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Posted by Cruxador (5 posts) -

It's really just because of the stereotypical "Grrl Gamer" figure, who doesn't know much about games but plays them for attention from guys, or the woman who uses her sexuality rather than actual competence to get a job or to market a game. The fact of the matter is there are women like that - and there have been high profile cases of game developers using attractive women to try to sell their game. Note Jessica Chobot's inclusion in Mass Effect 3, for example. Or the case of Jade Raymond, where there's no reason to suspect that she's not totally competent at her job - but when the first Assassin's Creed was released, she was a producer, one of several and not the lead or executive producer. There's no discernible reason that she was made the face of the game besides her appearance.

And there's cases of misogyny essentially being "baited" as with Jennifer Hepler's comment that critics of her writing were simply "Jealous" that she had "an industry job and a vagina". That's hardly the usual situation, but I fear that high profile cases like that can both make misogyny appear to exist to a greater extent than it truly does, and exacerbate the misogyny that legitimately does exist. I also feel that there's a tendency of feminists or people who want to milk feminism for financial gain to take a few of these comments (and let's face it, if there's one thing the internet has taught us, it's that hateful idiots can never entirely be eradicated) and construe them as far more representative than they truly are. And to some extent, this media attention adds to the discrimination, since portraying something as common also portrays it as normal, and therefore acceptable.

#1 Posted by Cruxador (5 posts) -

It's really just because of the stereotypical "Grrl Gamer" figure, who doesn't know much about games but plays them for attention from guys, or the woman who uses her sexuality rather than actual competence to get a job or to market a game. The fact of the matter is there are women like that - and there have been high profile cases of game developers using attractive women to try to sell their game. Note Jessica Chobot's inclusion in Mass Effect 3, for example. Or the case of Jade Raymond, where there's no reason to suspect that she's not totally competent at her job - but when the first Assassin's Creed was released, she was a producer, one of several and not the lead or executive producer. There's no discernible reason that she was made the face of the game besides her appearance.

And there's cases of misogyny essentially being "baited" as with Jennifer Hepler's comment that critics of her writing were simply "Jealous" that she had "an industry job and a vagina". That's hardly the usual situation, but I fear that high profile cases like that can both make misogyny appear to exist to a greater extent than it truly does, and exacerbate the misogyny that legitimately does exist. I also feel that there's a tendency of feminists or people who want to milk feminism for financial gain to take a few of these comments (and let's face it, if there's one thing the internet has taught us, it's that hateful idiots can never entirely be eradicated) and construe them as far more representative than they truly are. And to some extent, this media attention adds to the discrimination, since portraying something as common also portrays it as normal, and therefore acceptable.

#2 Posted by YOU_DIED (703 posts) -

2012 will be remembered as the year when the word 'misogyny' lost all meaning because some college grad turned 'pop culture critic' said something irksome on YouTube

#3 Posted by Oldirtybearon (4816 posts) -

I have a hard time discerning genuine misogyny from people trash-talking and being dicks online. If you were to confront the majority of the "Get back in the kitchen" types, I imagine most of them would deny being he-man woman-haters. I think it really boils down to the fact that people, when trash-talking, go for what's the easiest thing to say. Attacking someone's sexual preference/gender/playing style is often the easiest thing to reach for, and so that's what they grab.

Keep in mind I don't condone this shit in any way, but in the interest of genuine discussion, might as well try to understand the reasoning.

#4 Posted by haggis (1677 posts) -

I'm not sure there's a way of having this particular conversation online in discussion forums, given internet discussion dynamics. It only takes one dick to come in and make a dumb comment, or one woman to whine a bit, and the whole thing derails. And let's face it--trolls are attracted to these sorts of conversations because they're so easy to derail.

@Oldirtybearon said:

I have a hard time discerning genuine misogyny from people trash-talking and being dicks online.

You're not the only one. You need to have a thick skin online, because half the things people say are just there to piss people off and don't represent what people actually think. Feminists don't have thick skins about their particular issue. They tend to explode at the lightest provocation. I don't blame them, really--they have good reasons for being irritated with the state of things. But their reputation for outrage matched with the internet's natural tendency toward chaotic, rude, and immature discussion, is like a perfect storm of discussion board insanity.

Which is why the recent feminist campaign immediately struck me as counterproductive, even before the thing exploded. People are already aware of misogyny in the gaming industry--anyone who plays games sees it. We don't need awareness, we need a different gaming culture not so dominated by young males. I haven't seen anyone offer a solution for that particular problem.

