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From #1reasonwhy to #1reasontobe, and 1,600 Comments In-Between

Some thoughts on the fiery discussion prompted at Giant Bomb and elsewhere by a Twitter hashtag meant to raise awareness of sexism in the video game industry.

As with Mirror's Edge, the upcoming Tomb Raider revival was penned by Rhianna Pratchett, and tells the story of how Lara Croft came to be.

A tweet alone cannot change anything, but enough tweets can become a movement, a movement can raise awareness, and awareness can lead to action. That’s the potential power behind #1reasonwhy, a hashtag from this weekend encouraging women members of the games industry to speak up with stories of their own difficulties, and raise needed awareness about industry sexism.

#1reasonwhy is, by design, full of upsetting, troubling, and negative stories about what it’s like to be a woman that’s making video games in 2012, and games writer Rhianna Pratchett (the upcoming Tomb Raider reboot, Mirror’s Edge, Heavenly Sword) figured something more positive would be of use. Thus, the creation of #1reasontobe, a hashtag with reasons why women are part of the industry at this very moment, should continue to be part of the industry, and call attention to the many stories of strong, independent women succeeding in games--or trying.

Here are a few of their stories:

#1reasonwhy is important, but I’m creating #1reasontobe because I’d like female devs to share why they're in games & what they get from it.

— Rhianna Pratchett (@rhipratchett) November 27, 2012

So our children can see women succeeding in tech and games, and not know why it would ever be any different. #1reasontobe

— strange language (@neuralwiles) November 27, 2012

#1reasontobe Because of the jobs I've had in the past ~7 years, the ones where I create game-related things make me the most happy.

— Eve Walter (@MidnightRem) November 27, 2012

Because my daughter plays video games, she loves video games, and she needs role models who have come before her to be strong. #1reasontobe

— CK Burch (@ckburch) November 27, 2012

#1reasontobe Because when you find a game company who values everyone's opinion, you can just concentrate on making phenomenal games.

— Lindz (@lindzart) November 27, 2012

#1reasontobe - After years of work & careers which left me unfulfilled and outcast from so much, I've found a welcome & passionate home.

— Donna Prior (@_Danicia_) November 27, 2012

There is a growing diverse, queer culture that needs more voice, and games can give it to them. Now let us have it #1ReasonToBe

— Mattie Brice (@xMattieBrice) November 27, 2012

#1reasontobe Despite the bullshit, I am able to work constantly with amazing men and women who care about telling great stories

— Lillian Cohen-Moore (@lilyorit) November 27, 2012

#1reasontobe Because most men in the industry are accepting/inclusive/supportive. Don't let the bad apples dissuade you from going for it.

— LM Lockhart (@missdoomcookie) November 27, 2012

And #1reasontobe is that the only way to change things is to be part of the change. #wecandobetter

— Kathleen (@ninjaharlot) November 27, 2012

#1reasontobe When you get feedback from players that your game changed their life in some way, let them be the hero for once

— Tara J. Brannigan (@kindofstrange) November 27, 2012

#1reasontobe Cuz at their best, games push new boundaries in experience, and we're like 0.5% of the way to getting good at that. Define it!

— AngelosLH (@AngelosLH) November 27, 2012

#1ReasonToBe Because my presence here is changing the industry.

— Ceri Young (@Toughlovemuse) November 27, 2012

It’s good #1reasontobe exists. A problem isn’t solved without a solution, and #1reasontobe provides the disenchanted with glimmers of hope we can work towards a better environment. The next step is creating accessible avenues for people to make connections beyond Twitter, which #1reasonmentor aspires towards.

I haven’t done the math, but yesterday’s article about #1reasonwhy probably broke a comments record on Giant Bomb. I stopped reading the thread after it passed 500 or so comments, both because it’s pretty unwieldy in our current system, and I was roundly discouraged by some of the discussion.

Much of the response felt driven by a feeling that talking about #1reasonwhy, and thereby discussing problems women having in the games industry, suddenly means there are zero problems for men. Elevating the discussion of misogyny implies there is no misandry, or so the argument goes. I don’t buy that, and have trouble reasoning with people who continue to peddle it. Bringing up one very real problem does not invalidate other very real problems, but being so dismissive of the argument suggests you aren’t taking the original argument seriously, and instead want to discredit it because you don’t believe it has any merit in the first place. At least be honest.

