Some of our favourite games could soon sound very different indeed, as a number of prominent voice over artists are currently voting in a general ballot on possible strike action.
Conducted by the SAG-AFTRA, the largest union that represents video game actors, the vote comes following stalled negotiations with the gaming industry over performance bonuses and worker rights.
The hashtags #PerformanceMatters and #IAmOnBoard2015 have been gaining traction on Twitter over the past 24 hours, with industry veterans including David Hayter, Steve Blum, Grey Griffin, D.C. Douglas and Ken Lally all lending their support to the campaign and voting in favour of industrial action.
— David Hayter (@DavidBHayter) September 22, 2015
According to the SAG-AFTRA, they have had several rounds of negotiations with big-name companies including the likes EA, Activision, Disney and Warner Bros. concerning the Interactive Media Agreement its members were bound by until the end of last year as far back as February 2 and as recent as June 23, but were able to unable to come to an agreement over proposed changes to the contract, originally drafted in the mid-1990s.
Amongst the list of the SAG-AFTRA’s proposals include greater compensation in the form of sales-based royalties, the limitation of ‘vocally stressful’ recording sessions, greater transparency during the audition process, and the presence of a stunt coordinator on set for all performance capture. For their part, the video game companies have put forward a list of proposals of their own, including being able to fine performers $2,500 for instances of ‘inattentiveness’ and lateness.
Votes are due to be tallied by October 5, at which point SAG-AFTRA say they will offer a final round of negotiations before escalating to full industrial action. At least 75 percent of members must vote ‘yes’ to authorise a strike, which could then be imminent.