Case Study: Inequality within the Gaming Industry

Over the years of being a Girl Gamer I have realised a number of things within my travels when it comes to Gender within the Gaming Industry. The reasons behind inequality in the gaming area towards women is focused on disinterest of playing games by girls, the depiction of women in games, educational and cooperation factors, and a lack of higher roles to mentor women to go further. (pg.148)

Many adults between the ages of 18 – 30 make up the demographic of gamers. A majority of it being females at %52. This number has slowly been increasing but many games are creating big controversy. The commotion stems from the idea of how women should be shown within games and if women are at featured as the main protagonist at times.  Such examples being Fallout that gives you only one option of being a man and given the view of women being in the kitchen and cliche jokes. The Feminist Frequency (Twitter account of Feminists) attacked the new app that had been released mid last year called Fallout Shelter that shows women becoming pregnant and seen as weak and feeble even at times hysterical. So it went from the players to industries fault.

The international Gaming Association evaluated that there is %76 of males within the workforce. Speculation has been made that many women that find their way into the workforce towards the gaming industry bail out due to abuse and ill-mannered behaviour. This has been evaluated from both staff and higher up contact due to the study that was made back in 2014 that showed %39 of female developers left their jobs for, ‘better quality of life.’

Within the book, ‘Examining the Evolution of Gaming and Its Impact on Social, Cultural, and Political Perspectives’ it analyses that, “under representation of women in the video gaming industry stalls the potential for innovation and creativity.” (pg. 148) This further targeting the fact that a lack of women within the gaming industry plus its large demographic being majorly female does show the lack of diversity.

Michael Gallagher, the head of the entertainment software association took it upon himself to work out a better way to bump up the numbers. He released a variety of female gamer programs that involve both social and workforce related programs at local colleges of up to 180 institutions with a %31 enrolment progress.

“On this subject, I’m so encouraged about the growth trajectory and the positive trajectory of this industry when it comes to diversity,” Gallagher said.

Though the industry falls in some areas of its field it does flourish online through social media and individual production online. An example of this being a famous YouTuber by the name of ‘ihasCupquakes.’  She has had various progress online through her YouTube channels promoting games, figures and other geeky desires but her fan base ranges over four million subscribers with over 1.8 billion views. When playing games she does Let’s plays, walkthroughs and commentaries however her main focus is to show fun and love towards all games.

Reference

Huffington Post Australia. 2016. The Awful Truth Behind Sexual Harassment Of Women Gamers. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com.au/entry/gtfo-sexism-in-gaming_n_6804106. [Accessed 13 August 2016].

ABC News. 2016. Girls have always been game, now the industry needs to catch up – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation). [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-02-05/bendixsen-girls-have-always-been-game/7142890. [Accessed 12 August 2016].

The Daily Dot. 2016. Adult women are now the largest demographic in gaming | The Daily Dot. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.dailydot.com/parsec/adult-women-largest-gaming-demographic/. [Accessed 12 August 2016].

Google Books. 2016. Examining the Evolution of Gaming and Its Impact on Social, Cultural, and … – Google Books. [ONLINE] Available at: https://books.google.com.au/books?id=nt15DAAAQBAJ&pg=PA148&dq=inequality+towards+girls+in+gaming&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwj2gMvCgsPOAhVFjZQKHTokDmgQ6AEIHTAA#v=onepage&q=inequality%20towards%20girls%20in%20gaming&f=false. [Accessed 13 August 2016].

GamesIndustry.biz. 2016. Percentage of women devs “not good enough” – ESA CEO | GamesIndustry.biz. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2016-02-18-percentage-of-women-devs-not-good-enough-esa-ceo. [Accessed 12 August 2016].

GameSpot. 2016. Percentage of Female Developers Has More Than Doubled Since 2009 – GameSpot. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.gamespot.com/articles/percentage-of-female-developers-has-more-than-doubled-since-2009/1100-6420680/. [Accessed 13 August 2016].

Breitbart. 2016. Portrayal of Pregnant Women in ‘Fallout Shelter’ Attacked by Feminist Cultural Critic – Breitbart. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.breitbart.com/big-hollywood/2015/07/02/portrayal-of-pregnant-women-in-fallout-shelter-attacked-by-feminist-cultural-critic/. [Accessed 13 August 2016].

Mediakix – Influencer Marketing Agency + Platform for Brands. 2016. The 10 Top Female Gamers On YouTube . [ONLINE] Available at: http://mediakix.com/2016/03/top-female-gamers-on-youtube/#gs.cGi6s2E. [Accessed 14 August 2016].

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