I do not consider myself a feminist or particularly aligned with the feminist movement. I just know bullshit when I see it, and I'm tired of bullshit that involves the vapid, shallow arguments that crawl out of the comments section of every single website whenever this subject comes out. It feels like the same 50 people are just making dupe accounts across the Internet, and making sure to drown out any real conversation. Those people deserve a chance to be heard, and that includes the larger-than-you'd-think audience of women right here on Giant Bomb.

Maybe I’m just wading into an unwinnable argument, but I wanted to paste a comment that seemed emblematic of so much of the 1,600 comment (and still growing) thread.

I actually don’t have much of a problem with this comment, except for the fact that it was made at all. Video games, like any entertainment medium, are just a hobby to a vast majority of the audience, and their daily lives are filled with concerns vastly more important than the dynamics between men and women in the games industry. That is 100% okay, as there are plenty of things that I enjoy where I’ve done little-to-no research about whether I’m comfortable with all that’s happening behind-the-scenes. Still, you took the time to scroll to the bottom of this article, long after the achievement for a first post was possible, and post a comment that amounts to little more than trolling. There is no opinion here, and we’d all be better off if the discussion, positive or negative, didn’t include pointless derailment.

This isn’t all of you, obviously, and many of you made substantive arguments, even if I disagreed. I suppose the biggest problem I have is with the tone, the dismissiveness, the idea that none of this matters, and that if people only just spoke up at their jobs, engaged with sexual harassment laws (which is hardly the most pervasive issue), changed their attitude, this would just go away. “I have a solution, just grow some fucking balls,” was one comment that stuck out on page 20-something of the comments. There is a reason why it’s not easy to just “grow some fucking balls,” and it’s because of the response these subjects generate, and the seemingly futile nature of having this debate in a public forum. Not to mention that if you’re looking at the current layoff happy climate of the games industry, speaking up about this issue and possibly risking your job if it backfires doesn’t sound like the greatest idea ever.

If you were a woman at a game developer, would you want to speak up after reading that thread, or the countless others that sprouted up yesterday? Twitter is, at least, a place where you can do filtering and hear voices you regard.

“I’ve been watching the #1reasonwhy hashtag on Twitter with an anxious kind of understanding,” said games writer Katie Williams in a blog not long after #1reasonwhy started catching fire. “Like, part of me wants to jump right in and post a dozen of my own experiences, but I’ve also learned what happens if you say that shit publicly: you’re berated, blamed, dismissed. I’ve been there.”

She is not alone, and I don’t blame her for it.

I suspect there's an underlying fear involved in all of this, as well. "What does this mean for the games we love? What if we're okay with how games are made already? Don't ruin them!" Change, while painful, is often healthy, but I'm also realistic. I don't expect drastic change due to market realities--what sells well will continue to sell well, and that includes plenty of dudebro that, hey, I also enjoy playing! You know, even if the Entertainment Software Association does report that 47% of all game players are women. If there's better women representation in development, those people given a bigger voice, it's not going to make the video games you already enjoy go away. But maybe it means video game companies will be more willing to create games for a growing audience who play games because they love games but do not have characters that speak to them. It might not change publishers who release games with women protagonists but don't support them with marketing, but change happens slowly.

Again, it’s weird. I’m a guy, I’ve never had to deal with any of these problems. But I’m willing to admit where there’s smoke, there’s probably fire, and listening is helpful, informative. If you don’t want to listen, you don’t have to. No one is forcing you. Just stop shouting down others who want to.

As with last time, I'll leave you with my own contribution, this time for #1reasontobe.

#1reasontobe Because we need strong female role models, and more of them. It won't solve everything, but it's a start.

— Patrick Klepek (@patrickklepek) November 28, 2012
1698 Comments
Posted by WindFall259

I feel like any comment against Patrick is now satirical.

Posted by Light_Bahamut

The anonymity of the internet affords a great many things, but substantive, reasonable conversations about difficult subjects is not one of them. I'm not throwing up my hands, though. The gaming industry and press is made up of professionals, and they can discourse reasonably on social media forums like Twitter. There's no reason to pay attention to the blather of maladjusted, sophomoric idiots on a place like Twitter. But to suggest that in a gaming forum, filled with those same maladjusted morons, you can expect a reasonable conversation about gender politics in the gaming industry? I just don't see that happening. Ever.