#5 Posted by Sinusoidal (1520 posts) -

Yes, there are some women involved in gaming who are doing no good to their cause, but at the same time, I don't see how you can blame the misogyny in the industry on the women involved in it. If Jade Raymond and Jessica Chobot are indeed only where they are for the sex appeal, whose decision was it to put them there? I highly doubt either of them thought "Hey, I'm hot, I should star in/promote this video game so the teenage boys will throw their cash at me." and only ended up in the position after someone else - likely male - made them a large cash offer. Maybe they're not the best role models for women wanting to get into the industry for shamelessly selling themselves (again if this is really the case) but the audience who buys into it is just as much to blame as they are for accepting the arguably immoral opportunity. Last time I checked, both those games sold pretty well.

#6 Posted by Meowshi (2911 posts) -

@YOU_DIED said:

2012 will be remembered as the year when the word 'misogyny' lost all meaning because some college grad turned 'pop culture critic' said something irksome on YouTube

Only by edgy internet kids who want to continue pretending like the problem doesn't exist.

#7 Posted by SharkEthic (1049 posts) -

Oh God, make it stop...

#8 Posted by haggis (1677 posts) -

@Sinusoidal: Marketing departments make those decisions based on their perception of the gaming culture and that market's behavior. Those decisions wind up reinforcing the culture's less helpful aspects because those aspects are most prominent--even if they're not shared by most gamers. Most of us don't give a shit if a hot woman is hawking a game. We just want good games.

I'm not sure there really even was a market of people looking to (for example) buy Mass Effect 3 just because Jessica Chobot was in it. But the marketing people perceived that there was, and that's the problem. Most gaming misogyny is from a narrow slice of the market that many in the media still think (erroneously) represents the vast majority of gamers--teenaged boys. It hasn't been the case in a long time. Media still think of video games as games and not as entertainment. The marketing reinforces a juvenile attitude, which is then reinforced by young gamers more susceptible to that sort of manipulation.

Jessica Chobot and Jade Raymond can do whatever they like. If they want to sell themselves (btw, I don't think that's what was going on) then go ahead. But I think the entire thing is based on a misreading of gaming culture that would mostly go away if the media weren't stuck in a 1990s mindset when it comes to the gaming market.

#9 Posted by haggis (1677 posts) -

@Meowshi said:

@YOU_DIED said:

2012 will be remembered as the year when the word 'misogyny' lost all meaning because some college grad turned 'pop culture critic' said something irksome on YouTube

Only by edgy internet kids who want to continue pretending like the problem doesn't exist.

I don't think this is so much about pretending that the problem doesn't exist as it is putting the outrage about it into some context that makes sense. The misogyny in gaming is a problem, but it's nowhere near as pervasive as everyone seems to be making it.

#10 Edited by BisonHero (6539 posts) -

@Cruxador said:

Or the case of Jade Raymond, where there's no reason to suspect that she's not totally competent at her job - but when the first Assassin's Creed was released, she was a producer, one of several and not the lead or executive producer. There's no discernible reason that she was made the face of the game besides her appearance.

That seems like a bullshit reason. There are plenty of instances of people being the face of a game that aren't the lead designer or executive producer. It very well could have been that of the various producers and designers, she was A) one of the only people comfortable giving lengthy interviews in English (as opposed to French), and B) one of the only people comfortable giving interviews in front of a camera (a skill that has little to do with the day-to-day game development work a producer and designer does). Lots of people are the face of a game because they are good at talking to the press, and they don't always have to be the employee at the studio who literally came up with all of the important creative decisions.

#11 Posted by YOU_DIED (703 posts) -

@Meowshi said:

@YOU_DIED said:

2012 will be remembered as the year when the word 'misogyny' lost all meaning because some college grad turned 'pop culture critic' said something irksome on YouTube

Only by edgy internet kids who want to continue pretending like the problem doesn't exist.

Opinion different than mine? Better use logical fallacies in an attempt to look clever

#12 Posted by Salarn (465 posts) -

@Cruxador said:

Or the case of Jade Raymond, where there's no reason to suspect that she's not totally competent at her job - but when the first Assassin's Creed was released, she was a producer, one of several and not the lead or executive producer. There's no discernible reason that she was made the face of the game besides her appearance.

You know she started as a programmer and recently became the head of the new Ubisoft studio in Toronto right? It might just be possible that she's really good at making video games.

For one to assume that the only thing she brings to the table is her appearance to market a few games is pretty insulting. In addition it's pretty naive about how marketing works.

