#301 Posted by mtcantor (951 posts) -

@humanity said:

@sergio said:

@sooty said:

If people are gonna get all annoyed about the damsel in distress thing you're a bit late to the party, I'm pretty sure silent movies in the very early 1900s depicted women tied to train tracks.

This was actually used in her video as an example of the trope.

Sadly all she did was point it out as being a trope.

Isn't that the whole purpose of the video series? To point out the tropes?

#302 Edited by Killroycantkill (1423 posts) -

It's good to see her Kickstarter money made her videos exponentially better in terms of production value. The accurate information on older games and their creators is also a plus, but I still don't agree with her overall. Whenever she talks I feel she's saying that being a character like a distressed female is wrong and girls who are this way are bad, real of fictitious. Girls need to be portrayed one way, and one way only. I don't feel games that use these kinds of tropes are out to say "All women can only be objects that need saving". Damsel in distress is a great story starting point and it works to allow great character development and just great story in general in all mediums, that is why it became a trope.

Even if you want to look at it from a more shady perspective of using these kinds of stories is an easy way to sell units. Then wouldn't that just show that it's popular enough for people to not have a problem with it? I know manly women who love the Mario franchise who don't think of Princess Peach as a captive, they think of her as a princess, and as a princess, you have an importance in other things than just being a captive.

In today’s day and age where women are equal members of society, have high placed jobs and important roles, still focusing on the tropes of 20 years ago doesn't seem relevant. I can't remember a game in recent history where my main goal was to save a princess. The closest I can think of is the newer Ninja Gaiden (Xbox) where in the beginning you had to find the princess with the Dragon Jewel but then she gets sliced by Doku so that's not the games main story hook.

TL:DR

  • I don't feel games that use this trope are saying "Girls are nothing but objects to be captured"
  • Sometimes I feel like her videos try and make problems where there aren't any (See Christmas Songs Video)
#303 Edited by Sergio (2238 posts) -

@mtcantor said:

@humanity said:

@sergio said:

@sooty said:

If people are gonna get all annoyed about the damsel in distress thing you're a bit late to the party, I'm pretty sure silent movies in the very early 1900s depicted women tied to train tracks.

This was actually used in her video as an example of the trope.

Sadly all she did was point it out as being a trope.

Isn't that the whole purpose of the video series? To point out the tropes?

That would be a rather lazy approach and offers no substance. At that point, she might as well just have a montage of what she thinks are examples of tropes. It's more beneficial to analyze why something is a trope instead of just pointing at it and saying, "see?"

Her history of the trope does point them out without elaborating, and I had hoped she would have given more context for them. To her credit, she does try to analyze some of the tropes when it gets to the video game portion. Unfortunately, sometimes her deeper analysis is either wrong or based on wrong information. That's not to say that the particular game she's talking about doesn't have the trope, she just lays out bad information beyond that. That is a fault she often makes in her earlier videos.

That said, this is her first video. The second one regarding this same trope with modern games might delve further, and I can only hope she reduces the number of flubs.

#304 Edited by hinderk (690 posts) -

@killroycantkill: I don't think that she was trying to say that use of this trope automatically makes a game sexist(I'm pretty sure she even says that in the video). I think her point was that this trope is extremely common and the one who needs saving is almost always female(having hard time even thinking of a male example off the top of my head). Since it's so common, it helps perpetuate the stereotype that women are helpless and need men to protect them. That's what I got from the video anyway.

I'm terrible at explaining myself, so hopefully that made sense.

#305 Edited by EXTomar (4940 posts) -

How many actually address opposing viewpoints? Roger Ebert never cares to answer people yelling and screaming he was wrong about some movie he reviewed. Patrick doesn't bother to respond if people are yelling and screaming about the articles he posts. There are billions of Youtube videos on whatever that people say are stupid and those creators rarely respond.

So why is it suddenly important for her to have comments enabled so critics can respond to what ever they think is wrong with her video? Right...it seems to me people want an echo chamber and validation.

#306 Edited by mellotronrules (1244 posts) -

one thing i would be interested to know is who her intended audience is. i'm sure on a macro level she'd say "oh, everybody." but i wonder what her approach as an author is- is she pitching this primarily to the video game literate, or those without any working knowledge. and it's clear that this isn't purely an academic exercise with peer review, because youtube isn't the venue for that. all of this informs a lot of what she might be saying- many on this video game enthusiast website might respond "video games have tropes, no shit." but that might not be self-evident to those who aren't as invested.

Online
#307 Edited by Sooty (8082 posts) -

@gkhan said:

This is a fantastic video. I'm a straight dude who's proud to call himself a feminist

I think even females would roll their eyes if you said that.

#308 Posted by cthomer5000 (863 posts) -

@jasonr86 said:

@rotten_avocado said:

I just don't understand why we even spend this much time on this topic.

Not that I believe it should be ignored, but why can't we just move on?

It's like picking at a scab over and over again. It's not gonna heal that way.

Women, much like other groups that have been undermined in society, can't brute force their way up the rungs of society. They're gonna have to let it take it's course.

Please stop with this shit. If you don't like the games that come out, guess what?, go make your fucking own and shut the fuck up!!

It'll never take it's course if the problem is ignored. Problems with how the problem is approached can certainly arises and can be discussed. But ignoring the problem will never improve the problem.

