The Big Picture: In Defense of "Booth Babes" (sort of)

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Wolfgang94:
Sorry I know this is tangential, but did anyone else disagree with Bob's remark about the game industry wanting to be viewed as mature but not doing any "growing up"? With many games presenting mature storylines & themes dealing with a plethora of themes from the horrors, the many worlds theory, or even the Iranian revolution. Is it fair to say this? I feel like the industry and those who cover it are in general taking steps and moving towards providing mature and thought-provoking content. So I feel it is unfair to judge the whole of the industry on some of its products. It should be like judging all of film on the output of the pornographic film studios. Sorry If I rambled just off night shift.

I think the problem mainly arises from what people think "mature" truly means. Ignoring the more childish versions of mature, I would say that most opinions of "mature" would fall under to different camps. The first camp would be the idea that maturity is the exploration of ideas and concepts that younger audiences simply cannot grasp. The people of this camp usually likes for the usage of blood or sex to accent the point. Keep in mind that I don't mean an overuse, but rather using these concepts to explore ideas. Watchmen is a great example of this. The other camp would be the idea of bringing such complex ideas so it is easily understandable to younger audiences. This tends to use metaphors over actual mature-rated content to convey mature storytelling. Wall-E is another example.Keep in mind that both ideas of faults. Go to far with the first and you get pandering fetishes. Go to far with the latter and you dumb down ideas.

Now, with all that exploratory context out of the way, I do think that Bob's remark is both right and wrong. It is true that games have made excellent strides in the art of storytelling and more mature themes are being explored in more varied manners. But at the same time, we both simultaneously seem to be rejecting anything that looks kiddie regardless of context and yet long for the titillating "mature" titles without context as well. Of course, that's just my really hard to understand opinion and he could mean something completely different.

I cannot believe what I am reading, guys. Come on, Moviebob made some pretty compelling points here. Some of you are actually arguing with the notion that we should treat these women as people. Yes, we should treat them as people. Why? Because they are. And for all the reasons you might dehumanize somebody, "She looks pretty!" is nowhere near a good enough one.

Good work Moviebob. Ignore the haters, you're in the right here.

Izanagi009:
2)problems should be fixed regardless of whether the issue is not isolated. As for the models, like I said, outward symptoms not main issue and the main issue that "we are not good with women" is still present given the Dragon's Crown debacle.
3) We do have inclusivity to some extent but it seems to be limited at most and championing for more people to come in should not be seen as bad even if we have this inclusivity that you speak of (we don't)
4)This is something I will admit to going overboard on but looking at general internet behavior when dealing with women's representation in games and media and it's either bile or trying to hold back the bile. Honestly, something must be done, re-education may be a bit much but something should be done.
5)It still is a common trend to fall back on these blanket statements without any sort of rational argument and I will call people out on it since it does not encourage discussion at all. In addition, cuddling people and saying that they are not sexist is not going to do anything, we have to call it when it's present and hold them accountable

2) How exactly does having attract women in a video game mean a company isn't good with women? Just because you don't like something doesn't mean women will hate it.

3) If this "inclusivity" results in talented people being replaced by less talented people to fulfil a gender or race quota then it should be opposed.

4) Again just because you don't like something doesn't mean women dislike it. You're assuming there's a problem where none exists.

5) Your post is full of blanket statements without any sort of rational argument. You claim that something needs to be done but are completely unable to prove that a problem exists or why we should be following your solution. In addition claiming that everyone with a view you don't like is sexist isn't going to fix anything.

The Escapist is now officially annoying with this inclusiveness bullshit. Jim Sterling and Bob won't shut up about it. Seriously guys don't you have anything else to talk about? Okay, I get it! We need more women to play games, more inclusiveness, less trolling, less this or that, OKAY ALREADY NOW STOP SHOVING IT DOWN MY MOUTH.

As much as I like these shows, Escapist is now Yahtzee-only for me, again.

Phasmal:

My issue is more with the people who seem to take away from `Booth Babes` that: `these people know nothing about games therefore they're trying to deceive me! Must quiz everyone now to make sure they aren't deceiving me too!`. And honestly I have no idea how to deal with those people. Being more vocal and more visible doesn't seem to dispel the myth that I either don't exist or am just doing it to score alpha nerd hunks.

Still, it's nice to see someone else who recognises the bloody impossible position a lot of female gamers are put into. It's why I don't use mic.