It must be discouraging for adult, well-adjusted male members of the gaming press that have to do this job. Your business lives and dies on having an audience, and yet the loudest members of that audience tend to be entitled, maladjusted pricks. Basically, Patrick, what I'm trying to say is that I feel for you. You're an idealistic dude and you want to engage with the people you write for, and what do you get for your trouble? Hate and noisome nonsense. And that sucks. Full stop. I just don't think it's going to change, and you might want to adjust your expectations accordingly for your audience.

I'd just like to add that there are those among us who read what you have to say, and often don't have time to engage, but do enjoy what you write. We even snoop in on your conversations on Twitter with devs and other journos (your conversation re: the L.A. Game Space Kickstarter with Ben Kuchera this morning was very interesting, btw). So thanks for trying to have these conversations. Just remember who you're talking to. That's all.

Posted by EnduranceFun

@anarchyzombie9: That's the thing, all he's doing is complaining. It accomplishes nothing.

Posted by iAmJohn

@Deusx said:

@iAmJohn said:

@Deusx said:

#1reasontobe is something I can actually get behind, it's positive and it doesn't generalize men as sexist pigs all over the world. I say good on that.

If you're busy getting offended by "anti-men" generalizations, you're simply looking for a reason to be offended by the most microscopic bullshit imaginable.

I don't get offended, I just think it's stupid to fight fire with fire. That's what most of the #1reasonwhy tweets have been about. If you're busy replying to my comments you're simply looking for a reason to be offended by the most microscopic bullshit imaginable ;D. See? haha.

I'm just saying dude, there's a prevailing attitude that voicing dissatisfaction and shedding light on problems is tantamount to calling for oppression, and more often than not, the people who are making said arguments about oppression are from people who have never had to deal with systematic oppression at any point in their lives. It's about trivializing someone else's problems because fuck you mine are so much worse if only you understood, and it's a purely selfish attitude. I'm not saying you're arguing this, but trying to argue that #1reasonwhy is in some way promoting an anti-men sentiment is basically one step removed.

To put it another way, if I may paraphrase Andrew Ti for a second here, if you're getting offended by being told that something you said or did is sexist instead of being rational enough to see that it is and change your behavior, chances are you're just a sexist pig.

Posted by Napalm

@BlastProcessing said:

@Napalm said:

is a piece of shit of a human being. Throw out a ban if you feel necessary mods, but it's fucking true.

You sound like an even bigger scum. The dude just voiced his thoughts on the situation. If I am to disagree with this movement (which I do), am I a piece of shit of a human being as well? Your gestapo-esque attitude is more worthy of the banhammer.

"It's just a video game," is a terrible fucking blanket excuse to throw out there when you disagree with something with no real reasoning or sound advice behind it. So yes, if you agree with his exact sentiments, then consider yourself in that camp.

Problems in our industry are a real issue. It's like nobody wants to talk about actual issues about what is happening. People just want to say, "it's just all videogame fun-time, guise! No reason to get all angry and upset!"

Posted by morrelloman

This a problem in all industries, the youth of the gaming industry just means it hasn't gone thru these growing pains yet. Anyone lucky enough to work in games should just take their licks while realizing that it is a medium enjoyed predominately by males. Which makes the old slogan "its a man's world" all the more oppressive and all the more true. Sucks. Won't change. Thanks for putting your 140 character air hugs out there.

Posted by RazielCuts
Posted by AlKusanagi

@misquared: I'm not saying to not try, I'm saying to make is something bigger. Make it about the entertainment industry as a whole, if anything.

Posted by anarchyzombie9

ITT: angry woman hating neckbeards who probably believe in """Men's Rights Activism"""

Posted by Sil3n7

@anarchyzombie9 said:

@Sil3n7: is this really the best place to complain about somebody talking about why equality is needed in the video game industry?

Sure it is. I'm paying for this "content"

Posted by hurtfulmadmax

Bayonetta

Posted by Jumbs

@dr_mantas said:

I wish you would stop mentioning Men's Rights Activists and "privilege" when you really don't understand either. And NEITHER is really relevant to the conversation.

It's funny, I do, and I think it IS relevant. Did you see the morons on twitter yesterday in response to Patrick's article?

"Why work hard or study when a woman can pretend to be a victim and get free stuff from white knight males? 1reasonwhy"
"GunPowBoom I agree, so let's stop giving women preferential treatment in every sphere of life, including the workplace, as is the case now."

I was going to keep going, but it's honestly depressing.

