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Tropes Vs Women in Video Games, Somehow a Controversy? (+ general gender / video game discussion)
News reported by 
June 14, 2012, 17:58:56
The short story is that Anita Sarkeesian of Feminist Frequency has started a Kickstarter to explore the stereotypes of females in video games. Or well, why not just hear it in her words?

I love playing video games but Iím regularly disappointed in the limited and limiting ways women are represented. This video project will explore, analyze and deconstruct some of the most common tropes and stereotypes of female characters in games. The series will highlight the larger recurring patterns and conventions used within the gaming industry rather than just focusing on the worst offenders. Iím going to need your help to make it happen!

The longer story is that because she is a self-proclaimed "feminist" (what this means in her case I'm really not sure, since everyone interprets this label differently when applying it to themselves) that anything she does somehow automatically becomes super controversial, and she has received rape threats and death threats and attempts to shut down this project from (primarily) male gamers. Because obviously if you disagree with feminism the way to get your point across is to tell a women she needs to be raped and murdered. (That was sarcasm, in case you missed it. This is not the correct way to express disagreement. At all.)

Personally I think that, all fears of succumbing to the feminist agenda aside (also sarcasm), projects like hers are necessary for the video game industry to truly mature. Gamers seem to love talking about the word "mature" a lot, so why do we rebel against actual maturity so much? I think that it's a good thing that she is sticking to her project, all threats aside. And whatever the case, it is ridiculous that people are fighting so hard to shut her up. Why not let her say what she has to say and if, after actually hearing it, you disagree with it, you are well within your rights to say something.

What do you guys think?

PS. As of this writing she has brought in $126,768 of her $6,000 Kickstarter goal. So things aren't completely dire. But this doesn't negate the abuse she has had to (and most likely will continue to) sustain just to get this project moving.

As of today this thread will be locked. What originally was meant to be a thread discussing the soon-to-be controversial Anita videos about female tropes in Video Games grew into something much more. We at Negative World absolutely love a good conversation and we will always encourage mature and respectful conversation. That said, the thread has had it's moments of polarization to the extreme in the past and recently. While at the moment I write this, the thread is rather calm,.. there has been a joint decision by the moderators of this site to close this particular thread down. The thread strayed way outside of the original bounds of it's intent. We have a different idea of how to frame this delicate and polarizing topic at Negative World.

For future installments of Anita's series we will either have a mod create a new official thread for it (as well as posting links to previous episodes) or we will use our already established Youtube Video thread. The latter could have easily been the original home for this thread if it wanted to. Discussion can continue as normal in the future thread but we ask to keep in mind that the topic should relate to Anita's videos and her message. Hear, analyze, and discuss that. This new location for this discussion will be established with the release of her next video. Please find patience till then.

Thank you from all of us at Negative World for understanding.
~ Negative World Moderation

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Posted: 06/14/12, 17:58:56  - Locked by 
 on: 08/22/13, 04:37:22    
Why not sign up for a (free) account and create your own content?
This thread should be printed and leather bound for future generations.

Posted by 
 on: 08/06/13, 01:38:39

Maybe you should listen to what Anand is saying. And Nac is saying. It isn't just me, pal.

If you're talking about "listening to Anita," I already heard her in her 1st video. Its been the same thing over and over and over again, and then she pitched her incredibly far-fetched game, and as Nac mentioned, she'd STILL find a way to make it sexist against women. Like "if she really mattered, someone would've come to her rescue. However, she's just a woman in a videogame -- disposable -- so nobody cares if she rots forever. She is obliged to take it upon herself to escape lest she be left for dead."

--So, big deal? You "crazy feminists" liked ONE character. I guarantee if Jade was in a bikini, everyone would be BITCHING about it. Mirror's Edge chick is dressed almost the same as Jade. I guess the clothes really DO make the (wo)man. Also, if there was a REALISTIC jiggle, people would be grumpy. What kind of sad, sad, sad, sad, sad world do we live in? Can't even have cartoon breasts anywhere without someone getting upset. Do you know what boobs look like in a T-Shirt when a girl walks? Check it out sometime. How can one complain about that if its in a videogame??

And "making stuff up?" You seriously have no idea how women work.
Beauty fades with time. "Left for the younger woman" ranks pretty high, dude. No doubting that, happens every day.

Posted by 
 on: 08/06/13, 02:25:52

Posted by 
 on: 08/06/13, 02:30:06

Wow, that was a lot better than Anita's Sarsgard's stuff. Look how many examples that dude had! What the heck!

Posted by 
 on: 08/06/13, 02:39:44
@Mr_Mustache I have been listening to what Anita said, and in no way, shape, or form has she ever inferred that she wants all females to be small-boobed, 30-somethings wearing pants. And no one has been complaining about realistic boob movement either. Seriously, where on earth are you getting this stuff from? I'm not trying to be mean but it's just getting ridiculous. It has no connection to anything anyone has said. You're completely making up stuff and then getting all up in arms about the stuff that you made up.

And yes, Jade being in a bikini would be completely different, because it would make no sense in context (time to go save Pey'j, better throw on my bikini just in case!) and be a clear attempt to unrealistically sexualize a character who was not built to be a sexualized character. Now you're getting it.

"Feminists" like other female characters besides Jade, Jade's just a good high profile example.

@Secret_Tunnel I was cringing when I saw the title, but that was pretty hilarious actually. Holy F do some of the people in the comments make me fear for humanity though.