Dunno if you read the comments really, but I thought it'd be nice to quote because it's already getting depressing in here with the `whiteknighting` and `omgpanderingtofeminists` stuff, so I thought I'd comment and run.
Great episode. :)

I think its telling on how gamers are view themselves if we seriously believe that girls are joining these conventions because they want to sleep with the people there*. We are slowly transforming into the alpha male bullies stereotypes that were once feared by geeks everywhere**

However, on what to do, I would say that being vocal IS improving the position. There is a lot of backlash but by forcing this problem into the spotlight, the problem is now being discussed. The fact that there are now tons of articles, videos talking about the subject is the first step towards such problems being fixed. Once ideas are out there, they can exist so other people can access and come up with solutions on their own. It's an incredibly slow process but it is still, in my opinion, very powerful.

*Sadly I must make a note here saying that despite me saying gamers, I do not mean every gamer and know that there are many people who don't have this mindset. That should go without saying, but someone would probably say I'm painting a too broad picture.
** See above for similar sentiment

Izanagi009:
The issue with this is that we have to keep this mindset as dealing with it on an individual instance is not going to fix it permanently. (i'm probably going to do something stupid but it was the only analogy to come in my head) it's like treating an AIDS patient, you can treat any possible illness the person will have because of the weak immune system but the main issue of the weak immune system exists and the person will not be fully in the clear until the immune system is restored. Same with this, we can deal with each little case of misogyny and harassment that comes our way but the root cause must be found and targeted if we want it to stop or at least be reduced in severity greatly.

Do you even have any evidence that there is a root cause with misogyny and harassment or that it's actually causing any problems that would require such drastic action?

Well, we have been far too light on the issue: no bans on youtube over misogyny, no increased security against harassment in conventions, and no long term repercussions for any wrong behavior. We have to show a stronger hand to create an association that will limit this type of behavior: the less desirable you make something, the less likely someone does it.

Given that you've failed to prove that there's actually a problem it's no surprise that you've also failed to provide any evidence that we've been too light on it. I wonder if you would be demanding such harsh action if white knighting was being cracked down on.

Sgt. Sykes:
The Escapist is now officially annoying with this inclusiveness bullshit. Jim Sterling and Bob won't shut up about it. Seriously guys don't you have anything else to talk about? Okay, I get it! We need more women to play games, more inclusiveness, less trolling, less this or that, OKAY ALREADY NOW STOP SHOVING IT DOWN MY MOUTH.

As much as I like these shows, Escapist is now Yahtzee-only for me, again.

Yeah, guys, stop reminding me that the stuff I like has problematic qualities! It doesn't affect ME, a white male, so why should it bother any other person?

But seriously, y'all are spending a whole lot of time and comments arguing for "You're wrong, but whatever, I don't care about this issue anyway."

Omnicrom:

Can you do me a favor? Define what you think Feminism is, because it sounds like the feminism you describe here and the feminism I ascribe to are two very different things. I'd love it also if you could send me some examples of this malevolent feminism because I've never seen a feminist movement that's against happiness and productivity. I'm also interested in what the two opposing arguments you mention actually are.

These will do for a start, plenty more where that came from but I'm not going to do the legwork for you, because I'll be honest if you give either one of those more than 5 minutes I'd be very surprised. If you do watch them and do have something to say don't bring it to me, comment there, the comment sections on those videos can be pretty good as long as you don't go off on one yourself, which you legitmately do seem above.

I didn't say feminists were againist happiness and productivity, I said it wasn't what they DO. And they never seem happy(since there is always more to demand and more to cry about) and they aren't productive.

The only things they 'create' are silly little rules to prove how necessary they are, books about how important they are & propogations of their redacted histories(no I don't buy that the world was a cesspit of rape and oppression and female abuse, especially since 'proofs' always amount to anecdotes which often contradict actual events or are straight up intellectually dishonest spin), and arguments designed to convince men to do whatever it is they want this week, whether it's enact laws to give women extremely prestigious jobs because they think they're entitled to them, more free money via benefits or enforced wealth distributions of their soon-to-be-ex-husbands, or, increasingly, rules about what you're allowed(or more correctly NOT allowed) to say about them and their insane dogma.

MB202:
I also like how this episode is a nice follow-up to Jim Sterling's Jimquisition episode about a woman who DARED to write for video games and who DARED to have an opinion about video game get death threats about her kids. I.E., it's another episode that shouldn't have to exist but because gaming culture is in a major rut at the moment, some things need to be spelled out.

Actually she got death threats because her writing was so bad that she ruined several games and made it clear that she hated video games that were interactive in any way. You can't keep screwing games up while having an anti-game attitude without expecting repercussions from gamers.

I dunno but I don't see what you're talking about with this one Bob. I haven't run into booth babe being a slur and certainly in the UK being called any form of babe is usually quite the ego boost. Hell you'd think people would be happy with very attractive women (and sometimes men!) being paid to talk to you, be nice and at least feign an interest in what you have to say while giving you their full attention and making you feel good.

