WGA East Members at Spotify and The Ringer Ratify New Contracts

The two unions won raises, visa protections, and the implementation of “groundbreaking AI safeguards”

WGA East Logo
Courtesy of WGA East

Writers Guild of America East members at Spotify Studios and The Ringer have ratified new union contracts with. The move will raise base salaries at the latter from $57,000 to $65,000 and employees will also receive 2% raises beginning in the second year of employment.

Union employees at Spotify Studios will receive a $5,000 increase to their base salaries.

The Ringer Union said of the contract, “We are thrilled to ratify a new contract that addresses our members’ highest priorities. Thanks to the solidarity of our unit, we were able to negotiate meaningful raises and industry-leading protections against the creep of artificial intelligence into our work.”

Union members at Spotify Studios also released a statement. The company explained, “After more than two months of bargaining, we’re delighted to announce that we’ve agreed to a new contract with Spotify, and that this contract has been unanimously ratified. Thanks to the solidarity and strength of our union, we secured pay increases that are on average an inflation-beating 5.7% across the unit.”

“We also made gains on severance, won new protections for employees who are on visas, and secured groundbreaking A.I. safeguards. To win these gains, 100% of Gimlet Union employees signed a strike pledge and were prepared to walk. 100% of Parcast Union employees signed this strike pledge in solidarity.”

“This contract also marks a new chapter: beginning with the ratification of this agreement, the Gimlet and Parcast Unions join together to become The Spotify Studios Union.”

“Our unit went into these negotiations battered by brutal rounds of layoffs. So many of our talented colleagues were cast aside in a restructuring that was only necessary because of decisions made by Spotify leadership. Still, during the course of negotiations, Spotify Studios Union members came together and found a unified voice to defend our rights as workers,” the statement concluded.

The new contract also addresses the current wave of media layoffs that have besieged the industry. Union members at both Spotify Studios and The Ringer who have been with their company for at least 8 years will now receive up to 26 weeks of extended severance if they are fired or terminated. All employees will receive a minimum of 11 weeks of severance.

AI was also a major sticking point for the union members. Spotify will be required to let union members know when a new AI tool has been introduced and will be given the option to decline a byline or credit if the tool has been used heavily throughout.

Spotify will also not be allowed to use AI to create a “digital replica” of an employee without their consent, unless the tool is being used to translate podcasts into other languages.

Both new contracts also include protections for workers who rely on visas. Spotify has guaranteed the company will not ask for an employee’s immigration information unless legally required to do so; employees will also be allowed to request a meeting about securing a green card through the company after one year of employment.


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