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Activision QA workers win NLRB ruling, vote on union in April

Photo: Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Raven Software’s quality assurance staff will vote in a strong unit of 21 on whether to unionize, the National Labor Relations Board decided Friday. The decision comes after Raven’s owner, Activision Blizzard, questioned the organization’s efforts and tried to get an entire 230-strong studio to vote for the union.

All eligible Raven Software QA staff will receive their ballots in the mail on April 29 and will be counted on May 23, the NLRB said. If a majority of eligible workers approve, a union called the Game Workers Coalition begins contract negotiations with Activision Blizzard.

QA staff at Activision Blizzard and Raven Software await a decision from the NLRB after hearings in February. In testimony during the hearing, Raven Software executives and workers were questioned about the January studio restructuring involving union members.

A spokesperson for Activision Blizzard told Polygon that the company is considering options for possible appeals. Here’s the full explanation:

We respect the NLRB process, but we are disappointed that less than 10% of our employees make decisions that could have a significant impact on the future of the entire studio. We believe that direct relationships with team members are the best way to achieve personal and organizational goals. We are reviewing your legal options regarding possible legal remedies.

Raven Software’s QA staff expressed their excitement over the vote approval via social media. The group thanked supporters in a Twitter message. “Thank you to everyone who has supported our campaign from the first attack until now! Time for Democracy!”

Raven Software’s union push began in January after working with Communication Workers of America (CWA) to strike after a group of Raven Software contract workers were told they wouldn’t be part of the 500 new full-time workforce. – Time positions were converted last year. NLRB hearings on union scope began shortly after Activision Blizzard voluntarily refused to recognize the group.

Since then, Activision Blizzard has announced plans to convert an additional 1,000 QA staff to full-time positions, increase wages to $20 per hour, and provide bonuses and benefits to QA staff. Raven Software’s QA staff didn’t get the same impression they had back then. Activision Blizzard argued that this was due to “a legal obligation under national labor laws.”

QA and contractors in the video game industry are often referred to as unskilled departments. In August, Activision Blizzard Polygon QA staff said the QA contract cycle created a system that made it difficult for workers to get promoted or feel secure in their careers, with low salaries and extreme crises affecting their jobs common. So Friday’s victory for the Raven workers is a groundbreaking decision that has the potential to affect the video game industry as a whole.

Microsoft is preparing to acquire Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion under review by state regulators. Activision boss Bobby Kotik faced Activision Blizzard employee demanding resignation And the press (including this outlet) will keep the company running, at least until the Microsoft deal is complete.


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Activision QA workers win NLRB ruling, vote on union in April

Photo: Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Raven Software’s quality assurance employees will vote, as a 21-person unit, on whether to unionize, the National Labor Relations Board ruled on Friday. The decision comes after Raven’s owner, Activision Blizzard, challenged organization efforts and sought to make the entire 230-person studio vote on the union.
All eligible Raven Software QA workers will be mailed ballots on April 29, and the ballots will be counted on May 23, the NLRB said. Should a supermajority of eligible workers vote yes, their union, called Game Workers Alliance, will move into contract negotiations with Activision Blizzard.
Activision Blizzard and Raven Software QA workers have been awaiting a decision from the NLRB since a hearing in February. In testimony during that hearing, Raven Software management and workers were questioned on the studios’ restructuring, in January, as it applied to union-eligible workers.
An Activision Blizzard spokesperson told Polygon the company will review its options regarding a potential appeal. The full statement is as follows:

While we respect the NLRB process, we are disappointed that a decision that could significantly impact the future of our entire studio will be made by fewer than 10% of our employees. We believe a direct relationship with team members is the best path to achieving individual and company goals. We are reviewing legal options regarding a potential appeal.

On social media, Raven Software QA workers expressed excitement over the OK to vote. The group thanked supporters in a Twitter message: “We are so proud to announce that the NLRB ruled that our unit is eligible for election,” the group wrote. “Thank you to everyone supporting our campaign since our initial strike up until this very moment! Time for democracy!”

