With an overwhelming 95.6% majority, SAG AFTRA’s interactive division has approved a strike. Note that this does not mean that members are on strike, merely that the National Board has the authority to initiate a strike. If this strike occurs no SAG AFTRA voice actors will be doing any recordings for any interactive media company. SAG AFTRA members hope this strike, or the threat of it, will force major companies back to the discussion table concerning inhospitable work conditions, coaches, and secondary payment for blockbuster titles.
This vote is in reaction to major companies obstinate stance on contract changes, which include the capacity to fine voice actors up to $10,000 for being “inattentive” during a recording, and being able to fine agents up to $25,000 if a voice actor does not show up for a recording.
For the past week many voice actors and fans have shown tremendous support on Twitter, under #PerformanceMatters and #IamOnBoard. Some others have shown backlash, criticizing voice actors for doing “the easiest job in the industry”. The vast majority seemed to support the idea of striking, so it the result comes with very little surprise.
SAG AFTRA Interactive’s members seem confident that a strike is necessary to force major companies to acknowledge the work voice actors put into games. While there is not a strike at the current time the massive support behind the strike, obvious both in the votes and on twitter means the National Board will likely initiate a strike soon.
It is unclear what repercussions this will have for upcoming releases, but if the strike occurs and AAA companies hold out it may cause the release of major upcoming games to be delayed. You can read our previous article on the topic here. More information on the Strike Approval can be read on SAG AFTRA’s Interactive division’s website here.