#13 Posted by Counterclockwork87 (674 posts) -

I think the whole gamer misogynist thing comes from angry gamers (who, let's face it, are very often nerds) who've been ignored by women and now believe they have a forum to gain the upper hand because women are treading on "their turf".

Might be where some of that resentment lies. Also, there are misogynist people everywhere, just like how there are racists everywhere...people like this will always exist. Kinda wish this stuff would go away, the gaming scene is too sensitivities and PC.

#14 Posted by Ithmoliar (139 posts) -

I don't think we can blame "gamer girls" or Jessica Chobot for misogyny in games, and I think blaming the existence of Chobot et al on male executives is a bit off the mark, it is once again taking away the possibility that woman can have agency in their own decisions. Like Simone De Beauvoir once said (i'm gonna paraphrase cos internets) If a man sees a woman on a swing, he thinks it's because she wants to be like the boys, does he ever think... maybe she just likes swings?

Women don't need to pass some sort of gaming proficiency test to say they like gaming, they can simply like games. Also how does it harm you if a hot women "pretends" to like games, how does that affect your daily life? Do you need to be "homely" to be a female and like games?

It's like we are just waiting for them to fuck up, say something "dumb" or mispronounce a game title then "rabble rabble rabble!"

I feel like it comes from this being an industry primarily aimed at teenage boys who are not known to be the most understanding of people. Most of our games are about puerile and violent subjects, it kind of appeals to the lowest common denominator. The fact we have games that feature BOOB PHYSICS makes me think of Idiocracy, where a bunch of fapping dunderheads stare, mouth agape at a pair of boobs drooling, and when the boobs start talking back we don't like it, "shut up boobs, you can't talk, you're boobies, you're just there for me to fap to!" Unless they are telling us how bad-ass men are, how awesome our gaming-club is, we don't like it.

Females in the games industry catch a lot of shit for no reason except because they are female. I find that especially in what we could stereotypically call an "attractive" woman, as soon as she writes an article, promotes a game etc we suddenly start questioning their motives just because they are female and attractive. This is why women are offended because the discussion stops being about what they are saying, or what they are writing but immediately about their gender. She's only doing it because she's a chick and want's attention... Why not think shes doing it because she is a human being who has an interest in games?

I don't think this is all men, I'm not attacking anyone on here so please don't take it like that. I just think there is a very loud and vitriolic vocal minority that gives the rest of us a bad name. Misogyny exists in games because it exists in society and nothing we do in our "club" is done in a vacuum.

#15 Posted by Brodehouse (9951 posts) -

No. Misogyny exists because misogyny exists. No one isn't a misogynist and then plays games and goes "wait, that girl is getting attention because of her sex!" and then suddenly becomes a misogynist.

The gamer girl/attention slut trope as pertains to women is about as meaningful to the overall discussion as dudebros and the slavering anonymous mongooses who 'did it for the lulz' are meaningful as pertains to men. You wouldn't appreciate being lumped in with a bunch of macho bullshit because you happen to be a man, don't lump women in with simpering attention whores just because they happen to also be women.

I also want to add, I think if anyone needs an attorney in the court of public opinion, it's the stereotypical dudebros. They are one of few groups in the world where they are treated as inherently awful even if the person hasn't done anything wrong. I actually really liked James Vega in ME3, because he seemed like the deconstruction and rehabilitation of the dudebro. He has all the stereotypical surface factors, but he's still a _person_, whether prejudice lets you see it or not.

#16 Posted by Oldirtybearon (4816 posts) -

@Brodehouse said:

I think if anyone needs an attorney in the court of public opinion, it's the stereotypical dudebros. They are one of few groups in the world where they are treated as inherently awful even if the person hasn't done anything wrong. I actually really liked James Vega in ME3, because he seemed like the deconstruction and rehabilitation of the dudebro. He has all the stereotypical surface factors, but he's still a _person_, whether prejudice lets you see it or not.

I have no goddamn idea where the "Dudebro" hate came from. I want to be reductionist and say some assholes stuffed some nerds into lockers or gave them swirlies, but I don't think that could account for all of the butthurt when people act in any way like young men acting stupid.

#17 Posted by LastNinja (281 posts) -

Because games are art. Art imitates life.

#18 Posted by gamefreak9 (2359 posts) -

People will always attribute the average to the individual, stop trying to control the world into something you want it to be and face reality. Its rational to assume things about girls unless proven otherwise, you don't always have a chance to find out more, sometimes you gotta work with expectations. There's always these people who think they are being progressive but are in fact just whiny. If there's opportunities for profit that the market is missing then maybe the industry can meet it. Otherwise I hate hearing about people telling others what should be in their product or how they should enjoy it, just GTFO.

