On Friday, news broke late that a group of QA employees at Activision Blizzard's Raven Software studio, the studio that handles Call of Duty: Warzone, were suddenly laid off without warning. There was outcry across worker groups, especially since these workers were not given reasons for their firings, and they were listed as in good standing.
As a result of these job cuts, a group of workers are walking out of work today in protest.. It’s the latest development in labor movement amid a suit of serious allegations and discrimination claims, including two prior walkouts following allegations, investigations, and lawsuits uncovered a history of discrimination, hostile work culture, and more serious allegations regarding covering up harassment and abuse.
The cuts at Raven affected about 12 temporary workers and came after weeks of overtime. The staff members that were fired we’re not really given any clarity on why. According to Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier, Activision Blizzard emailed a statement saying that it decided to end the contracts for 20 temporary workers as part of a restructuring effort and that they plan to convert about 500 temporary workers to full-time, but this adjustment was necessary.
Call of Duty: Warzone earns about $5 million a day according to an email written to management by Raven workers asking the company to reinstate those who were fired. Those participating in the walkout intend to keep up pressure and stand with their colleagues..
The letter to management also stresses that Raven has nearly 40 testers and the uncertainty still continues because while a few were promoted to full-time, a dozen people were laid off effective in January, while others were left uncertain about the future of their job status.
This uncertainty comes at a significant time where Activision Blizzardi s facing allegations, lawsuits, federal investigation, and even both workers’ and community petitions calling for CEO Bobby Kotick to step down or be removed after the abuses uncovered and further alleged in a recent Wall Street Journal report.