It's not a matter of ignoring it. However, shoving it in people's faces all the time makes it a lot less palatable.

You attract a lot more bees with honey then vinegar.

Equality will happen if it's deemed important enough. Not because a select few "patriots of virtue" will it to happen.

What in the world are you talking about? So issues like slavery, institutional racism, or women's rights shouldn't have been addressed head-on? Those groups should have simply hoped things would get better?

Sexism in video games is a legitimate issue worth discussing. I don't understand why so many people are offended by the idea of even having an adult conversation about this stuff. As a 34 year old dude who has been playing games for probably 30 years, I would love to see some more maturity in the medium.

I also generally enjoy critical anaylsis of the things I love. It can really help you appreciate the good stuff far more when you deconstruct it, and also help point out incredibly lazy writing when you see it.

Without really understand the broad framework of the medium of games, you have less of a basis for critiquing it. Games don't have to be just something 12 year olds kill time with. The analysis of even simple games can be serious without being a waste of time.

#309 Posted by arch4non (443 posts) -

@baltimore said:

For example, they could give her a mini skirt with leggings.

Then people would have cried about sexism for a whole other reason.

#310 Posted by boj4ngles (287 posts) -

@darji said:

@boj4ngles said:

I thought it was pretty good, looks professional. It seems to be very well researched. She makes some good points that seem obvious in hindsight. It's no secret that games thrive on adolescent male fantasy. However I have to confess that the "controversy" surrounding this project is part of what makes it compelling, if for the wrong reasons. Will the outspoken feminist prevail against the legions of enemy male geeks? The whole affair almost feels like watching a promoted sports event. I hope people can settle down and not get worked up over it.

I'm interested in seeing part 2.

Yeah it was really researched. In fact the quoted a lot of Wikipedia in her video and even word for word.

Haha, well maybe she's the one that edited the Wikipedia article?

#311 Edited by FengShuiGod (1492 posts) -

It's like someone dropped Julia Kristeva down the stairs when she was a baby.

#312 Posted by Ninja_Welshman (498 posts) -

Can't wait till the Dead or Alive series crops up.

#313 Posted by JasonR86 (9723 posts) -

Can't wait till the Dead or Alive series crops up.

Don't you mean 'pops out'.

'jiggles over'

'flops about'

'bounces to attention'

'breaks the laws of gravity...over here'

Online
#314 Posted by Icicle7x3 (1203 posts) -

@jasonr86 said:

@ninja_welshman said:

Can't wait till the Dead or Alive series crops up.

Don't you mean 'pops out'.

'jiggles over'

'flops about'

'bounces to attention'

'breaks the laws of gravity...over here'

motor boats its way here

#315 Posted by TobbRobb (4840 posts) -

Ohey. Now I can be indifferent about this but at least acknowledge I'm happy that she didn't run away with the money. Good ending for everyone.

#316 Posted by Carousel (418 posts) -

This generation is terrible, everybody is so sensitive.

But that 10 year old in Idaho said he'd rape me.

THAT'S A SERIOUS OFFENSE

THE INTERNET!

#317 Edited by JadeGL (961 posts) -

@carousel said:

@drcornwalliz said:

This generation is terrible, everybody is so sensitive.

But that 10 year old in Idaho said he'd rape me.

THAT'S A SERIOUS OFFENSE

THE INTERNET!

I really hope this is a failed attempt at a joke. Seriously. If someone online goes so far as to say they would rape me, I would hope that I could tell that it was a ten year old so I could write it off as a stupid kid being a shithead. But if we're looking at written comments, yeah I'd be a little freaked out by someone online saying they would rape me. That's messed up, even more so if you can't tell who it is, the age, where they are, etc. I realized while thinking about this that I have a bigger footprint online than I might have originally intended, my name is out there, age, you can find me on facebook and twitter I assume with not much muss or fuss. So yeah, having someone make a threat like that would be creepy and kind of scary.

Just remember, if you go up to a person on the street and say that you would rape, kill or hurt them, it is a crime in a lot of places. Don't brush off shitty behavior because "the internet" when someone calls that person our for being a jerk or a creep. I give people a ton of leeway (I didn't report someone on XBOX Live for calling me a skank by PM, I just deleted it and went on with my day) but I would think twice if someone sent me a message or posted a comment like that about rape.

Moderator Online
#318 Posted by Bourbon_Warrior (4523 posts) -

Decent series, was worth a watch.

#319 Posted by Bourbon_Warrior (4523 posts) -

Comments and the like\dislike bar disabled, I guess 4chan got on this fast...

#320 Posted by Shakey1245 (67 posts) -

Comments and the like\dislike bar disabled, I guess 4chan got on this fast...

To be fair it's the comment section of YouTube. The chances of anything productive or interesting being said there are slim to nil not that conversation on forums across the internet have been much better with some people acting like this video will allow her to sneak into people's homes and steal their games like she's the bloody Grinch.

#321 Edited by SpaceInsomniac (3901 posts) -
@jasonr86 said:

@spaceinsomniac:

Like I said, we could discuss the severity of issues in the category of 'equality' allllll daaaaaay loooooong. But that doesn't mean that there aren't multiple topics within the category of equality as a subject. It's like type of person referred to as an 'asshole'. There are a lot of people who are assholes. But not all assholes are created equally. Some assholes are really big assholes while others are just accidental assholes. Plus there are assholes for a number of different reasons and that behave in a lot of different ways. But assholes are still assholes no matter how we would like to frame their asshole-ed-ness.