#19 Posted by Gladiator_Games (444 posts) -

@BisonHero: Here's some back up on this one.. Joe Kucan as Kane.. he was just a coder/art dude who looked kinda sinister.

#20 Posted by TheSouthernDandy (3872 posts) -

It has nothing to do with 'grrl gamers' or Jade Raymond it's immaturity. If you're not a child stuff like that isn't going to make you angry to the point of taking it out on all females. Cause that is what a child does.

#21 Posted by RIDEBIRD (1232 posts) -

As crazy as it sounds, no, it's not women's fault.

Misogyny in gaming exists because a large group of gamers are stupid as fuck and have no real way to relate to women. They treat women like shit because that's what their father did and what their grandfather did, and this has just been transferred over to games. It is made much worse as this group is generally financially powerful, buying all the large "hardcore" titles, vocal and do not like women treading on "their" turf. Also, a vast majority (or so it would seem) of the japanese gaming crowd are also big fans of titties, and women are viewed as objects over there more commonly, or so it seems.

Therefore we have hot girls presenting games in every way everywhere - because dudes just like tits and in games they especially do, because they have never seen them in real life. Marketers know this and bring the titties. I know this sounds a bit hateful towards them, but I'm so goddamn tired of misogyny everywhere. Just grow the fuck up.

It's also up to the industry to take some goddamn responsibility.

#22 Posted by RIDEBIRD (1232 posts) -

@haggis: Discussion could help you know, being quiet about it would make women feel even more alienated.

@AndyAce83: I assume you are trolling.

#23 Posted by forkboy (1151 posts) -

@gamefreak9 said:

People will always attribute the average to the individual, stop trying to control the world into something you want it to be and face reality. Its rational to assume things about girls unless proven otherwise, you don't always have a chance to find out more, sometimes you gotta work with expectations. There's always these people who think they are being progressive but are in fact just whiny. If there's opportunities for profit that the market is missing then maybe the industry can meet it. Otherwise I hate hearing about people telling others what should be in their product or how they should enjoy it, just GTFO.

Yeah, this argument could be used to "defend" almost every prejudicial view that we now tend to look down upon but was acceptable at some point in history. To use an intentionally provocative & extreme example, "Slavery is just a social reality, you'll never change it, just accept reality & move on, stop whining about it." The only way to make progress on social issues is to kick up a fuss. Now the internet is not really the best place to do that because so many people talk in absolutes online rather than accepting that life is full of little subtitles that can't just be fixed by a screaming fight where we call each other faggots & cunts & so forth.

I can't really be bothered arguing it online because it's a crappy environment for serious debate: anonymity really does make it too easy for people to be dicks, & I say that as someone who is quite as capable for turning into a horrible shite online as the next person. I think that a minority of gamers have what could generously be described as out-of-touch opinions on women & will leave it at that. I don't think all games need to change massively, I think some games could do with being less gratuitous & leering but the same could be said about cinema, & I think some gamers could probably do with having some female friends, or at least have more personal experience of women than their mothers & their favourite porn actresses. And I'll just leave it there because I don't really see any point in a debate where the two sides will never agree.

#24 Posted by Demoskinos (14842 posts) -
@YOU_DIED

2012 will be remembered as the year when the word 'misogyny' lost all meaning because some college grad turned 'pop culture critic' said something irksome on YouTube

Agreed. Seems like at the drop of a hat everything is sexist or misogynistic now days. Not saying there isn't a problem but I am saying that there is way too many jumping to conclusions. People called out Tomb Raider for its "rape scene" but oh wait what's this..... It was written by a woman? Shock! Its ridiculous how often this topic is bludgeoned to death with little to no discussion value each time Is brought up. Also, newsflash sexism is a larger societal issue. This isn't going to be solved by making video game culture more lady friendly. Quit tweeting fucking hash tags and being a keyboard social activist and if you are ACTUALLY that upset ya know....do something about it.
#25 Posted by LikeaSsur (1532 posts) -

@Cruxador said:

or the woman who uses her sexuality rather than actual competence to get a job or to market a game.

This is precisely the reason why Felicia Day and Veronica Belmont (and their cringe-worthy "Vaginal Fantasy") need to go. Their main focus is "We're girls who like geeky stuff!" to which I respond "Who the hell cares what chromosomes you have?"

#26 Posted by Canteu (2821 posts) -

Jessica Shazbot is an attractive women?

