Lucasfilm worker has a bad feeling about tech firm salaries
A Lucasfilm employee has accused several big-name tech companies of conspiring to drive down employee wages.
The case alleges that Adobe, Apple, Google, Intel, Intuit, Lucasfilm and Pixar violated antitrust laws by “conspiring to fix the pay of their employees and entering into ‘No Solicitation’ agreements with each other”.
The claimant said he had been affected by a series of top-level agreements aimed at keeping a lid on wages. “My colleagues at Lucasfilm and I applied our skills, knowledge, and creativity to make the company an industry leader,” said Siddharth Hariharan, who brought the case to court.
These companies … must take responsibility for their misconduct
“It’s disappointing that, while we were working hard to make terrific products that resulted in enormous profits for Lucasfilm, senior executives of the company cut deals with other premiere high tech companies to eliminate competition and cap pay for skilled employees.”
The complaint seeks compensation and damages for the alleged anti-competitive employment practices. The law firm behind the case believes it can put a figure on the deflationary effect of the alleged deals.
“Competition in the labour market results in better salaries, enhanced career opportunities for employees, and better products for consumers,” said lead lawyer Joseph Saveri.
“We estimate that because of reduced competition for their services, compensation for skilled employees at Adobe, Apple, Google, Intel, Intuit, Lucasfilm and Pixar was reduced by 10% to 15%. These companies… must take responsibility for their misconduct.”
The complaint for damages follows an investigation last year by the US Department of Justice into similar misconduct by the defendants, after which they agreed to end such agreements.
The complaint claims the conspiracy consisted of agreements not to actively recruit each other’s staff and a deal to provide notification when making an offer to another’s employee, without the knowledge or consent of that employee.
The companies also agreed to cap pay packages offered to prospective employees at the initial offer, the lawsuit claims.