In this thread you've compared Anita Sarkeesian to Martin Luther King, and you have suggested that black people as a race and women as a gender were both equally oppressed. I've suggested a counter argument, and instead of actually trying to explain your position, twice you've come back with "we could discuss the severity of issues in the category of 'equality' all day long."

That's not defending your position. It's more of a circular non-argument. And I find it kind of sad that no one other than myself is calling you on this.

Seriously, it doesn't take ANYTHING away from the historic struggles that women have gone through to admit that black people have had it far, FAR worse.

@mellotronrules said:

@jams said:

@mellotronrules said:

i have. seen her on reddit too. she's got a sweet sticker on her fridge there for ncfm.org.

What wrong with that website?

on a fundamental, legal rights level? nothing. just like if someone wanted to organize a national coalition for caucasi...oh wait.

There are absolutely situations where women are at an unfair disadvantage because of their gender, or where they are mistreated because of their gender. Clearly this is wrong, and women should be encouraged to stand up for themselves and fight for equal rights when it happens.

To mock men in situations where they find themselves at a disadvantage, to or ridicule men in situations where they are mistreated because of their gender, that is the literal definition of the word sexism, and is the complete opposite of a true equal rights movement.

If you don't want to admit that, then that's fine, but do me a favor.

If you ever are older, and you're getting a divorce, and your soon to be ex-wife hates you, and she wants to limit your contact with your children as much as possible, and you love your children, and you can't stand the idea of your time spent with them being drastically reduced, and you are attempting to get equally shared custody over your children, please remember this thread.

And that is a happy scenario. God help you if you find yourself in a similar situation, but your ex is mentally or physically abusive to the children, you're attempting to secure full custody, and it's her word against yours. If none of that strikes you as an example of sexism, please imagine the same situation with the genders reversed.

#322 Posted by High_Nunez (214 posts) -

@extomar: No, I totally understand why someone would do that. But I feel that such a decision comes at a price. Which in this case is that it stifles discourse. Sure, we're talking about in a civil manner here, because the tenor of the conversation is different here on giantbomb, in that it's not as vitriolic and abusive. But she's using YT as a platform for her series, and so it's there that she should just let the shit fly free. It sucks that idiots will dominate the conversation, and if she could click on a "no abusive language" button, I'd be all for that. But it's also disingenuous to say that 100% of all the comments will be abusive, and that nobody has anything legitimately thoughtful to say about it from both ends of the spectrum. The unfortunate side effect that I foresee with the comments disabled is that both camps will cluster to their preferred forums and it'll be an echo chamber and no one will learn anything. I'm not saying that enabling comments will change the whole conversation around, but it's a step in the right direction, a mostly shitty direction, but the right one.

#323 Edited by Bourbon_Warrior (4523 posts) -

@jams said:

@mellotronrules said:
@jams said:

Even when the women who are being sexuality love it and are happy with it, she blames sexism. I wouldn't doubt that if she had her way every woman would be wearing burka's and men would have their eye's and dicks removed from their bodies.

i'd just like you to read that bit over once more.

Yeah? Do me a favor and watch some videos from girlwriteswhat and get back me. Listen to someone who can actually bring a lot to the discussion with gender equality.

That women is crazy, she has out wright said women that are domestically abused by their partners have better sex, don't pay attention to her because she doesn't represent the majority of her gender.

#324 Posted by kitsikitsi (9 posts) -

Comments and the like\dislike bar disabled, I guess 4chan got on this fast...

Disabled from the beginning.

Also, why is it "sexism" when girls get attacked on the internet but it's just "trolling" when I get attacked on the internet?

#325 Posted by mtcantor (951 posts) -

@bourbon_warrior said:

Comments and the like\dislike bar disabled, I guess 4chan got on this fast...

Disabled from the beginning.

Also, why is it "sexism" when girls get attacked on the internet but it's just "trolling" when I get attacked on the internet?

If hordes of women were attacking you on the internet, targeting you because you were male and saying things designed to make you uncomfortable because of your gender, then that would be "sexism" too.

#326 Edited by SpaceInsomniac (3901 posts) -

@bourbon_warrior said:

@jams said:

@mellotronrules said:
@jams said:

Even when the women who are being sexuality love it and are happy with it, she blames sexism. I wouldn't doubt that if she had her way every woman would be wearing burka's and men would have their eye's and dicks removed from their bodies.

i'd just like you to read that bit over once more.

Yeah? Do me a favor and watch some videos from girlwriteswhat and get back me. Listen to someone who can actually bring a lot to the discussion with gender equality.

That women is crazy, she has out wright said women that are domestically abused by their partners have better sex, don't pay attention to her because she doesn't represent the majority of her gender.

Care to provide a link to where she said that? And did you read it yourself, or are you just regurgitating something that someone else said who was trying to discredit her? I find the idea that she said that seriously hard to believe, and I would imagine that it's something that is being taken wildly out of context.

And even if she did say that and it's not being taken out of context, which would be insane, that doesn't make her immediately wrong about every other opinion that she will ever have. Like I said in the second post in this entire thread, Anita Sarkeesian has posted some fairly radical crazy feminist shit in the past, but I look forward to judging this video series on its own merits.

