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Men's Rights Activists: Video gaming should be a "safe space" for male nerds.

No girls allowed!
Safe space! No girls allowed!

Though Men’s Rights activists devote an enormous amount of their time denouncing feminism – or at least the imaginary version of feminism that exists only in their own heads – they’re happy to appropriate feminist concepts when it suits them. One that many MRAs seem especially eager to claim for themselves is the idea of the “safe space.”

Of course, their version of the “safe space” bears only a slight resemblance to the feminist original. Feminists seek to create spaces for discussion in which say, rape survivors can discuss their experiences without being triggered by insensitive arguers and trolls and mansplainers in general.

When MRAs talk about “safe spaces,” by contrast, their goal is often to exclude women not just from discussion spaces but from full participation in society, essentially declaring giant arenas of work and play, from STEM fields to video games, to be places where feminists, and women in general, should fear to tread.

And so it’s hardly surprising that more than a few MRAs are arguing that the Zoe Quinn “scandal” proves that women and gaming don’t mix – or, at least, that they shouldn’t.

Consider the little manifesto recently “pinned” as the top post on the Men’s Rights subreddit, in which a fellow calling himself mradiscus lamented what he called “a pattern of female feminists migrating to formerly male spaces, demanding to be accommodated and eventually causing conflict and alienation.”

The “male spaces” he has in mind – the “hacking scene,” atheism, and the video game industry – won’t come as a shock to anyone familiar with the current state of nerdboy rage, but might trouble anyone who thinks that women are, you know, equal to men and have the same rights to choose their own careers and have their own interests and beliefs.

Not only that, but there is just a teensy bit of irony in that the way that MRAs and others are trying to drive off the feminist, er, invaders is by harassing them. That is, MRAs are appropriating the concept of “safe spaces” — designed to protect those in them from harassment and abuse — and using it as an excuse for … harassment and abuse.

But let’s step back a bit, because we still don’t have an answer as to why any of these “spaces” should be defined as male in the first place. How is atheism – the lack of a belief in god or gods – only a dude thing? When did guys get the right to call dibs on the gaming business?

Well, as mradiscus sees it, these “spaces” have traditionally been essentially nerdboy preserves, and should be protected from the pernicious influence of “female feminists” who, presumably, have no real interest in hacking or gaming or skepticism and whose real goal is just to make life hard for already beleaguered nerd dudes:

A scene predominantly populated by rather introverted young males becomes popular and attracts, among others, young women with a feminist mindset. Some of these women then go on and demand to be accommodated. Their demands are mostly met, and so we see the emergence of “gender awareness teams” at hacking conferences, no-means-no campaigns at anime conventions and a whole lot of conference panel slots devoted to “feminist this” and “gender that”.

Mradiscus then offers what I can only call a “revisionist” history of the harassment of feminist women from Rebecca Watson to Zoe Quinn:

What we also see is a whole lot of scandals. What seems to spark them most of the time is a overreaction to a minor offense, blown way out of proportion by a semi-popular feminist and her fan base who then proceed to launch an attack on the whole “misogynistic” scene. The young men feel cornered and unfairly attacked and retaliate with inappropriate and infelicitous measures which only leads to the feminists seeing their prejudices confirmed. Rape threat allegations are launched, there’s doxxing and name-calling all-around and new-found fame for a brave and courageous young feminist who may or may not proceed to make a career out of her struggle.

I should point out that none of the women who have allegedly “made … career[s] out of [their] struggles” actually asked to be harassed and demonized. If the harassers are angry that their harassment allowed Anita Sarkeesian to raise a lot more money than she asked for, they really have only themselves to blame.

Mradiscus ends with an ominous prediction-slash-threat that young men aren’t going to remain “patient” for much longer – and that things could get much worse for feminists venturing into these “male spaces.”

I wouldn’t be surprised, however, if the patience of these young nerdy men turns out to be a shallow well that’s drawing to a close. I sense quite a bit of alienation in the hacking and gaming sub-cultures when it comes to feminist topics. What do you think?

