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  1. #81
    Quote Originally Posted by Grapemask View Post
    Incorrect.

    Like any person that exists in the real world, which is not a programmed computer simulation where you can only choose the dialogue options presented to you on the screen, he can tell his employees the way that he would like performance evaluations to be done, and tell the people above him "no, this is what we're doing, sorry." Maybe that leads to repercussions, but Blizzard has plenty of power on their side, from financial to public relations.
    You have NO clue how the real world works. He he can SAY he us against it, but has NO POWER to fo anything about it. Please at least understand a little about what you are talkinv about.

    Activision OWNS Blizzard. What they say goes. It would be like you going to your city mayor and telling them you are against a certain policy. You can VOICE your opinion, but you have no power to do anything.
    Last edited by Utrrabbit; 2023-01-24 at 04:21 PM.

  2. #82
    Quote Originally Posted by Plutarch78 View Post
    I’m all for a rewarding environment with a good work/life balance, but unions lost their usefulness a long time ago.
    Unions will always be relevant, because from the company point of view shareholders > employees.

    Quote Originally Posted by Grapemask View Post
    Like any person that exists in the real world, which is not a programmed computer simulation where you can only choose the dialogue options presented to you on the screen, he can tell his employees the way that he would like performance evaluations to be done, and tell the people above him "no, this is what we're doing, sorry." Maybe that leads to repercussions, but Blizzard has plenty of power on their side, from financial to public relations.
    This is very naive. The potential repercussions you allude to would in fact amount to a certainty of unemployment.

  3. #83
    Quote Originally Posted by Plutarch78 View Post
    unions lost their usefulness a long time ago.
    This whole post highlights the effectiveness of anti-union propaganda in America. Unions are alive and incredibly strong in pretty much the rest of the developed world and provide countless benefits that workers in America can only dream of having. Europe is striking as a result of the cost of living and energy crisis, and workers are surviving if not thriving in many industries while their equivalents in America are being plunged deeper into poverty and homelessness. My wife's union just secured a 9.6% pay rise and mine did similar. Know how much our product prices are being impacted? 0. No increase over previous years because of strong competition and monopoly busting. The people who felt the impact? C-Suite, Executives, and upper management. Both companies still projected to post healthy profits, just not as ridiculous as you'd see across the pond.

    Essentially every right and priviledge and protection you enjoy as an employee is the direct result of unions in the past.

    Heck, unions are so strong in some countries that they have a huge QoL edge over USA and have no minimum wage such as Sweden, Finland, Norway, Iceland, Denmark, Italy, and Switzerland.
    Last edited by God Save The King; 2023-01-24 at 04:36 PM.
    “You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”
    – C.S. Lewis

  4. #84
    Quote Originally Posted by Utrrabbit View Post
    You have NO clue how the real world works. He he can SAY he us against it, but has NO POWER to fo anything about it. Please at least understand a little about what you are talkinv about.

    Activision OWNS Blizzard. What they say goes. It would be like you going to your city mayor and telling them you are against a certain policy. You can VOICE your opinion, but you have no power to do anything.
    I manage the machine learning team at my job, so let me go ahead and stop you right there.

    The CEO and the CTO are both constantly telling me things they would like my team to do that I just don't agree with. I don't throw up my hands and say "well shoot, the boss said do it, guess we're doing it." I push back, I tell them why these are bad ideas, and often things end there. Sure, there are things that we don't get our way on - but often, I can cite the fact that our group is a significant part of what makes our product work, and screwing with the chefs is going to screw with the soup and that's going to screw with the outcome of our product. Saying these things doesn't get me fired, because they pay me to have a handle on this stuff.

    I'd like to kindly ask you guys to get off Blizzard's nuts. That small indie company stuff we throw around is supposed to be a joke.

  5. #85
    Quote Originally Posted by Elbob View Post
    ...that is not the purpose of stack ranking.
    It's almost as if unintended consequences are a thing.
    "There is a pervasive myth that making content hard will induce players to rise to the occasion. We find the opposite. " -- Ghostcrawler
    "The bit about hardcore players not always caring about the long term interests of the game is spot on." -- Ghostcrawler
    "Do you want a game with no casuals so about 500 players?"