Posted by 
 on: 08/06/13, 03:23:19  - Edited by 
 on: 08/06/13, 03:26:25

There's a distressing lack of sienna in this post. You do realize this guy was mocking people who reject Anita's conclusions right?

Posted by 
 on: 08/06/13, 11:18:31

Maybe the men who obviously tried to rescue her didn't have the intelligence to find her, stupid men!!!!

Posted by 
 on: 08/06/13, 13:26:04

No one? What about "boob jiggle" in Mighty Switch Force? Will pick up later.

I gotta go to Panera Bread now (LIKE A MAN) for lunch.


All the games he listed are hilarious. Its almost exactly what she does, and how she frames it. Why DIDN'T they just make another James Bond game? THEY MUST HATE MEN.

Posted by 
 on: 08/06/13, 21:44:26

That's not the joke, the joke is on people drawing that equivalence to what Anita is doing.

Posted by 
 on: 08/09/13, 01:52:53

But she still does that.. Whether the joke is supposed to be about something else, it doesn't ignore the fact that is how she treats a LOT of her examples. You could present "problem games" almost the same way. I could whip up 20 games and talk about how "Religion is EVERYWHERE." Definitely doesn't mean that its in every game, but a slew of boxes is hard to ignore. And thats what she's going for.

Posted by 
 on: 08/09/13, 01:55:53

Oh no doubt there will be examples of good female characters to disprove the notion that all games are following these tropes. I was even giving a bunch of those examples early on in this thread. But the argument isn't that this stuff is everywhere but rather that it is pretty influential and perhaps even scarier that it is influencing us in ways we don't realize. Watching these videos it is pretty clear that there are a lot of paint by the numbers.

Really it is kind of the same as any stereotype. It`s like saying 'Black People like watermelon'. The actual content (liking watermelon) isn't harmful but what is is painting a wide group of people in to this stereotype. Then saying 'but I know this one guy Jim who is black and he likes watermelon' doesn't make that stereotype any less damaging.

Posted by 
 on: 08/09/13, 02:25:56

Who DOESN'T like watermelon though? What a delicious and refreshing fruit!

I found the Perfect Dark stuff pretty disturbing, actually; girl on guy uber-violence. If we had a game where we were running around shooting women, I think Anita would have something to say about it, and be justified (no secret, I think she stretches a lot of stuff and makes mountain ranges out of molehills). By the same token, I kinda get that argument with Resident Evil 5 as a means to "run around and shoot black people." Never played it, but I heard what people said.

Posted by 
 on: 08/09/13, 02:43:58
EDIT: At this point in the thread gamewizard65 posted something extremely offensive about Anita. After then receiving criticism for it he deleted the posts. I then edited his post back in to this one as I felt like it was something that cannot simply be swept under the rug. On the advice of Super Conzo though I have removed it so as not to offend anyone further. All you need to know was that it was an unfounded, vile rant about Anita. This was not based on the actual content of the video but simply her looks. If your curiosity persists as to what was actually said you can PM me and I will send you the post. Rest assured though, Zero was notified of the content of the post.


Enlightening as always.

Posted by 
 on: 08/09/13, 11:18:00  - Edited by 
 on: 08/09/13, 12:24:02

Holy sh-

Dude. Seriously. Uncool.

Posted by 
 on: 08/09/13, 11:18:57
When you dismiss someone on the basis of a physical defect you are showing yourself to be highly insecure.

When you speculate on someone's sexuallity and use that to dismiss them you are showing yourself to be highly ignorant, not to mention a base level of maturity.

When you casually throw out a post like that you are showing yourself to be a grade-A troll. Is this how you want to come across? If not, then please address her content rather than label her using playground language.

Posted by 
 on: 08/09/13, 11:32:35
Hey bro - maybe we should let it slide. The guy obvs knows he did wrong. Maybe he's having a bad day, it's not an excuse but we all have the right to change our minds.

Now, I'm not sure how the politics of this site work but I'd sure be glad to see a post like that disappear. What do you think?

Posted by 
 on: 08/09/13, 12:08:58

I tweaked it so as not to continue offending people. I will not cover it up entirely however.

Posted by 
 on: 08/09/13, 12:18:59  - Edited by 
 on: 08/09/13, 12:25:22
Good call.

Now, everyone breathe... and resume.

Posted by 
 on: 08/09/13, 12:29:35
When the Cat's away..

--Has Anita mentioned when we're getting video 4? I know 3 just dropped..but she's got like 8 more, right?

EDIT- And she's COMPLETED the "Damsel in Distress" leg, right? It'll be nice to see her go a different direction with this thing.

Posted by 
 on: 08/10/13, 23:30:05  - Edited by 
 on: 08/10/13, 23:31:48
I think it's important to examine why we think what we think about gender. I know that while I wasn't explicitly taught to think of women as inferior, I've definitely been culturally influenced to believe many things about them that are inherently prejudiced. Things like: they're weaker, they need the protection of men, they're heavily influenced by their emotions. But these things are all true of men as well. While the specifics of the examples Anita cites may be questionable in times, it's impossible to deny the fact that culture very much influences the way we view the world and the way we treat each other. You might be able to pick apart any particular example she gives, but all she is really advocating is treating women in an unprejudiced way as human beings in our culture.

The fact that gamewizard would resort to ad hominem is not surprising, nor were the slurs, unfortunately. When you allow ignorance to persist unabated, this is the fruit you will bear.

Posted by 
 on: 08/11/13, 01:52:52
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