In a huge win for gaming industry workers, employees at eBay-owned company TCGplayer voted by a count of 136 - 87 on March 10th to join CWA Local 1123!
This was a tough campaign, during which TCGplayer workers fought off heavy anti-union attacks from the employer. CWA recently filed an unfair labor practice against TCGPlayer, accusing the company of interfering with the unionizing process and coercing employees engaging in protected and concerted union activity. TCGUnion-CWA is also waiting to hear from the NLRB on several unresolved unfair labor practice charges which include the surveillance of employees who wore insignia identifying them as supporters of the union by TCGPlayer managers, as well as illegally forcing employees to attend mandatory anti-union meetings to influence their decision about whether or not to join a union.
TCGPlayer is one of the largest online marketplaces for verification services, card games, comics, and collectible trading cards. It was acquired by eBay in November 2022, and the workers, who formed the union TCGUnion-CWA, are the first group of eBay workers to unionize in the U.S.
"I joined the union effort at TCGPlayer because I wanted to raise up the voices of my peers and correct the existing imbalance of power,” said Paul Neri, a worker at TCGPlayer. “This has been the hardest thing I’ve ever fought for, but knowing that my colleagues came out in droves to stand together against efforts to silence our voice and erase our collective power made the fight worth it. With our new union, we will be a united force for the betterment of our workplace and so many others.”
In 2020, workers at TCGPlayer made attempts to form a union, but were hit with massive pressure and pushback from the company, who brought in Littler Mendelson, a notorious union-busting firm, to spread disinformation and in the last weeks leading up to the election. Workers pulled their petition with the National Labor Relations Board due to the pandemic. In January 2023, TCGPlayer workers restarted their organizing and filed for a union election with CWA, becoming the first group of eBay workers in the U.S. to seek formal recognition. They navigated daily anti-union meetings, surveillance, threats, misinformation, and flagrant violations of the law to vote overwhelmingly in favor of unionizing.
The union-represented group will include all 246 non-supervisory workers responsible for ensuring that every shipment in and out of TCGPlayer is completed accurately and that they match quality standards.