Posted by SlashDance

I don't really see how this is a video games problem though. I've worked in a few different industries over the years and sexism was always a problem.

Some men are stupid, and sometimes a bunch of men in a room with one or two women act like animals, nothing new under the sun. We should fight that, don't get me wrong, but don't say it happens because of the "video games culture". It's unfortunately a much larger problem.

That's my experience anyway.

Posted by EnduranceFun

@DeathsWind: People will disagree with the article! So, uh, I'm smart, right guys?

Posted by Turambar

@HellBound said:

@Kaiserreich Idiots need to be called out. Maybe they will think twice before spewing ignorance.

It's against forum rules to try to publicly shame other users. Mods have, and will continue to edit/lock threads that do such things. Why do the staff get a pass when no users do?

Posted by TheGrumpyHatter

Patrick, I just wanted to say thank you for covering this on the site. This is clearly something important happening in the industry at the moment, and I really am excited that Giant Bomb is bringing attention to it. While there are apparently in the community who are not as appreciative, I hope you continue with stories in this trend. There are people reading who definitely want to see more.

Also, I couldn't agree more with how stupid the "it's just [blank]" argument. It's just being willfully ignorant of the importance of media in our culture.

Edited by pbhawks45

@CornBREDX said:

Despite some grammar mistakes, (sorry, I couldn't resist, they get real bad near the end) you raise some very valid points.

While I really don't like to partake in this discussion (as it's one that makes everybody get all riled, and those are not fun discussions for me) I have always been for equality in all things. I think there are bigger issues these days, then this, but if women are not being treated equally in any work place they really should stand up for themselves. I would never be against that.

I understand where you are coming from, but I think you're making things a little too simple. There's an underlying fear of going to HR. It gets people involved, it creates more tension, and can often make the situation worse for the woman. It's a different sect, but here's a report regarding the military and sexual harassment.

"GAO found several reasons why servicemembers may choose not to report an incident, including the belief that the incident was not sufficiently serious to report or that the incident would not be taken seriously if reported," the report states. "...support for sexual harassment policies and programs by military commanders and senior enlisted servicemembers is not consistently strong".
Military personnel reported that incidents of sexual harassment were sometimes ignored or "swept under the rug", according to interviews conducted by GAO investigators, because leaders believed complaints would reflect badly on their command.

Not taken seriously. Afraid it would be ignored. These are common themes you will read. If it were as simple as you described, I very much thing these women would have gone through those avenues. Not trying to pick a fight or anything.

Posted by Dallas_Raines

The idea that asshole users could potentially get called out by editors is awesome. Consequence is a great thing. Anyway, I can see this thread is already going to complete shit with manchildren complaining about being exposed to 'adult' problems.(Hey, nobody forced you to click on it.)

Online
Posted by anarchyzombie9

@EnduranceFun: Would you rather we all just pretended that the video game industry isn't fucking incredibly sexist and instead stop "complaining" and not try to bring any awareness to the problem? Because honestly, fuck that.

Posted by dr_mantas

@anarchyzombie9 said:

ITT: angry woman hating neckbeards who probably believe in """Men's Rights Activism"""

YOU are the problem. This is not how you tell people about a problem. You don't come in with insults blazing.

I hope Patrick writes an article soon about how the derogatory "neckbeard" should no longer be used.

And put more quotes on Men's Rights, why don't you. Real mature.

Online
Edited by RenMcKormack

I am glad this is an issue being talked about. Because games and entertainment stuffs are one of the few massive industries we have left here in the US. The companies and management has to grow out of their weird boys club roots in some ways. Like sexual harassment is one thing. What's going to be a longer process is the acceptance of the opinions of females in the industry and as fans of games period. I am 28 and grew up with videogames. As a teenager it was alien to hear a female voice as a game creator, journalist, or fan. Its been interesting seeing that change. But it certainly is a change, and some folks knee jerk freak out no matter what. Time is the only cure.

Posted by kahjah

@RazielCuts: I remember seeing that video and I appreciate his sentiment. I think he is totally off base.

Posted by McGhee

@hurtfulmadmax said:

Bayonetta

YES

Posted by Gordo789

@kahjah said:

It's good to see that people are speaking up about this in positive ways. I wonder though if this were about POC (people of color) in the gaming industry if it would have gotten this kind of traction?