#27 Posted by Brodehouse (9951 posts) -
@RIDEBIRD listen, let's not confuse two things for a good cause. Misogyny exists in a number of ways in the industry, but the 'booth babe' or 'sexualized women' thing is not it. Misogyny is categorized as the refusal to see women as human beings, they do not have rights, feelings, or agency over their own lives or their own bodies. This only extends to the hot model portion if you believe that those women who dress in revealing clothing to attract men are being forced to, if they lack the agency to decide what they want to do with their body. Furthermore, it only exists in the men who are attracted if they don't see the model as a person. I'll let you know that it's possible to be sexually attracted and interested in a person's body and still recognize their intrinsic human value as a person. I want to see Jessica Alba's naked body, but I recognize her as being a person who has the right to decide whether she does it.

The idea that heterosexual male desire is intrinsically misogynist is not something shared by all feminism, and more accurately corresponds to anti-sex or sex-negative denominations. The end game for that winds up in the complete repression of any and all sexual desire from being expressed, including hetero, homo, trans, or any other minority interest. As someone who identifies as sex-positive, and dislikes any and all repression and prudery, I urge you to look into the issue and offer you to come over to our way of approaching the situation. It is perfectly fine to have sexual desires, it is fine for others to choose to please them, but it is their choice.
#28 Posted by TheSouthernDandy (3872 posts) -
@LikeaSsur I like Veronica Belmont a lot but that really is the worst name. The worst.

@Brodehouse I don't always agree with you but man that's probably one of the best posts I've read over the last few days regarding this subject. The Booth Babe argument had always bothered me. Yeah it's kinda silly but they're there cause they wanna be and I'm sure they're getting paid better then I do. And that's great! Equating that to a woman in the workplace being treated horribly is dumb.
#29 Posted by JasonR86 (9710 posts) -

Piggy backing is fun isn't it?

Christ.

#30 Edited by RIDEBIRD (1232 posts) -

@Brodehouse: That's very well put dude. The thing is though, do you see a correlation with videogames and hot babes? I surely don't. They are there for your pleasure, your attraction and so that your interest for titties will transfer over to an interest for the game in question. They are literally selling games with tits - that's all it is.

And that's where I feel like I'm being treated like a frothing idiot. I'm a straight male and I too love titties, but I feel offended that for some reason that should be the end all and be all for reasons why I would be interested in something is just tits. Sure, they're there of their own free will, but do you not see it as somewhat exploitative and demeaning?

Read the comments on Twitter about female producers being treated as booth babes at events. There you really have what you're talking about, namely objectification and the fact that women in games get reduced to titties and nothing else. I know people around here fucking hate to talk about gender in general terms (IT'S SO INDIVIDUAAALLL), but the fact that most women get treated like that is a huge issue. Seeing the examples put up by other posters on the hashtag, the same thing that happens at events is obviously occuring in the game industry in general.

I have no problem looking at hot naked women for the sake of getting aroused, but I do have a problem when that same arousal is being used to attract me to a game, as that feeling for some reason would transfer. I don't always sexualize women, but I would consider myself very much sex-positive.

It's just generally a target group kind of thing as well. Using tits to attract your audience out of a PR sense pretty much singles out a rather narrow, but in gaming huge, group. You effectively alienate most others, and I don't think that's very good. Your saying that the heterosexual male is the standard and is the only one that should bother with games.

edit: Before someone comes in with the extremely oftenly used remark on these forums a la "so dont look at it" "so dont care" "why are you offended" etc - these are important issues since gaming in general is one of the absolute worst when it comes to sexism. That's why I care. Oh also I love games.

#31 Posted by Brodehouse (9951 posts) -
@RIDEBIRD Absolutely it is lowest common denominator and tries to appeal to more base urges rather than intellectual, I'm not condoning the use of sex or explosions or dubstep or whatever 'eyeblaster' marketing we have this week on an intellectual basis, I'm merely making sure we kill the idea that sex is inherently misogynist. Sexual desire is intrinsically human, and I feel intrinsically good. It's the refusal to see a target of desire as a person with agency that constitutes misogyny, not the mere existence of it. And that's true in every orientation and desire, whether hetero, homo or anything else out there.

