Posted in: Activision, Games, Video Games | Tagged: activision blizzard, microsoft, Raven Software, union, Xbox Game Studios
Thirty-Four Raven Software Employees Have Unionized
While the Activision Blizzard acquisition dominated the headlines this past week, one of their studios, Raven Software, made news of their own. As we previously reported, the company's staff have not been happy with how their parent company has been running things as of late, which along with all of the sexual misconduct allegations and lawsuits and investigations, the company laid off several contracted members of their QA crew at Raven before the holidays.
This led to a strike within the company that has been lasting for weeks with no resolution in sight as those involved confirmed that no one from AB had even bothered to talk to them during that time. The frustration has finally boiled over as it was confirmed by Bloomberg that 34 QA staffers have formed their own union within the company. What's more, they asked Activision to voluntarily recognize their union status, which if done, would make them the first union at a publicly-traded video game publisher.
The article continues saying that the company responded to Bloomberg's request for comment, in which they said they are "carefully reviewing the request for voluntary recognition from the CWA, which seeks to organize around three dozen of the company's nearly 10,000 employees." […] "While we believe that a direct relationship between the company and its team members delivers the strongest workforce opportunities, we deeply respect the rights of all employees under the law to make their own decisions about whether or not to join a union," an Activision Blizzard spokesperson told the website.
While those statements sound like they're working toward trying to remedy the situation, multiple stories over the past several months suggest that AB probably won't do anything unless they're backed into a corner. This combined with the fact that back in July they hired union-busting firm WilmerHale to help with the sexual misconduct issues when employees were staging walkouts would suggest they will most likely refuse to acknowledge it. The news probably isn't going to sit well with Microsoft, either, who will inevitably take on the fallout of whatever decision they make as the acquisition will close in late 2023. However, how Microsoft chooses to handle things may be entirely different from what AB might choose, so who knows how this will go.
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