Tag Archives: gender

The Metaphorical Grocery Store

Chris Plante, Polygon:

Two groups are at opposite ends of this moment:

One side has folded its arms, slumped its shoulders while pouting like an obstinate child that has learned they are getting a little brother or sister but wants to remain the singular focus of his parents’ affection.

The other side has opened its arms, unable to contain its love and compassion, because they understand they are no longer alone.

This week, the obstinate child threw a temper tantrum, and the industry was stuck in the metaphorical grocery store as everyone was forced to suffer through it together. But unlike a child, the people behind these temper tantrums are hurting others. It’s time to grow up. Let’s not wait until next week to start.

I am very happy to see writers Auerbach and Plante echo each other’s sentiment of “childish rhetoric.” I’m even happier that Plante is escalating this conversation to include the reality of the situation.

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You’re talking to a child

David Auerbach, Slate:

Now a harder suggestion: Police yourselves. When an impetuous member of Anonymous “revealed” the wrong person as Michael Brown’s shooter, many other members aggressively and publicly condemned the member. You’ve got to do that, too. When the more infantile and hateful members of the online gaming contingent harass a woman, you should remind them what the actual goal is, and tell them that they’re tripping themselves up. Remember that you’re talking to a child, in spirit if not in actual fact. If you police yourselves, Reddit and Steam moderators won’t have to. This is not an easy task, but it is possible. Self-organizing communities are one of the miracles of human civilization.

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‘The Truth About Zoe Quinn’

Elizabeth Sampat:

I keep using the word “survive” but I can’t help but wonder: is this surviving? What parts of me are surviving? Can any woman escape this whole?

That’s the thing. The truth is, a lot of the women who are being driven away have never met or interacted with Anita or Zoe. A lot of the women in our industry exist in a constant state of fear. Women who make games and would never dream of connecting their face or real name with a Twitter account, just in case. Women who would never go indie. Women who are terrified of starting a crowdfunding campaign but who can’t get their dreams funded any other way, and so their dreams just die.

Are you okay with this? Is this the industry that you want?

An insightful must read from Sampat.

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‘Trolls drive Anita Sarkeesian out of her house to prove misogyny doesn’t exist’

Adi Robertson, The Verge:

The threats against Sarkeesian have become a nasty backdrop to her entire project — and her life. If the trolls making them hoped for attention, they’ve gotten it. They’ve also inexorably linked criticism of her work, valid or not, with semi-delusional vigilantism, and arguably propelled Tropes vs. Women to its current level of visibility. If a major plank of your platform is that misogyny is a lie propagated by Sarkeesian and other “social justice warriors,” it might help to not constantly prove it wrong.

I am deeply troubled by all of this. My thoughts to Sarkeesian and those affected by these incredibly disturbing acts of lunacy.

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The Gimmick Girl

Jack Moore on Mo’Ne Davis and Emma March:

The narrative of the gimmick girl in sports is doubly damaging. Not only does it foster a lower expectation of women’s abilities — in both genders — it also creates an assumption that women aren’t earning their spots when in reality they are almost certainly facing even higher standards than the men they compete against.If the sports world is truly going to house gender equality, we need to give girls the freedom to choose their sports. We need to stop pressuring them to take the path of least gender resistance. And we need to stop holding them to a higher standard when everything else is already working against them.

Great read on gender equality in sports. Bring me right back to the Finnish Hearthstone Tournament and gender segregation in chess. A very interesting conversation.

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Megan Farokhmanesh of Polygon, in conversation with Nate Fox of Sucker Punch, on the inclusion of Fetch as a playable character in Infamous: First Light:

Until now, Infamous has never given a female character a leading role. This was largely because of the assumption that “we thought that the demographic of game players were dudes and they identified with dudes,” Fox said. He pointed to BioWare’s Mass Effect series; in 2011, the developer said only 18 percent of players chose to play as a woman. That number was reiterated during a PAX East panel last year.

I love the admittance of assumption. Happy to see this message being spread throughout AAA Dev teams.

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Female Hollywood Numbers


Hollywood’s woman problem is well-documented: researchers at San Diego State University found that women made up just 15% of protagonists, 29% of major characters and 30% of all speaking characters in movies last year.

Still better than the video game industry, but not far off. Also, I am slacking on my follow-up to the E3 2013 Genre/Gender Breakdown.


The Untold Story of Unroll.Me

Perri Blake Gorman, co-founder of Unroll.Me:

Personally I love being a woman in tech. There is nothing that has helped me be more memorable than being a woman. Our first piece of press happened when Courtney Boyd Meyers (@CBM), then at The Next Web, reached out to us. She asked to write a piece because she had seen me tweeting about it. As a female founder you get on people’s radars. That press was followed by a post by Lifehacker which generated over 26,000 signups in 24 hours.

A great outlook on the ongoing and magnified diversity problem in the tech (and gaming) industry. Just unsubscribed from 85 newsletters, rolled up 29. My favorite part are the Most Unsubscribed / Most Rolled Up awards.

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‘How chess shows that gender segregation in eSports might encourage more female leagues’

An interesting piece over at Polygon.

Emily Gera, Polygon:

Chess historically has featured gender-segregated tournaments; This has nothing to do with differences in skill levels between the genders, however, MindSports International development manager and chess coach Eduardo Sajgalik tells us. Rather it’s the best method of helping smaller demographics grow.

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Binary Notions of Sex and Gender

The newest version of Dungeons & Dragons launched on July 3, 2015.

Dungeons & Dragons, 5th Edition: Basic Rules v0.1:

You can play a male or female character without gaining any special benefits or hindrances. Think about how your character does or does not conform to the broader culture’s expectations of sex, gender, and sexual behavior. For example, a male drow cleric defies the traditional gender divisions of drow society, which could be a reason for your character to leave that society and come to the surface.

You don’t need to be confined to binary notions of sex and gender. The elf god Corellon Larethian is often seen as androgynous or hermaphroditic, for example, and some elves in the multiverse are made in Corellon’s image. You could also play a female character who presents herself as a man, a man who feels trapped in a female body, or a bearded female dwarf who hates being mistaken for a male. Likewise, your character’s sexual orientation is for you to decide.

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