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Bandcamp Unionizes (bandcampunited.org)
477 points by panic on March 16, 2023 | hide | past | favorite | 222 comments



This is an interesting place for this to come from, since bandcamp has really been a model for fairness in how artists can distribute their work and get paid. And it was sadly recently bought by Epic Games. I know nothing about Epic, but I know the game industry is far from the paragon of fair labor or fair content distribution. I wish them luck.


> And it was sadly recently bought by Epic Games.

I wasn't aware of that, that deeply sucks. Bandcamp was the premiere place for me to buy DRM-free music and know my money was going to the artist at a transparent and fair price.

Unionising certainly seems especially important for these folks in light of that, I wish them all the very best.


I think as it currently stands that's still the case, however with Epic at the helm there's indeed a high risk of negative changes.


what gives me hope that they won't, is that they probably only bought Bandcamp to use it as a salvo in their legal battle versus Apple.


Epic bought artstation, bandcamp, and, sketchfab. I don't know for sure, but I don't think any of those are very profitable. They're almost like resume hosting websites for game developers. 3d artists show off their work on sketchfab, artists show off on artstation, musicians show off their work on bandcamp.

My impression is that epic bought them for sort of the same reason Microsoft bought linkedin. They don't make tons of money, but they enhance the pipeline of artists and musicians available to the game industry.

Of course I have no idea if that's why they did it, but epic has definitely shown interest in steering the direction of the game industry in the past, and aligning the talent pool with their way of thinking is maybe a good way to do that.


> musicians show off their work on bandcamp.

That would be SoundCloud. Bandcamp is a marketplace and a pretty good one.


Bandcamp was profitable since 2012 apparently.


It makes me wonder if microsoft now has the upper hand - it can now ask chatgpt/bing: who should we hire?


In Bandcamp's messaging when they were acquired, expanding these payment systems was a major highlight. Combine this with Epic's messaging against Apple and Google about opening up billing on mobile platforms and major goals becomes very clear. One of these major goals can be a subscription service but to me it's obvious they're wanting to get into the artist -> individual creator/studio licensing environment for game/movie creators who already rely on Unreal.

The good news about this is that none of this should impact Bandcamp negatively, neither as a consumer or an artist, not unless you see more avenues to sell your music/merch as a bad thing. Bad news is your favorite Bandcamp artist will sell out ;)


Being used as a pawn does not put you in a place that is sustainable over the long-term or even really the medium term.


How so? You mean along the Apple Music vertical?


To prove you can run a marketplace with lower commissions since the Epic Store was shown to be running at a loss, which hurt their case against Apple. Or so I’ve read.


They bought it over a year ago. Where ya been? Turns out it’s still the best place to buy DRM-free music.


> They bought it over a year ago. Where ya been?

Enjoying my life, working on things that inspire me, not following tedious news about tech industry mergers and acquisitions.

Not dismissing the news as unimportant, it is important. It's just boring and I wish we lived in a world where everything good wasn't subsumed into soulless corporate behemoths.

So far Epic still seems to have a tiny bit of soul. But that'll gradually fade as it does with every huge company and in ten or fifteen years it'll be another Adobe/Autodesk.


Heh. I’ve been enjoying my life, as well, and also buying things from Bandcamp. And each time I do for the last year it says “Receipt for Your Payment to Bandcamp, an Epic Company.”

Anyway I don’t want to bore you, but yes I agree that less mergers would be nice. And the bandcamp news was very worrisome, and I’m sure at some point things will turn to shit.


Yeah luckily I've not noticed any major changes. Hopefully Epic continues to let them do their thing. It really is a one of a kind service in our current media landscape.


Still downloading from Bandcamp.

Instead of paying $10+/mo for a streaming service, I spend $10+ on an album each month.

I first check the band/label website to see if they have a download.

I then use bandcamp if the band is smaller and on there, falling back on 7digital or HDTracks when they are larger and not.

All to say is, I just didn't know they were bought by epic, I just usually get linked to artist pages


In a way it's not that surprising that people drawn to work at a company that prioritizes fairness and compensation of labor in the music industry would also be amenable to forming a union to support those principles in their own labor.

As for Epic, we can't know until they speak to any specific reasoning, but unions don't necessarily imply active or anticipated poor treatment from the employer. It's pretty normal to want input into decisions that affect your working conditions, and unions are a legally-protected way to do that.


Good-ness can be a creeping thing. If you're excited to work for a company because it does an actual measurable good you probably are inclined to care about and advocate for the people around you.

Wish them luck in keeping that fairness to the artists and themselves going strong.


Hadn’t really considered that but the epic purchase is probably why the employees decided to quickly unionise?

I feel like that’s a pretty smart change to make when you go from an apparently reachable and (I assume) fair leadership you knew, to… Epic Games.


Epic owns ArtStation too.


Worse, Tencent owns like 40% of Epic. Ironically would have been better if Bandcamp were acquired by Spotify, because then it would at least be owned by a public American company.


Spotify is Swedish.


Oh haha. Yeah. I guess “western” in this case. Listed on the NYSE.


Close enough (to me).


Hope this union will voice out any possible changes in Bandcamp's organisation which can hurt the common creator using the platform, even though I understand this is absolutely not the goal of creating one.

It will be a bleak day when BC hits the skids, as inevitably happens with any such service (unless not backed by a solid non-profit).


I hope it'll last another few years. It's a great platform.


me too - at the moment it is uniquely positioned for both what creators and (some) fans want. Can't see unionizing in a bad light at all especially in the realm of arts.


>even though I understand this is absolutely not the goal of creating one.

Not necessarily. All a union is is a way of collectively negotiating. Whether those terms include stipulations about the way creators are treated is up to the union's members.


Right, but in practice unions often confer a lot of benefits to creators. See the other major tech company to unionize: Kickstarter. They basically unionized in response to management bending to the whims of Brietbart who threatened to sue. Stronger worker voices means more backbone to stand up to external influences like that


To give folks a term to search for, also known as "bargaining for the common good."


Bingo. A company can run their stuff however they please. The union can ask for, or demand anything they please. Neither side has to 'give-in' to the other. You would be hard-pressed to find a company that allows its union to dictate how it operates or does business, the union is there to ensure the employees are all treated and paid equally, and well. If my company decided tomorrow to pivot to manure production instead of steel production, the union can protest all they like, but has no power to affect the direction of the business, just like if the union wanted the business to pivot to copper instead of steel they would be laughed at. They can absolutely try to negotiate in whatever they want, but the company is equally free to say "non-negotiable" and that's the end of it. On that note, it would be really interesting to see a union committee attempting to bargain on behalf of the customer.


After a union is certified or recognized, the employer "will be required to bargain with the union about all mandatory subjects, e.g., wages, hours, and other terms and conditions of employment.

