SAG-AFTRA, the union representing voice actors in video games, will picket WB Games’ studio lot in Burbank, California as its high-profile strike against major video game publishers enters its second week.
Last week SAG-AFTRA picketed the offices of Electronic Arts, in an action that brought more than 300 members to the publisher’s Redwood Shores headquarters. The union declared a strike against games publishers on Oct. 21 after it was unable to reach a new contract with them. SAG-AFTRA has pushed for a new deal for it members for more than two years, with residual compensation a key sticking point in the discussions.
In response, the publishers’ representatives launched a website attacking SAG-AFTRA and saying the union was unwilling to reach a compromise. The companies said the union was not up front with its members about the offers made and said the group’s voting process was undemocratic.
SAG-AFTRA seeks better working conditions for its members and an increase in the pay they receive for successful games that hit sales milestones. The strike targets certain publishers whose games have been in production since February 2015. SAG-AFTRA represents about a quarter of actors working in the video games industry, but they do include actors David Hayter (Metal Gear Solid) and Jennifer Hale (Mass Effect), who have supported the union’s action.