Microsoft Pledges to Respect Activision Blizzard Unionization Efforts

    Photo: Getty Images [via Observer]

    The Facts

    • Microsoft has committed itself to a "neutral approach" toward unionizing employees at Activision Blizzard King (ABK), a video game company it's acquiring for $69B.

    • Under the agreement, employees will no longer need to petition the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) for an election to unionize. Instead, the process of unionizing will be expedited and overseen by a neutral third party.

    The Spin

    Narrative A

    This new deal will give a much-needed voice to Activision employees. The video game industry and major tech companies have been slow to organize, but this deal marks a significant step forward in protecting workers' rights and collectivizing employee power.

    Narrative B

    This agreement is great PR for Microsoft. It also isn't as risky a move for the company as it would be for an organization like Amazon, which employs hundreds of thousands of warehouse workers. Microsoft employs largely well-compensated, white-collar workers who are unlikely to unionize.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 50% chance that less than 13% of Americans will be represented by a labor union in 2030, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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