"You are required to bargain over mandatory subjects in good faith, which includes the duty to provide relevant information to the union upon request and to refrain from unilaterally changing any of those terms and conditions without first notifying the union and bargaining with the union to lawful impasse. The duty to bargain in good faith does not mean, however, that you must reach agreement with the union on any proposals; rather, it merely requires you to approach bargaining with an open mind and desire to reach agreement, and that, if you reach an agreement, to sign the resulting written document.

"You may also choose to bargain with the union about permissive subjects, which is anything that is not mandatory or unlawful."


Regarding your last sentence: that would be a consumer protection agency.

There is a private non profit entity (with a "it's complicated" relationship to the government) for consumer protection in my country to which you can go for little money and ask them to help when you suspect a company is acting illegally.

They'll advise you, help you write letter, link you up with a lawyer or sue on your behalf. Sometimes they go after companies for things like "creative" TOS or to have courts clear up grey area of the law.

Recently they became one of the few entities who can start the entities who can start the local "equivalent" of a class action suit.

As a whole it's working pretty great.


> With our union we will fight for equity

Important to note "equity" not "equality".

Equality means each individual or group of people is given the same resources or opportunities. Equity allocates the exact resources and opportunities needed to reach an equal outcome.

Not my kind of place.


Equity can be okay, especially for a union. If a worker is sick and needs to take leave, a union will stand up to make sure their job is protected and they are compensated.

It's not "fair" and "equal" that someone who isn't working gets paid, but we need to take care of those who need help the most.

Equity had tradeoffs, equality has tradeoffs too. I think equity sounds like a more appropriate word for what a union does. Do you disagree?


Equity in this context likely means diversity, inclusion, and equity (DI&E) which has been an absolute cancer on US tech companies in the years leading to the current cycle of layoffs.

i.e. roles and promotions reserved for people of certain races and genders.


You're going to need a massive bucket of evidence to back that claim. The current layoffs are most definitely not due to diversity hires, they are largely driven by a skittish market, active shareholders being more critical of cashflow, reduced funding and performative overhead reduction.


I see. It's as if putting "equity" in there signals they are talking about diversity and inclusion as well. Thank you.


>ctrl+f equity, 0 results

They mention equitable conditions and economic stability for their colleagues. Which, imo, is a main purpose of a Union.


When you click on the “read more” button on the bottom of the page you go to quotes from employees: https://www.bandcampunited.org/our-stories

Here you find plenty of “equitable” and “equity” comments…


There's the argument that the definition of equality has been twisted in order for equity to make sense.

10 years ago, if someone said kids should have the right to education equally, that always meant taking especially care of the poor ones. It didn't make sense to send a million dollars to a public school and another to a private - that would have considered very dumb.

So why did we twist the old term, introduce a new one and now get into semantic discussions instead of discussing rights and policy?


right

> We are committed to protecting the benefits we have, fixing historical disparities within and across departments, and promoting equitable conditions and economic stability for all of our colleagues


bad take


Organised labour has been a cancer on western civilisation. Both "equity" and "equality" are the expression of the underlying ideology of communism, where disparate outcomes are the result of imaginary malignant oppressive forces.

Equality and centralisation go hand in hand, as evidenced by every communist/socialist regime ever and the simple insight that suppressing human nature requires a suffocating (secret) state police that controls every aspect of its subject's lives, and they cannot co-exist with freedom and de-centralisation.


It doesn't take a communist to see the inherent conflict of interest between employer and employee, or the disproportionate power in the hands of employers. These are not "invisible forces" by any means.


Massive false equivalence and poor understanding of the concepts of equality, socialism and associated regimes, which were never equal. You also seem to subscribe to the idea that human nature is inherently purely selfish, which it has been proven not to be.

It is more likely that you have consumed too much American based anti-union media, happily pushed by corporations whose profits would be threatened and politicians whose campaign contributions would be threatened by stronger unions. I accept that US unions have had a bad history but if you step outside of that narrow viewpoint there is a lot of benefits to unions and organised workforces.


What nonsense. Organized labor is the only force that has ever brought any parity between labor and management. Do you think a 40 hour week and other benefits were magnanimously bestowed on workers by management? Unions are the only force that have gotten labor anything.

You sound like a typical vulture capitalist. So with your disdain for labor, I suggest whatever great lofty idea or concept you have, do it all yourself. Development. Engineering. Marketing. Sales. Service. You can't. You need that labor you so airily brush off with the 1953 bugaboo of communism.

Solidarity forever.


> You need that labor you so airily brush off with the 1953 bugaboo of communism.

Its always funny how socialists think employers simply hire some labour and then steal their wages.


And it's not funny inthe slightest how that's the case.

You of course ignore my main point. Go make your earth shattering life changing product without labor and see how far you get. You throw around buzz words like communism and socialism without apparently knowing the distinction between them, using them as if they were a bludgeon to smash those who disagree with you.

Honor Labor.


> You throw around buzz words like communism and socialism without apparently knowing the distinction between them

There is none, as the underlying model of the world is the same. Its a different in degree, not in kind.


So you have, as I said previously, no understanding of either term.

Why do you keep dodging my real point? Go make your great idea entirely by yourself. Then you can keep all the moneys. Great ideas are a dime a bale. Making them happen requires people willing to make it happen other than yourself. Why should they get anything other than the maximum they can extract from you, in the same way you extract the maximum possible from your customers?


> suppressing human nature

I'm genuinely curious what people are like who believe cooperation and mutual support is against human nature. Do you perform a daily cost-benefit analysis to consider whether to leave your spouse for another candidate? Do you eject your children from your home if they don't deliver sufficient value? Do you slam the door in your neighbor's face if they ask you for a cup of flour on a Saturday night and can't immediately repay you or sign a credible contract with interest?

> disparate outcomes are the result of imaginary malignant oppressive forces

Funny. Most people seem to agree that different starting conditions are likely to yield different outcomes. I struggle to imagine your reasoning for why wealth is so unevenly distributed and why this inequality persists over generations assuming you aren't a believer in eugenics (i.e. natural superiority by bloodline).

> freedom

Freedom to what, specifically?

> de-centralisation

Someone recently said to me "When tech dudes say de-centralisation they always mean de-regulation" and I have no idea what made me think of that.

> every communist/socialist regime ever

Yes, let's not look up what those words mean or else we'll risk finding out what leftist thinkers thought about the Bolsheviks before they successfully purged all other revolutionary movements. Communist Russia killed ten billion people and its Gestapo surveillance state kept track of every resident, Mao Ché Minh banned religion and gave Cuba bad WiFi, Marx was a Leninist and Stalin his prophet.