I think that you have a very strange notion of “patience.”

Naturally, MRAs being MRAs, mradiscus’ little manifesto – dripping with unexamined misogynistic assumptions and a quiet, curiously passive-aggressive rage – won praise and more than one hundred upvotes from the subreddit regulars.

The most extraordinary response to mradiscus’ rant was also the top-ranked comment, a long screed from a fellow calling himself a0i that argued, with complete seriousness (and occasional very confused references to the theories of Italian Marxist theorist Antonio Gramsci), that

The logic of how feminists target predominantly male spaces is very similar to the pattern of locust swarms.

Yep. Feminists are LOCUSTS.

Wherever there are men, there are targets for false accusations, male scapegoats, and fake victims. False accusations can’t happen without men, and neither can feminism. When there are too many women somewhere, you can’t claim that the environment is dominated by men, and feminists have nothing left to justify their presence. Feminists can’t thrive because they lack a scapegoat. They seek out a place where men are, and fabricate outrage at finding too many men in once place, at one time.

They have to find fresh environments with concentrations of male majorities, for “structures of misogyny” to pretend-struggle against. Thus, nerd culture being targeted, video games being targeted, Anita Sarkeesian making up being attacked, etc.

Yep, apparently all those hundreds of thousands of comments you might have seen attacking Sarkeesian all over the internet are nothing but a mirage.  That Flash game in which you could cover her face in bruises? You must have dreamed it.

It’s telling that a major feminist concern is for “women’s exclusive space”, while another feminist concern is for “women’s inclusion in male-dominated spaces”. They fight to get in, just to kick the men out.

Feminists demand unlimited access for women, as proof of men’s commitment to equality, but demand limited access for men, to prove men’s concern for safety.

Wat? I’m pretty sure no feminists are talking about excluding men from video gaming.

This works, despite the irony that — if you believed in their equality, you wouldn’t make special accommodations for their safety.

Uh, no, because if one group faces systematic oppression because of prejudice, the only way to ensure an egalitarian society is by making “special accommodations for their safety.” That’s why we have hate crime laws.

In the case of gaming, and atheism and tech in general, the only “special accommodations” feminists have asked for have been, you know, protection from sexual harassment and assault. Protections that also apply to men.

If there is one principle to understand about the tactics used to engineer women’s privilege over men in society, it is this:

  • what you intend to do to an opponent, you must accuse them of doing to you”

Frame your victim as your victimizer, put them in a position to want to prove themselves innocent. Frame your attacks as self-defense, frame your transgressions as righteous. Frame the enemy as using propaganda, make this part of your propaganda. Frame the enemy as a threat, before you launch your attack. Pretend to be a victim, while attacking the accused.

Apparently MRAs are utterly oblivious to irony.

 

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inkhat
6 years ago

Fine. We call Science Fiction and comic books then.

inurashii
inurashii
6 years ago

This is why I’m hosting a game jam that’s all about ruining video games.

It’s also why I just activated 2-factor authentication on all of my e-mail and social media.

Kim
Kim
6 years ago

Where did this idea come from that all nerds are male?

inurashii
inurashii
6 years ago

@Kim: I suspect that it stems from the need to cultivate a persecution complex from a privileged position. Why don’t I understand women? Oh, it’s not that I don’t understand them, it’s that they don’t understand ME because I’m a poor social outcast, a nerd.

sunnysombrera
6 years ago

Seriously, atheism is a dude thing now? What mental gymnastics did they perform to come to that conclusion? And what are the gains for them in making it a male only “safe space”?

Also, SAFE FROM WHAT, EXACTLY? Girl germs?

sunnysombrera
6 years ago

Kim: probably the same place that assumes a geek girl is only faking it to get attention from men. Or to mock ‘real’ geeks.

Luzbelitx
6 years ago

If there is one principle to understand about the tactics used to engineer women’s privilege over men in society by every manipulating abusive misogynyst ever.

There, FTFY.

Bina
Bina
6 years ago

a shallow well that’s drawing to a close.

