A Wee Bit of Insight

4 Dec

So, over the last few days, the 1reasonwhy story has left quite a wake. On both sides of the spectrum, vitriolic words spew back and forth, feminism is equivalent to socialism/facism/nazism/satanism, men are moronic knuckle-draggers…the list goes on. That a few words on a hitherto mostly unexplored topic could cause such virtual anger is, to me, utterly fascinating. So let’s explore the topic a little.

First things first, lets look at the ‘instigators’. As some would have you believe it, a number of ultra-radical feminist individuals posted a number of tweets designed explicitly to bring about the downfall of western society, in particular the games industry. With malicious intent, they desired to knife men everywhere in the heart, instead of making them that all important sammich. Rather, a number of women involved in the gaming industry came forward and gave their first hand accounts of sexism in the gaming industry. Now, what is interesting is that a large number of those who effectively mooed ‘nuh-uh’ did so merely because they personally did not see it happen. I have never seen an elephant being born, yet I know they are the result of a live birth, they do not come from an egg or the earth. As such simply because I have not seen sexism in practice in the gaming industry or online does not mean that instances of it do not exist. There are millions of unique experiences that occur all the time, not all of them are positive. To simply deride because you do not agree does not achieve anything.

These women, and the women who play games do not represent a minority of the gaming community as a whole. Yet among console and pc gamers, they ultimately do. Does this disqualify them from a view? Some may be sanctimonious, some may be preachy and offensive, however they are still gamers. The issue is sexism as a whole, not just sexism in the gaming industry. While it may be bad, it is by no means unique, to single out one sector without a coherent strategy is both nonsensical and counter-productive. There can be no true advancement in the arguement until it is accepted that this situation is by no means unique.

On the flip side, there are the male gamers. We are sometimes stereotypes (most recently on feedbackula) as knuckle-dragging neanderthals with a single digit IQ and an inability to play games two-handed, is this the case? Must we be so horribly dehumanised? I’m sure the vast number of male gamers are reasonable individuals, must we be lumped in with the nutcases? That some insult is not the first sign of the apocalypse, thank you very much ‘Johnny’. We, as men, are dealt with in a crude manner that is not becoming.

This is what is ultimately lacking from the argument overall. Where is the love? Tens of thousands of comments on dozens of articles, each spewing filth about the other side, each comprehensively ‘right’. Perhaps the time is right for change, we need new consoles, a healthier ecosystem, balance between each disparate group of gamers. These are things that are all achievable. Society needs to treat some members a little better, but not at the expense of others. That is it however, 1reasonwhy is a small part of a bigger picture, that cannot be forgotten. So let’s look at this objecitvely, equality, not superiority. This is fair, is it not?

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