The Bandcamp United, a union representing U.S.-based Bandcamp employees, which made its debut earlier this year, has issued a statement following the recent sale of Bandcamp to music marketing company Songtradr by Epic Games. This development comes after Epic Games had officially recognized Bandcamp United in May, and negotiations between the two parties commenced in August. On Tuesday, the union sent a formal letter to Songtradr’s CEO, Paul Wiltshire, requesting voluntary recognition. We’ve reached out to Songtradr for their response to this matter.
According to the union’s statement, employees received an internal announcement from Epic Games indicating that Songtradr would extend employment offers to some, but not all, existing Bandcamp staff. Furthermore, it was noted that “most Bandcamp workers” had their access privileges revoked by Epic Management shortly before the Songtradr acquisition, just days before the latest Bandcamp Friday event.
“Bandcamp United is pressing for employment offers to be extended to all workers, clear and equitable voluntary severance options, and the prompt acknowledgment of their union by Songtradr, with a swift resumption of negotiations while preserving the progress achieved thus far,” their statement emphasizes. “Currently, Songtradr is providing employment offers to workers on a rolling basis, with a 72-hour acceptance deadline, despite the sales documents stipulating a 7-day consideration period. Additionally, Epic Games and the Union have not yet reached an agreement on terms for voluntary severance.”
In response to this situation, the union has launched a petition, urging supporters to call on Wiltshire to officially recognize Bandcamp United.
“Bandcamp wouldn’t be Bandcamp without the people who develop and maintain the website—we are the individuals who have shaped this platform into what it is for artists,” remarked Ed Blair, a Bandcamp support specialist, as mentioned in the union’s statement. “Songtradr’s failure to promptly recognize Bandcamp United raises concerns that they may underestimate the value of Bandcamp. It’s not merely a platform or portal; it’s a meticulously crafted community. The workers comprising Bandcamp United are crucial to the future of Bandcamp.”
The acquisition of Bandcamp by Epic Games has raised questions among music enthusiasts and artists alike, with many eager to see how this change in ownership will impact the beloved platform.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Unionization
What is Bandcamp United?
Bandcamp United is a union representing U.S.-based Bandcamp employees.
Why did Bandcamp United release a statement?
They issued a statement in response to the sale of Bandcamp to Songtradr by Epic Games.
What does the statement from Bandcamp United emphasize?
The statement highlights their demand for employment offers to all workers, fair voluntary severance options, and recognition of their union by Songtradr.
What issues arose following the acquisition by Songtradr?
Some existing Bandcamp employees faced uncertain employment prospects, with access revoked, and a discrepancy in the acceptance period for job offers.
What action has Bandcamp United taken?
They launched a petition to urge Songtradr’s CEO to recognize their union and protect the future of Bandcamp.
How important are Bandcamp United workers for the platform?
Bandcamp United asserts that these workers are essential to the community and future of Bandcamp, emphasizing the platform’s value beyond being just a portal.