Besides I wonder what would happen if One Direction/Our Lord and Saviour Justin Bieber entered a game of Counter Strike or Halo. I dare say they would face the same torrent (maybe worse) that a lot of attractive and successful female models face. It doesn't make it OK, it just says what we all already know, a lot of gamers need to mature.

bobleponge:

Yeah, guys, stop reminding me that the stuff I like has problematic qualities! It doesn't affect ME, a white male, so why should it bother any other person?

But seriously, y'all are spending a whole lot of time and comments arguing for "You're wrong, but whatever, I don't care about this issue anyway."

More like, stop constantly telling me that some people tell other people to tell other people that there are vague 'issues' somewhere and that other people are complaining constantly about inconsequential bollocks, the result of which is undoubtably going to mean less of a good thing(namely beautiful women at conventions in this case).

Also, they're disingenuous as fuck at this point anyway. The other day at Dtoid instead of actually advertising a new Saints Row product they ran a story about Saints Row and sexism and right at the end blatantly dropped the ad in. Sexism gets clicks and clicks mean prizes.

Also, why do you assume he's white? If he's a brown male is he suddently allowed a dissenting opinion that you won't dismiss?

Booth Babes "problem". That's a nasty pile of shit. Not because of them, they are doing a honest job. Nor for most of the audience, since they are normal human beings.

But then there are feminist protesters against "objectification" of women, persons that have neither social skills nor self restraint and, of course, "white knights" who rush to the help of girls that have it all under control in the first place stinking up the situation to outhouse level.

Yea, booth babes or attention magnets (just popped in my mind but describes their jobs perfectly and removes gender from term since some males end with same job) are normal thing at any gathering where punch line is further up on emotional then on intellectual scale. That's why you see them at car show and races but now on book shows and chess tournaments. They are pretty jewelry meant to get your attention and pass you up to the product or product manager. Why would anyone expect any info from them, other then what you can read from the stand's banner. They are to smile and look pretty, pose for pictures, pass up potential customers to sale representatives and, occasionally, at their own leisure, allow physical contact (seriously, I would like to see rule that proclaims that any unwanted physical contact with personnel can result in sudden sharp bursts of pain which will not be sanctioned).

To be honest, I never go to gaming conventions. Not my cup of tea. Not because I have something against gamers, even the ones least deserving of the title "decent human being", but I just don't see a point unless you are member of the press. It all comes to me anyway. But I can hardly imagine that there is huge numbers of people, or gamers, who really use "booth babe" as degradory term or think that they should be gamers. Sure there are some who really feel that way, and a lot more of those who think it's macho or funny to use that terminology, but on a whole, I don't see those as force enough to cause serious stir. Unless someone wants to cause a stir for his own goals. Seriously, flip them "the bird" and move on. They have no power.

And for the "objectification" crowd. Urgh... You know, i like seeing pretty human of sex I'm attracted to. You know, that what we evolved to see as pinnacle of beauty. And since I'm not psychic I don't know how old she is, where she went to school, what her hobbies are, how her last boyfriend hurt her and any of those. All I know is how she looks and even that is actually skewed by how she presented herself. So, guess what, that is all I can base my judgment on. You may call it objectification, but I call it judgment based on available information. So, if attractive girl, dressed in provocative clothes is near me I might think "It would be rather nice to spend afternoon in bed with her" but unless we have long enough conversation to establish her impressionable deductive capabilities I will not think "I would like to spend evening deconstructing social evolution of urban environments".

In other words, stop making problem where there isn't one. Let models do honest job and flip the bird to people who make their life harder.

THE END

uanime5:

MB202:
I also like how this episode is a nice follow-up to Jim Sterling's Jimquisition episode about a woman who DARED to write for video games and who DARED to have an opinion about video game get death threats about her kids. I.E., it's another episode that shouldn't have to exist but because gaming culture is in a major rut at the moment, some things need to be spelled out.

Actually she got death threats because her writing was so bad that she ruined several games and made it clear that she hated video games that were interactive in any way. You can't keep screwing games up while having an anti-game attitude without expecting repercussions from gamers.

1st off, she was involved in two games and you are taking her interview horribly out of context. I know that others have called you up on these points but you don't seem to grasp the point so I won't bother.

2nd, someone named her children, what school they went to, talk about specific private events she attended, and then threatened to kill her children. This isn't a "meaningless death threat" that happens normally on the internet. That is a very scary and personal attack and from the context, it seemed likely that this person was in a position to seriously hurt this woman's family and life.

