Activision Blizzard Shareholders Reject Employee Board Seat TechCrunch

As Activision Blizzard faces numerous sexual harassment lawsuits and investigations, employee activists have gathered to get a seat on the board of directors to represent the voice of the workforce. Despite big wins, as testers of Raven Software QA, an Activision division, won the first union elections at a major US gaming company, shareholders rejected the organizers’ request to give workers a voice on the board. Only 5% of shareholders voted to extend a board seat for employees.

The bad news for activist workers didn’t stop there. In November, a Wall Street Journal report found that top executives at Activision Blizzard had failed to notify the board of directors of alleged rape at the company, and a minority group of shareholders demanded that board directors Brian Kelly and Robert Morgado retire by the end of 2021. to go. months after that deadline, they were re-elected to the board of directors, along with controversial CEO Bobby Kotick.

However, shareholders approved a proposal from New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli that would require the gambling giant to share information about employee compensation, the total number of sexual harassment settlements, the total number of pending complaints and general progress in improving the security system. corporate culture.

This proposal could force Activision Blizzard to take a measure of responsibility. But this is also a corporate board that has investigated itself and found that it has done nothing wrong, other than “a few substantiated cases of gender harassment”. And yet there are many reports of toxic behavior, attempted union breakdown and unrest among the employees at Activision Blizzard.

As more tech workers achieve historic firsts in union organizing — such as the union of an Apple Store this week — the movement, led by Raven Software QA testers, may continue within Activision Blizzard. Microsoft, the suspected buyer of Activision Blizzard, last week signed a labor neutrality deal with the Communication Workers of America, which helped Raven Software employees unionize. Under that agreement, Microsoft will not actively try to dissuade employees from joining unions.