  6. #86
    Quote Originally Posted by agentsi View Post
    I fully understand that issue. And I agree with you to an extent. But I do think humans can adapt to that environment(most environments), if anything, look at how we handle sports. I know, it is in theory just a game. But you're graded based on your results. If you play American football for example, and have a bad quarterback, as a wide receiver, your numbers aren't going to look great. What do you do? You make the most of every opportunity you get, to showcase your value.
    Football players are unionized and the least of them make far more money as a result. As such, he'd be able to voice his complaints far more effectively and a good deal louder (press conference level) were he in the NFL Players Association.

  7. #87
    Quote Originally Posted by agentsi View Post
    I fully understand that issue. And I agree with you to an extent. But I do think humans can adapt to that environment(most environments), if anything, look at how we handle sports. I know, it is in theory just a game. But you're graded based on your results. If you play American football for example, and have a bad quarterback, as a wide receiver, your numbers aren't going to look great. What do you do? You make the most of every opportunity you get, to showcase your value. As an employee, whether a warehouse associate, sales account manager, programmer, etc, there are a ton of factors that will either improve your performance or decrease it. What do you do? You adapt, you prioritize, and you learn how to make the most of your situation to show your value. Just because you got the job, IMO, doesn't mean you deserve to keep the job.

    Now, how do employees handle factors outside of their control? Maybe game development is slow, which is causing you to not meet deadlines in the art department. ANY "GOOD" Manager, will notice this, and acknowledge the fact that you can't get your work done because of someone else. It happens every day, I guarantee it. At Blizzard, at Riot ( I know it happens here, friends complain about it all the time), and every place of employment. I'm sure it's happening at your job now. But complaining about it without providing solutions will get you fired more than likely. Which is what I think happened to this guy at Blizzard. If he got fired for saying no and offered alternative measures to evaluate his staff, and still got fired, then he might have a case for wrongful termination. But if he just said no, and walked out, that not only isn't professional but its also disrespectful to your employer and warranted the result.
    I don't fully disagree with you. A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. It makes sense. The simple solution (as mentioned elsewhere in this thread) would be to unionize the games development industry.

  8. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nzx View Post
    Why does everyone act like this is a Blizzard problem and not something that exists across just about every corporate company on the planet? This isn't 'typical toxic blizzard' it's 'typical corporate employment' and isn't even really that bad. I'm sorry, but if someone else performs better than you do they deserve a greater share of pay increases/promotion opportunities/whatever. If you were raised on participation trophies, welcome to the real world. If everyone in your team did well, someone did less well than the others, and it's your job as a leader to explain that to those above you and to front foot it with the person themselves.

    tl;dr this is someone complaining that they are incapable of managing a team very well and an internet full of unemployed teenagers jumping at the chance to jerk each other off about 'big company bad'. If this hurts your feelings, thanks for proving me right.
    The employee grading system fundamentally functions under three presumptions. The first is that there's a substantial section of employees that are grossly incompetent and ultimately end up being more of a hindrance than anything else. I'm talking the people that will do the absolute bare minimum, if even that, have poor attendance, etc. I've worked with no shortage of such people over the past couple of years, so they do exist. However, as mentioned in the post below this one, there's a possibility that virtually zero such employees exist within a certain group. The second presumption is that there are better candidates to replace the bad ones. With the job market the way it is, this isn't necessarily guaranteed, particularly in less desirable jobs (which, despite all the PR hits its taken, Blizz, or any big game company for that matter, are not in that category). The third is that labor can be definitively measured. As also mentioned in previously-mentioned post, this is a bit trickier to measure compared to, say, manual labor. Not every bugfix is built equal. Same can be said for asset creation, lines of game code, etc, etc. So measuring employee performance in an objective fashion is difficult at best. That's nothing to say about the fact that the person doing the evaluation may be more inclined to give more favorable grades to people they personally like, which is a whole different rabbithole.

    So while I do agree with the system on paper, there's no shortage of potential issues with it that warrant criticism. Whether Birmingham was simply taking a principled stand, or there was some other stuff going on in the background, that's something that may or may not end up unraveling in the coming time.

