Employees of a subsidiary of Activision Blizzard voted Monday to form a union, establishing the first union of a major US video game publisher.
The software quality assurance staff in Activation’s Raven software division, which operates in the “Call of Duty” series, voted 19 to 3 in favor of the union and will be represented by the American Communication Workers (CWA).
The vote counted by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) applies to a section of staff in Raven, which employs about 350 people. The NLRB had earlier rejected Activism’s claim that a union election included all workers.
This week’s vote is the latest in a series of unification efforts by other technology companies in recent months, including Apple Store retailers and Amazon warehouse workers. Technology workers have also joined unions at organizations such as The New York Times, where workers voted 404 to 88 to form a union representing about 600 software engineers, data analysts and other workers.
The decision to unionize Raven Software came months after it was organized by Raven staff. Organizers formed the Game Workers Alliance in January to represent workers after a five-week strike against Activision’s decision to lay off 12 quality assurance testers. The Game Workers Alliance action was supported by the CWA.
“Our greatest hope is that our union will serve as an inspiration for the growing movement of organized workers in video game studios to create better games and create workplaces that reflect our values and empower us all,” said one of Activision’s union workers. Said in a statement. . “We look forward to working with management to positively shape our working conditions and the future of Activation Blizzard through a strong union agreement.”
The union reiterated in a statement that it wants the union vote to be conducted among all its employees: “We respect and believe in the right of all employees to decide to support or vote for the union. We believe that an important decision that will affect the entire Raven Software Studio of about 350 people should not be taken by 19 Raven employees. “
Activision will acquire Microsoft in a $ 68.7 billion deal that Activision shareholders approved in April. The acquisition is expected to be completed by June 2023