I was going to leave this subject alone, I really was. I don't mind covering sensitive subjects, I don't mind talking about them, it's good for people to have an outlet to talk about these subjects and to have their opinions heard, right?
So, here is my opinion on the matter after sitting on the sidelines and observing for a while. Sexism in video games, whether we all want to admit it or not, is just a hot button subject to get clicks(And yes, I realize the hypocrisy here). Are there asshats online? Oh, yeah, most definitely. Are there good people? Yep. Are there White Knights posing as good people and then turn hostile when women gamers/streamers wont give them something special for taking up for them? Fucking A right there are and those douchebags are the worst.
However within the past year or so the subject seems to be popping up more and more. Kotaku seems to be the main "offender" of this as Kotaku appears to be quickly going the "woke" route which never seems to turn out for the best in the long run for anyone. But even news outlets, like The Guardian, are trying to cover the subject especially after the Fortnite World Cup winner was a young man and a whole article was written about how basically Esports needs to get "woke" or fail. If you want to see the article and have some commentary by Tim Pool on the subject, click here . It's a good video and he makes some damn good points that most of us gamers already know and agree with.
To get to my point, here it goes. Get prepared to either agree or get triggered, I don't think there's going to be a middle ground here. In video games, sexism shouldn't surprise you. It's a male dominated hobby,and now, sport. However, I believe the sexism is blown out of proportion and made into hyperbolic situations/articles by our gaming journalists just for the clicks and they know it will get them some traction on social media.
Also, the term "Gamer" has changed over the past couple of years too, with the advent of casual games like on your phone or simple indie games that were made just to kill 15-20 minutes at a time. *Only* playing these kinds of games still qualifies you as being a "gamer" by today's standards. Supposedly 46% of women are gamers, but are they playing Candy Crush or League of Legends? Most likely they're playing Candy Crush, or games similar to it, that most actual gamers wouldn't give the time of day. Thus making the term "gamers" only accurate in its most literal sense of the word, not what the industry/community actually defines it as. That sounds completely upside down I know, but it's true.
Then lets turn our attention towards something else that is a touchy subject; online harassment of gamers and general trash talk. There were numerous studies where it basically boils down to where 74-80% of gamers have experienced online harassment. Why is this surprising? It's a male dominated arena/community.
Have you ever seen a group of dudes together? Have you ever experienced how us dudes treat each other and what we say to each other? You can be our best friend in the world and we'll still tell you that we are going to bang your mom and force you to watch. Why do we do this? It's funny, it's like this weird privilege of being a friend and most times there's a retort that nets you an interesting back and forth for a little while.
However most women don't seem to do this with their friends(yes, there are exceptions but most seem not to). Most women are treated differently than men when it comes to feelings and what is and isn't appropriate to say to them. Men are more likely to develop a tougher skin at an earlier age and thus when we are talked to like trash, it doesn't bother us. If anything, we step up to the challenge and fire back. Most women don't. They get taken off guard, completely offended, then plot and scheme on how they're going to "get even" because someone made a verbal attack against them.
There also seems to come down to another thing that people seem to blindly either ignore or just forget about: Ambition and drive to compete/dominate. That's the point in most games, right? You are given an objective and you are tasked with completing said objective to obtain victory. Not to mention once you get down into the Esports part of it, where you need to work as a team(usually) to accomplish a goal and it's for an actual reason and not just fun; like a hefty amount of money for winning the event. Guys tend to be able to work more cohesively than women do to achieve a common goal. Is this because we figure out a "pecking order" more quickly than women do and just fall in line because there's something that needs to be done?
Men typically have a higher drive to compete on professional levels, or just to simply compete. To prove ourselves, undertake challenges, and try to accomplish seemingly impossible goals(for better or worse, we're "dumb" enough to stick our necks out). Which is why you see Esports as a typically male dominated world, like most other sports. Sure, there are women that can and do compete with men however most of the women simply don't qualify for events like the Fortnite World Cup. Is this because women gamers generally don't care and push themselves to qualify? Is there an actual skill gap? Whatever the reasons are it just seems that most female gamers don't make the cut and some don't even try.
There are exceptions to every rule but that is not what I am concentrating on here. Should maybe there be a female Esports arena like other sports have splintered off into male and female version? Sure. Why not? And at least on the Esports level, you could have the males and females compete without having to worry about biological things getting in the way like size differences, muscle mass differences, etc. It would be a level playing field and the most skilled person would win. That would be badass to see, honestly.
I'm not trying to say that women experiencing harassment/sexism is right. I'm not saying that every bro-bag that does harass gamer women doesn't need their teeth knocked in. If you're a woman by all means, do you. Play the video games. Enjoy the game. Most of us welcome women, honestly. There's only been a handful of women that I've experienced in my life that play games and can put up with the initiation right to "hang with the guys" and let me tell you an inside bit of info; if you are a woman that can dish out the trash talk with the best of us, aren't a glass house(get your feelings hurt when someone trash talks you back), can manage to put a guy in his place by coming back with witty one liners and leaving them speechless, it's a big blow to the guy and actually garners lots of respect from the other men in the group, including the one you were having the back and forth with. You just gotta be able to do it is all and most women don't seem to have what it takes to do it. Either because they simply don't want to, or because they're feelings will get hurt too easily, to any other myriad of reasons.
You might be pissed off by reading this(if you've got this far) and you might fly off the handle about this article and post some nasty things, but always remember this:
Somewhere out there is a woman/tiddy streamer who is taking some dumb ass, typical alpha male fucktwat, to the cleaners(Lets be honest though, it's more likely a beta male or a good ol' fashioned Orbiter). Getting all the money she can from him by giving him something he can get for free if he just visits one of the many free porn sites.
There is a woman somewhere taking full advantage of a man because she simply knows how to do it.
Somewhere in the wild is a woman who is tricking all her White Knight followers into protecting her because she knows their low self-esteem is easily manipulated with just a kind word, maybe a kissy face made in their general direction, and that's all she needs to do in order to keep their subs/monthly recurring payments.
So, while gaming might be a male dominated arena, women "get even" with men in other ways too. All I've got to say about that is kudos to you, girl. Do your thing. Take their money, their admiration, and whatever else you can get from them because:
A) They're stupid enough to do it. Simple as that. You got bills and you gotta eat too.
B) If it's not you, it would be someone else, so might as well be you.
Here are some videos on the subject as well:
- Tim Pool
- The Quartering