Raven QA Testers Become Union as Activision Illegally Threatens Staff

Months after Raven Software QA testers began the steps to become a union, a 22-person vote has been tallied. With 19 votes for and three votes against, the Game Workers Alliance is the first major union in the video game industry.

The next step in this process will be to negotiate a contract with Activision. That’s going to be a job much easier said than done. Activision, the parent company of Raven Software, failed to recognize the union. Now, allegations have come out that say they illegally threatened Raven staff. Bloomberg reports that according to the US labor board, Activision Blizzard enforced a social media policy that conflicts with workers’ rights.

The National Labor Relations Board will file an official complaint against Activision Blizzard unless they enter a settlement with the workers, according to NLRB press secretary Kayla Blado. Activision has yet to comment on the allegation or the Raven Software union vote tally at this time.

In a statement obtained by Fortune, The Communications Workers of America, who have been working with Raven workers on their union organization, vow that the allegations against Activision “will not go unanswered.”

The story of Raven Software is not the only attempt at unionization in the video game industry. While Raven QA union may be from one of the industry’s biggest studios, they are not the first. Vodeo Games formed the first union in the industry late last year. In April, we reported that Bioware QA contractors are also looking to unionize.

Activision is not alone in facing scrutiny and allegations of union-busting. Nintendo was charged with attempting to violate a worker’s right to unionize just last month.

Phil Spencer, the head of Xbox and soon owner of Activision Blizzard, has avoided discussing the topic of unions. Spencer claims that “I don’t have a lot of personal experience with unions” and that he will “be having conversations about what empowers (workers) to do their best work.”


Written by Jake Valentine

I am the Editor-In-Chief of BossLevelGamer. I'm also a lover of video games, food, and beer.

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