And who gives a fuck if she represents the majority of her gender? If men who care about women's rights don't happen to represent the majority of their gender, does that mean we should ignore them too?

[edit] Actually, forget waiting for you to provide a link, I found it myself. In this blog post where she responds to a ridiculous list of things that automatically make you a rape supporter, she responds to each one of them. Here is the quote that is almost certainly what you're talking about:

He defends the physical abuse of women on the grounds of “consent.”

Annnnnddd...pretty much all the sex I actually enjoy is now categorized as supporting of rape. Pinning, dominating, spanking, struggle for dominance, consensual roleplaying. All of it, abuse, no matter how much I say I like and want it, no matter that I consider it not just enjoyable but a requirement in any long term relationship I will ever have, how hard I get off on it, or how much the tender "rock me gently" stuff bores the fuck out of me. Any man I would want to be with is by default a rape supporter.

Meaning that she's being told by feminists that she's not allowed to enjoy even slightly rough sex, even though she herself has requested it, and any man who would agree to her wishes is automatically a rape supporter.

Might that be what people are twisting around to become a claim of "she has out wright said women that are domestically abused by their partners have better sex"?

#327 Posted by JasonR86 (9723 posts) -

@spaceinsomniac:

You're putting words in my mouth. Here's what 'severity' means;

Web definitions
badness: used of the degree of something undesirable e.g. pain or weather.wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn

Topics in categories come in degrees. Some things, like the racial oppression that occurred during Martin Luther King's day, is much, much worse then the current oppression women face in a variety of venues (job market, games industry, cultures at large, etc.). But that doesn't mean that they don't fall in the same category of 'oppression'. Rather, they do it's just that one is worse then the other.

I can't be more clear then that. No one is calling me out because likely everyone else gets it. I'm not sure why you don't. I'm being as clear as I can. If you don't get it now I don't know how else I could explain it to make it more clear. Read my words and understand my meaning.

Online
#328 Posted by EXTomar (4940 posts) -

Shesh people getting carried away with what they believe is their right to be heard. Here is the new flash: You have a right to say or think whatever you want. You do not have a right to be heard. No one public or private is under any obligation to provide anyone else a platform for a "counter view point". Others at any particular point can just "walk away" and chose not to be listen.

If someone makes a video and doesn't want to have comments because they don't want to manage it then that is fine. Being concerned that it damages her creditability is silly since she doesn't need Youtube posts for praise or positive feedback. If one wants to give feedback then go for it but don't use her Youtube Channel to do it where all one needs to do is link it back to her video and Youtube, Google, Bing, etc will link them.

#329 Edited by EnduranceFun (1109 posts) -

A video creator can disable comments and ratings if they want, but Sarkeesian also has an openly feminist agenda. She is both an entertainer and pseudo-politician, the latter is where she lost credibility. Personally, I do feel it's not helpful to anybody to disable comments anyway, because if they're bad comments, it affects no one and I imagine there would be at least a little decent commentary amongst the supposed rabble. It just perpetuates the myth of negativity without directly facing it and in my opinion makes her seem weak. Quite ironic given all the talk of dis-empowering womyn.

#330 Posted by JasonR86 (9723 posts) -

...but Sarkeesian also has an openly feminist agenda...

What makes you say that?

Online
#331 Edited by EnduranceFun (1109 posts) -

Well, she gives talks on feminist issues and has talked to industry leaders like Valve about sexism in their games.

It's not just her politics, but her livelihood relies on pointing out inequalities between men and womyn.

#332 Posted by JasonR86 (9723 posts) -
Online
#333 Edited by mellotronrules (1244 posts) -

@spaceinsomniac said:

There are absolutely situations where women are at an unfair disadvantage because of their gender, or where they are mistreated because of their gender. Clearly this is wrong, and women should be encouraged to stand up for themselves and fight for equal rights when it happens.

To mock men in situations where they find themselves at a disadvantage, to or ridicule men in situations where they are mistreated because of their gender, that is the literal definition of the word sexism, and is the complete opposite of a true equal rights movement.

If you don't want to admit that, then that's fine, but do me a favor.

If you ever are older, and you're getting a divorce, and your soon to be ex-wife hates you, and she wants to limit your contact with your children as much as possible, and you love your children, and you can't stand the idea of your time spent with them being drastically reduced, and you are attempting to get equally shared custody over your children, please remember this thread.

And that is a happy scenario. God help you if you find yourself in a similar situation, but your ex is mentally or physically abusive to the children, you're attempting to secure full custody, and it's her word against yours. If none of that strikes you as an example of sexism, please imagine the same situation with the genders reversed.

look- i would never insist that sexism is an issue exclusive to women. there are plenty of situations where if you're a man, the deck is stacked against you (especially if you happen to be a minority suspect).

but

there's a big difference between recognizing incidents of atypical sexism, and founding a reactionary body who's very existence seems counter to both historical and cultural precedent. just like i alluded to earlier with-

@mellotronrules said:

on a fundamental, legal rights level? nothing. just like if someone wanted to organize a national coalition for caucasi...oh wait.

i guarantee you terrible things have happened to a person on account of them simply being white or caucasian. does that mean i found a body to ensure my 'whiteness' isn't discriminated against? fuck no- because there's a demonstrable historical, cultural, political, and socio-economic precedent that says "hey, being born a white guy, there are certain things you stereotypically won't have to worry about/have going for you." of course there are exceptions to any rule- but i personally think it's myopic to believe men need to organize because their rights are being infringed upon.

