Members of the Activision Blizzard Workers Alliance are taking the next step in their push for work conditions to change and have organized a “Strike Fund” on GoFundMe to prepare for an eventual strike. They’re also taking steps toward unionization.
This announcement comes alongside an article from Shannon Liao of the Washington Post, which reports that Activision Blizzard management informed workers that those who strike from today onward won’t be paid or will need to use their paid time off.
The Strike Fund was created to supplement “wages lost from the work stoppage, as well as to assist in the potential relocation of Raven Software workers who were forced to move without financial assistance at the insistence of Activision Blizzard.” This latest walkout, one of several that have occurred at Activision Blizzard this year, comes in response to several QA testers being unexpectedly laid off at Raven Software this past week.
In addition to the planned walkout, members of the AB Workers Alliance are asking all employees to sign union authorization cards, which could lead to the formation of an official union in the near future. If this happens, this could be the first official workers union in the non-unionized video games industry.
This will be the third employee walkout at Activision Blizzard in less than half a year. The first one occurred in the wake of the State of California labor department’s lawsuit against Activision Blizzard stemming from allegations of sexual harassment, gender discrimination, and retaliation. The second occurred after the Wall Street Journal reported that CEO Bobby Kotick knew about some of the allegations from the lawsuit and even protected employees accused of harassment.
The Activision Blizzard Workers Alliance’s strike fund has earned over $50,000 in just 12 hours, with a goal of $1 million set.