Bad metaphor mixers of the world unite! You have nothing to lose but your writing skills!

cloudiah
6 years ago

Just on the swarming thing… I have a friend who’s a beekeeper. (Well, she’s many things, but among them she tends a few hives.) She recommends a book called Honeybee Democracy to anyone who is interested in how swarms work, and how the … actual hivemind makes decisions.

kirbywarp
kirbywarp
6 years ago

I had this notion a while back that I wanted to put into law form:

“Any successful meme will be appropriated to convey the opposite message.”

Then I found this describing the same thing.

And here we are. Gaming as a “safe space.”

You know, women-only safe spaces online consist of what… a forum? A blog? Among zillions of other blogs and forums? How do you do the same with Gaming, exactly? No girls allowed to buy video games, except anonymously online? No playing in public or multiplayer? How is this supposed to work?

Nathan Hevenstone
6 years ago

I am getting really sick and fucking tired of these misogynistic fucks trying to use introversion and social awkwardness as an excuse for their shitty behavior.

[blockquote]A scene predominantly populated by rather introverted young males [/blockquote]

I’m not just socially awkward… I have a phobia of social situations. It’s amazing I’m not a hermit… yet… I’m extremely introverted and have a very hard time making friends.

And yet here I am, respecting boundaries and taking “no” for an answer and not creeping anybody out and being self-conscious about my actions to ensure I don’t creep anybody out and being friendly and not whining like a misogynistic little twit that “TEH WYMYNZ ARE STEALING MY PENIS SPACE!!!!!!!”

Why is it that being an introvert makes them misogynistic assholes, but not me?

vaiyt
6 years ago

Women have been video gaming since the beginning, dudebros. That ship sailed long ago.

sunnysombrera
6 years ago

Nathan: because introversion and introspection are two different things. You are introverted and introspective. When you think about yourself you have thoughts about how you can make other people feel comfortable and happy. When these dudes think of themselves, it’s either self pitying or thoughts on how other people can and should make them feel happy.

freemage
freemage
6 years ago

The evils of feminism:

I didn’t watch it all, but I did enjoy the bits I watched. I think part of the reason it was so successful was the fact that they were targeting kids who hadn’t fully socialized into hard-core gender roles–they’d obviously been exposed to them, but they were still able to think outside those lines, at least enough to get past the initial hesitancy.

vaiyt
6 years ago

Gaming as a “safe space.”

Safe space from what? From girl cooties? Oh no, having to acknowledge women as more than objects for my sexual and power fantasies is so distressing to me! I demand that an entire industry be closed to half of humanity to assuage my tiny shriveled ego!

ikanreed
ikanreed
6 years ago

The LAST thing atheism needs is less women(or other minorities). One of those things about atheism is that it’s trying to make an argument about reality without respect to who you are.

To make it an exclusive club (like virtually every religion has a history of being) pretty much outright denies that it has anything to do with philosophical truth.

Pocket Nerd
6 years ago

Thus Spake Zaramradiscus:

Some of these women then go on and demand to be accommodated. Their demands are mostly met, and so we see the emergence of… no-means-no campaigns at anime conventions…

… I wanted to make a joke here about “In the good old days, we MENZ could hassle, photograph, and grope any women we wanted at conventions, but now we can’t, whine whine men are so very persecuted whine” but I realized I’d rather say this:

GOOD. No does mean no. A woman is not granting you access to her body by attending a convention — no, not even if she’s dressed up like Sexy Crossplay Sephiroth.

Sexual assault at conventions (and not just anime conventions) has been a huge problem at least since the 1980s, and probably long before that. Some men who seem decent enough in ordinary daily life turn into sexual harassers and rapists at conventions. The problem is cultural: There’s a widespread, if largely unspoken, belief that “women come to these things to get laid” and “they wouldn’t dress up like that if they didn’t love the attention.” And, of course, historically there have been few or no consequences for men who sexually assault women at conventions; if the staff didn’t flat-out ignore an incident, they generally reacted by naming, blaming, and shaming the victim.