3rd, WHY IS SUCH ATTITUDES CONSIDERED ACCEPTABLE? There is a fine line between "I don't think your idea has any merit and here are a list of reasons why" and "I will kill your children!" The first is fine, the second isn't. How hard is it to understand?

xaszatm:

I think its telling on how gamers are view themselves if we seriously believe that girls are joining these conventions because they want to sleep with the people there*. We are slowly transforming into the alpha male bullies stereotypes that were once feared by geeks everywhere**

However, on what to do, I would say that being vocal IS improving the position. There is a lot of backlash but by forcing this problem into the spotlight, the problem is now being discussed. The fact that there are now tons of articles, videos talking about the subject is the first step towards such problems being fixed. Once ideas are out there, they can exist so other people can access and come up with solutions on their own. It's an incredibly slow process but it is still, in my opinion, very powerful.

*Sadly I must make a note here saying that despite me saying gamers, I do not mean every gamer and know that there are many people who don't have this mindset. That should go without saying, but someone would probably say I'm painting a too broad picture.
** See above for similar sentiment

I don't understand much of the resistance to inclusiveness, especially the times that people pretend that women have only shown up to gaming about ten minutes ago or that somehow we need to impress guys.

I'd consider myself pretty darn vocal on this site (due to the frequency these issues come up), but I'm not much of an out gamer otherwise. Just easier not to be. I don't like having to memorise every single bit of trivia about things that I like just so I can survive the Nerdish Inquisition, while my male friends are allowed to make schoolboy errors.

I do think we'll get there, we just have to get past this weird phase of people simultaneously going `Yeah no but WHITE KNIGHTING-FEMINAZI` and other people going `Nobody needs to be TOLD this stuff!`, when obviously the problem still exists, so people kinda do.

So what is enjoyable about these conventions in the first place? Maybe they don't draw all kinds of people because they have a very limited appeal. Just a thought. I wonder how many of the guys are just gays looking for someone to take home.

Bob is right though. The booth bunnies make perfect sense for tits and ass games. But they just need one good model out of reach. Not a low rent strip club atmos. For the other games, by bringing in "spokespeople" as Bob says they are just reducing their target audience to the sports car midlife crises crowd (insert Homer Simpson) but then again. Maybe that's their demo'.

Eh, I don't know, while I've never had any personal objections towards the supermodels at conventions as people (Moviebob is right here; they are just doing their jobs), I think their overly prevalent appearances aren't indicative of positive trends in the game industry. I mainly say this because the presence of these models perpetuates the mentality of games being a "boys club"; true, there are predominately female models at other conventions or events, but think about what those events are as well. The events or conventions that I can think of where female supermodels/presenters are present are also targeted towards a male audience, like car shows, NASCAR, motocross, etc (although that's not to say that these events have no female fan-base, just that the male fan-base dwarfs them). I'm having a hard time thinking of a gender neutral event ("gender neutral" meaning equally populated by male and female fans) where the presenters feel obligated to use attractive female models, besides fashion shows, which is more by necessity than perversion. I problem with the "boy's club" mentality prevalent in gaming is that I'd like for video games to be gender neutral medium like books, music and film. Right now I'm still on the defensive whenever I explain to someone why I think video games are art, because they see pandering shit like this being extremely prevalent in the industry and laugh at the thought of the medium being perceived as art, and that's not right. Unfortunately, the majority of video games are still too juvenile.

Don't get me started on people who call prominent journalists who happen to be women "glorified booth babes." The fact that some of these people tend to be prominent journalists themselves makes it all the more disgusting.

*sigh* Bob, I respect you a lot, seriously, you look like a nice guy to chat with and I highly respect all your mighty knowdelage on all things geek and retro and I do enjoy your movie reviews, but... no... just... I don't agree with you sometimes.

Seriously, I was tempted to simply ignore your video just by reading the title alone and I almost stopped watching it as soon as you donned your white knight helmet, but after finishing watching it... I wish I did.

Modelling is a worthless and bankrupt profession, whether it is in gaming or any other industry. Why legitimise it just because it involves gaming? Why not condemn it across all of the industries it is involved with?

Belated:
I cannot believe what I am reading, guys. Come on, Moviebob made some pretty compelling points here. Some of you are actually arguing with the notion that we should treat these women as people. Yes, we should treat them as people. Why? Because they are. And for all the reasons you might dehumanize somebody, "She looks pretty!" is nowhere near a good enough one.

Good work Moviebob. Ignore the haters, you're in the right here.

Here's the thing. When people complain about "booth babes" (at least as far as i know) they complain about the concept. They don't hate said women or think they aren't people, they complain about how they are used to sucker them in which makes some people think "How stupid do you think i am? I'm not just all about tits". Now being into marketing I myself have nothing against the use of pretty ladies to attract consumers but trying to assume that many who have something against it are misogynistic or sexist is quite silly (like moviebob implied). I'm fairly certain they'd also object if those women were replaced by shirtless muscled dudes.

Bob, are you already working on schlocktober?

