Warzone quality testers pressure Activision with new union
Call of Duty: Warzone’s striking quality testers are now pressuring Activision Blizzard to meet demands by forming a union. Raven Software’s QA team is giving management five days to recognize their union before taking things to the federal government.
Call of Duty: Warzone’s management drama has been well-documented over the past months. From Activision Blizzard’s overarching ‘frat-boy culture’ lawsuit to Warzone studio Raven Software’s striking Quality Assurance testers, the company’s internal issues were spotlighted prior to Microsoft’s shock acquisition.
Now, the Raven QA team’s labor dispute appears to be reaching a turning point. While Warzone continues to be marred by bugs and gameplay issues, the studio’s striking quality team is pushing forward into unionization (as revealed by the CWA).
Having earned enough signatures for a majority, the QA department is forming the Game Workers Alliance union. They’re now waiting for management to formally recognize their unionization.
Warzone quality testers form new union
QA Testers at Raven Software asked to be a recognized union within Activision Blizzard pic.twitter.com/jWKlNEOcjR
— Dexerto (@Dexerto) January 21, 2022
Among the reasons for forming their union, the GWA referenced “recent layoffs, excessive overtime, low pay, expectation to relocate and allegations of toxic corporate culture at their parent company” (per the Washington Post).
The aforementioned layoffs are also the origin of the ongoing strike, which began back in early-December.
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If Activision Blizzard do not voluntarily recognize the union by the end of January 25, the GWA is prepared to “file for a union election through the National Labor Relations Board.” This would entail working with the federal government to institute collective bargaining.
“We formed @WeAreGWA because my colleagues and I want to have our voices heard and we want to see changes that reflect the wants and needs of both the gaming community and the workers who create these incredible products.” – Brent Reel, QA Lead at Raven.https://t.co/WLwYxl2TKw
— CWA (@CWAUnion) January 21, 2022
Speaking about the decision, Raven’s QA lead Brent Reel explained that “we want to see changes that reflect the wants and needs of both the gaming community and the workers who create these incredible products.”
So far, Activision have yet to respond to any of the demands and complaints. Further, the CWA has accused them of ‘using surveillance and intimidation tactics, including hiring notorious union busters, to silence workers.’