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Gearbox Responds to Union Beef

Kotaku has a statement from Gearbox Software to actor Troy Baker's comments about not performing in Borderlands 3 because of the game's use of non-union talent. Gearbox notes that Texas' right-to-work laws are behind their hiring for the game. They also have a statement on the matter from SAG-AFTRA, the union in question. We start with the SAG-AFTRA proclamation:
“We applaud any member who stands up for workplace fairness and the integrity of their creative work. It is a courageous decision to act in the best interests of one’s fellow SAG-AFTRA members and this honors all working people.

The misguided decision by Gearbox to deny their performers the opportunity to have fair union wages, a safe workplace and the possibility of health care coverage for their families, is unfortunate.

We attempted to sign Gearbox to a union agreement. They refused and disengaged from those talks.

We look forward to hearing from any Gearbox performer who is interested in the many protections a union agreement offers actors.”
Here's the statement Gearbox provided to Kotaku:
Troy is an exceptional talent and we were disappointed that he declined to partner on Borderlands 3 after being offered the part. We wish him the best and hope he knows the offer to collaborate with him still stands. Gearbox is a Texas company and is bound by Texas law – which means that a person cannot be denied employment because of membership or non-membership in a labor union or other labor organization. As a talent-owned and talent-led organization, Gearbox enthusiastically works to ensure our pay and working conditions meet or exceed union standards. We also believe strongly in hiring local voice actors whenever we can which is why we’re thrilled Troy’s career really took off after working with us.
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22. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 23:11  jdreyer 
 
Beamer wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 21:22:
Creston wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 21:03:
Beamer wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 18:04:
Creston wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 17:29:
which is why we’re thrilled Troy’s career really took off after working with us.

Yes, because nobody had heard of Troy Baker before he worked with fucking Gearbox. Rolleyes

Eat shit, PR peon.


Actually, that's accurate.
But still a douche thing to say. Gearbox gave him his first big break. I'm unconvinced it wouldn't happen, anyway.

It wasn't his first big break, come on. He'd been in TV series for TEN YEARS before Brothers in Arms. And what did he do after Brothers in Arms? He was in relatively minor video games for another 5+ years, until he started landing some major roles in Red Faction, FF13, Fable III, the next year he did Arkham City and that's when his major roles started rolling.

For Gearbox to imply that it was because they let him voice a role in Brothers in Arms is hilarious bullshit.

Shit, I just hit my back mouse button and lost what I was typing. Long story short, Brothers in Arms was his biggest role to date, by a long shot, and nothing from before 2004 even makes it on to his Wikipedia page. That said, I think the real big break was Bioshock Infinite, a game that I adored largely for his voice work, which was critical to the plot working (and a game I kind of want to go back to, but had on the 360.) That's what made him a "household name."

Infinite is $30 on Steam, but I'm sure it will go on sale soon.

It's on Indiegala right now for $5.50. Not sure if they are gray market or not.
 
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21. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 21:22  Beamer 
 
Creston wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 21:03:
Beamer wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 18:04:
Creston wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 17:29:
which is why we’re thrilled Troy’s career really took off after working with us.

Yes, because nobody had heard of Troy Baker before he worked with fucking Gearbox. Rolleyes

Eat shit, PR peon.


Actually, that's accurate.
But still a douche thing to say. Gearbox gave him his first big break. I'm unconvinced it wouldn't happen, anyway.

It wasn't his first big break, come on. He'd been in TV series for TEN YEARS before Brothers in Arms. And what did he do after Brothers in Arms? He was in relatively minor video games for another 5+ years, until he started landing some major roles in Red Faction, FF13, Fable III, the next year he did Arkham City and that's when his major roles started rolling.

For Gearbox to imply that it was because they let him voice a role in Brothers in Arms is hilarious bullshit.

Shit, I just hit my back mouse button and lost what I was typing. Long story short, Brothers in Arms was his biggest role to date, by a long shot, and nothing from before 2004 even makes it on to his Wikipedia page. That said, I think the real big break was Bioshock Infinite, a game that I adored largely for his voice work, which was critical to the plot working (and a game I kind of want to go back to, but had on the 360.) That's what made him a "household name."
 



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20. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 21:09 NKD
 
Beamer wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 12:31:
Does WaltC pass the Turing Test?


I have no idea because he never responds to anyone else (key part of Turing test), he just drops his 2 cents and moves on to the next thread.
 
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19. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 21:03 Creston
 
Beamer wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 18:04:
Creston wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 17:29:
which is why we’re thrilled Troy’s career really took off after working with us.

Yes, because nobody had heard of Troy Baker before he worked with fucking Gearbox. Rolleyes

Eat shit, PR peon.


Actually, that's accurate.
But still a douche thing to say. Gearbox gave him his first big break. I'm unconvinced it wouldn't happen, anyway.

It wasn't his first big break, come on. He'd been in TV series for TEN YEARS before Brothers in Arms. And what did he do after Brothers in Arms? He was in relatively minor video games for another 5+ years, until he started landing some major roles in Red Faction, FF13, Fable III, the next year he did Arkham City and that's when his major roles started rolling.

For Gearbox to imply that it was because they let him voice a role in Brothers in Arms is hilarious bullshit.
 
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18. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 20:28  Beamer 
 
Sepharo wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 19:20:
Icewind wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 19:13:
Liberals are only liberal until it affects their pay...then they turn conservative real damn quick.

Things conservatives say.

Just like the religious believe atheists convert in the fox hole.

So many weirdly believe that if you're left of center you must be on every issue. Generally, I feel that those people think you're a bad person unless you support your party 100%, because they do. Not exactly free thinkers...
 



