The lights are on
While women have made great strides in the
game industry in recent years, Crystal Dynamics' Meagan Marie has written a
blog that details the sad reality: There's still far too much sexism and
inappropriate behavior in gaming.
In a post on her Tumblr entitled "What Would
You Do If You Weren't Afraid?", Meagan details some personal anecdotes from her
career both at Crystal Dynamics and Game Informer, which – to my mind – include
some really reprehensible behavior on the part of males in the game industry.
Judging by the reaction from other female video game professionals on Twitter
today, this behavior is sadly far too common.
Thankfully, a recent incident that occurred
at PAX (detailed in her post) has convinced Meagan that it's time to stop being silent:
The situation this weekend at PAX made me question why I'm willing to
stand up for others, but not myself. By allowing myself to be treated this way
I'm perpetuating that this behavior is acceptable. And it isn't. If I continue
stand by silently, I might as well sit on the sidelines and watch while other
young women endure what I have.
The treatment and representation of women in
gaming has come to a head this past year, and I know some of you are tired of
hearing about it. I'm tired of living it. I want to feel safe and valued as a
member of this industry, whether I'm conducting an interview, talking to fans
on a convention floor, or cosplaying. And I have a right to that.
I'm not afraid anymore. I'm angry.
I strongly encourage you to read the complete
post on Meagan's Tumblr. Also, while we encourage people to express their
views in our comments section, I'll give you one guess as to how much tolerance
I'm going to have for any posts that direct any abuse or inappropriate
comments towards Meagan (Hint: none). Thanks for reading.
[Photo courtesy of The Hairpin]
Email the author Matt Helgeson, or follow on Twitter, and Game Informer.
Wow I never knew how bad this stuff gets. If someone said stuff like that to a female friend of mine I would challenge him to fisticuffs or I would just give him a stern talking too.
The death of politeness, decency, saying 'please' and 'thank you', holding doors open for people (anyone, not just women or old people) has bred our current culture of bro-dudeitude where objectifying someone, ANYONE is okay because that's all you see going on around you.
Good for her for putting her foot down and taking a stand. Fear is powerful, and overcoming it is a great thing.
We need more female leads like samus she is a freaking boss!
Get at them gamer girl, GET THEM!
Wow i didn't think it was that bad
God, people are pigs.
I congradulate Megan for being a pioneer in this workplace. I'm sure E3 is much more a nighmaare then Pax. She faces the same type of sexism as the sports world. Look at the football games. You always have a female announcer on the field for sex appeal or almost always held to female events. As long as you and other females in the business stand up your voice will soon be heard.
Wow, I hope that many women read this. Last week, I experienced an instance of sexual harassment by a neighbor a few houses from me. I was so shocked that all I could do in the moment was run away. He was confronted, not by me, and told not to do it again. Now, walking up and down my street, which I previously did without thinking, grips me with fear and shame. The ability to stand up for oneself in instances of sexual harassment is just so difficult but so required if change is to happen. I hope I can stand up straighter when I walk back home from the bus stop tonight.
Thanks for sharing, Matt. I'm sad to say that I'm not too surprised to hear about this kind of behavior in the video game industry. It's a significant problem in every industry, and I'm thankful that in America we have a nice set of sexual harassment laws in place that I think more women should be comfortable pursuing action with. It will never stop until the message is clear: sexual harassment=lawsuit.
I read her blog... Oh... man... Men can be some tough pigs. Hang in there Meagan!!! Not all men are like that!!! Be strong! Fight the sexism!!!
Just a few weeks ago I remembered being dumbfounded in my english lit class when after I finished talking for about 5 minutes about how women need to be treated better and how everyone should be treated as equal, my fellow classmates were just sitting there in silence. When asked why, they responded saying that it was suprising to see a guy have so much to say about supporting women, since it is not common in society to do so.
This made me so sad to see. These are our leaders of the future being scared to stand up for half of the world's population. It's a societal thing, and it starts with one person standing up for what's right. Kudos to you Megan for writing this blog. I'm so sorry for what you and countless other women have had to put up with. I'm thankful to my family for raising me with the mindset that everyone should be treated with kindness and equality.
Megan, you were an awesome editor at Game Informer, I wish you the best of luck at Crystal Dynamics, and I hope this never happens to you or anyone else again.
I miss Meagan and wish she would come back....
Such an interesting read. I'm actually shocked this would be going on in the gaming industry. I never really considered it was a possibility.