. This comes at the height of the SAG-AFTRA labor strike against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers. While it authorized the strike on video game work, the labor union has stated that this does not mean they are going to call a strike order at the current moment.

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The strike authorization received 98.32% “yes” votes, with 34,687 members of SAF-AFTRA voting in total. This represents 27.47% of all eligible voters within the union. SAG-AFTRA has been in negotiations with video game companies over the fair compensation, safety, and job security of voice actors since October 2022. The next bargaining sessions are scheduled for September 26-28, 2023. SAG-AFTRA can call for a strike any time after September 26, 2023 if discussions between the union and signatory companies fall apart.

Some of the issues SAG-AFTRA is bringing up with video game companies include artificial intelligence, wage increases that reflect inflation, safety for on-camera performers, and vocal stress protections for voice actors.

The signatory companies under the agreement include:

  • Activision Productions Inc.
  • Blindlight LLC
  • Disney Character Voices Inc.
  • Electronic Arts Productions Inc.
  • Formosa Interactive LLC
  • Insomniac Games Inc.
  • Epic Games
  • Take 2 Productions Inc.
  • VoiceWorks Productions Inc.
  • WB Games Inc.

The last strike on the video game industry occurred between 2016-2017 negotiations broke down over paying residuals to voice actors in a comparable manner to screen actors in films and television. The 2017 agreement did not include residuals, but did give members bonus pay based on the number of sessions worked for any union video game project.

SAG-AFTRA will be meeting with the signatory companies for their next round of bargaining sessions on September 26-28, 2023.

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Arielle Haddad
Arielle is a freelance writer for Siliconera, but has served as the Senior News Editor at Kingdom Hearts Insider for over a decade and currently freelances for Nova Crystallis. Has a knack for playing RPGs to exactly 80% completion before getting distracted by another one. When she isn't working as a government wheel turner by day, you can find her transforming into book-hoarding dragon by night.