  9. #89
    Why would any one ever want a "stack ranking" system tho?

    Reading alittle about it and it sounds very horrible

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  10. #90
    Merely a Setback FelPlague's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grapemask View Post
    Incorrect.

    Like any person that exists in the real world, which is not a programmed computer simulation where you can only choose the dialogue options presented to you on the screen, he can tell his employees the way that he would like performance evaluations to be done, and tell the people above him "no, this is what we're doing, sorry." Maybe that leads to repercussions, but Blizzard has plenty of power on their side, from financial to public relations.
    Lol that is not how reality works mate.

  11. #91
    Quote Originally Posted by Nalam the Venom View Post
    Why would any one ever want a "stack ranking" system tho?

    Reading alittle about it and it sounds very horrible
    Is it horrible for the employer though? That is the deciding factor

  12. #92
    Quote Originally Posted by Grapemask View Post
    I manage the machine learning team at my job, so let me go ahead and stop you right there.

    The CEO and the CTO are both constantly telling me things they would like my team to do that I just don't agree with. I don't throw up my hands and say "well shoot, the boss said do it, guess we're doing it." I push back, I tell them why these are bad ideas, and often things end there. Sure, there are things that we don't get our way on - but often, I can cite the fact that our group is a significant part of what makes our product work, and screwing with the chefs is going to screw with the soup and that's going to screw with the outcome of our product. Saying these things doesn't get me fired, because they pay me to have a handle on this stuff.

    I'd like to kindly ask you guys to get off Blizzard's nuts. That small indie company stuff we throw around is supposed to be a joke.
    This just sounds more like you have a reasonable boss.

    Like, you do realize they can hear your criticism and just go "okay but we're not doing it your way regardless", and then fire you if you keep trying to activately go against what they say to do, right?

  13. #93
    Quote Originally Posted by Grapemask View Post
    I manage the machine learning team at my job, so let me go ahead and stop you right there.

    The CEO and the CTO are both constantly telling me things they would like my team to do that I just don't agree with. I don't throw up my hands and say "well shoot, the boss said do it, guess we're doing it." I push back, I tell them why these are bad ideas, and often things end there. Sure, there are things that we don't get our way on - but often, I can cite the fact that our group is a significant part of what makes our product work, and screwing with the chefs is going to screw with the soup and that's going to screw with the outcome of our product. Saying these things doesn't get me fired, because they pay me to have a handle on this stuff.

    I'd like to kindly ask you guys to get off Blizzard's nuts. That small indie company stuff we throw around is supposed to be a joke.
    I feel bad for any employee who works for you than if that is how you run things.

    Also just cause your bosses are cool with it means nothing. At the end of the day they are incharge and no matter what you say whar they want goes.

  14. #94
    Stood in the Fire BrokenRavens's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Osmeric View Post
    Another thing this does is encourage the hiring of bad people so they can be sacrificed at stack rank time, to protect the actual performers.
    That’s fairly innocent to what I was thinking of.

    I wonder when a “my supervisor only put me in the bottom 5% because I refused to sleep with him” story will arise.

    Or… I was picked for the bottom 5% because the other guys go out drinking with him, or he didn’t like my sports team, etc.

  15. #95
    Jesus its scary how hardcore the american propaganda machine is in indoctrinating average people into servitude.

    As soon as you say "capitalism is flawed" their blood pressure skyrockets and they start spewing red-white-&-blue dogma.

    Third world countries have better worker rights than what goes on in Usa but the very victim of the flawed system is the first to defend his abusers, thanks to indoctrination.

  16. #96
    The Undying Lochton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Osmeric View Post
    https://www.pcgamer.com/blizzard-fir...uation-policy/

    Brian Birmingham was fired before he could quit. He refused to go along with "stack ranking".
    Sadly, the method they used is very common among larger companies, it is a way to control the pay as well. Birmingham was against that and stood up, unlike thousands of others through other companies who just followed suit to secure that pay. Hopefully, he'll find a better position or be rehired after the drama but in a better situation.
    FOMO: "Fear Of Missing Out", also commonly known as people with a mental issue of managing time and activities, many expecting others to fit into their schedule so they don't miss out on things to come. If FOMO becomes a problem for you, do seek help, it can be a very unhealthy lifestyle..