There was a recent story on Kotaku that might be relevant to your interests

http://kotaku.com/5948422/serious-racism-allegations-levelled-at-video-game-developer

It's hard to say if the traction would be the same. Unlikely.

Posted by pbhawks45

@DrKunze: That's all you get out of this? C'mon, man.

Posted by Toug

"First word problem" has really become the torch of those who don't want to give a shit about any problem that isn't theirs. It's still a problem. There being worse ones does not invalidate it.

I said this in the other article, but if your response to someone expressing the feeling they have been marginalized or discriminated against is "fuck you", you need a long hard look at yourself.

Posted by Soulreaverm

@dvaeg said:

I'm pretty ambivalent about the whole concept as it seems in my casual glance to be wholly without context. Are the (admittedly legitimate) feelings of these employees found in greater number vis-a-vis any other industry? I work in healthcare, in a profession dominated by women. Many of my fellow men feel similarly in our field. The missing context appears to be: is this emblematic of an industry that is disproportionate in its genders, of the workplace in general, or is this common societal issue that is being misappropriated to the games industry?

I'm not sure it matters? It's terrible either way. If it exists in this industry and it shouldn't (which is the case) then it should be eliminated from this industry. Which is a positive step towards broader social change as well. It makes no sense to say "we don't have to fix this because EVERYONE ELSE is doing it too". And it's a fact that video games in general are an area where women have traditionally been met with discrimination (and I've had extensive conversations with female friends about their awful experiences) so it's not exactly far-fetched to say that there is a particular problem here.

Posted by csx009

let day two of shit slinging commence

divide the community more, that'll fix it

Edited by GalacticPunt

I think this "reasontobe" business is much more productive. I didn't participate in the shit-fest yesterday, but the highlighted tweets yesterday were very petty and representative of First World Problems. Girls in Afghanistan are getting acid thrown on them for daring to go to school. That is a real battle for feminism in the 21st century.

Half the world's population are women, nearly half of the people playing games are women. There should be more women in the development community, and to do that they should encourage each other to pursue such careers. The main reason women are under-represented in development is their lack of interest. There is no Taliban throwing acid in their face, no Southern governor blocking them from colleges with police and attack dogs. If more women get engaged, and get into the industry, the novelty and awkwardness goes down.

Posted by churrific

I know that this is an op-ed, or at least reads like one, but I'll just say I found it distasteful for Patrick to be calling out a single person like that and using his comment to encompass a whole slew of conversations that he read only a third of.

Posted by trolipo3

@EvilKatarn said:

Again, it’s weird. I’m a guy, I’ve never had to deal with any of these problems. But I’m willing to admit where there’s smoke, there’s probably fire, and listening is helpful, informative. If you don’t want to listen, you don’t have to. No one is forcing you. Just stop shouting down others who want to.

I've argued about this topic with friends and we've all agreed that there's both merit and fault in this whole thing happening over Twitter. I even had an elongated argument on Twitter with Zynga's community manager who managed to utter out the words that me being against this Twitter thing shoved in my face does not make me sexist scum. I have a different way of fighting this and believe that this Twitter thing will change nothing.

So Patrick, in the bombcast I hope I won't have to hear about this. At all. None.

Giant Bomb is a website. About videogames. I subscribed because of the fun-loving nature of the crew.

There are surely other places you could write about this stuff, ones where people wouldn't lash out at you so easily.

check ur privilege

Posted by trolipo3

@churrific said:

I know that this is an op-ed, or at least reads like one, but I'll just say I found it distasteful for Patrick to be calling out a single person like that and using his comment to encompass a whole slew of conversations that he read only a third of.

a person posted his comment out there for everyone

deal with it

Posted by Apathylad

"Much of the response felt driven driven"... What?

Posted by SamFo

Reading the comment section here makes me really sad.

Some people seem angry at Patrick for raising these points? What is wrong with you people.

Are you just young and immature? Ignorant? Totally Sexist? Against Patrick because he's new to the group and you've been here way too long?

This philosophy of "keep feminism out of my hobby" as one user so eloquently put is disgusting.

Patrick Klepek does not seem like a feminist, but rather a reasonable human being. Some of you guys really either need to take a look at yourselves, OR how about you just shut the fuck up.

Posted by kahjah

@Gordo789: I remember that story and the comments eventually always seem to victim blame when allegations of sexism and racism arise. It's a damn shame that the burden of proof is almost astronomically high.

Thanks for posting it.

