In a recent article published by Macleans.CA ‘On Campus’ paper, women in the gaming industry have noticed a sickening number of sexist remarks while playing video games. In the article, it is mentioned that of some of the comments such as “make me a sandwich” are common recurrences, while “show me your t-ts” and “I’ve got something for you to sit on” are the most common forms of sexual harassment expressed.
Other instances of this have been reported in a recent article in The Globe and Mail as well. A game, whose purpose was to pummel Anita Sarkeesian, a Canadian blogger from Toronto (for which special features blackened eyes, added bruises, and also added lacerations) had been normalizing violence against women in a response to Sarkeesian’s attempt to expose misogyny in games.
How have women been fighting these stereotypes? In some instances all-girl gamer groups have been formed to combat the age-old stereotype that girls can’t play video games. Two of the largest groups, The Frag Dolls and The PMS Clan also attend major gaming conferences, often competing alongside all-male (and some diverse) gaming teams to further prove their point. TV Shows such as G4’s WCG Ultimate Gamer have also been diligent in including a diverse group of girls for each season; in season 2, WCG had its first female winner, Katherine Gunn (whose gamertag was ‘Mystik’).
In other instances, female gamers have begun speaking out against the overly sexual portrayal of women in games, calling for less demeaning portrayal of women.
“If the industry stopped objectified female characters in games, men might be less inclined to objectify the women playing them.” Emma Teitel, Macleans.ca
What do you think can be done to combat harassment of women in the gaming sphere? Sound off in the comments!