Let's not think about the uncanny parallels to surveillance capitalism, the economics at scale of monopolist corporations like Amazon, the industry poisoning our water and scorching our Earth, the way our entire collective wealth (however minute it may be for each of us) hinges on our collective capacity to extract natural resources for a pittance from the Third World so we can sell refined goods back to them at a profit for loans they can never repay. The Bolsheviks may have created housing for all unhoused people but the houses were ugly and the consumer goods were outdated, thank god we ended up on the right side of the international pissing match that nearly drove us to extinction so let's not bite the hand that begrudgingly feeds us if we give it every waking hour as labor because this is just the natural state of human existence: some have it all, the rest of us lives on scraps. The guns and bombs staring us down aren't to keep us in our place but to keep us safe against the others who want what we have and want to take away our freedoms. We must surpass, we must compete, we must be better than the Reserve Army of Labor or else society will collapse. Solidarity is defeat, cooperation is death. After all, this is how man evolved: the primordial Elon Musk or Jeff Bezos, standing alone in the desert, fruits of his labor in hand, staring down the sabre tooth with entrepreneurial spirit, the self-made man, standing on the shoulders not of giants but of those he outcompeted because they were inferior to him.

Pardon the prose but in the spirit of competition your comment did not warrant anything less fanciful.


Yeah, it’s disheartening how labor unions seem to attract this ideological poison. Can’t a labor union just be about collective negotiation with the employer? -_-


Most don't. It's just the ones where there is very little at stake or that they need to bargain for.

Tech worker unions can't really strike because the ratio of red and blue M&Ms in one of the thirty free snack rooms is slightly off. They need something else to rile people up.


Agree, equity at workplace could easily be highjacked for nepotism and tribalism since the criteria for “opportunities needed” is often subjective. IMO it’s best addressed via governmental and social programmes.

However, kudos to them if they’ve found a verifiable model that takes into account all historical injustices done to all people who are currently in the US labour force (including new immigrants from Africa, South Asia, South America, Central Asia, etc).


I’m pro union and I’m in the tech industry, but it is tone deaf when members of best paid and most well treated of industries speak as if they are oppressed. It kind of makes a mockery of the plight of the actual working class.


The working class can't live off your pity, they would much rather have a strong union movement from every sector so we can fight together.


Platitudes won't either. People in true need of a union need actual support. Where you spend your money, who you financially support in politics. They are not on the sidelines cheering the Bandcamp engineers on, they see it for what it is, and know it isn't going to trickle down to them.


Forming a union isn’t a platitude, it’s direct action. In a culture as union-hostile as the modern day US, every new union is a win for the labor movement.

I can speak from experience that leftist groups who otherwise hate the tech industry do celebrate tech unions.


Unions have won every cultural battle in the US. The only reason union membership declined is that virtually every industry that they got a hold of went bankrupt or severely contracted. A notable exception is Hollywood, and that's only because the nature of movie projects, which are time-limited, reduces the leverage of unionized workers.

In the government, where taxpayers pay for growing inefficiency, unions have only grown in strength.


You're right, it's not a platitude, but it's entirely performative and diminishes actual labor struggles.


I don't think it actually, meaningfully diminishes "actual labor struggles". The working class is not going to have a harder time organizing because some tech workers did it first.


Nothing about forming a union is tone deaf. One doesn't have to be 'oppressed' to form a union. This isn't mocking anything.


You don’t have to be oppressed to form a union. Most professional athletes, for example, are unionized. And they’re often very well paid.


Not to mention gladiators i ancient rome, many of whom were paid very well...

You're quite right that this is a completely ridiculous argument.

A well paid slave, is still a slave.


This is the mockery and tone deafness I was referring to. No, no one at Bandcamp is a slave, and to say so is an insult to people who are. Do you hear yourself? It is the height of privilege to think you are a slave at your well paid, fun engineering job.


https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/irony

It is simply risible to pretend that the tech-industry has not created a new generation of piece-workers. Or that conditions cannot be bad (even unacceptable) in a well-paid and otherwise privileged job.

Perhaps you simply lack insight to realise that by writing this comment you have become the thing my comment was mocking? :)

"You Gladiators, look at the purse awarded to you! And you call yourself a common slave! It is an insult to the slaves who toil in the mines!"


Also, Doctors, Actors etc


Nowhere did I say Bandcamp engineers can't have a union, or even whether it makes good business sense for them. It might, it might not. Maybe this will end up being better for Soundcloud engineers in the long run if you know what I mean. I was reacting to the idea that it somehow furthers the cause of organized labor, it doesn't.


> I was reacting to the idea that it somehow furthers the cause of organized labor, it doesn't.

It absolutely does, by helping to (re)normalize the idea that the employer/union duality is the common, sensible, ubiquitous arrangement.


Don't we call those guilds, associations, academies, etc.?

Unions traditionally refer to blue collar/factory work.

I don't know what the difference is.


We have a lot more in common with the working class than with billionaire CEOs


Most of us are working class, even if relatively well-paid.


Yeah buddy you are just like a bus driver…


Yep. I rely on a job for income. My boss has leverage over me. I can't go too long without a job. I don't have a say on what the company works on.


Nailed it. These are about the conditions of your existence and the dignity of your profession, not how much you are being paid.

A worker might get paid $1,000 in compensation every time an executive hits him with a baseball bat, but it doesn't make it okay. You might later increase the payment to $3,000 per blow. But it is still assault, even though that is a lot of money to be earning for a job that anyone can do.

https://www.latimes.com/world/la-xpm-2010-dec-01-la-fg-south...


He, and you, are more like a bus driver than you are like any billionaire CEO. Sorry to pop your bubble of imagined superiority.


I bet the average non-manager wage at Bandcamp is substantially less than the big tech companies (especially given the mix of support staff). Many of them will be putting up with less money so they can work on something they actually believe in, and something that is one of the few tech success stories for musicians.


Can anyone involved describe, perhaps more frankly than the linked site, what drove this? I think of unions as typically being a response to some kind of abusive behavior from management, and am wondering what it is in this case. Most of the specifics described seem like stuff that is common in tech companies already (eg good pay and benefits) or stuff that sounds hard to enforce (eg input into company direction).


I'm not involved, but they were recently sold to Epic Games, which, I imagine, represents a fairly large shift in character of management. It might be a defensive move to protect the worker culture that evolved before then.


IMO this stems from the massive layoffs across the field which align more closely with timing here than the acquisition and change of management. Not that either are exclusive reasons.


Unions are not necessarily a response to bad management. Often they can be because the workers want to force the good management to stay good.

It’s far more effective to unionize when things are going well rather than when things are going bad.


Unions are simply a rent-seeking mechanism to extract more wealth from the shareholders by restricting their contract rights.

Detroit was the wealthiest city in the US in 1950, with the highest per capita GDP in the country. Over the course of the 1950s, 60s and 70s, the UAW union took over, with membership eventually peaking in 1978.

