Blizzard employees complain of pay disparities amid record earnings for parent company Activision

By Sherif Saed
6 August 2020 13:38 GMT

Just days before Activision Blizzard revealed how profitable the last quarter has been, Blizzard staff were protesting wage disparities.

According to a Bloomberg report, Blizzard employees have been circulating a spreadsheet internally to anonymously compare salaries.

For context, Blizzard found in a survey conducted in 2019 that over half of its staff are unhappy with their salaries. Blizzard’s response to the results of the survey was implemented in July, according to Bloomberg. It came in the form of raises and readjustment of salaries for some employees.

Unsatisfied with the results, Blizzard’s workers began tracking all the readjustments across the studio, to measure the increase in pay. The results, according to the report, were well below what they expected after answering the survey. Some of the raises were less than 10%, particularly for those in quality assurance and customer service roles.

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This all came to light just a couple of days before parent company Activision Blizzard revealed its Q2 earnings, in which the publisher noted record revenue, boosted by the increased demand activity its various games as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

This news brings back memories of the company’s 2019 decision to lay off around 800 of its staff on the same day it announced breaking new revenue records. Activision Blizzard routinely compensates its CEO and top executives very handsomely, something an investment group called out as being excessive, particularly in light of layoffs and the current state of staff wages at Blizzard.

For now, there is not much employees could do without collective bargaining, one of the benefits of being part of a union.

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