Edited by EnduranceFun

@Turambar: I do find it quite ridiculous he picks out one guy to shame and ignores everyone else, ostensibly because he doesn't want to hear opposing opinions [discouraging!]. No offence to the user, but his poor grammar and insensitive post doesn't represent those well who disagreed with Patrick's antics.

Posted by dr_mantas

@Jumbs said:

@dr_mantas said:

I wish you would stop mentioning Men's Rights Activists and "privilege" when you really don't understand either. And NEITHER is really relevant to the conversation.

It's funny, I do, and I think it IS relevant. Did you see the morons on twitter yesterday in response to Patrick's article?

"Why work hard or study when a woman can pretend to be a victim and get free stuff from white knight males? 1reasonwhy"
"GunPowBoom I agree, so let's stop giving women preferential treatment in every sphere of life, including the workplace, as is the case now."

I was going to keep going, but it's honestly depressing.

These are not Men's Rights arguments, because they are baseless and unfounded. As someone who's for Men's Rights I think everyone should be treated equally, as I am also an egalitarian.

There are assholes with bitter life experiences, they don't fight for any rights, they fight against their perceived image of a coniving evil woman.

A Men's Rights issue would be gender quotas that make it harder for more qualified males to get a job. This is not it.

Online
Posted by Milkman

Good follow up, Patrick. Agreed 100%. It's shame that so many people seem to have this inexplicable, unexplainable problem with this cause. It really boggles the mind. If you think the cause is "useless" and "accomplishes nothing", then just ignore it. Why people feel the need to argue for 2,000 comments about this makes no sense at all.

Posted by pbhawks45

@EnduranceFun: I'd be interested to hear what your problems are with this issue. Surely it's not for women wanting sexual harassment to stop in the workplace and be treated as equals.

Posted by anarchyzombie9

@dr_mantas said:

@anarchyzombie9 said:

ITT: angry woman hating neckbeards who probably believe in """Men's Rights Activism"""

YOU are the problem. This is not how you tell people about a problem. You don't come in with insults blazing.

I hope Patrick writes an article soon about how the derogatory "neckbeard" should no longer be used.

And put more quotes on Men's Rights, why don't you. Real mature.

Alright, I'll give you that I shouldn't have used neckbeard because inflammatory language in arguments is stupid and serves no purpose so, apologies for using language that serves no purpose to my argument.

But, I'm not the problem. Me calling a majority of the gaming community mean things because there is so much sexism and misogyny doesn't make me the problem. The problem is the fact that women are harassed constantly in almost every aspect of the gaming industry.

And I refuse to back down on making fun of Men's Rights Activism but, that's another long argument for another comment thread.

Posted by YOU_DIED

@EnduranceFun said:

Most of the discussion from the comment section ignored. Thanks for the misinformation, because the discussion you perpetuated was 'discouraging.' Yes, yes, sexism bad, Patrick good.

You also posted the same tweet twice...?

To sum up the comment section:

  • Faith is not a memorable character at all and it's insulting the way you talk about her female writer
  • Virtual boobies in Dead or Alive DLC is not equatable to real world problems
  • Secretaries are largely female and gamers are largely male, thus the stereotypes
  • Twitter is not a good sole sample for a 'news story'
  • How about some coverage on social issues in games other than sexism?

Well said, but how about more games and less social issues?

Posted by EricSmith

I grew up thinking sexism was okay for jokes. I was never slapped down for it outside of my home. Teachers said nothing, school administrators, police, etc., nothing. They let it happen. When I was online in those days, I posted some shit to message boards I am happy will never be found. It was dirty, disgusting shit that should have earned me a punch in the face. 
 
 I then went to college, grew up, and learned that treating everyone with an equal level of respect and decency is not only easy to do, but benefited me. I also noticed a huge sea change in the attitude of my friends and piers at the same time. We all grew up.
 
So either, a majority of people posting on gaming sites are under 18 (which I believe is the case) and don't know any better, or they are 18 and above and were raised by terrible parents who didn't lay the groundwork for them to realize the dumb shit they had been saying was fucking DUUUUUMMMMMBBBB. These people will then grow up and spawn other wastes of oxygen who think sexual harassment isn't a big deal, and believe that a woman belongs nowhere but in the kitchen.
 
