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E3 Games

Sexism Still a Problem At E3 737

Posted by Soulskill
from the let-your-project-succeed-or-fail-on-its-own-merit dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Now that E3 has wound down and the big product announcements are out of the way, its time to take a step back and look at the culture represented by the giant gaming show. 'The presence of scantily clad women hawking games and gizmos seemed in particular contrast to a report released this week by the Entertainment Software Association, which organizes the gaming industry's annual trade show. It found that 45 percent of the entire gaming population is now women, and women make up 46 percent of the most frequent game buyers.' While there are fewer 'booth babes' than in earlier shows (and while some are trying to bring balance by adding 'booth bros'), the conference organizers are happy to let exhibitors make their own policy. By contrast, the Penny Arcade Expo forbids 'booth babes,' a controversial but widely lauded stance. A recent article in Kotaku about this year's E3 notes, 'For every confident cosplayer who might do the job at a con, I am seeing dozens of companies trying to sell me hundreds of women. They are not drawing my attention to the content of their games, or to their tactics or techniques. They are drawing my attention to thigh-high boots, to low-cut shirts, and, frankly, to the hard work of a really expensive bra. So much of what I see here at E3 is aimed directly at the lizard hindbrain of a 13-year-old boy. But you have to be 18 to get into the show, and it's nominally for industry professionals. Perhaps someday we—men and women alike—can all be treated like the grown-ups we theoretically are, and be trusted to judge a game by its content... not its double-D cover.'"
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Sexism Still a Problem At E3

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  • by girlintraining (1395911) on Saturday June 15, 2013 @02:13PM (#44016015)

    If the industry's most prominent trade show looks like it was organized by teenage boys, it's not going to do much to dispel the stereotype that games are just something for teenage boys.

    Most trade shows look like this. There's an old adage in marketing: Sex sells. It doesn't matter if 46, or 48%, or even 51% of the population is women buying video games. We have a culture that endorses the objectification of women, to the point that women aren't making purchasing decisions based on the endorsement of a scantily clad woman -- but they aren't not making a purchasing decision on that basis either. And that's the crux of the matter. Sex sells games to men.. and for women, well... as long as it isn't driving them away, who cares?

    Yes, the 600,000 polygon "realistic boob bounce" graphics are in many games... but we'll play them anyway because hey, if we can't escape the blatant sexism everywhere else... why would video games be different? Not to say I wouldn't appreciate a knob or switch in the options to say "Disable 13 Year Old Boy Mode", but I'm not going to go all "Achievement Unlocked: Raging Bitch Mode" because of it either. And that's what we inevitably are labelled should we ask for realistic looking women, heroes, etc., rather than the "armor bikinis" and the boobs bigger than their heads...

    Again, not to say it's right, just that, as a woman gamer... I pick and choose my battles. And if I had one wish I could cast upon the entire video game industry, it wouldn't be "and make girls in games realistic and playable"... but to bomb Square Enix and it's peripheral companies into oblivion because if ever there was a plague of locusts to descend upon everything we love and enjoy in the world... it's Square Enix. x_x

  • In protest of rapant neo-puritanism: E13 2013 Booth Babe Pics [legitreviews.com]

  • can someone explain? (Score:4, Informative)

    by stenvar (2789879) on Saturday June 15, 2013 @02:19PM (#44016083)

    Apparently, it's sexist when hired female sales staff ("booth babes") wear T-shirts, makeup, and big hair. But apparently it is OK to use your feminine wiles if you declare yourself a feminist and a female technologist [wordpress.com] (and apparently, you don't actually need to know much about technology to do so [linkedin.com]). Can someone who is well versed in the intricacies of sexism and political correctness please explain who is allowed to wear revealing clothes under what circumstances, and who is not?

  • by icebike (68054) on Saturday June 15, 2013 @02:22PM (#44016109)

    If the industry's most prominent trade show looks like it was organized by teenage boys, it's not going to do much to dispel the stereotype that games are just something for teenage boys.

    Lets face it, teen age boys don't have the attention span to organize much of anything.

    Contrary to the rantings in the summary above (as well as yours), it is the demographics of the attendees that determine the character of the show.
    When there start to be 45% females in the attendance the situation will change.

    All you need do is fire up Google image search and look for E3 show floor images and you will find it looks surprisingly
    like a Muslim street scene, with hardly any women in sight.

    I'd say the show knows its audience very well.

    Besides, the whole rant is based on the assumption that most women disapprove of having scantily clad women
    running around, and there is almost no place other than a church service where there is any evidence
    of this.

The bogosity meter just pegged.

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