Note to the debate.
The description of modeling, being a profession about looking good while being approachable for long duration of time, sounds like the opposite of a nerd or geek.
I don't suggest envy on beauty but social skill and the, mental and physical, stamina for daylong events. Though most in the community don't check every point on the list, socially inept is one of the more often associated traits of our hobby and for some passion. I worked in a big Hardware-store for a year and hopped at the first chance to work in a workshop again.

xaszatm:
1st off, she was involved in two games and you are taking her interview horribly out of context. I know that others have called you up on these points but you don't seem to grasp the point so I won't bother.

In other words you lack a real argument but don't want to admit it. My comments about the article were accurate, you're were not.

2nd, someone named her children, what school they went to, talk about specific private events she attended, and then threatened to kill her children. This isn't a "meaningless death threat" that happens normally on the internet. That is a very scary and personal attack and from the context, it seemed likely that this person was in a position to seriously hurt this woman's family and life.

Given that you could get this information from anywhere on the planet (Facebook makes searching for people easy) it's unlikely that this person was in any sort of position to harm her children. You're clearly blowing this out of proportion because it fits with your "gamers are bad" delusions.

3rd, WHY IS SUCH ATTITUDES CONSIDERED ACCEPTABLE? There is a fine line between "I don't think your idea has any merit and here are a list of reasons why" and "I will kill your children!" The first is fine, the second isn't. How hard is it to understand?

Well since Hepler kept ignoring all the valid points it's no surprise that people stopped making valid points and tried to get her attention in other ways. Why is this so difficult for you to understand?

uanime5:

Actually she got death threats because her writing was so bad that she ruined several games and made it clear that she hated video games that were interactive in any way. You can't keep screwing games up while having an anti-game attitude without expecting repercussions from gamers.

Hepler was only involved in the writing of 2 games. Dragon Age 1 and 2 (some parts of 3 as well from what i hear). Dragon Age 2's problems were in repetitive environments and wave based combat sections. Neither of which is her fault because she's not in charge of any other part of the game other than some writing. She's not even the head writer for the games she's involved with.

Lastly, she doesn't have any "anti-game attitude". She never stated she hated interactivity or anything of the sort. She simply stated that she dislikes the combat sections of some games. That she prefers story to gameplay. This isn't some evil conception that ruins games, it's an attitude that a lot of gamers have as well.

And even if she was the worst writer in the history of video games, that still doesn't justify death threats, in any way. The fact that you think this is somehow ok, says more about as an individual than anything else.

Wolfgang94:
I know this is tangential, but did anyone else disagree with Bob's remark about the game industry wanting to be viewed as mature but not doing any "growing up?"

I'm sure someone out there disagrees, but I don't. The gaming industry strikes me as being one big Miley Cyrus, thinking that singing songs about doing drugs and dancing all night because abdication of responsibility hooray! is what it means to be grown up. Or, if that simile is unclear, I think the video games industry glories in immature spectacle but thinks that since the spectacle is inappropriate for prepubescent children, it must therefore be mature. It's not. It's just a slightly older version of immaturity.

Belated:
I cannot believe what I am reading, guys. Come on, MovieBob made some pretty compelling points here. Some of you are actually arguing with the notion that we should treat these women as people. Yes, we should treat them as people. Why? Because they are. And for all the reasons you might dehumanize somebody, "She looks pretty!" is nowhere near a good enough one.

Good work MovieBob. Ignore the haters, you're in the right here.

You are the best person.

That probably sounded ironic, but seriously. You are the best person.

uanime5:
Actually she got death threats because her writing was so bad that she ruined several games and made it clear that she hated video games that were interactive in any way. You can't keep screwing games up while having an anti-game attitude without expecting repercussions from gamers.

Oh, fuck every inch of that. The idea that disagreeing with people about make-believe justifies threats to end the life of not only the person disagreeing with her but also the lives of her children is beyond entitled; it's straight up evil.

I will admit that I've never personally attended a gaming or anime expo/convention. I have had a number of friends attend them though (official shirts stating "where's the soap" to joke about the stench is rather unflattering!). I'm unsure if this makes me more casual than others, but I'm alright with it.

Working in a technical field I will state that it is common place to have female models present at conventions or expos dealing with computer components, audio-visual devices, printers, etc... Which is really paradoxical for myself since I attend these events to view, learn, and experience new products that are forthcoming. So when I ask questions about the product to the model since there's one sales person and 3 models I typically get queued up in line to speak with the sales person. Which half the interested clients in line end up leaving due to time constraints.

I realize it's not fiscally effective to be sending two sales people and an engineer to every technology expo/convention, but I would much rather have someone who knows the product. Plus due to my recent experiences it also is becoming apparent that the vendors with the most models are publicizing themselves rather than focusing on their product.