One thing the ESA's stats don't say, is what games the women in the audience are playing and what sites they are visiting. 47% may be an accurate figure if you pool in social games on Facebook, and mobile gaming; but if you drill down to the "core" audience, what is the percentage there? 15%? 20% at best? And last year in the 10,000 person strong survey that Whiskey did, something of 16% of the readers/watchers were female. I do see more women posting here (at least claiming to be, this is the internet) than the other gaming sites I frequent, so that says very few females read gaming news sites.
 
So why am I doing this dogshit statistical breakdown? Because when women aren't around, there isn't anyone saying to be more respectful to women. I know most guys don't do it, maybe because they don't notice, or simply don't care. Women moving into corporate America in the late 1960s (and still struggling with this today) only happened because strong females took a stand and said, "This isn't right, we deserve better."
 
This may be starting with a hashtag, but it is a strong first step. I support everything that is trying to be achieved with it. There is not one single person in this world who deserves to be above or below me based on race, gender, or sexuality. Videogaming may be late to the party on social issues (as is the standard), but I do believe we will get to the right place one day. 

Posted by Grimluck343

@dvaeg said:

I'm pretty ambivalent about the whole concept as it seems in my casual glance to be wholly without context. Are the (admittedly legitimate) feelings of these employees found in greater number vis-a-vis any other industry? I work in healthcare, in a profession dominated by women. Many of my fellow men feel similarly in our field. The missing context appears to be: is this emblematic of an industry that is disproportionate in its genders, of the workplace in general, or is this common societal issue that is being misappropriated to the games industry?

I think the issue is that it is happening, period. It doesn't matter if it occurs more frequently in other fields. The issue raised in the comments yesterday (which, incidentally, was more than "just grow a pair of balls") was whether or not this twitter campaign would actually achieve anything, what the endgame was, so to speak, or whether or not it was just a soapbox for bitching (pardon the word). If it wasn't intended to actually solve anything (which it didn't appear that it was over the weekend), then why write a news article about it other than to incite a flame war for pageviews (which worked, by the way, as Patrick mentioned it was the most commented thread in the history of the site.)

Plenty of people (Patrick included) have noted that just "raising awareness" of the issue was enough to justify the twitter campaign which is interesting because a news article on sexism in video games/booth babes pops up about once every two weeks somewhere on the internet. It's not even a dead horse, it's been ground into a fine powder suitable for snorting, which added another layer to yesterday's comments: why are talking about this again? What did the last conversation achieve except to make everyone hate each other?

That and the fact that it appeared at least one person (Leigh Alexander) was trying to blame the backlash for previous bad behavior on "sexism" pissed a lot of people off and further derailed the conversation.

I will say that, for the record, sexism is bad. Most of these stories in these tweets are horrible and reprehensible. But the time for talk is over - we've talked this issue to death. It's time for action. I have no idea what that action is, but it's clear that "raising awareness" is doing more harm than good at this point. People are becoming numb to the issue. "Oh look, it's this article again. Fishing for pagehits, aren't we Patrick?" Quit talking, start doing.

And that's a whole hell of a lot more than I ever wanted to talk about this.

Edited by Gordo789

@kahjah said:

@Gordo789: I remember that story and the comments eventually always seem to victim blame when allegations of sexism and racism arise. It's a damn shame that the burden of proof is almost astronomically high.

Thanks for posting it.

it seems like the dudes at the center of this were fired. It's unfortunate that the victim in that case had to go through so much to get some justice, but that's always the way.

Posted by Veektarius

I don't see how this could spawn a more productive discussion than the first one, especially since it takes a more accusatory tone.

Posted by EnduranceFun

@anarchyzombie9: That doesn't mean Patrick should post one 'sexist' news article per week.

Edited by Neurotic

You should have blanked that guy's name out, Patrick. Regardless of what you think of the comment, that's not cool.

@EnduranceFun said:

@anarchyzombie9: That's the thing, all he's doing is complaining. It accomplishes nothing.

This is more or less my feeling on the matter. Enough of all of this goddamn talking if you're not gonna take action as well. Do something. Ban sexist assholes from gaming communities, fire sexist assholes in the gaming industry, don't assume the majority of your market wouldn't buy a game because it has a female protagonist or un-sexualised female characters. Even if that is the case, why should these morons be catered to? Talking about this will only get you so far.

Posted by EnduranceFun

@YOU_DIED said:

Well said, but how about more games and less social issues?

Beggars can't be choosers. :'(

Posted by cabrit_sans_cor