November 30, 2005

Girls, Games, and Post-Feminism

Filed under:Feminism, Gaming Women, Online Communities — Lake Desire @ 2:46 pm

Sarah Graves’s article, Girls, Games, and Post-Feminism, does well to both discuss what women (and feminists) want out of video games and the divisions in online communities of gaming women.

For a while now I’ve been part of an online community of girl gamers. It’s a livejournal community with close to two thousand members, and another thousand or so watching. … Every now and then someone will post about an experience online or in person where they were either mocked/praised/drooled over/harassed based on their sex. Some girls sympathize and groan- nearly every one has had a similar experience. Others get downright angry. Not at the mocker/praiser/drooler/harasser… But the girl bringing it up as an issue.

Graves’s observation is one I’ve also observed in gaming communities and in online games: You’re playing in a man’s world, what do you expect? A safe environment with like-interested folks to vent about harassment is reasonable. The victims are blamed, or told to toughen up and stop being so sensitive (“masculine” traits), enough in game and in the real world.

In fact, talking about your personal experiences as a girl gamer has become quite a point of contention in the community. Some members are supportive, share a laugh or anecdote, other members get angry that girls keep mentioned shoddy treatment based on sex. For them, it’s either an absolute: It’s a game…it’s entertainment. Women are exploited in almost every genre of entertainment. or something that happens so often, mentioning it is just redundant: As long as the male turnout overweighs the female, expect stupid reactions, and indeed, dumber questions.

Is it really that much of a turnout? 43% of people who play video games are female, according to Entertainment Software Association.


Survey Excerpt

Filed under:Gaming Women, Statistics — Lake Desire @ 12:23 am

In addition to general demographic questions, I also asked survey respondents to share their experiences with online harassment, their views on women in gamers, and invited any general comments on any of the topics raised by the survey. The following are excerpts from the survey responses. Original spelling and grammar are still intact.



November 29, 2005

Women Gamers Survey

Filed under:Feminism, Gaming Women, Gender, Statistics, Videogames — Lake Desire @ 5:44 pm

In October of 2005, I conducted a survey of women gamers from the girlgamers community on Live Journal, feminist_gamers community on Live Journal, and Video Game Recaps web forums. I was curious about women who game, how they see themselves in games, and how much of an interest there was in a feminist gaming resource. I received 32 responses. This survey was by no means scientific and certainly was not free of bias.



Fandom and Male Privilege

Filed under:Fandom, Privilege — Lake Desire @ 11:38 am

From LJ user Cereta posted an article on Fandom and Male Privilege:

The second result of the invisibility of male privilege is that a lack of male privilege is taken as active oppression, as male-bashing or bias towards women. It is not enough that the mere presence of something which actively aims at women and women’s interests is taken as oppressing men; simply not catering to men’s interests is perceived as oppression. And I mean, by the way, honestly perceived that way.

It is not enough, you see, not to exclude men. We have to actively get them involved. I’m not sure what’s more insidious, there: the notion that we must find it not only desirable that men get involved in fandom but also some kind of imperative, or the notion that it is our, women’s, responsibility to get them involved in fandom.

Read the full article.


November 28, 2005

New Game Plus

Filed under:Site News — Lake Desire @ 2:36 pm

Welcome to New Game Plus. This blog was prompted by a women’s studies course at my university. I wanted to see what was out there for feminist gamers. There are some great sites out there, but I decided to throw one more into the mix.
Upcoming in the near future:

  • Results from surveys I conducted with women gamers in general and women who play World of Warcraft.
  • My reviews of some websites and resources for women gamers.
  • General blog-type entries: links, comments on news stories, etc. I also plan on getting the RSS feed to work properly. (Bear with me, I’m learning the technology.)
  • Long-term goals:

  • Game reviews written through a feminist lens.
  • Forums (if there is an interest).
    If you’d like to contribute, or have any suggestions, please send me an E-mail.
  • end