On the topic of fake geek girls and women not belonging in the gaming community I personally find that unacceptable and inappropriate. Fairly certain I've never met a fake geek girl and as for women not belonging since no one can make a competent factual reason that they shouldn't, it appears as if others are just fearful.This gives me the impression that individuals don't have all the correct information at their disposal and instead of researching the facts (or simply asking questions) on their own so that they may make an informed decision, they rely on well crafted opinions to infer as facts.

Merklyn236:
MovieBob, I think you hit the nail on the head when you talked about everyone rushing in to address the symptoms of the problem (in this case, latent misogyny present is the gaming community) instead of actually trying to FIX the real problem. Of course, that's because the symptoms can easily be fixed by rules ("We're going to ban 'booth babes' from the convention, because we want to be gender inclusive" instead of "Um, people, maybe we should do a better job of being an inclusive gaming society here. You think? Maybe? Hello?"

Banning "booth babes" is an effective means to start fixing the problems within the community. If gamers going to conventions don't expect to see women presented as eye-candy, then that helps improve the community.

I don't like the idea of booth babes (yeah, I know), I also don't like lollipop chainsaw, bayonetta or dragons crown either.

I just think we need to take away some sexy from games.

I've heard all the arguments before, "it's not sexist 'cos they aren't humiliating the women", "it's not sexist 'cos it's not trying to be sexist", "it's not sexist 'cos it's taking the piss out of game design" etc. It's a woman running round in a very revealing set of clothes, that might as well just be her underwear.

I'm not saying make all women wear burkas but a little modesty wouldn't ruin the game!

I liked this one Bob. Good stuff :) I've not liked the way "booth babes" are thought of as inferior, that's why I was annoyed when I heard that some conventions were banning them. It seems like a way of saying "We're too good to have their kind here.

Ugh, again with Bob waving his social justice willy for everyone to see.

This is such a non-issue I can't even believe the level of hand wringing present both in the shows on this site and in the commenters here. Booth Babes were never a problem, neither were the "Fake Geek Girls" bullshit, thats just journalist's click baiting for lack of a real story to report on. Besides, Borderlands 2's Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon Keep managed to lampoon the concept of fake geeks far more effectively and decisively and any preachy article or smug, condescending video could ever do.

And while I'm at it, fuck this constant demonization of gamers. What? Fox News, Joe Lieberman, Anita Sarkeesian, and Jack Thompson weren't enough? I gotta get generalized and condemned by our own fucking journalists?

Here's an idea; maybe all the sane gamers left because they got tired of being CONSTANTLY TALKED DOWN TO.

Captcha; english muffin.

I could sure go fro an english muffin, with marmelade, maybe a spot of tea for maximum british.

uanime5:

xaszatm:
1st off, she was involved in two games and you are taking her interview horribly out of context. I know that others have called you up on these points but you don't seem to grasp the point so I won't bother.

In other words you lack a real argument but don't want to admit it. My comments about the article were accurate, you're were not.

2nd, someone named her children, what school they went to, talk about specific private events she attended, and then threatened to kill her children. This isn't a "meaningless death threat" that happens normally on the internet. That is a very scary and personal attack and from the context, it seemed likely that this person was in a position to seriously hurt this woman's family and life.

Given that you could get this information from anywhere on the planet (Facebook makes searching for people easy) it's unlikely that this person was in any sort of position to harm her children. You're clearly blowing this out of proportion because it fits with your "gamers are bad" delusions.

3rd, WHY IS SUCH ATTITUDES CONSIDERED ACCEPTABLE? There is a fine line between "I don't think your idea has any merit and here are a list of reasons why" and "I will kill your children!" The first is fine, the second isn't. How hard is it to understand?

Well since Hepler kept ignoring all the valid points it's no surprise that people stopped making valid points and tried to get her attention in other ways. Why is this so difficult for you to understand?

Alright, I'm now positive you are a troll. However, as I've been mistaken multiple times before so I will ignore your petty insults (in case you're wondering, I'm specifically referring to me lacking a real argument and blowing things out of proportion) and try to answer in the best way that I can.

1. I'm assuming you're talking about the interview. As such, let's get the specific question and response that got everyone's anger flared up.

Now, from your post that I originally replied to, you said that the death threats happened "because her writing was so bad that she ruined several games and made it clear that she hated video games that were interactive in any way." I didn't argue the first point as that is subjective and, as I am not a fan of the Dragon Age games period, I can't comment on the quality of the writing. However, reading that interview, while she did indeed say that playing the game itself was her least favorite part of the industry, she also talked of an alternative which pretty much plays as a "reverse skip cutscene" mechanic. Because there are some people who would prefer doing the story over doing the gameplay. I would that this position is perfectly fine to have, but obviously, you believe that your opinion is more correct.