The developer who felt oppressed by the presence of attractive models at E3, while her feelings are genuine and valid, they aren't an acceptable framework to apply to every other person at E3, even the booth babes causing her insecurity. Her feeling that the men in her office won't be able to differentiate her as a person from paid models runs on the sexist assumption that all men are too stupid and ignorant to live. I mean, yeah, there are some _STUPID BASTARDS_ out there, but I think her male colleagues deserve a tad more respect in that in general, if not in specific.
#32 Posted by Fire_Of_The_Wind (170 posts) -

I don't understand what misogyny means any more I thought it meant hatred of women, but apparently anything sexist is also misogynistic, so why use 2 different words unless they mean different things. Can someone please explain to me what the difference is, if there's any, between misogyny and sexism?

#33 Posted by Rasmoss (456 posts) -

@Fire_Of_The_Wind said:

I don't understand what misogyny means any more I thought it meant hatred of women, but apparently anything sexist is also misogynistic, so why use 2 different words unless they mean different things. Can someone please explain to me what the difference is, if there's any, between misogyny and sexism?

I think misogyny is legitimate hatred of women, while a sexist doesn't necissarily hate women, as long as they "know their place".

#34 Posted by Milkman (16804 posts) -

So pretty much you're saying misogyny in gaming is women's fault. Great, I bet they were "asking for it" too.

#35 Posted by Trainer_Red (314 posts) -

Boom. And just like that, I now give zero fucks about this subject.

#36 Posted by Brodehouse (9951 posts) -
@Fire_Of_The_Wind Misogyny is the refusal of women as being people, of having rights, feelings and agency. Sexism is the projection of certain traits as being inherent within gender (racism is the same with race, ageism with age, et cetera). All misogyny is sexism, as it takes the single fact of 'woman' and applies it to 'not having intrinsic human worth'. But not all sexism is necessarily misogyny, often it is covert stereotyping or unfortunate implications that ignore the woman as an individual (even if still treating her as a human).

Much like all cheaters are assholes, but not all assholes are cheaters; all misogynists are sexists, but not all sexists are misogynists. And sexism also works both ways; it's dependent on gender assumptions, not necessarily just ladies.
#37 Posted by Levio (1784 posts) -

I think what you're trying to say is that individual critiques of women can't be identified as misogyny because they may instead be legitimate critiques, and the ambiguity of such offenses may be used by both sides to confirm/deny such misogyny exists.

Yes, this issue exists with many forms of bias, and there is no obvious solution to it other than to be aware of it and be careful not to be fooled by it.

#38 Posted by RIDEBIRD (1232 posts) -

@Brodehouse: What you fail to see is that one woman uncomfortable is enough. You don't agree there, as you wrote, but I think it's enough. I'm pretty sure quite a lot of women would feel similar seeing as there were others telling about experiences where they were approached as booth babes. I have no idea why booth babes is a thing that must exists and why it would be worth the fact that we alienate a whole bunch of people because of it, and offend the intellect of men. There's no one except sexist dudes who wanna hover hand that benefit from booth babes.

It's not like it's one or two booths that have titties in them - it's everywhere. Every publisher, every developer. They need to change.

#39 Posted by MikkaQ (10294 posts) -

I find this recent influx of discussion on the issue to be pointless because it's all discussion. Nothing's changing, no body is doing anything or reacting, they're just typing stuff on a keyboard. I don't see how that is going to change something that is fundamentally wrong with our society. Games aren't exclusively to blame because women deal with sexism on all fronts and gaming is such a small or non-existent part of most people's lives. It's super weird to me that we're even talking about this in the context of games because that is such a relatively small section of culture that you'll never fix the problem from within it.

#40 Posted by Fredchuckdave (5492 posts) -

Misogyny is prevalent because this is a patriarchal culture and Japanese culture is even moreso; additionally with very little female involvement in the industry there's not much chance of this changing. Misogyny is also quite prevalent in film, literature, and just general society though it is not always obvious. The enabling of promiscuous, popular, and retarded sex symbols as the most famous young women in our culture doesn't exactly help the situation.

#41 Posted by Beforet (2922 posts) -

@MikkaQ said:

I find this recent influx of discussion on the issue to be pointless because it's all discussion. Nothing's changing, no body is doing anything or reacting, they're just typing stuff on a keyboard. I don't see how that is going to change something that is fundamentally wrong with our society. Games aren't exclusively to blame because women deal with sexism on all fronts and gaming is such a small or non-existent part of most people's lives. It's super weird to me that we're even talking about this in the context of games because that is such a relatively small section of culture that you'll never fix the problem from within it.

It might be a small part of the overall culture, but for some people gaming can be a big element of their lives. And at the very least the discussion is making us think about this stuff. The publishers and developers won't start changing unless they see a market incentive, or if they come to the decision to change on their own. And hell, maybe there's some small time developers or writers reading these threads. At least this controversy puts the issue into people's heads, where it can stew and cultivate and perhaps even prompt action later on. Also, when has talking ever hurt anything?

