This week, a hashtag by the name of #1reasonwhy appeared on twitter and exposed some of the more horrific corners of the video game industry. Leading figures in game design, publishing, writing shared regrettable stories about the times they had been treated differently simply because they were female. Go check it out.
As a result, a lot of men in the video game industry who agree that this sexism shouldn’t exist in this day and age might be on the fence on how to approach this sensitive issue. Your heart is in the right place but you don’t want to appear as a dumb, lumbering meathead coming to the rescue of helpless women. I’m one of those lumbering meatheads and I’d thought I’d put together a comprehensive list so we can work together not being scumbag sexists.
1. If you see someone treating women differently at game events simply because they’re not a dude, say “The hell? What are you doing? Don’t do that.”
2. Don’t get your picture taken with booth babes. But don’t regard them as filthy non-entities either.
3. Don’t assume a woman knows less about games than you. Assume they know more. There’s more women out there who have forgotten more about games design, programming and Dragon Age than I’ll ever learn.
4. Give your opinion about sexism in gaming whenever possible. Except if you’re a sexist. In which case, start back at number 1.
5. Avoid comments sections on gaming sites. There’s better discussion elsewhere.
6. If you’re giving your sexist opinion to women as some sort of defense and are baffled as to why it’s a problem, IT’S BECAUSE YOU’RE PISSING PEOPLE OFF THAT’S WHY. WHAT ARE YOU, TWELVE?
7. Sexism isn’t a ‘side of the argument’. It’s being sexist.
8. Constantly question whether upcoming female video game characters are too sexually perverted. There’s approximately 12, 422, 980, 155, 657, 285 other boobs on the internet if you need to look at some.
9. If a ‘boy’s club’ is engaging in sexist behaviour and encourage you to do the same, reply “Hahaha you’re joking aren’t you? Who do you think I am, Pepe Le Pew? Hahahaha you stupid bastards.” And then leave.
10. Stop using or being okay with the term ‘girl-gamer’. Are there girl-movie watchers? No.
11. There’s no such thing as sexism against men. Because come on son.
12. If you’re excited about an upcoming game or trailer, don’t describe your excitement in relation to erections, ejaculations or sexual penetration like you’re going to actually insert your penis into the game or something. All that just leads to trouble.
13. Stop buying Dead Or Alive games.
The only thing more staggeringly unbelievable than sexism in gaming still being a problem in 2012 is people who like KFC potato & gravy and the fact that According To Jim was on television for eight years. Seeing countless deranged pieces of excrement on the internet making sexist comments towards women in gaming makes me want to grab them by the ear, shove them towards their mother’s vagina and scream “Get the fuck back in there, you’re not ready yet!”. I don’t care how you were raised. When I was young, you could smoke cigarettes in hospital waiting rooms, rotary phones were the only communication tool and video game advertisements looked like this:
If your dad brought you up to believe that a woman’s place was in the home, not only has that time passed but your dad was wrong to begin with. It makes me sick to my stomach that some men have no idea what a suffragette is and still think there’s no problem with women being treated differently in the video game industry.
Pull your head out of your asses and let’s work towards ending this. Because we’d all be rather playing video games.