Now, on your second part, in the Jimquisition video, someone had posted the conversation that I just described. Unfortunately, it has been removed and I currently cannot find it. It was a twitter conversation that was what I had written about. I will try and find it because my word clearly holds no water to you, but if I don't find it, it's currently all I have.

Now for the third part, and the one that just confuses me with great sadness. To put it simply, yes. Yes, I do not understand your third point. When I read it, I am seeing you justify threatening to kill the children of a writer someone did not like. And how do you justify it? Because she didn't respond to criticism. I'm sorry? I thought artists had the right to do whatever they pleased as long as it doesn't directly affect someone else. People do have the right to criticize. They do have the right to complain about the lack of quality. The second someone threatens the person directly or indirectly, that right disappears. This is what goes through my head when I read that last sentence. I literally cannot comprehend the connection between writing poorly and death threats. I thought that Annie Wilkins was to be feared, not modeled as a hero. You can chock my inability to comprehend to stupidity but still...I'm literally a wreck right now because I cannot comprehend.

Bob, they are called Booth Babes for a good reason, they are pretty women that stand at booths to grab people's attention, so people call them Booth Babes. But there are also women who work at booths who are not there to be eye-candy, not sure what you call those people (be they man or woman). Sometimes those women are also rather attractive and use that to their booth's advantage and as is inevitable they make a mistake or piss off the wrong guy and they get called glorified booth babes as a result.

Now what I don't understand is why you have to come to there rescue and 'defend' them rather then just let this be what it is, shit that comes with the territory of working at a booth. If all genders where to be reversed it would be the men who would be called glorified booth babes and they would simply suck it up as part of their work environment and nobody would give a shit.

Just give it a rest Bob. I'm sure these women can stand up for themselves, and if not then maybe they are not cut out for this line of work.

At the end of the day Trade-show Model doesn't roll off the tongue as easily as Booth Babe does. But hey, you can change that, come up with a new word for it, make it sound classy and easy/fun to say, and then in due time nothing will have changed because in the end it will still carry the same meaning of being a pretty face that attracts attention at a booth. But hey, at least is will sound classy now right?

And another thing, why are you coming to the defense of women who get made fun of in general (at conventions)? You don't do this for guys. People are sometimes assholes to either other, guys seem to have to suck it up, but if your a women its Bob to the rescue. I say fuck 'em, let them deal with their own problems. Besides, how bad can it really be, if these places really are as hostile as people like you make them out to be then why would anyone go to them?

The main part that bugs me is the impotent defense by some that tradeshow models "don't know what they are hawking." This is assumption at it's finest. I can name one person that is easily recognized by the community for her modelling appearance at E3 and PAX and is an avid gamer, Jessica Nigri. Now realize that there are other female gamers out there that are just as eye catching as Jessica, and stop assuming they don't play games. Hell, if most people on this forum met me at E3 or on the street, they would never guess what a horrible dork I am. The nerd subculture wants the old prejudice of nerd appearance to go away, but then continues to judge others by their looks when assuming if they are a member of said nerd culture.

Valderis:

And another thing, why are you coming to the defense of women who get made fun of in general (at conventions)? You don't do this for guys. People are sometimes assholes to either other, guys seem to have to suck it up, but if your a women its Bob to the rescue. I say fuck 'em, let them deal with their own problems. Besides, how bad can it really be, if these places really are as hostile as people like you make them out to be then why would anyone go to them?

This is a good point: for all the talk of women's rights and "inclusivness", the moment women receive the same static men do, oh, suddenly it's a big deal!

In trying to get women to be treated as adults and just as capable of men, "feminists" seem reluctant to actually let that happen.

captcha: spangled banner

'Murica! Fuck Yeah!

uanime5:

MB202:
I also like how this episode is a nice follow-up to Jim Sterling's Jimquisition episode about a woman who DARED to write for video games and who DARED to have an opinion about video game get death threats about her kids. I.E., it's another episode that shouldn't have to exist but because gaming culture is in a major rut at the moment, some things need to be spelled out.

Actually she got death threats because her writing was so bad that she ruined several games and made it clear that she hated video games that were interactive in any way. You can't keep screwing games up while having an anti-game attitude without expecting repercussions from gamers.

wat

What are we, 90's rap scene now?
Because after all the murder threats, the next step would be repeating Dre - Barnes incident.

omega 616:
I don't like the idea of booth babes (yeah, I know), I also don't like lollipop chainsaw, bayonetta or dragons crown either.

I just think we need to take away some sexy from games.

I've heard all the arguments before, "it's not sexist 'cos they aren't humiliating the women", "it's not sexist 'cos it's not trying to be sexist", "it's not sexist 'cos it's taking the piss out of game design" etc. It's a woman running round in a very revealing set of clothes, that might as well just be her underwear.