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17. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 20:13 Razumen
 
NKD wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 11:38:
Yeah that's bullshit. Troy Baker has been in like, everything, for the last 12 years, and it has nothing to do with some bit part in a game no one played. Also, Texas law doesn't say you can't sign a union worker under a collective bargaining agreement. There are all kinds of unions in Texas. You just can't make membership mandatory for employment, and any collective bargaining agreement in Texas is going to reflect that.

The snippet of: 'Gearbox is a Texas company and is bound by Texas law – which means that a person cannot be denied employment because of membership or non-membership in a labor union or other labor organization.' is just Gearbox going; "We didn't break the law because in Texas it's illegal to do that thing we're being accused of."

Corporate non-speak.
 
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16. Re: Saturday Safety Dance Oct 1, 2019, 19:24 Drath71
 
Brazor wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 17:21:
The nurses at a hospital I worked at bailed on their union. They had safety issues that needed to be addressed by Congress but the Union reps were only concerned about increasing the pay rate. Even though the bulk of the nurses said they didn't need the raise and that the safety issues were far more important.
The issues were with the laws at it's core. The hospitals and insurance companies can't change it. So the unions we'ren't going to budge. They just accused some of the nurses of being Republicans when most were life long Dems.

If your industry requires unions then it's as good as dead.

That's because any form of bureaucracy, unions, government, etc increases in power in itself. This eventually outweighs the good it was trying to do, and it eventually becomes a great evil.
Extremes are just bad.
 
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15. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 19:20  Sepharo 
 
Icewind wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 19:13:
Liberals are only liberal until it affects their pay...then they turn conservative real damn quick.

Things conservatives say.

Just like the religious believe atheists convert in the fox hole.
 
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14. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 19:13 Icewind
 
Pritchford & company are all avowed liberals, but yet are tickled to death that they can hide behind a conservative-backed law that is anti-union just so they can save a buck.

Liberals are only liberal until it affects their pay...then they turn conservative real damn quick.
 
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13. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 18:04  Beamer 
 
Creston wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 17:29:
which is why we’re thrilled Troy’s career really took off after working with us.

Yes, because nobody had heard of Troy Baker before he worked with fucking Gearbox. Rolleyes

Eat shit, PR peon.


Actually, that's accurate.
But still a douche thing to say. Gearbox gave him his first big break. I'm unconvinced it wouldn't happen, anyway.
 



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12. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 17:47 MoreLuckThanSkill
 
Wow, NO unionized actors in Borderlands 3? And it sounds like Gearbox does that all the time with their games? Guess it's time to add Gearbox to the boycott list.

Unions are a necessary evil, as long as capitalism exists. When the hell are people going to learn that?

 
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11. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 17:29 Creston
 
which is why we’re thrilled Troy’s career really took off after working with us.

Yes, because nobody had heard of Troy Baker before he worked with fucking Gearbox. Rolleyes

Eat shit, PR peon.

 
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10. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 17:21 Brazor
 
The nurses at a hospital I worked at bailed on their union. They had safety issues that needed to be addressed by Congress but the Union reps were only concerned about increasing the pay rate. Even though the bulk of the nurses said they didn't need the raise and that the safety issues were far more important.
The issues were with the laws at it's core. The hospitals and insurance companies can't change it. So the unions we'ren't going to budge. They just accused some of the nurses of being Republicans when most were life long Dems.

If your industry requires unions then it's as good as dead.
 
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9. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 14:57  wtf_man 
 
NKD wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 11:38:
Also, Texas law doesn't say you can't sign a union worker under a collective bargaining agreement. There are all kinds of unions in Texas. You just can't make membership mandatory for employment, and any collective bargaining agreement in Texas is going to reflect that.

I think Mr. Baker refused to work for gearbox, not gearbox refused to hire him, according to the gearbox statement.
 
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Get your games from GOG DAMMIT!
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8. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 14:55  Cutter 
 
"We look forward to hearing from any Gearbox performer who is interested in the many protections a union agreement offers actors.”

How about actual work? The idea of unions is good in principle but they generally suck in practice. I've belonged to 2 unions and both were a shit show that took my money and didn't help me at all. All the crap with seniority and all that, no thanks.

 
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7. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 12:43  Primalchrome 
 
Verno wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 11:22:
We also believe strongly in hiring local voice actors whenever we can which is why we’re thrilled Troy’s career really took off after working with us.

It's never hard to pinpoint where Pitchford had any input on a public statement. Sure he did some stuff in BiA with Gearbox but he also worked with dozens of other companies, its kind of bizarre that they're implying they're responsible for his success.
Yeahhhhh....that was the bit that stood out for me as well. BiA or Tales from the Borderlands were never any kind of gaming or pop culture icon. If any one title catapulted him to the forefront it would probably be The Last of Us.
 
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6. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 12:41  jdreyer 
 
Beamer wrote on Oct 1, 2019, 12:31:
Does WaltC pass the Turing Test?


Hey now, corporations are people too, even if they can't pass a Turing test.
 
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5. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 12:31  Beamer 
 
Does WaltC pass the Turing Test?

 



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4. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 11:51  BIGtrouble77 
 
I would want to be in a union if I was still in the development side of the industry. These devs and creatives get so abused, it should be a crime. I got the hell out in 2001 and couldn't be happier for it. Nothing like your day job sucking the life out of your favorite pass time.  
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3. Re: Gearbox Responds to Union Beef Oct 1, 2019, 11:43 WaltC
 
Reminds me of the US Toyota factories, where workers vote against the unions in every union election. Never did understand making people who don't want to be in a union pay union dues--well, of course, the union bosses want the money and could care less if you didn't want to give it to them. It used to be that way, but the Supreme Court has taken care of that, thankfully. A huge inequity at long last corrected.  
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It is well known universally that I do not make mistakes--so, if you should happen across an error in that which I have written, please be assured that *I* did not write it!...:)
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