Another Activision Blizzard studio, Proletariat, is looking to unionize.
Proletariat, an Activision Blizzard division in charge of World of Warcraft production, has begun organizing a union with the Communication Workers of America. This would be the third studio from this corporation to join the union, following Blizzard Albany and Raven Software.
This unionization drive is distinct in one important way. The Raven Software and Blizzard Albany unionization campaigns targeted QA Testing employees. Meanwhile, the Proletariat is attempting to build a “wall-to-wall” union. In other words, they aim to organize all personnel outside management, such as engineers, animators, quality assurance workers, and producers. If the CWA is successful in its quest, the unit will have 57 members.
The proletariat was purchased for an unknown sum in June 2022. The firm has been working on the World of Warcraft development pipeline since its takeover. The studio now aspires to become Activision Blizzard’s third unionized studio. In an emailed statement, Dustin Yost, a Proletariat software programmer, stated:
When we learned that Blizzard intended to buy Proletariat earlier this year, we debated how we might maintain the incredible culture we’ve developed here.
We can ensure that we can continue to perform our best work and create creative experiences at the cutting edge of game development by creating a union and negotiating a contract.
The Proletariat Workers Alliance claims that through its union campaign, it hopes to keep business advantages, including its healthcare plan, policy on permitting remote work, and “flexible PTO policy” in place. The group also wants to formalize professional development opportunities and policies on diversity, equity, and inclusion.
It also tries to reduce any purported assumption that overtime is “necessary” to provide a “transparent” mechanism for reporting wrongdoing and improving communication regarding remuneration.
Will Proletariat’s union influence other Activision Blizzard studios? Time will only tell. One thing is sure: the winds of change are growing more ferocious at the corporation now being purchased by Microsoft.