Blizzard Albany Announces Union Bid, Forms Albany Game Workers Alliance
Blizzard Albany’s quality assurance testers (formerly Vicarious Visions) have applied for a representation election to the National Labor Relations Board. The workers, known as the Albany Game Workers Alliance, have asked Activision Blizzard to recognize their union.
Blizzard Albany ( Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater and Diablo I: Resurrected ) is the second group of workers to request representation with the Communications Workers of America. The Raven Software QA team made company history in May by becoming the first Activision Blizzard-certified union through a 19-3 vote. The Albany Game Workers Alliance aims to achieve fair compensation, and better benefits, addressing title disparities and protocols around crunch periods.
Workers at the company are still organizing despite what the CWA called Polygon Activision Blizzard based on the “anti-union playbook.”
Amanda Laven, the associate test analyst, stated that there are many issues in the videogame industry that go unnoticed. This is because people see our work as a hobby rather than a job. Quality assurance workers deserve fair treatment and proper compensation for their work. This is why we formed a union. My co-workers and I will build the Albany Game Workers Alliance/CWA to give us a platform for our voices because we know that having a place at the table will give us structure, power, and a way forward for improving our workplace. Management won’t be able to ignore us anymore; our union will.
The CWA reports that 95% of QA testers signed the vision statement asking Activision Blizzard to recognize their union. Another Albany studio test analyst, Brock Davis, called Raven Software colleagues inspiring after winning their bid.
Activision Blizzard workers also coordinate and advocate for ABetterABK initiatives. The newly formed Worker Committee Against Sex and Gender Discrimination will hold a walkout on Thursday, JJuly 21. The committee is calling for better protection for LGBTQIA+ workers and their families in the wake of the Roe v. WWade’sUS Supreme Court ruling.
July 22marks, one year since the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing sued Activision Blizzard over its “rat-boy” culture. Activision Blizzard bizarrely claimed it had not done anything wrong since the news broke about the lawsuit. However, privates at Activision Blizzard seem to disagree. The Activision Blizzard board decided to reelect him, despite complaints about Bobby Kotick, CEO, and his egregious behavior regarding public coverage. It also refused to include an employee representative on the board.