I'm not saying make all women wear burkas but a little modesty wouldn't ruin the game!

While some dresses are ridiculous enough to breake immersion, WTF?

Literature: 50 shades of Grey. Mainstream megahit. Half of book are gratuitous and detailed descriptions of BDSM sessions between lover with wide age disparity.

Still Visual Arts: I can make painting (or sculpture or photo) of naked woman (or during sex act if creative enough), anatomically correct or sexually exaggerated (statue even with convenient and perfectly sized holes in anatomically correct places) and sell it on a street as "artwork" even if it is anything but.

Movies: Drive Angry. Gorry battle scene during which female stays on hero's penis.

Music: Smack my bitch up... there are far worse examples, but I can't remember them

Games: Girl in somewhat inappropriate clothing slays tones of enemies?

Doesn't really sound the same level, does it? We'll outgrow it and understand that there are games with sex appeal and games that don't go for sex appeal. It took Hollywood 40 years to outgrow it's own "head up it's own arse" problem

Ok Bob I love most of what you say but this brings up an old wound that keeps festering in the video game community so I gotta say something.

First consider that while many male gamers are complete misogynist jerks and need to be called out on it there is a reason that the "Geek Girl" thing continues to be an issue when it does not need to be. It starts back at how society normalizes people to react to certain situations.

For example one of the movies I know you have used clips of in the past Revenge of the Nerds. In these movies we are taught it is ok to be mean, nasty, explicitly lie to, and take sexual advantage of someone if they are a jerk and in a higher position of power.

Consider how bullies are shown in most cartoons as getting their just deserts by getting laughed at by the end of the episode(Danny Phantom springs to mind). Do you understand that in some ways we are conditioned to lash out at perceived social injustice? Particularly if you are considering yourself to be the underdog.

Now understand that many male gamers are going to remember that pretty and popular women where the most mean to them in high school. Now I understand that everyone was kind of an jerk in high school at some point and many of us grow out of it with time(though not enough). But old wounds still hurt even years after the fact. If you where a hard core gamer/nerd in high school chances are good you where also introverted and unattractive(or at least not concerned with appearances). Typically making you the target of scorn.

Whos insults or laughter was most likely to make you feel the worst and stay with you the longest? Yeah the popular attractive women who always dressed up the most. Of course not all of them are like this. In fact I am willing to wager it is a minority of women that are particularly mean in high school. But we are talking about what people remember in the years of awkward development from teen years into early adulthood.

Getting back now to my original point. Consider that you where a unattractive socially awkward man who finally got out of years of embarrassment and found a place for yourself in a gamer community. No one insults for liking games or D&D and you have worked hard to keep up with all the news, events, and skills required to be active in a gamer community. Then one day you turn around one day and a attractive women is talking smack about your favorite fighting game because it is typical male BS and men should feel bad for playing it(Maybe they should feel bad for playing it).

At that moment you don't consider the finer points of your argument all you do is have gut reaction. You are mad because all you see is an attractive women yet again picking you apart(because people become emotionally invested in their games)personally and being a bully. You remember(emotionally) that it is ok to be a jerk to bullies because that is a societal normal thing(according to your favorite shows and movies). SO you rattle off some misogynistic comments in a fit of righteous indignation.

Maybe after a day or 2 they cool down and start to realize that they where being silly and that yes maybe their favorite fighting game is a bit misogynistic. They start to make a personal resolve within to not do that again and everything is going well......O wait no. An internet personality comes on their popular show(not just you Bob there are lots of them) and waves a finger at all those men who left hurtful comments telling them how stupid and wrong they are.
Then women who are gamers on social media start being more vocal about all the games being all horrible because they where designed for men and are awful.

Now it is not one incident. Now it has become an Us vs. Them situation. Defensiveness sets in as assaults seem to be coming from multiple directions. Snarky youtube videos continue to show gamers as introverted basement dwellers that breath hard into their microphones. The phrase "Neckbeard" and "Autism" are thrown around as a default descriptor for any male gamer that isn't married or getting laid 12 times a week. Life starts to look a lot like high school all over again. With you at the bottom of the food chain as usual.

So what would you do? I mostly remain silent because I have move on from the petty politics of that world. Before embarking on a social crusade to put people in their place remember you are going to make as many enemies as friends. Just be your happy friendly self and maybe talk about how you think an aspect of the game industry can be improved without resorting to insulting the people who liked it the old way. Eventually people will come around if you give them a chance.

Just casually dismissing peoples hurt feelings and putting them into a general "Misogynist" category will only make them defensive and rally together and more obnoxious.

P.S. I will not respond to responses. I will delete all in my inbox before reading because I do not feel like being called a misogynist for trying to bring some sanity and understanding to a situation.

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