Jan 24, 2022 - Economy

Activision worker strike ends pending union recognition

Photo of two Call of Duty video game boxes and one Xbox One controller

Activision Blizzard's Call of Duty: Modern Warfare video game. Photo: Michael Ciaglo/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Employees at Call of Duty developer Raven Software have ended their strike after nearly seven weeks.

The details: Workers announced the news over the weekend on Twitter, noting that the strike has ended "pending the recognition of our union."

  • "We have asked to be recognized under GWA, *pending* refers to pending response from leadership," the group said in a follow-up tweet. "Either positive or negative. We are acting in good faith and asking for good faith."
  • Unused money from the workers' strike fund will be put toward future organizing and collective action efforts.

The big picture: Employees announced their intent to unionize on Friday under the name Game Workers Alliance.

  • Activision Blizzard and its corresponding companies, including Raven, will become part of Microsoft, pending a $69 billion acquisition.
  • Indie studio Vodeo became the first North American studio to unionize last December.

Raven Software employees walked out in December in support of roughly a dozen Quality Assurance contractors who were told their contracts would not be renewed; the company has yet to bring those employees back.

What's next: Employees in the Quality Assurance department specifically are asking Activision Blizzard's management to voluntarily recognize their union.

  • If the company refuses to do so, QA workers can still push forward an election under the National Labor Relations Board; if a majority is in favor, the company must legally recognize the union.
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