#42 Posted by haggis (1677 posts) -

@RIDEBIRD said:

@haggis: Discussion could help you know, being quiet about it would make women feel even more alienated.

Yes, discussion could help. But the last few days have only further convinced me that a real discussion on this topic isn't going to happen online, where too many people seem happy to troll the boards. Or, at least, the discussion could be initiated in a way less confrontational than Twitter hashtags, which begs only for sniping, not real discussion. It's not about being quiet about it, it's about choosing the right venue for a productive conversation. The initial wave of commentary wasn't about having a discussion, but about being controversial. That's at least part of what caused this whole mess. Now everyone's pissed, irritated, or sick-to-death of it. Positions have hardened. In other words: nothing has changed.

Gaming websites could have decided to support this by having a symposium, of sorts, curating different perspectives so everyone felt heard. Instead we got a social media brawl.

#43 Posted by Brodehouse (9951 posts) -

@RIDEBIRD said:

@Brodehouse: What you fail to see is that one woman uncomfortable is enough. You don't agree there, as you wrote, but I think it's enough. I'm pretty sure quite a lot of women would feel similar seeing as there were others telling about experiences where they were approached as booth babes. I have no idea why booth babes is a thing that must exists and why it would be worth the fact that we alienate a whole bunch of people because of it, and offend the intellect of men. There's no one except sexist dudes who wanna hover hand that benefit from booth babes.

It's not like it's one or two booths that have titties in them - it's everywhere. Every publisher, every developer. They need to change.

Let me preface this by saying that I actually don't see any ethical 'need' for booth babes or what have you; but apparently marketers do. The great and awful thing about business is that it doesn't see people as genders who deserve consideration, it only sees financial value, for good or ill. They serve no value purpose to me, but apparently to someone. That's unfortunate.

With that said, pull back the reins a bit. You're doing exactly what I feared, and conflating 'sex' with 'sexism'. Sexual desire, whether it's heterosexual male, female, homosexual of either gender, trans, whathaveyou, is not sexist, misogynistic, or bad. The 'sexist dudes' you crucify are not necessarily sexist for taking pictures with models. To say they are implies that they're forcing the models to do this something they don't want, which implies they have a complete lack of agency as regards their lives or bodies. If it is sexist to enjoy sexually-driven work that others perform, it establishes that sexually-driven work is itself sexist; it states women don't have the agency to choose what they do. This is textbook anti-sex rhetoric, and as someone who thinks our culture is puritanical enough already, I can't abide by it.

A woman being uncomfortable and personally offended by the presence of heterosexual male sexuality in public has no more justification than assholes of any stripe (though predominantly heterosexual men and women) taking personal offense at seeing gay men dressed provocatively, of trans couples kissing in public, or hell, even other heterosexual couples in some extreme cases. The 'sex doesn't belong here' only wants to hide any and eventually all sex away, in places it can't be seen or heard from, treating sex like a foul blight on humanity rather than one of the most liberating and life-affirming drives we have. The urge to repress and smother all these examples only serves to demonize all sexual desire, and as an egalitarian I won't stand for it.

If booth babes stop appearing at E3, I hope it will be because they ceased to be a financial benefit to the companies that hire them, because they stopped getting a reaction, not because prudes told them that they were evil.

#44 Posted by IzzyGraze (850 posts) -

@Brodehouse said:

No. Misogyny exists because misogyny exists. No one isn't a misogynist and then plays games and goes "wait, that girl is getting attention because of her sex!" and then suddenly becomes a misogynist. The gamer girl/attention grabbing trope as pertains to women is about as meaningful to the overall discussion as dudebros and the slavering anonymous mongooses who 'did it for the lulz' are meaningful as pertains to men. You wouldn't appreciate being lumped in with a bunch of macho bullshit because you happen to be a man, don't lump women in with simpering attention whores just because they happen to also be women.

Yeah. Essentially this. And I do have to add. Where are these attention grabbing "gamer girls"? I have never seen them. Are they like smosh starting up a gaming channel? People who don't know much about video games but play them so they can get the youtube money? Or is it just the celebrity women that pretend that they like games in commercials? Because plenty of guys do that too.

#45 Posted by LiquidS (971 posts) -

THANKS OBAMA

Also @Brodehouse

" If it is sexist to enjoy sexually-driven work that others perform, it establishes that sexually-driven work is itself sexist; it states women don't have the agency to choose what they do. This is textbook anti-sex rhetoric, and as someone who thinks our culture is puritanical enough already, I can't abide by it."

