This Move Is a Good-Faith Gesture, Employment Group Says
In the light of the formation of a union, Raven Software’s QA department has called off their strike. At least, for now.
This will make a tentative end to the near two-month strike. Originally, the QA department of Raven Software, who are known for their work for Call of Duty, walked out after the termination of a dozen of their fellow employees. While this had been legal action, it was also not an ethical one, as all employees were given the impression that they would be kept on in permanent positions in the near future. There had been little reason to fire any employee, as the months prior had been highly successful.
There is a catch though to this good-faith gesture. And that is Blizzard’s, and by extension, Raven Softwares, accommodation of their union. The Game Workers Alliance. Activision Blizzard already has a deadline of January 25, 2022, to voluntarily recognize the union. After that, The Game Workers Alliance, (GWA) tend to ramp things up by going to National Labor Relations Board to file for election.
Considering that prior to the formation of a union, there had been anti-union talk by the upper management to their employees, it’s difficult to say if they will recognize the formation of said union. It may be a no, considering past patterns.
A Better ABK was quick to ensure that word would spread through Twitter, saying this: “Please no not misquote here media: we have asked to be recognized under GWA, *pending* refers to pending response from leadership. Either positive or negative. We are acting in good faith and asking for good faith.”
Please no not misquote here media: we have asked to be recognized under GWA, *pending* refers to pending response from leadership. Either positive or negative. We are acting in good faith and asking for good faith. https://t.co/H8dOjsaXjO
— ABetterABK 💙 ABK Workers Alliance (@ABetterABK) January 23, 2022
It seems like a simple request and one that may have drastic consequences if neither Raven Software QA employees nor the greater part of Blizzard Software employees is recognized. It may even be possible that they will walk out again- and that could affect the talks with Microsoft about Activision-Blizzard’s acquisition.
But, as we’ve seen from past experience, upper management at Blizzard do not always make the smartest, nor the most empathic, decisions when it comes to their employees.