We are so proud to announce that the NLRB ruled that our unit is eligible for election! Thank you to everyone supporting our campaign since our initial strike up until this very moment! Time for democracy! #WeAreRaven #WeAreGWA
— Game Workers Alliance #WeAreGWA (@WeAreGWA) April 22, 2022

Raven Software’s union push, in partnership with the Communication Workers of America (CWA), kicked off in January following an employee walkout after a group of Raven Software contract workers were told they would not be among the 500 employees converted to new full-time positions last year. The NLRB hearing regarding the union’s scope began shortly after Activision Blizzard refused to voluntarily recognize the group.
Since then, Activision Blizzard announced its intention to convert another 1,000 QA workers to full-time positions, increase their pay to $20 per hour, and allow QA workers access to bonuses and benefits. Raven Software QA workers were not offered the same pay raises at that time; Activision Blizzard claimed that was because of “legal obligations under the National Labor Relations Act.”
QA and contract workers in the video game industry are often characterized as an unskilled department. In August, Activision Blizzard QA workers told Polygon that QA contract cycles created a system that made it hard for workers to advance or feel stable in their careers, on top of the low pay and intense crunch endemic to their jobs. The Raven workers’ victory on Friday is therefore a landmark decision, with the potential to influence the video game industry as a whole.
Microsoft is preparing to acquire Activision Blizzard in a $68.7 billion deal that will be reviewed by government regulators. Activision chief executive Bobby Kotick, who has faced calls for resignation from Activision Blizzard workers and the press (including this outlet), will continue to lead the company, at least until the Microsoft deal is finalized.

#Activision #workers #win #NLRB #ruling #vote #union #April

Activision QA workers win NLRB ruling, vote on union in April

Photo: Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Raven Software’s quality assurance employees will vote, as a 21-person unit, on whether to unionize, the National Labor Relations Board ruled on Friday. The decision comes after Raven’s owner, Activision Blizzard, challenged organization efforts and sought to make the entire 230-person studio vote on the union.
All eligible Raven Software QA workers will be mailed ballots on April 29, and the ballots will be counted on May 23, the NLRB said. Should a supermajority of eligible workers vote yes, their union, called Game Workers Alliance, will move into contract negotiations with Activision Blizzard.
Activision Blizzard and Raven Software QA workers have been awaiting a decision from the NLRB since a hearing in February. In testimony during that hearing, Raven Software management and workers were questioned on the studios’ restructuring, in January, as it applied to union-eligible workers.
An Activision Blizzard spokesperson told Polygon the company will review its options regarding a potential appeal. The full statement is as follows:

While we respect the NLRB process, we are disappointed that a decision that could significantly impact the future of our entire studio will be made by fewer than 10% of our employees. We believe a direct relationship with team members is the best path to achieving individual and company goals. We are reviewing legal options regarding a potential appeal.

On social media, Raven Software QA workers expressed excitement over the OK to vote. The group thanked supporters in a Twitter message: “We are so proud to announce that the NLRB ruled that our unit is eligible for election,” the group wrote. “Thank you to everyone supporting our campaign since our initial strike up until this very moment! Time for democracy!”

We are so proud to announce that the NLRB ruled that our unit is eligible for election! Thank you to everyone supporting our campaign since our initial strike up until this very moment! Time for democracy! #WeAreRaven #WeAreGWA
— Game Workers Alliance #WeAreGWA (@WeAreGWA) April 22, 2022

Raven Software’s union push, in partnership with the Communication Workers of America (CWA), kicked off in January following an employee walkout after a group of Raven Software contract workers were told they would not be among the 500 employees converted to new full-time positions last year. The NLRB hearing regarding the union’s scope began shortly after Activision Blizzard refused to voluntarily recognize the group.
Since then, Activision Blizzard announced its intention to convert another 1,000 QA workers to full-time positions, increase their pay to $20 per hour, and allow QA workers access to bonuses and benefits. Raven Software QA workers were not offered the same pay raises at that time; Activision Blizzard claimed that was because of “legal obligations under the National Labor Relations Act.”
QA and contract workers in the video game industry are often characterized as an unskilled department. In August, Activision Blizzard QA workers told Polygon that QA contract cycles created a system that made it hard for workers to advance or feel stable in their careers, on top of the low pay and intense crunch endemic to their jobs. The Raven workers’ victory on Friday is therefore a landmark decision, with the potential to influence the video game industry as a whole.
Microsoft is preparing to acquire Activision Blizzard in a $68.7 billion deal that will be reviewed by government regulators. Activision chief executive Bobby Kotick, who has faced calls for resignation from Activision Blizzard workers and the press (including this outlet), will continue to lead the company, at least until the Microsoft deal is finalized.

#Activision #workers #win #NLRB #ruling #vote #union #April


Synthetic: Vik News

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