/tips hat

#46 Edited by Brodehouse (9951 posts) -

@IzzyGraze said:

@Brodehouse said:

No. Misogyny exists because misogyny exists. No one isn't a misogynist and then plays games and goes "wait, that girl is getting attention because of her sex!" and then suddenly becomes a misogynist. The gamer girl/attention grabbing trope as pertains to women is about as meaningful to the overall discussion as dudebros and the slavering anonymous mongooses who 'did it for the lulz' are meaningful as pertains to men. You wouldn't appreciate being lumped in with a bunch of macho bullshit because you happen to be a man, don't lump women in with simpering attention whores just because they happen to also be women.

Yeah. Essentially this. And I do have to add. Where are these attention grabbing "gamer girls"? I have never seen them. Are they like smosh starting up a gaming channel? People who don't know much about video games but play them so they can get the youtube money? Or is it just the celebrity women that pretend that they like games in commercials? Because plenty of guys do that too.

There are absolutely 'gamer girl' youtube accounts that mostly revolve around attractive teen girls living up to the standards you would assume of teenagers on youtube. I just don't think they are extremely relevant to any meaningful discussion of inequality in games.

I think the celebrity portion is mostly guys being upset at public reaction (which in games means male reaction, of course). There are absolutely different public reactions to male or female celebrity gamers, ladies do tend to get more of a 'bump' than Zachary Levy or whomever announcing they like teh Haloez. But once again, not extremely relevant in the grand scheme.

In fact, it's pretty much the same issue as the whole 'booth babe' thing; it's using the sexual desires of men in service of exposure. It's crass and lowest-common-denominator, but it's not sexist.

#47 Posted by Simplexity (1382 posts) -

Actually people are just cunts to women on the Internet because they are cunts towards ANYONE.

I.E If you are black be prepared to be called "the N word".

That is really all there is to it.

#48 Posted by mordukai (7151 posts) -

I don't think it's a case of misogyny as more of a case of not knowing how to write and create good female characters in games. The fact of the matter is that video game industry is male dominated. You can say the same thing about why most main characters are caucasian males and that's also because the gaming industry is mostly caucasian males.

#49 Posted by CatsAkimbo (627 posts) -

A misogynist who blames someone else for their shitty behavior is not very manly.

#50 Posted by gamefreak9 (2359 posts) -

@forkboy said:

@gamefreak9 said:

People will always attribute the average to the individual, stop trying to control the world into something you want it to be and face reality. Its rational to assume things about girls unless proven otherwise, you don't always have a chance to find out more, sometimes you gotta work with expectations. There's always these people who think they are being progressive but are in fact just whiny. If there's opportunities for profit that the market is missing then maybe the industry can meet it. Otherwise I hate hearing about people telling others what should be in their product or how they should enjoy it, just GTFO.

Yeah, this argument could be used to "defend" almost every prejudicial view that we now tend to look down upon but was acceptable at some point in history. To use an intentionally provocative & extreme example, "Slavery is just a social reality, you'll never change it, just accept reality & move on, stop whining about it." The only way to make progress on social issues is to kick up a fuss. Now the internet is not really the best place to do that because so many people talk in absolutes online rather than accepting that life is full of little subtitles that can't just be fixed by a screaming fight where we call each other faggots & cunts & so forth.

I can't really be bothered arguing it online because it's a crappy environment for serious debate: anonymity really does make it too easy for people to be dicks, & I say that as someone who is quite as capable for turning into a horrible shite online as the next person. I think that a minority of gamers have what could generously be described as out-of-touch opinions on women & will leave it at that. I don't think all games need to change massively, I think some games could do with being less gratuitous & leering but the same could be said about cinema, & I think some gamers could probably do with having some female friends, or at least have more personal experience of women than their mothers & their favourite porn actresses. And I'll just leave it there because I don't really see any point in a debate where the two sides will never agree.

Slavery gave people no rights from birth. Merely comparing these is idiotic. The market is a bunch of people who have a specific opinion of women and hence they prefer games that coincide with their opinions. Its that simple, stop asking people to change just so they meet your top down expectations. If a girl wants to play games that's fine, if enough of them do so to create a market girls would love more then cool but that is all. I would not even call this a real issue since most social issues are about people having a right to do things, but your not even talking about a right to do something, your talking about taking the rights of gamer's to talk about their opinions or the industry to reflect things a certain way.