Activision Blizzard employees create new gaming workers' union

Los Angeles, California - After weeks of strikes from employees at Raven Software, the Activision-owned company behind Call of Duty: Warzone, workers are forming one of the first unions at a major US video game company. And first, they are calling for recognition from the gaming giant.

Activision Blizzard has the chance to recognize the GWA alliance.
Activision Blizzard has the chance to recognize the GWA alliance.  © Collage: IMAGO / Alexander Limbach, imagebroker

If Activision Blizzard is Goliath, then it is getting the chance to make amends with David, aka its workforce.

Raven's workers have pumped the brakes on their strike-train, for now, in order to give leadership at Activision-Blizzard a chance to recognize their unionization efforts and the newly formed Game Workers Alliance.

The new group is "an organization made up of workers across Activision, Blizzard, and King (ABK)" and born out of the Raven Software quality assurance (QA) workers' strike.

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The work stoppage began early last month under the banner of strike campaign A Better ABK. The stoppage was partly to demand re-employment of QA workers who were unexpectedly laid off a few days earlier, and partly to make sure that "worker representation is finally given a place within the company."

According to a letter from the Game Workers Alliance to Activision-Blizzard leadership, the deadline for ABK to recognize the newly-formed union is January 25.

"If we have not heard back from leadership by end of day January 25th, we will be filing for an election with the NLRB. However, we would prefer to allow the company the opportunity to willingly engage with us as we proceed," it read.

The Game Workers Alliance could really get things snowballing for video game workers' rights, especially if leadership at Activision-Blizzard and Microsoft, the soon-to-be owner of ABK, are quick to recognize the union.

Cover photo: Collage: IMAGO / Alexander Limbach, imagebroker

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