What followed was industrial collapse, and eventually, Detroit becoming a ghost town.

Unions are not good for labor at large, just the labor that is on the winning side of the zero sum rent extraction scheme.


Note for anyone reading this:

There are anti-union folk who try to blame the unions for Detroit dying. This is ignoring the fact that GM took money that was meant for pensioners, and started spending it on non-pension related stuff.

Their pension savings dropped, and the companies couldn't meet the obligations they promised to. Those obligations were put in place because of the unions.

So yes, you could argue if it wasn't for the unions those pensions would've never been promised to. However, that's victim blaming the folks since the company decided to spend money that effectively wasn't theirs and was put away, and then cry for help after it got caught. Short term profits over long term longevity is what killed Detroit.

There were a lot of other things happening at the same time:

- NAFTA fucked over US industry. - White flight, caused by a multitude of reasons including xenophobia cut down the taxable population of the city. - Lack of oversight and regulations and mismanagement of the city of Detroit.

Blaming Unions for what happened is wild. Without the Unions, detroit would've never seen the boom that it did, and without the unions, the workers would've ended up in a worse situation considering what NAFTA did to US manufacturing.


What nonsense. You do know there were other things going on in Detroit that caused the white flight of the 60s and 70s? Your oversimplification of the collapse of Detroit because of the ebil unions would seem to ignore the unrest of the 60s. I was there. Do a little reading into the civil rights and anti-war movements of the 60s and 70s before betraying your ignorance.


Won’t anyone think of the *checks notes*… poor shareholders?


With increasing retail ownership of US company shares, why on earth wouldn't we think of the poor shareholders?


Is this fair?

Retail ownership may now make up a greater population but for the lower 50% of Americans, stock ownership has been declining. And for all but the top 10% of Americans, the amount of stock owned (as a fraction of all stock in circulation or even inflation adjusted value held) has been declining.

So in a very real sense, the stock market has an increasingly negligible direct impact on the lives of a significant chunk (if not a majority) of Americans (however it still may have an indirect effect via exposure from their employers).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wealth_inequality_in_the_Unite...


Rolling back protections, or implicitly suggesting that shareholders don't deserve much protection (by virtue of them being wealthy), serves to reinforce this though. If owning shares is made more risky, only those who can afford to take more risks will be able to capture the benefit.


I think the context of the GP that

> Unions are simply a rent-seeking mechanism to extract more wealth from the shareholders by restricting their contract rights.

and the choice between that money going to the workers creating that value vs the shareholders matters.

If ownership of stocks is concentrating and fewer working class Americans are owning stocks, then shifting wealth distribution from the shareholder towards the worker should generally be regarded as good for the working class. And regardless, maybe if more of the money went directly to the workers, they'd me more willing to put money into the market than they currently are.

Wages have stagnated, cost of living has continued to rise, and corporate profits have soared. It's really not a surprise why working class Americans don't invest in the market, they just don't have the money to "waste" or "risk" on it.


If you make the US inhospitable to business, corporations will not site manufacturing plants in the US, or conversely, will be forced to site them in the US and then will pass the costs onto consumers. The end result is Americans having less purchasing power, i.e. lower inflation adjusted wages.

Capitalism is the only model that can maximize economic growth and social development. No amount of ideological wishful thinking will change that.


Shareholders being rewarded for investing is how you get more investment, which is how you get productivity growth, which in turn is the only way to increases wages that is not zero sum, i.e. is sustainable.


Did you just connect two entirely different things together and create a causative relationship?

Wild. Even ChatGPT would yell at you for this hot take lol.


OR it is racism as whites fled Detroit and it became unsustainable big


The Big Three automakers massively contracted as the pension obligations the UAW forced them to agree to made their financial positions untenable.


> forced them to agree to made their financial positions untenable.

They were tenable. The execs literally spent money that wasn't theirs and then said oh no we don't have money left.

They took short term profits, over long term goals and commitments.


But good pay and benefits can be taken at any time in a right-to-work state. And the pay is not consistent or transparent to quote adjectives from that section.


I think you mean at-will employment, right-to-work usually refers to bans on union security agreements.


Yep, I was wrong. At-will is what I wanted to say.


I live in a right to work state and they are using it correctly.


No, they aren't. Just look at Wikipedia, it's a common enough misconception that the page for right-to-work directs people to at-will employment: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Right-to-work_law https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/At-will_employment


Why not form them before the bad stuff starts happening so you are ready for it?


It's the current wave of entitled generation, who want more than what the market reality can actually pay them. They were cuddled by free interest rates, above average pay first and then during the pandemic by the government. The companies also went along with prioritizing mental well-being, self-care, full-pay-for-no-work culture.

The tech workers are under the false assumption that they have the upper hand, in the midst of higher interest rates, competition between companies (reducing profit margins), AI (boosting non-english, non-western workforce skills higher bringing them near par to average western knowledge workers).

Companies will accelerate firing and blocking these groups going forward.


The “current wave of entitled generation”? Union membership in the US is at a historic low. If you equate unionization with entitlement (I don’t) then this is the least entitled generation almost a century.


Comment of the century.


My father was a carpenter. He clocked into his shift at a standard wage that had been organised by his union. Any overtime was paid in his weekly cheque.

I, on the other hand, have worked multiple jobs where an expectation of 18 hour days 6-7 days a week is not out of scope for the role during periods of crunch. This brings my hourly wage based on salary down to that of someone working at McDonalds.

Who exactly is entitled?


I sincerely think that if you lived your father's at life your age for a few months, you would come to the conclusion that your life is better.

I hate that there's no easy way to run the experiment, but when I talk to my parents about their life at my age, I'm often astounded at how much wealthier my life feels at $27k a year (though I am fortunate to rent a room for free, so my living standard is effectively ~10k higher than it would be for others at the same wage as me).

For what it's worth I'm from Denmark, so maybe its totally different in the US.


That may be the case but if entitlement is based on actual working conditions, then we’ve got far less entitlement.

Even today tradespeople get paid $50k more per year than I do and they have far better conditions. They strike all the time and refuse to do work they aren’t paid for.


> For what it's worth I'm from Denmark, so maybe its totally different in the US.

To weigh in a bit on some of the differences between employment in Denmark and the US.

- In the US there are no mandated (paid or unpaid) vacation days/time off (with the exception of 3-4 of the 50 states).

- There are no mandated paid sick days.

- You are granted at most 12 weeks of unpaid sick leave per year by the FMLA however if you actually take advantage of this, most companies will simply let you go for another, unspecified reason (as you are not required to document or explain why you have let go or fire an employee).

- There is no mandated paternity leave, paid or unpaid. Maternity leave falls under unpaid sick leave.

- On average (but not required), employees get 10-20 days of paid time off (combined between vacation and sick time).