Online
#334 Edited by EnduranceFun (1109 posts) -

Oh, you.

#335 Edited by JasonR86 (9723 posts) -
Online
#336 Edited by deadmoscow (267 posts) -

I was a dummy and posted a new thread without seeing this one first. I had a pretty extensive writeup (at least more than "watch this video and comment on it") and I wanted to share it with all of you.

Hey duders,

As some of you may know, Anita Sarkeesian's Kickstarted project, "Tropes vs Women in Video Games," just kicked off with its first episode yesterday (it's present in yesterday's Worth Reading). For those who might be unfamiliar with the series, Sarkeesian received a whole bunch of money from the internet to make a series of videos which examined gender and portrayals of women in video games.

Here's the first episode, which I recommend everyone watch:

The video breaks down the trope of the damsel in distress, all the way from ancient myth, to early films of the 20th century, up to Pauline in Donkey Kong and modern games. It's an insightful, even-handed examination of the trope, and provides an excellent explanation of the subject-object dichotomy which lies at the heart of the trope.

Now that a lot of the controversy over the project has faded away, I think this is a great time for the videos to start rolling out. I'm an English major by nature, and critical theory in literature and film was my bread and butter in undergrad. I've been seeking out critical theory in video games for some time now, and while there are many excellent resources for the academically inclined (Game Studies is a fantastic, open-access journal with 12 years worth of articles on the subject), there's still a distinct lack of feminist critique in video gaming.

It should be said that criticism is not used in a context you might be familiar with. In Clint Hocking's excellent article, Ludonarrative Dissonance in Bioshock, he points out that "...game criticism is for game developers and professionals who want to think about the nature of games and what they mean. Game reviews are for the public – for people who play games – and they are intended to help those people make decisions about which games they should buy." Hocking's article, the entirety of Game Studies, and Sarkeesian's web series all are not meant to constitute purchasing advice or subjective opinion of games. Instead, they are purely academic in scope, and concerned with examining games on a deeper level than "is it fun?" and "should I buy it?". Hocking himself loved Bioshock, but his article is a thorough breakdown of the fundamental flaws of the game's narrative when compared to its mechanics and gameplay.

Keep in mind that criticism and reviews are both valuable resources, and each have their place. I don't expect to see articles like Technology Trees: Freedom and Determinism in Historical Strategy Games popping up on Giant Bomb or Kotaku anytime soon, but anything that deepens my understanding and appreciation of the video game medium is alright with me. I've been an avid gamer all my life, and only in the last couple of years have I really thought to understand my hobby on a deeper level and play and think about games in a conscientious, thoughtful manner.

I don't expect all of you to see the value in Sarkeesian's video series or the critical theory of games, and that's okay! It's not for everyone. But when someone looks down on gaming and tries to censor, downplay, or remove it entirely, I want to be able to point to something like Game Studies or Tropes vs Women and say that "yes, this all has merit, and there's more to it than you realize."

#337 Posted by EnduranceFun (1109 posts) -

@jasonr86: That was actually directed at you for teasing, didn't see the post above mine.

#338 Edited by LackingSaint (1853 posts) -

That's an interesting piece you wrote, although unfortunately it really doesn't actually say much about Anita's video. My major criticism (which as i've read is shared by many others) isn't that i'm somehow offended by what she's saying, it's that she isn't really saying anything at all. All this first video is is going through a list of occurences of Damsels In Distress in games in the 80s and 90s, with maybe some smattering of educated guesses on why that's the case. There's no critique, or even an in-depth look into how the trope fits into game design (an obvious point, that almost all NPCs regardless of gender are about as pathetic and helpless as the Damsel In Distress in most games, for example). I know people are saying it's a series and there's even a second part to just this topic, but if it's really just another twenty-minute laundry list of occurences, i'm out.

#339 Edited by deadmoscow (267 posts) -

I'd say that explaining the trope of the damsel in distress throughout history, describing the way it works in detail, giving a measured description of the subject-object dichotomy that informs much of feminist theory, as well as discussing why the trope amounts to lazy story telling, amounts to much more than...

If you don't want to make an effort to understand why a feminist point of view is important in gaming, these videos aren't for you. These videos amount to criticism, which is a field squarely aimed at people who have a desire to understand more about a medium.

As to the idea of NPCs being powerless - spare me, please. A story has to have a protagonist to keep things moving. Without dramatic tension or a hero's journey or something along those lines, you're going to have an extremely boring story. When you claim that Sarkeesian missed the "obvious" point that NPCs are helpless, you're being willfully ignorant of the fact that biased gender representations are problematic and extremely prevalent in gaming.

#340 Edited by LackingSaint (1853 posts) -

I'd say that explaining the trope of the damsel in distress throughout history, describing the way it works in detail, giving a measured description of the subject-object dichotomy that informs much of feminist theory, as well as discussing why the trope amounts to lazy story telling, amounts to much more than...

If you don't want to make an effort to understand why a feminist point of view is important in gaming, these videos aren't for you. These videos amount to criticism, which is a field squarely aimed at people who have a desire to understand more about a medium.

As to the idea of NPCs being powerless - spare me, please. A story has to have a protagonist to keep things moving. Without dramatic tension or a hero's journey or something along those lines, you're going to have an extremely boring story. When you claim that Sarkeesian missed the "obvious" point that NPCs are helpless, you're being willfully ignorant of the fact that biased gender representations are problematic and extremely prevalent in gaming.

