Staff at Raven Software vote to form Game Workers Alliance union

Staff at Raven Software vote to form Game Workers Alliance union

Employees in Raven Software's QA department have voted to form the Game Workers Alliance union.

As reported by Bloomberg's Jason Schreier, 19 members of staff voted in favour with three voting against. This is the first time a major union has been formed in the US video games market.

"Next, this group of Raven testers will set out to negotiate a contract with Activision. Based on how Activision has reacted to Raven's union efforts so far, safe to say the coming negotiations will be neither short nor easy," Schreier wrote.

"One sign that Activision won't make this easy for Raven testers: In recent weeks, as management encouraged employees to vote against unionizing, the company repeatedly mentioned that it can take a very long time for a union to negotiate its first contract."

Back in January, Raven staff announced their intent to form a union in the wake of 12 members of staff being laid off. Parent company Activision Blizzard chose not to voluntarily recognise this union. The National Labour Relations Board (NRLB) gave Raven staff the thumbs up to conduct a vote last month.

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Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.