- The US obviously has atrocious health care costs that unless you are very lucky end up eating non-negligible portions of your paycheck. (just insurance before any actual received care is on average is ~450USD/month)

- US Universities cost a lot of money and if you aren't going into the trades, you will be dedicating a large, non-negligible portion of your paycheck towards paying loans (avg: ~40k USD loans, ~150-300USD/month).

- In almost any part of the US outside of a small selection of major cities, you cannot work or live without a car. (avg car insurance ~150USD/month, avg cost of fuel ~150-200USD/month, maintenance, etc can be assumed to be another 25-100USD/month).

----

That works out to on average around ~900-1200USD/month or ~10.8k-14.4k USD/year in costs (if you aren't going to university you can subtract 450USD/month or 5400USD/year from this) that are essentially unavoidable for the overwhelming majority of Americans which likely are avoidable in a country like Denmark as long as you don't live in an overly rural area.

Realistically this means that for the average American (~31k/year), anywhere from 17-46% of their income goes to expenses that aren't necessarily applicable to people in a decent chunk of western Europe (particularly the urban/suburban parts). And on top of this, for many Americans, any life complication or sickness that prevents them from working causes that percentage to rise (both from increased costs and decreased income).


I don’t know why you’d spend so long typing out such a long piece of what is just patently misinformation. It border line reads like you just harbor animus towards the US and wanted to seize on an opportunity to malign it.

If you made 31k/yr your healthcare subsidy under the ACA would put your premium at $0-10/month https://www.goodrx.com/insurance/aca/aca-income-limits

While there is no federal law for sick leave, many states have them, and even for states that don’t, local municipalities do which means a large portion of US workers do receive mandated sick time. https://www.paycor.com/resource-center/articles/paid-sick-le...

To a lesser degree, the same goes for maternity leave https://www.zippia.com/advice/average-paid-maternity-leave/ https://www.ncsl.org/labor-and-employment/state-family-and-m...

The car insurance part is also wrong. As is the part about being fired for taking sick time; it costs the average employer 7 figures to fight a wrongful termination suit. So even if they win, it’d have been cheaper to keep you on even if you did nothing. Employers in at will states can fire you for any reason but if you’ve had fine performance reviews leading up to your medical leave, only the stupidest employers would expose themselves to massive legal liability by firing you. I’m guessing you’re pretty naive to running a business because most employers and entrepreneurs I’ve talked to are quite aware of this and truthfully do have good will towards their employees anyway.

There’s more to pick apart here but tl;dr - no one in the US making 31k/yr is spending half their income on health insurance and car insurance. At the income level, your effective tax rate is 0% too cause of tax credits.


> Employers in at will states can fire you for any reason

Which is an employer in every state except Montana. And let's not pretend that employees who are wrongly fired are willing/able to fight a long legal battle to prove their termination was illegal, so no matter how much it costs an employer it's still on the terminated employee to start proceedings. Unless it's a "slam dunk" case that a lawyer will take pro-bono and take money from the settlement or win, that person will need to pay out of pocket, which is out of reach for almost everyone.

I also would like to see the "7 figures to fight a wrongful termination suit" citation.

> While there is no federal law for sick leave, many states have them, and even for states that don’t, local municipalities do which means a large portion of US workers do receive mandated sick time.

Sure, but not everyone lives in the states that have paid sick leave, and only 14 states plus DC, plus a handful of other cities, actually do offer it. The majority of them additionally have a cap of 40 hours, after which it's going to be unpaid, so if you're unfortunately sick for longer than a week, you're kind of out of luck.

On top of this, the parent most likely meant mandated as in federally mandated, which is true, there is no federally mandated sick leave.

While the US isn't as bad as some people like to make it seem to be, it's also not that good for a lot of people, so please don't pretend it is.


Yeah you live in a world where you don’t have the crushing weight of potentially having to go into life ruining debt to pay for healthcare. Where a decent college won’t put you into 200K of debt. Or not having any useful social safety net. Or not being able to retire because the government programs that support senior citizens are going to be bankrupted by the time you’re that old. I find surviving in America to be incredibly stressful, and by all measures I’m doing “well”.


Forming a union isn't entitled. Nothing is wrong with forming and joining a union. Your post is frankly ridiculous.


Forcing an existing organization to bend to your will is textbook entitlement.

You can start a new software company and run it the way you want as opposed to parasitizing an existing one. This isn't the 1800s where you have to go build an entire factory. This is software.


Now I know you are trolling.

Employees forming a union isn't 'parasitizing' an existing one. It is clear you don't even understand the basics of what a union is or how it works. It is for the best if ignorant people like stop acting like you know what you are talking about instead of posting brain dead takes on the internet.


It's clear you don't understand or don't want to understand.

If the existing organization wanted a union, it would have established the union itself.

If it did not, it's parasitizion of an existing organism.


Is it also “parasitism” to negotiate your salary? I mean, if the company wanted to pay you that much, they would have offered it themselves.


Who is "the existing organization" if not the employees of that organization?


> Forcing an existing organization to bend to your will is textbook entitlement.

This is a mischaracterization of what unions do. When have you witnessed a union do this? That must be a remarkably powerful union to be making decisions for the entire organization.

Unions simply negotiate things related to their members, on behalf of their members. There's no "forcing" involved.

If a company doesn't want to meet the union's expectations for the wages and benefits of their members, it can simply fire all the union members or wait for them to strike and hire their replacements. After all, it's just software, how hard could it be to replace the entire team? Surely no harder than a single person simply quitting and building a competitor to Blizzard.


> If a company doesn't want to meet the union's expectations for the wages and benefits of their members, it can simply fire all the union members or wait for them to strike and hire their replacements.

Not agreeing with OP, but you generally can’t fire striking workers. Replacements are difficult as you still owe the striking workers their positions if they return.

Lots of caveats to all of that, but it’s definitely not simple. If it were there would be very few private unions.


I was mostly being as facetious and dismissive as the op, their take is so old fashioned I honestly wonder if they're doing a bit.


This is a small Union but Unions in general are a political tool and not for the good of their members. In Italy we had a Union outraged that Tech Employees ere not joining it that it "negotiated"(forced) the government to automatically enroll them (meaning they take a fee from the salaries as a tax) if they did not opt-out. that shows you who the unions are working for and their power.


I'm sure just like there's shit companies, there's shit unions. If "just find a different company" or even "just found your own company" is a valid form of anti union criticism, "just find / form a different union" is equally valid.