Except explaining what something is and nothing more is a poor job at "critique", and I take exception to the implication that I don't care about understanding the medium because I think in this instance somebody did a bad job of criticizing it. You need to get off your high horse if you think there's great value in Anita "explaining in detail" what a Damsel In Distress is as if anyone over the age of 7 isn't already well aware; I think she filled her video with a lot of needless fluff to cover the fact that she didn't really have an argument (like explaining what "raison d'etre" means, who does that?) in this instance, and i'm not saying that from the perspective of some 'close-minded gamer nerd' like many critics of Anita are painted, i'm saying it as somebody that does take an active interest in subscribing to and taking part in game critique.

I'm not really sure how you interpreted my helpless NPCs point, unless you're trying to make the point that Anita should ignore how games actually work, or give any consideration to putting her arguments in perspective. Which reminds me, Anita barely mentioned the difference between Western and Eastern culture's storytelling and gender politics philosophies, another weird thing to just ignore in 20 minutes of talking about japanese games.

#341 Edited by Jeffsekai (7052 posts) -

@bourbon_warrior said:

Comments and the like\dislike bar disabled, I guess 4chan got on this fast...

Disabled from the beginning.

Also, why is it "sexism" when girls get attacked on the internet but it's just "trolling" when I get attacked on the internet?

boobs

#342 Edited by Bourbon_Warrior (4523 posts) -

@spaceinsomniac said:

@bourbon_warrior said:

@jams said:

@mellotronrules said:
@jams said:

Even when the women who are being sexuality love it and are happy with it, she blames sexism. I wouldn't doubt that if she had her way every woman would be wearing burka's and men would have their eye's and dicks removed from their bodies.

i'd just like you to read that bit over once more.

Yeah? Do me a favor and watch some videos from girlwriteswhat and get back me. Listen to someone who can actually bring a lot to the discussion with gender equality.

That women is crazy, she has out wright said women that are domestically abused by their partners have better sex, don't pay attention to her because she doesn't represent the majority of her gender.

Care to provide a link to where she said that? And did you read it yourself, or are you just regurgitating something that someone else said who was trying to discredit her? I find the idea that she said that seriously hard to believe, and I would imagine that it's something that is being taken wildly out of context.

And even if she did say that and it's not being taken out of context, which would be insane, that doesn't make her immediately wrong about every other opinion that she will ever have. Like I said in the second post in this entire thread, Anita Sarkeesian has posted some fairly radical crazy feminist shit in the past, but I look forward to judging this video series on its own merits.

And who gives a fuck if she represents the majority of her gender? If men who care about women's rights don't happen to represent the majority of their gender, does that mean we should ignore them too?

[edit] Actually, forget waiting for you to provide a link, I found it myself. In this blog post where she responds to a ridiculous list of things that automatically make you a rape supporter, she responds to each one of them. Here is the quote that is almost certainly what you're talking about:

He defends the physical abuse of women on the grounds of “consent.”

Annnnnddd...pretty much all the sex I actually enjoy is now categorized as supporting of rape. Pinning, dominating, spanking, struggle for dominance, consensual roleplaying. All of it, abuse, no matter how much I say I like and want it, no matter that I consider it not just enjoyable but a requirement in any long term relationship I will ever have, how hard I get off on it, or how much the tender "rock me gently" stuff bores the fuck out of me. Any man I would want to be with is by default a rape supporter.

Meaning that she's being told by feminists that she's not allowed to enjoy even slightly rough sex, even though she herself has requested it, and any man who would agree to her wishes is automatically a rape supporter.

Might that be what people are twisting around to become a claim of "she has out wright said women that are domestically abused by their partners have better sex"?

No thats not it, I can't find the original reddit thread she posted, but here is what she wrote in it duder.

http://freethoughtblogs.com/dispatches/2012/08/22/woman-defends-the-beating-of-women/

But I'm done with this thread, all it does is make me hate the majority of GB users, no more like the vocal minority.

#343 Edited by LackingSaint (1853 posts) -

But I'm done with this thread, all it does is make me hate the majority of GB users...

Sorry to hear that man, but I hope you're able to see the difference between disagreeing with someone on an issue and not liking them as people. I've had plenty of heated arguments with people but it doesn't make me actively despise them unless they're saying they enjoy beating up the disabled or something.

#344 Posted by SpaceInsomniac (3901 posts) -

@spaceinsomniac said:

[edit] Actually, forget waiting for you to provide a link, I found it myself. In this blog post where she responds to a ridiculous list of things that automatically make you a rape supporter, she responds to each one of them. Here is the quote that is almost certainly what you're talking about:

He defends the physical abuse of women on the grounds of “consent.”

Annnnnddd...pretty much all the sex I actually enjoy is now categorized as supporting of rape. Pinning, dominating, spanking, struggle for dominance, consensual roleplaying. All of it, abuse, no matter how much I say I like and want it, no matter that I consider it not just enjoyable but a requirement in any long term relationship I will ever have, how hard I get off on it, or how much the tender "rock me gently" stuff bores the fuck out of me. Any man I would want to be with is by default a rape supporter.

Meaning that she's being told by feminists that she's not allowed to enjoy even slightly rough sex, even though she herself has requested it, and any man who would agree to her wishes is automatically a rape supporter.

