SAG-AFTRA Just Scored You an Animation Win

SAG AFTRA AI Voice Acting

SAG-AFTRA members, listen up! You just dodged a bullet (or an AI takeover, to be more precise) and scored a major win with your new contracts. Let’s break it down. This week, SAG-AFTRA members overwhelmingly approved the new 2023 Television Animation Agreement and its counterpart, the 2023 Basic Cable Animation Agreement. Basically, these fancy contracts lay out the rules of the game for voice actors in the world of animation – things like pay, benefits, and working conditions. And guess what? This time around, they come with some seriously cool AI protections.

Remember that epic 118-day strike last year? Yeah, that wasn’t for nothing. SAG-AFTRA fought hard, and those gains are trickling down to animation voice actors. The new contracts include a bunch of benefits, but the real showstopper is the language around artificial intelligence (AI).

Here’s the thing: AI is getting creepy-good at mimicking human voices. That’s fantastic for some things, but not so fantastic for voice actors who could be replaced by a computer program. SAG-AFTRA saw this coming, and they put a stop to it in these new contracts. The new contracts make it crystal clear that voice actors are, well, actual people. The legalese says “only humans” can be voice actors. That’s a good start. But it gets even better.

There are also mandatory meetings between voice actors and producers to discuss how AI is being used. This way, everyone’s on the same page, and actors can keep an eye on how this AI stuff is developing. Plus, there are rules about how these AI voice replications can be used. For example, if your voice is used to create a digital character, you gotta get paid for it – no ifs, ands, or buts.

Here’s another cool thing: if a studio uses your voice performance to create a foreign language version of a show, you get paid for that too. Basically, SAG-AFTRA is making sure voice actors get their fair share, no matter how their voice is being used. The head honcho at SAG-AFTRA, Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, is pretty pumped about the whole thing. He says this new contract is a win-win, with better pay, more holidays, and those all-important AI protections.

So, SAG-AFTRA members, breathe a sigh of relief! Your jobs are safe from robot overlords (for now). And with these new contracts in place, you can get back to doing what you do best: bringing animated characters to life with your awesome voices.

Source: Deadline

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About Anthony Whyte

Content Manager | Senior Editor | Daydreamer | Keep your head on a swivel and don't blink