Regardless, unions are a net positive.

https://www.epi.org/publication/unions-and-well-being/

> We find that, on average, the 17 U.S. states with the highest union densities:

> have state minimum wages that are on average 19% higher than the national average and 40% higher than those in low-union-density states

> have median annual incomes $6,000 higher than the national average

> have higher-than-average unemployment insurance recipiency rates (that is, a higher share of those who are unemployed actually receive unemployment insurance)


Nothing of these applies to The tech Sector and Especially to my example in Italy. where the Labour protection laws afforded to anyone (even without a Union) are enough. That is the way to go, State laws guarantee the job protection not Unions. Unions are a vestige of the past where everyone had the same repetive task/responsability and the employer could exchange Bob for Greg without a thought. Many Jobs today (Especially in the Tech Sector) you can't Exchange Bob For Greg and thus negotiations on "collective minimum Salary" do not make even sense. Protections from Firing and other unemployement assurances must come from the government in equl measure irrespective of whether you are in a union or not.

And Especially "just form your own union" was precisly what this example demonstrated that is not valid. That union had enough political power to Force the State to autoenroll People that did not want to be part of that union because they did not see any benefit.


I don't really know what's going on in Italy in this case but when I met with communists there on a trip my impression is that the State provides not nearly enough labor protections. Sure it'd be nice if the state did that, I don't disagree, but what we've seen historically is that the most you can expect from a government is below the dirt bare minimum - such as a child labor law... Banning child labor for those under 8. Sorry, 12 if it's mine labor. So whatever you're getting from the government probably still isn't even close to what's possible given the level of industrial development and possible surplus.

Anyway in the usa the population at large is utterly allergic to workers rights laws. The most rational way in the usa to ensure better labor rights is to form a Union.


Well Ofcourse if you talk to communists "it's not enough". In Italy it's practically imposible for a company to fire people unless they have very good reasons too. The court system works very well. These protections are so strong that have become detrimental to the workers. For example let's say that Company X has a new project and wants to build something that will take 2 years. Noone in Italy will Hire anymore employees for this because after two years you can't downsize after the bulk of the work is donee. What 90% will do in these cases is hire external consultants, pay even 10 times more than the cost of the emplyees, just because there is no way you can have a Dynamic workforce. So a lot of people are employed in these Body-Rental Companies instead of working directly for the company that needs them and get paid better without the being often the 3rd or 4th link in the chain.

For the Communists, I come from an ex-Communist country. Me and my children are still suffering from those conseguences and the communists in Italy tell me stories how they watched us in the television from their villas and Envied us..., while our govenment gave contributions to the Italian Comunist party and we the people had the moto "We will eat grass if we have to". that's the Disconnect they live in.


Oh yes, the tech sector. You're special.

You're not replaceable. Those... those workers... They're replaceable. You're special. You negotiated and got a whole dime more for yourself. That makes you better than those... others.

Of course, if you'd joined a union, you'd have got a buck more, and better benefits. But no, you're Speshul.

Solidarity forever.


Do unions make people richer, or being richer affords people to have more wealth-destroying unions?


I don’t want to run a software company I just want to be treated fairly


Forcing laborers to bend to your will is textbook entitlement.

See how that works?


“entitled generation”

My parents were in a union and their parents before them. What are you talking about?


He's one of the many temporarily embarrassed millionaires on this site that thinks they're the next Elon Musk.


It’s this disgusting attitude from management that unions form to counter.


> entitled generation

Of course they feel entitled to this, many young workers just entering the workforce (myself included) haven't known anything else their entire adult lives. How can you blame them and not the government and corporate cronies for instituting these terrible policies in the first place?!


"Entitled" to the basic human rights enshrined in the UN charter and the ILO. Conditions befitting the dignity of an animal in a zoo, never mind a human being with a profession.


> cuddled by free interest rates

thanks for the chuckle


> We are committed to protecting the benefits we have, fixing historical disparities within and across departments, and promoting equitable conditions and economic stability for all of our colleagues. Whether it’s access to paid time off or the security of knowing our salaries will grow to meet economic necessity,

and

> When we use our voices, we do so because we care about the future of Bandcamp

These two "principles" are in tension with each other, so it will be interesting to see how selfless (do what's best for Bandcamp, even it means I need to lose my job or get paid less or get less time off etc. etc.) or how selfish this group will be.


> These two "principles" are in tension with each other, so it will be interesting to see how selfless (...) or how selfish this group will be.

These aren't really in tension with each other at all.

> (do what's best for Bandcamp, even it means I need to lose my job or get paid less or get less time off etc. etc.)

Unions aren't particularly afraid of layoffs. They'll fight reductions in force (RIF) and unnecessary layoffs but the main focus is guaranteeing that those individuals who are let go get compensated adequately and are provided a sufficient cushion to bounce back and find their next job.

When it comes to priorities, number 1 and 2 are equally that the company survives and benefits are not cut. If you have to let people go to meet those priorities that is fine but as soon as you start carving away at peoples' hard earned benefits, then all of a sudden any perceived bump in the road can be used to undermine the union and your benefits.


There will be times when those principles are in tension, yes, but they’re not contradictory. Bandcamp is created by workers. In most instances, what’s best for the workers as a collective is also what’s best for Bandcamp as a company.


Rank and file employees are neither in a position (vantage point, perspective), nor have the judgment (should a new grad have equal “say” to someone more experienced) to make big strategic decisions.

One “solution” is to make big decisions by committee / vote, but then there’s no accountability or responsibility.

If workers want to control their destiny they should buy the company so they have real skin in the game, not tell shareholders/owners that they know what’s best…


This is complete fantasy. What's objectively best for the company is to get the most value from their labor for the least cost. This is not in the interest of the workers.


Well yes, and in the U.S. that "least cost" is slave labor. It doesn't have to be, though. Do you think the EU/western Europe has lower worker efficiency even though we have a five-day week, four or five weeks vacation time a year, and eight hour work days with relatively generous overtime compensation? And businesses pay more taxes on their workforce, the state spends lots on healthcare, etc etc.

Many countries are even talking about doing four-day weeks or six-hour days.

It is in the interest of the company to have happy, productive workers that stay because they enjoy their life and work. That is best done with generous compensation and whatever allows for a good work/life balance.


> Do you think the EU/western Europe has lower worker efficiency even though we have a five-day week, four or five weeks vacation time a year, and eight hour work days with relatively generous overtime compensation?

Yes.

https://www.aeaweb.org/articles?id=10.1257/jep.22.1.25


Beware the people conflating efficiency with "productivity" productivity is just earnings divided by payroll.

If you sack half of your workers, your productivity will approximately double. But not for long.


That is only good for the company if your notion of company ignores the needs of one faction of people (those who generate value) and prioritises the needs of another group (those who extract value).

If we are going to have malicious and incompetent people in the society, I am of the opinion that they should sink to the bottom, not rise to the top.

You, apparently, believe the opposite.

Of course, you are quite free to continue with that preference.


> You, apparently, believe the opposite.

I'm not sure how exactly you read that given the context, but I agree with you.


It will be interesting.

As we've seen, capitalism has constantly driven itself in to crisis with those at the top always managing to protect themselves.