Might that be what people are twisting around to become a claim of "she has out wright said women that are domestically abused by their partners have better sex"?

No thats not it, I can't find the original reddit thread she posted, but here is what she wrote in it duder.

http://freethoughtblogs.com/dispatches/2012/08/22/woman-defends-the-beating-of-women/

But I'm done with this thread, all it does is make me hate the majority of GB users, no more like the vocal minority.

I'm sorry to hear that you're done with the thread. Seems to be a healthy mix of opinions here, and some good debate.

But for you or anyone else who would like to read her defense of "her defense of beating women"--including the part where several self-proclaimed feminists "defend the beating of women," then please do read on. It's a little on the long side, so I'm putting it in a spoiler tag.

http://owningyourshit.blogspot.com/2012/08/this-means-war.html

Look at this hypocrisy from FTB

over one of hundreds of comments I've made over the last two years concerning domestic violence:

I used to live under a young couple with a baby. I’d listen as she followed him from room to room upstairs, stomping, slamming things, throwing things, screaming. After about an hour, he’d eventually hit her, and everything would go quiet. An hour after that, they’d be out with the baby in the stroller, looking perfectly content with each other.

Here is the response from FTB (complete with photo of man's head exploding) to such a comment made by an "enemy":

So, if you’re annoyed at a woman, that justifies hitting her? In fact, you should hit her early in your annoyance, lest you beat the living shit out of her later when you’re reallymad? Of course, the fault will be hers for annoying you, not yours for having the physicality of a grown man but an infant’s mastery of your emotions.

And here,

from the comments:

I wonder if she has ever say gone out to lunch with that couple? If she has, I wondered if she noticed that the wife cowered like a fucking sheep when her husband spoke. I wonder if she just so happened to notice that the poor woman’s husband spoke for her, talked down to her, criticized her, all while she sat there and took it. Did she react when he made a swift movement? Does she carefully and painfully choose her words to avoid his wrath?

Okayyyy.... so a woman chasing her boyfriend from room to room, screaming insults and profanity, throwing heavy objects at him (in front of their infant, no less) while refusing to allow him to exit the situation is a clear sign that she's living in terror of him. Huh.

But it was the response to

THIS comment

that really told me who we're dealing with:

Normally I would say that violence towards women is never justified, however, I did see my dad hit my mom twice. He stayed and put up with her because of me, and every few years she would get in one of these moods where she would ride his ass and tell him what a loser he was for not making enough money, losing his hair, or whatever, put her finger in his face, scream at him, shove him, etc. This would go on nightly for weeks until he would beg her to stop because he was about to snap, which only encouraged her. She got off on it. He would try to go for a walk to get away from her before he lost it, and she would grab him and keep on and on, until he would start shaking and crying uncontrollably, and then he would snap. He said he would literally see red, then have no memory of what happened. I have snapped like this once after having been bullied for years and years, and I couldn’t remember, either. He felt cornered and tried to do the right thing and take a walk, but she wouldn’t let him. I can’t fault him for that. If anyone deserved a backhanding, it would have been her.
Go ahead and tell me I’m evil. I can take it. I think violence against women is deplorable, and I wouldn’t put up with it myself, and would tell anyone who is in an abusive relationship to get out. But I can also understand why someone would snap if they were incessantly poked and prodded and then reacted accordingly.

Wow, an almost identical (if more embellished) situation to the one I described, so you'd expect a TON of exploding heads, right? Oh wait, but that comment came from a "friendly", and is therefore "different":

Your mother was the one being abusive. Men are victims of domestic violence too, not as often, but it still happens. I do not know often women act like this in the US or around the world, but reported domestic violence case statistics say that men are more likely to be a the abuser.
I don’t think it was right of your father to hit her, because I don’t think that hurting anyone is okay. But I think he was justified to fight back.
That kind of situation is not what GWW is advocating though. And even if that’s -all- she was advocating I’d still encourage her to change her stance and encourage the men to get help instead of hurting the women they are with.

Um, wow. And this guy's mom didn't even throw anything at his dad, but somehow the commenters at FTB are prepared to accept that she was the abusive one! Couldn't they tell she was terrorized and cowed, living in such fear of his wrath that she barely spoke without permission?

And if we're to apply the same rules here as were applied to me, relating a situation you've observed means you advocate for it. This must be the case, since me attempting to have a frank, meaningful, grown-up discussion of the complexities of domestic violence--you know, how it goes down in the real world among real people, as opposed to how it goes down in Feminist Theory--is the same as me advocating beating women.

Therefore I'm shocked. Shocked, I tell you, about how absolutely no heads exploded over this guy's domestic violence apologia! Look, here's another understanding comment:

Your mother was the abuser in this situation. Hitting her was probably not the *best* solution, but I certainly am not going to fault your father for it in this case.

I can't believe these three commenters at FTB are advocating for men being allowed to beat their wives! Where are the bits of brain and skull all over the place from everyone's heads exploding? Nary a fragment to be seen, which means they must not only be excusing violence against women, but actively supporting and encouraging it! Where is the outrage? If there's no outrage, that's exactly the same as endorsement!

#345 Posted by BestUsernameEver (4825 posts) -

@mtcantor said:

@humanity said:

@sergio said:

@sooty said:

If people are gonna get all annoyed about the damsel in distress thing you're a bit late to the party, I'm pretty sure silent movies in the very early 1900s depicted women tied to train tracks.

