These are two comments by Thomas and Heather N on the post “Video Game Critic Draws Hateful Misogynistic Abuse“.
This case raises an interesting question, though. Gender role representation has been improving in all kinds of media, with men and women increasingly allowed to be complex characters outside of genital-based stereotypes. Video games are running behind, though.
“Really? This claim perfectly matches the stereotype of the misogynistic gamer who lives in his mother’s basement and can’t get laid. But if you look at other kinds of media or entertainment are they really more progressive when it comes to gender roles? For example the Fifty Shades books which are still on the first three places of the NYT bestseller list. Are these books a good example for ‘complex characters outside of genital-based stereotypes’? Video games are a lagging indicator because I say so is not a convincing argument.”
Heather N said:
“A big difference, I think, is how long these other media have been around. Other media have been around long enough that tropes and cliches have been created and broken multiple times. You still get books, movies, etc that rely on old stereotypes, but there are also a wealth of really popular books, movies, etc. that don’t. And so it sort of softens the blow a bit because it’s not as if the entire medium is full of these really horrible representations.
“So I don’t think video games are falling behind, so much as I think they’re still being figured out … and not just in terms of gender representation, but even the business and legal side of it. I think part of the problem with video games is that it’s not only video-game-haters that actually buy into the gamers are adolescent (or adolescent-minded) boys/men … but the industry itself buys into it. And then they market their games to who they think their audience is which just feeds the perception that games are for adolescent boys…and on the circle goes feeding into itself.
“I think we’re starting to break out of that cycle though as more people make critiques of video games and that stereotype of who is playing them.”
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