Maybe the rest of us will get a chance to insulate ourselves from our own incompetence rather than being simply crushed by management and laid off when their bad decisions have come home to roost.

If we're going to have crises, I'd rather they be of my own making, and I'd rather be looked out for.


"The music and tech industries are at a juncture, and it’s time that we as workers have a seat at the table to weigh in on the challenges and opportunities of this moment."

Can someone explain this in plain english?


The union might literally want a seat reserved on the board, at licensing and terms negotiations, etc — to make sure the company stays/moves in a direction that employees support and that doesn’t squander employee loyalty in agreements that negatively impact them.


i suppose that could happen, it's not unheard of, but usually in exchange for wage/benefits concessions in a troubled industry as happened in the Rust Belt. In the case of a newly organized union they're much more likely talking about their seat at the negotiation table that unionizing creates.


I don’t really understand “juncture”, but money flows in the music and tech industries is changing, so it is nice if the people that produce the work make sure a good amount of money flows to them.


The music and tech industries are undergoing large changes and we need to make decisions NOW to make sure the industry stays healthy. We are unionizing to make sure that us workers are part of the decision making process.


Margins are getting sucked out of the music industry and people's willingness to pay any real amount of money for music has been trending downwards. Even the artists are pretty much only making there real money from touring. This will let Bandcamp employees crush the business faster then it would otherwise.

Expect a major downsizing in the next year or so.


They want a say in certain decisions being made at the higher levels.


They are scared of AI.


union bosses want a cut, that's what "seat at the table" means. How much are the dues? I wonder what worker protections have been promised vs what's going to show up in an actual contract. Is bandcamp going to take the threat of a strike seriously?


Unionisation, I'd wager, will come to the tech world a lot more.

No one cared about unions when they could easily find new jobs.

Now that's not so certain with the rise of AI. (Edit: and all these redundancies, yes)


The rise of AI isn't causing a drop in tech jobs. Its the crazy over hiring that happened during 2020/2021, the lack of confidence in the economy, and rising interest rates.

The AI boom overall will most likely add more jobs to tech with everyone wanting to invest resources in it.


Not even. It's the total failure of management to find any useful work for those people to do.

They are supposed to be the smart guys who make the big bucks in return for efficiently allocating capital to productive activities.

They, apparently, couldn't think of any productive activities, and instead have spaffed it up the wall inventing "taxis, but worse", an automatic plagiarizer, and a variety of unprofitable websites whose goal is to herd and trap users before making the website shit in exchange for money so they can milk cash from entrapped users before a competitor manages to scale their moat.

It's bizarre considering the scale of problems humanity faces (not even including the serious stuff like climate change) that these people cannot find any useful work for all those talented hands to be set to.

People are right not to have confidence in a system that seems to so have obviously and clearly failed to do things that you imagine any reasonably bright person would be able to do (ie. find useful and profitable things for talented people to get on with, given an unlimited free-money faucet for a decade and a half).


I bet people said the same about AI when Watson won Jeopardy. A more real catalyst could be the recent tech sector cooldown. The again, would someone dare unionizing when your position could be cut.


Watson wasn't pumping out code in response to non technical input though.


GPT 4 code sucks.

It can write you a function/method/script if you give it an outline of what you need but it's awful at anything remotely complex and everything it spits out needs to be understood by somebody so it can be checked.

It can save a developer time but it only replaces people in that one person can be more productive which is absolutely nothing new.

The reason for that is because it's not AI, it's ML. It doesn't understand anything.


If one coder can do the work of four, the other three are out of a job.


Which is exactly why programmer numbers plummeted as development shifted to higher level languages.


Fair, though sadly sarky, argument.

Those languages came about during the boom of websites and apps, however.

And more code was being written, rewritten and maintained by coders--now, instead, it's looking like it'll be generated, tested, analysed and regenerated.


Almost every company I've worked at have more ideas for projects than coders. The constraint has been how much they're willing to spend on R&D and not how much work they can think up.

If one developer can all of a sudden do the work of four, I think leadership is just going expect higher output from the same number of people.


This is the only comment that has made me less worried about AI.

If AI gets to the point where an end user can easily describe the app or website they want, however, then it won't just be the programmers who are in trouble.


It can save a developer time typing... not thinking.


But that thinking, in future, may not need a developer as we know the term


In my years as developer I found typing to be the least of my concerns.


It's not even something as speculative as AI. Just not having ZIRP has changed the game.


If AI heads in the direction you're suggesting, it will only increase the demand for tech workers.


I wish non-union worker organizations would get more traction, not everything really works well in the labor union model. Eg. professional workers more traditionally organized into guilds yet I've never seen any movements toward organizing modern professions into guilds.


Having thought a bit about the space, I agree! I think we could gain a lot by organizing as a guild.

That being said, if you have the knowledge-working talent, organizational skills, ambition, and reputation necessary to start a successful guild, you can make a lot more money as a consultant, and money is a powerful motivator.

I think if, as an economy, we were geared more towards quality and building for the long-term, a software guild would emerge more naturally. We've optimized for a different system, that doesn't much reward the differential outputs of a guild-like association. Reasonable people can disagree on the relative merits of this system. :)


To add some color to this, I know of at least one contracting agency / consultancy that effectively operated as a guild for about 10 years.

When you hired somebody from them, you knew you were getting the real deal. Their contracts included protection from off-the-clock hours, 4-day weeks, etc. They were also super transparent and accurate with the "level" of people you were getting. They charged a premium-level fee (read: not an exorbitant, luxury-level fee), but my company at the time was happy to pay – the marginal expense was basically insurance that nobody involved was going to be wasting their time. On every IC team they were embedded in, they got better performance reviews and 360 reviews than anybody else.

I think over the years, they (tragically, IMO) appear to have drifted away from this model, because they found they could grow faster by aiming more "mid-market"; my guess is that the pool of money on the buy side in the mid-market is larger.

Basically, mediocrity is the most profitable equilibrium. You have to possess some organizing principle that's more foundational than the pursuit of profit to avoid it. There's ways to do that without getting totally wonky. You could organize as a Co-Op (so you operate group-selfishly instead of leader-selfishly), register as a benefit corporation, etc.


What's an example of a non-union worker organization that you've seen work well for its members?


I'm not sure as I don't belong to any of these but here are some examples (US) that seem like they "work well"... Screen Actors, Directors, Writers all have guilds. Real-estate and Lawyers have decent looking guilds, they just don't call them by name. Doctors, Dentists and Nurses also have guilds (they call them associations).


SAG, DGA, and WGA are all labor unions. The other cases I'll grant you, but it's less clear what their direct benefit to their members is besides acting as lobbying organizations.


SAC, WAG, etc. are all labor unions similar to the one Bandcamp just created. Don't be confused by the name.