This was actually used in her video as an example of the trope.

Sadly all she did was point it out as being a trope.

Isn't that the whole purpose of the video series? To point out the tropes?

Not really, I am more interested in the explanation or background to these trends. If you said many game characters rescue women, here's a woman in an old movie in the same position, and leave it at that, who cares? If you went on to explain that this trope is because of story limitations or something that is proven to connect with a broad amount of people, maybe digging deeper would make me interested in this series. But as it is, receiving 100,000 dollars for a low production youtube series just says scam to me.

#346 Edited by deadmoscow (267 posts) -

I wonder if the reason that so many men are so opposed to Sarkeesian's videos is because they've been experiencing gender-biased narratives from video games their entire lives and suddenly hearing a different point of view is difficult because cognitive dissonance can be an uncomfortable experience? New information can be seen as threatening, especially when it forces you to consider privileges that you may be unaware you have. Is it really so uncomfortable to realize that your gender might, just *might* be given some preferential treatment in terms of game narratives?

#347 Edited by JadeGL (961 posts) -

@mtcantor said:

@humanity said:

@sergio said:

@sooty said:

If people are gonna get all annoyed about the damsel in distress thing you're a bit late to the party, I'm pretty sure silent movies in the very early 1900s depicted women tied to train tracks.

This was actually used in her video as an example of the trope.

Sadly all she did was point it out as being a trope.

Isn't that the whole purpose of the video series? To point out the tropes?

Not really, I am more interested in the explanation or background to these trends. If you said many game characters rescue women, here's a woman in an old movie in the same position, and leave it at that, who cares? If you went on to explain that this trope is because of story limitations or something that is proven to connect with a broad amount of people, maybe digging deeper would make me interested in this series. But as it is, receiving 100,000 dollars for a low production youtube series just says scam to me.

It would be a scam I guess if she asked for that amount and delivered nothing after a long period of time, and also didn't keep her backers informed. But she didn't. She asked for a much smaller amount and her supporters gave her above and beyond what she asked for. According to other sources, she also kept backers informed of where money was going and what exactly she was doing, and I haven't seen anyone who actually supported the kickstarter complaining. It's just people who had a problem from the very beginning and wouldn't have given her a penny anyway.

Again, no one is blasting other kickstarters for this same thing happening. I already mentioned Jeff Cannata putting up a kickstarter for his new show and within one day he had triple the amount that he was asking for. Is he running a scam? Can people who are not backing it complain of the quality or the time he takes to make it when the first video is aired? Will they? Probably not.

Moderator Online
#348 Posted by BestUsernameEver (4825 posts) -

@jadegl said:

@bestusernameever said:

@mtcantor said:

@humanity said:

@sergio said:

@sooty said:

If people are gonna get all annoyed about the damsel in distress thing you're a bit late to the party, I'm pretty sure silent movies in the very early 1900s depicted women tied to train tracks.

This was actually used in her video as an example of the trope.

Sadly all she did was point it out as being a trope.

Isn't that the whole purpose of the video series? To point out the tropes?

Not really, I am more interested in the explanation or background to these trends. If you said many game characters rescue women, here's a woman in an old movie in the same position, and leave it at that, who cares? If you went on to explain that this trope is because of story limitations or something that is proven to connect with a broad amount of people, maybe digging deeper would make me interested in this series. But as it is, receiving 100,000 dollars for a low production youtube series just says scam to me.

It would be a scam I guess if she asked for that amount and delivered nothing after a long period of time, and also didn't keep her backers informed. But she didn't. She asked for a much smaller amount and her supporters gave her above and beyond what she asked for. According to other sources, she also kept backers informed of where money was going and what exactly she was doing, and I haven't seen anyone who actually supported the kickstarter complaining. It's just people who had a problem from the very beginning and wouldn't have given her a penny anyway.

Again, no one is blasting other kickstarters for this same thing happening. I already mentioned Jeff Cannata putting up a kickstarter for his new show and within one day he had triple the amount that he was asking for. Is he running a scam? Can people who are not backing it complain of the quality or the time he takes to make it when the first video is aired? Will they? Probably not.

I'm saying it's a scam to me, obviously not the ones getting what they paid for.

#349 Posted by DonPixel (2617 posts) -

More women into videogames is a good thing

#350 Posted by Sergio (2238 posts) -

I wonder if the reason that so many men are so opposed to Sarkeesian's videos is because they've been experiencing gender-biased narratives from video games their entire lives and suddenly hearing a different point of view is difficult because cognitive dissonance can be an uncomfortable experience? New information can be seen as threatening, especially when it forces you to consider privileges that you may be unaware you have. Is it really so uncomfortable to realize that your gender might, just *might* be given some preferential treatment in terms of game narratives?

Or some people actually agree that there is sexism in some games, but not to the degree that Anita does. For example, I've played DmC, and unlike Anita, I didn't see anything misogynistic about it, as she's said on twitter. Some of us try to critique her work for what it is, without pulling any punches because she's a woman. And I chose those words specifically because anyone who has the nerve to criticize her will have their words twisted to make them the villain, so I expect someone to do so here and prove my point. You ignore this possibility and simply assume we can't handle the truth as seen through Anita's eyes. She's not infallible.