Throughout the months of the labor scandal at Activision-Blizzard, the company has made it clear that it will not go to great lengths to prevent a union from forming. Proof of this are the recent structural and administrative changes made at Raven Software, a studio where the pro-union movement began, and now the company’s position has given rise to talk after the statements of one of its directors.
Activision insists on saying no to unions
In the framework of the tense relationship between Activision-Blizzard and its workers, the ABetterABK group account, which advocates for the well-being of employees, shared the capture that came to the hands of Jessica Gonzalez, founder and leader of this movement, where it is shown the message sent by Chris Arends, vice president of quality of the company. In this communication, where curiously there is no way to respond to the directors registered as administrators of the group, Arends insists that there are no reasons to continue nurturing the idea of a union.
VP of QA at Activision just posted this shit in company slack LOL this was posted in a channel where you can’t reply to threads. Sad… pic.twitter.com/oDmG4u9dfq
– Jessica Gonzalez #WeAreGWA (@_TechJess) January 31, 2022
At first, Arends’ message points out that the changes made at Raven Software have nothing to do with the union movement started by quality control workers. Likewise, on behalf of the company, it denies any information about unions and union procedures, inviting employees to look for it themselves since there will be nothing on the part of the company.
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Later, the director of Activision-Blizzard took a dramatic tone and assured that in case a union is formed, the company will not be able to produce those “great world-class games”: “a union does nothing to help us produce games of world-class, and the negotiation process is often slow, often reduces flexibility, and can be confrontational and lead to negative publicity. All of this could hurt our ability to continue making great games.”
On the other hand, Arends points out that the existence of a union would mean a problem in communication between the company and its workers: “in a direct relationship model, where you and the company share objectives, the agreement is quick and the company can change quickly. In a bargaining model, agreement and change happen quickly only when the union has exactly the same goals and no additional goals that it would rather insist on.”
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