The voices behind some of your favorite video game characters might soon go quiet: SAG-AFTRA, which represents unionized voice actors who work in video games and other interactive media, has announced that the right to declare a strike has been authorized.
The Interactive Media division published the results of the vote which determined whether or not to go on strike due to what the union considers to be unfair compensation and other demands. In its report, the union writes that "96.52% of members [voted] in favor of the referendum."
Now that it's been approved, the union's National Board now has the option to declare a strike. If this happens, members will be required not to go back to work until a compromise between them and the game publishers that employ them is reached.
75 percent of members agreeing to the strike was the threshold required for its authorization. The report refers to the overwhelming support in favor of the move as "a resounding success."
Voting began several weeks ago following months of negotiations between the union and their employers, including big-name publishers like Activision and Electronic Arts. The Negotiating Committee aims to re-open bargaining discussions after previous conversations failed to bear fruit.
The union lists its demands on its website. These include royalties and residuals, as well as stunt pay for more demanding recording sessions.
Several of the industry's biggest names, like Jennifer Hale (Mass Effect) and David Hayter (Metal Gear Solid), showed their support for the motion to unionize when the vote opened a few weeks ago. #PerformanceMatters was adopted by voice actors and their sympathizers on Twitter as a rallying cry. Tweets featuring the slogan were meant to encourage members to vote in favor of the strike, as well as increase visibility for what the performers consider to be their undesirable working conditions.