Activision studio scraps union plans after “confrontational tactics” of CEO


Employees of Activision Blizzard-owned Proletariat have reportedly scrapped plans to form a union after CEO Seth Sivak reportedly used “confrontational tactics”.

Proletariat was acquired by Activision Blizzard last July, enlisting the 100-strong studio to handle various World of Warcraft projects, including the dragon flight extension.

Last month, staff at Proletariat announced their intention to form a union, with the Proletariat Workers Alliance looking to remote work as a permanent option, better communication about pay and overtime guarantees would never be mandatory (via Eurogamer).

“We strive to be a beloved game studio with a diverse team, doing our best work and creating innovative experiences in game development. We are unionizing to protect this mission and to set the studio up for success as we move into the next chapter of Proletariat by joining forces with Activision Blizzard,” it said.

However, it has now been revealed by the Communication Workers Of America (CWA) that those plans have now been dropped. “Unfortunately, Proletariat CEO Seth Sivak chose to follow Activision Blizzard’s lead and responded to the workers’ desire to form a union with confrontational tactics,” the statement said.

“Like many founders, he took the workers’ concerns as a personal attack and held a series of rallies that demoralized and disempowered the group, making free and fair elections impossible.”

“As we have seen in Microsoft’s Zenimax studio, there is another way forward, one that empowers employees through a free and fair process, without employer harassment or manipulation,” the CWA continued. “We will continue to advocate with video game industry workers for better working conditions, higher standards and a union voice.”

In December, Quality Assurance (QA) employees at Blizzard’s Albany office officially unionized after several months of resistance from Activision leadership.

In August, Activision Blizzard was accused of taking “the low road” in an attempt to stop the union, and GWA Albany alleged that Activision Blizzard was trying to make a “clear and conscious decision to deny us our basic labor rights”. In November, Activision Blizzard was accused of trying to “silence workers’ voices” when it attempted a last-minute seizure of ballots cast during the Albany union vote.

In October, Communications Workers of America filed suit against Activision Blizzard over unfair labor practices, accusing communications chief Lulu Cheng Meservey of “threatening to withhold pay raises and make improvements to unionized workers” in a company-wide lawsuit. Slack message.

The same month, the National Labor Relations Board found that Activision Blizzard was illegally retaliating against union members by withholding their pay raises.

In other news, Justin Roiland reigned as CEO of Squanch Games following reports that he had previously been accused of domestic violence.

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