A supermajority of Sega of America’s employees have unionized
by Danny Craig ·
Workers at Sega of America have announced that they have now formed a union under the Communications Workers of America (CWA) and have requested that the company’s management voluntarily recognize the group.
- Staff at the company’s office in Irvine, CA, filed for an election with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) on April 24, which will take place only if Sega’s management refuses to voluntarily recognize the union. The new CWA-partnered union, going by the name Allied Employees Guild Improving Sega (AEGIS), consists of 144 employees across multiple departments, including QA, product development, marketing, localization, and live service, making it the largest multi-department union in the video game industry in the United States. ATLUS West, a subsidiary of Sega, is also confirmed to be included in the union according to a response from AEGIS.
- The union has outlined the following goals in its mission statement shared via its Twitter account, which it states are already in line with the existing values at the company:
- Higher base pay for all, following industry standards, with raises tied to the cost of living and inflation.
- Improved, stable benefits for all, including healthcare, retirement, remote work opportunities, and more.
- Increased, clearly outlined opportunities for advancement.
- Balanced workloads and schedules, and defined responsibilities for all positions.
- Adequate staffing of departments to end patterns of overwork.
- According to the mission statement, almost a third of the employees at Sega lack "full-time status, paid time off, proper training, or even bereavement leave," with the union being formed to help the affected departments create a "united front." Plans to unionize have been in the works for over a year, with Emma Geiger, a temp localization editor at the company, stating that remote work and siloed departments made the organization process take longer than expected.
Gaming unions formed in 2022–23:
- Following years of reports claiming that QA staff were mistreated, ZeniMax Media formed ZeniMax Workers United, with many other members of staff being forced to crunch during development periods, particularly during Fallout 76's development cycle. The union announced on April 25 that the first day of bargaining for its first contract with ZeniMax and its parent company, Microsoft, had begun.
- Studios Raven Software and Blizzard Albany announced that QA staff at each developer had formed unions, with Activision Blizzard opposing the decision. A spokesperson for the publisher stated that the company believes that an "important decision that will impact the entire Raven Software studio of roughly 350 people should not be made by 19 Raven employees.”