  17. #97
    Quote Originally Posted by Exkrementor View Post
    Yeah, no shit. Wotlk is running worse than a polish private server.
    This right here is what I always go to.

    "Oh, that's funny. I seem to remember Hodir having an animation that plays whenever his ice drops from the ceiling."

    *checks old Tankspot video*

    "Well, maybe something about that animation is just really hard to replicate even for a large company like Blizzard"

    *checks videos of Hodir kills from 2017*

    "Well... uh...."

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Lochton View Post
    Hopefully, he'll find a better position or be rehired after the drama but in a better situation.
    Doubt it. He went on strike basically indicating that he wasn't quitting but just wouldn't work until that policy was changed. They fired him on the spot.

    I think their stance is pretty clear on the subject matter.

  18. #98
    Quote Originally Posted by Osmeric View Post
    It's almost as if unintended consequences are a thing.
    yeah but ive also never even heard of some one hiring low quality employees on purpose to fire them later via stack ranking. Stack ranking is usually used to boost average employee quality. I suspect you have never really interacted with stack ranking aside maybe being on the graded side. The general concept IS about churning your bottom 5-15% and replacing them but you don't want to replace with more fodder you want to replace with average to above average, when the employees are ranked comparative to each other. This creates a new bottom 15% by raising the average quality of employee so each time you cycle employees you gain quality.

    Now I have issues with stack ranking but you should come at it with real criticisms not what sounds like some BS you just made up. I have no qualms about this guy taking a stand and refusing to stack rank his employees. Slapping a grade on every person can feel pretty degrading as if they don't have good variable strengths and weaknesses(which is why I'm not a huge fan of the process) but for people in leadership being able to honestly evaluate your team and which employees are your strong/weak points is very important.
    Last edited by Elbob; 2023-01-24 at 06:16 PM.

  19. #99
    Quote Originally Posted by Aleksej89 View Post
    Jesus its scary how hardcore the american propaganda machine is in indoctrinating average people into servitude.

    As soon as you say "capitalism is flawed" their blood pressure skyrockets and they start spewing red-white-&-blue dogma.

    As a fellow American Kool-Aid drinker raised in the 90s-

    Fuck this Capitalism shit. Well, actually mostly just fuck publicly owned companies.

    I'm sure privately owned companies are responsible for just as much bullshit corporate greed as publicly traded ones, but publicly traded companies are basically REQUIRED to scumbag their employees and customers at every possible opportunity because they have a fiduciary responsibility to their shareholders.

    I've been slowly realizing what this means over the last few years, and it's a grim outlook for any of these companies IMO. They get caught in an endless cycle of trying to cannibalize themselves to inflate their profit numbers as much as possible. The only thing that matters to the investors is the stock price. It's unsustainable. Eventually, you're GOING to hit your peak unless you start doing some scummy shit. When everybody in the entire world either owns your product or has no interest in ever owning your product, what do you do?
    You can go the Apple route and constantly make slight tweaks and yearly releases while also making other features obsolete or have your hardware set to die after 2-3 years.

    You can go the GEICO route and start slowly merging your lowest call center positions with higher and higher levels thereby dramatically increasing the work load of your reps without a substantial pay increase.

    Like, yes, a privately owned company is still going to want to maximize profits, but they don't NEED to be increasing profits year over year. It's the goal, but they can simply remain in a holding pattern.

  20. #100
    Quote Originally Posted by DarkAmbient View Post
    When he says "They put us under pressure to deliver both expansions early" is he talking about TBC and Wrath, or Wrath and Dragonflight?
    I read this as Wrath and Dragonflight. I have long believed Blizzard to be releasing products too frequent in order to boost the Activision earnings call numbers to impact the share price. Reason why Blizzard was so successful in the past was their willingness to delay or cancel products that did not hit a quality bar. That has been gone since around Cataclysm. Now they release a new expansion every 2 years like clock work regardless of if it is ready or not and this will continue as long as analysts believe the WoW ROI percentage is higher than they would receive investing elsewhere.

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