--

As for the other examples, what I like about tech is that anyone can join the industry. I think the way attorneys and doctors have set up their profession works for them but it really makes it hard for anyone who didn't choose the golden path to join.


Professional trade associations, such as chambers of engineers.


I noticed you were from Turkey -- I've never heard of the phrasing "chamber of engineers", but from Wikipedia, it sounds to be a kind of labor union: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Union_of_Chambers_of_Turkish_E...


Turkish chambers of engineers are regulated as trade associations with mandatory membership, not as labor unions. Trade associations in Turkey are semi-governmental whereas unions in Turkey are non-governmental, hence this distinction matters a lot here.


Do unions exist in Turkey or are these trade associations essentially non-legally protected unions?


Unions exist in Turkey, as a separate type of entity. In fact, Turkish unions even participate in the national minimum wage and public service pay coefficient negotiations.


In the engineering space, it's common to get chartered with one of the Institutes, such as the Institution of Civil Engineers, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE who make so many standards), Institution of Engineers of Ireland, and a great many others. These are massive organisations, which write standards, certify engineering courses in universities, and lobby governments. They are absolutely the successors to the guilds


Same difference. It's just the Pavlovian anti-anything-smelling-of-socialism reflex most people have.


In their mission statement they make themselves sound quite heroic I have to say. And, unsurprisingly, there's the obligatory nod to intersectionality. I'd be interested to know how actually popular it is. The headline makes it sound like everybody has joined but perhaps not (yet).


awesome work to the organizers and congratulations to the employees!


Great news. Tech industry in general needs more unions. Slowly but surely getting there…


I wonder if there can be more ephemeral union like entities that help the labor market. I'd love to see a community that helps people organize strikes and coordinate between multiple companies. Strikes are one of the strongest tools a union has, but you don't need a union to organize them. It feels like we have the technology to create ad-hoc unions and support general labor advocacy and direct action without the need for a formal union (not saying they are necessarily bad).


Every few years someone thinks that they have a new plan to revolutionize labor organizing, usually involving some sort of app that will somehow replace the work necessary to organize a union, and they are always wrong. Building a union that's strike-ready requires a lot of on the ground work that you simply cannot automate.


Would you say that things like Blind or Levels.fyi have had an impact on labor organization? I would argue that they have.


I certainly think they're emblematic of changes in attitudes, but I think the direction of causation is not so clear.


There are exceptions, but strikes are usually the result of an organized group of workers exhausting other bargaining options. Strikes are the result of very intentional, long periods of organizing. They (usually) don't happen all of a sudden. Barring something egregious, strikes are hard to pull off and requires a lot of buy in.

The most successful way to accomplish this level of organizing is forming a union.


strikes, or the credible threat of a strike, is the only power a union has. well except for the dues paid but those usually just go to a handful of pockets.


Unions are needed to provide the social structure to suppress worker dissent against a strike and to label all willing to work on terms offered as "scabs".

"Union solidarity" is an important cover story for a host of behaviors that would otherwise be simply shocking.


> I'd love to see a community that helps people organize strikes and coordinate between multiple companies.

Unfortunately solidarity strikes were so successful for workers for much of the 20th century, they were criminalised in parts of the English-speaking world from the 80s onward.


wildcat strikes, which you're describing, are illegal in the united states.


Wildcat strikes aren't illegal if you're not in a union:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wildcat_strike_action#Legality


It's not a wildcat strike if you're not in a union. It's just refusing to show up to work.


But if it's an organized effort in order to get management to do something, it is a strike


And even if they were illegal, there are so many creative ways to stage action that do not technically constitute a strike.


Not sure why you think that, here's the first line from your source

>Wildcat strikes have been considered illegal in the United States since 1935

Sounds to me like the only time it becomes legal is if you were in a union and then leave while still employed at the same place


From the article:

> Nevertheless, US workers can formally request that the National Labor Relations Board end their association with their labor union if they feel that the union is not adequately representing their interests. At this point, any strike action taken by the workers may be termed a wildcat strike, but there is no illegality involved, as there is no longer a conflict between sections 7 and 9(a) of the NLRA.


That is described by the last part of my comment, it is only legal under a very specific circumstance and not generally


That's not stated in the Wikipedia post or the National Labor Relations Act: https://www.nlrb.gov/guidance/key-reference-materials/nation...


It's literally what your reply to my first comment is stating

What do you think "formally request to end their association with their labor union" means?

>formally request that the National Labor Relations Board end their association with their labor union if they feel that the union is not adequately representing their interests

>At this point, any strike action taken by the workers may be termed a wildcat strike, but there is no illegality involved

Which is stated in wikipedia after:

>Wildcat strikes have been considered illegal in the United States since 1935

>Under the 1935 National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), federal courts have held that wildcat strikes are illegal and that employers may fire workers participating in them.


Your interpretation doesn't hold. All it's saying is that you have to not be affiliated with a union, then a wildcat strike is legal ("no illegality involved").


It isn't an "interpretation"

The wikipedia page literally says that you must end your relationship with the union due to inadequate representation


It says that because you can't be in a union and do a wild cat strike. Not in a union? You're free to. You're misreading it. I'd encourage you talk to a lawyer if you have any doubts.


Because this is what an attorney told you or you're relying on your own interpretation of the plain English text? It's pretty clear, words mean things and I encourage you to look up the definition of words like "request" and "end" and "association"

If there isn't a union then it wouldn't be considered a wildcat strike at all, therefore there must be a union at that workplace for it to be considered a wildcat strike and the person must be unassociated with that union due to inadequate representation for it to be a protected wildcat strike

https://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Wildcat+Strik...


A strike is a wildcat strike only if there is a union that the strike is not approved by. If there's no union at your workplace, it's not a wildcat strike. There's more to all of this, but it's pretty straightforward reasoning.

At worst, the LLMs are able to explain this stuff correctly so you can just ask them.


That is not at odds with my statement. It is only a legal wildcat strike if you request to be unassociated with the union first and if you don't request that while there is a union but you strike anyway, then it is an illegal wildcat strike


Only because the govt promised to protect unions. They’re not really keeping their side of the promise.


> Bandcamp has a clear path forward to future success, and it starts with our union having a seat at the table.

Not sure whether this is saying that Bandcamp has already established a cooperative stance with the union, or if it's saying that doing so should be Bandcamp's next step. I'm hoping that it's the first option, but otherwise this is definitely a positive development.


After Kickstarter are they the second "major" tech company to do so? (do I need to add "non-gaming" as a qualifier here too?)


For the reasons behind the recent acqusition, new places such as Formaviva.com are thriving. Wish them luck


I was very worried when Epic Purchased them but so far so good.


Does BandCamp actually make money?


That's prolly why they banned Tim Pool without any justification.


How can I short Bandcamp?




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