A new internal e-mail leaked by a former Activision Blizzard employee showcased the company’s latest attempt to discourage its workers from unionizing.
Jessica Gonzalez, a former Blizzard Entertainment employee, took to her personal Twitter account on Friday, Dec. 10 to post a screen cap of an e-mail sent around the company on her last day in office. The message came from Brian Bulatao, chief administrative officer at Activision Blizzard, around 9 a.m. PT (12 p.m. ET). In it, Bulatao engaged in what Gonzalez identified as “union-busting” behavior against the Communications Workers of America (CWA).
Unfortunately for him and the company as a whole, it appears that effort has backfired.
Leaked “Union-Busting” E-mail Pushes ActiBlizz Employees Over the Edge
“The leadership of Activision Blizzard supports your right, under [the] National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), to make your own decision about whether or not to join a union.” He wrote, going on to ask employees to “consider the consequences” of signing with CWA—namely the relinquishing of individual working conditions in favor of conditions of the whole body.
However, employees seem unconvinced of the company’s intentions. Several have taken issue with the last part of Bulatao’s message, in which he writes:
“Achieving our workplace culture aspirations will best occur through active, transparent dialogue between leaders and employees that we can act upon quickly…If we fail to achieve the workplace goals we have set forth—if we fail to do the things we’ve committed to doing—then of course you will still always have the right to engage with, and vote for, the CWA.”- Brian Bulatao, Activision Blizzard CAO
The primary sentiment voiced by several employees is that ActiBlizz has already horrendously failed in achieving those goals and thus is unworthy of the trust to correct itself without overhead. As one Twitter user put it: “Why start now? You’ve never shown an interest in helping prior to the threat of collective bargaining.”
In fact, some have stated that the e-mail was, “so bad I’ve seen several people on the fence say it pushed them to sign.”
For his part, Bulatao claimed that Blizzard is “working hard to create a more inclusive, supportive, and rewarding environment” thanks to employee input. He explained that the company has “converted 500 temporary employees to full-time workers…introduced a zero-tolerance policy…[and] made significant commitments to increase gender diversity.” ActiBlizz believes that a “direct dialogue between management and employees is essential to success,” according to him.
Regardless, if anecdotes from current and former employees are to be believed, the workers of Activision Blizzard are tired of waiting.