March 8, 2023: SIGCAS Works in Progress: Collective Action in Tech
March 8, 2023
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM EST
Presenters: Emily Mazo, Nataliya Nedzhvetska, and JS Tan (MIT Grad Student Union)
Since 2016, the number of collective actions taken by workers in the tech industry have risen dramatically. Kickstarter employees won union recognition from their company. Amazon workers led a cross tech-industry walkout to support the global climate strike. Googlers unionized, fought against increasing corporate hostility, and challenged their company’s unethical partnerships. There were more than a hundred publicly reported actions in 2019, some involving thousands of people. This is almost triple the number of actions we saw in 2018 and nine times the number in 2017. Our presentation will cover the rise of the tech workers movement, the motivations of tech workers in taking collective actions, and how the movement has changed since the mid-2010s. In this presentation we also discuss Collective Action in Tech, how it has supported the tech workers movement, and the challenges that tech workers face in organizing at their companies.