Microsoft video game testers form the company’s first union in the US

Por Daniel Wiessner

Jan 3 – A group of about 300 video game testers at Microsoft Corp subsidiary Zenimax Studios have voted to unionize, the Communication Workers of America reported Tuesday (CWA), which is something unprecedented for the technology giant in the United States.

The CWA He said Zenimax employees at four locations in Maryland and Texas voted overwhelmingly to join the union, but he did not provide a recount. Zenimax owns major video game franchises, such as The Elder Scrolls and Fallout.

Microsoft did not immediately respond to a request for comment. He has said he would voluntarily recognize the union if workers voted to unionize.

Voluntarily agreeing to bargain allows Microsoft to avoid a formal election supervised by the US National Labor Relations Board and the legal battles that often follow.

The president of CWAChristopher Shelton, said in a statement that Microsoft has distanced itself from other technology companies that have discouraged union campaigns.

“Microsoft is charting a different path that will reinforce its corporate culture and its ability to serve its customers, and that should serve as a model for the industry and a model for regulators,” Shelton said.

In June, the company reached an agreement with the CWA to remain neutral on union organizing campaigns at Activision Blizzard Inc, which Microsoft intends to buy for $69 billion. Last month, US regulators filed a lawsuit to block the deal.

Game testers at Activision units Blizzard Albany and Raven Software voted in 2022 to join unions, amid complaints from the CWA that the company has threatened and retaliated against union supporters. Activision has denied any wrongdoing.

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