I’m glad that’s finally changing. It’s long overdue.

Bina
Bina
6 years ago

Why is it that being an introvert makes them misogynistic assholes, but not me?

Because introversion ≠ sexist asshattery, basically. Introversion is an inherent trait, probably genetic; asshattery is learned by osmosis from a society built around it. Asshattery can be unlearned. Introversion can’t.

And yeah, they don’t get to claim that as a hall pass for universal godawfulness, either.

(Fellow introvert here, used to be socially awkward to an extreme degree, still struggles with it now and then, but is by and large over it. Also, a feminist, which has actually helped me to get the hell out of that shell when I need to.)

Tefo
Tefo
6 years ago

A read of the MRA pontifications indicates that they are very anti-feminist. They are careful to distinguish between feminists and women. So do they want ‘safe space’ to be safe from feminists or women generally?

Pocket Nerd
6 years ago

Thus Spake inurashii:

I suspect that it stems from the need to cultivate a persecution complex from a privileged position. Why don’t I understand women? Oh, it’s not that I don’t understand them, it’s that they don’t understand ME because I’m a poor social outcast, a nerd.

Exactly. As Leigh Alexander put it:

A lot of ‘proud nerds’ are people who used the fact they were picked on for their interests as children to maintain, as adults and and fathers (they are most often privileged men, now) a ‘secret clubhouse’ that lets them victimize and oppress other participants — despite the fact games are now a multi-billion dollar industry, increasingly stigma-free, and desperately in need of the creative and professional participation of multitudes of new voices.

Self-identified nerds are often so obsessed with their identity as cultural outcasts that they are willfully blind to their privilege, and for the sake of relatively-absurd fandoms — space marines, dragons, zombies, endless war simulations — take their myopic and insular attitudes to “art” and “culture” with tunnel-visioned, inflexible, embarrassing seriousness that often leads to homogeneity, racism, sexism and bullying.

[…]

My adult life in games and internet culture frequently involves brutal gendered language. Over video games. So if you want someone who feels sorry for you because your family grew up with a Super Nintendo, don’t ask me.

leftwingfox
6 years ago

I would LOVE to have known more women who were into video games and role playing games and cartoons and the like. I’m not even talking about dating here, just more socializing. It sure beats growing up with the myth of the unfuckable D&D virgin into a miserable “Nice Guy” period.

Well, unless you’re an abusive asshole. In which case it’s a great way to abuse people, yell at them for not taking that abuse, whine about not getting your dream girl, and enjoy a nice self-pity party about being so oppressed by the cheerleaders who won’t go out with you.

Megan Rivera
6 years ago

“Their demands are mostly met…”

HAH.

HAHAHAHA.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAAAAAAHAHAHAHAAAAA!!!

No.

Incognita Secunda
6 years ago

I have a gamer ex who isn’t an MRA, but sure as hell managed to sound like one sometimes. He really, really wanted me to get into video games and kept bumping up against “Oh, whoops, that’s just incredibly fucking misogynistic, isn’t it? Why the hell would I want to play that?” And every time I got lulled into thinking, “Oh, hey, this one’s not so bad,” there would be a gratuitous boob joke or a joke about women who were too ugly to rescue, etc. (And those examples came from a game in which the main characters are a female wolf who is the avatar of the sun goddess and a fucking flea. For serious. The flea was a total prick, and I kept wishing the wolf would just eat him.)

One signal argument involved a hyper-violent fighting game that he and his buddies were playing, in which the female fighters wore those idiotic string bikinis made out of metal and were constantly mocked or humiliated by the male fighters. I’m talking about women in these get-ups being CHAINED UP TO POLES as a backdrop for the main event, in which a woman was being mocked for demanding respect from her opponent. It took me a long, long time to get him to understand why this wasn’t okay, with his excuses running the gamut from “I didn’t even notice; that’s not the point of the game” (to which I replied that misogyny being so expected that male players didn’t even notice it wasn’t exactly LESS of a problem) to “Well, I play these games, and I don’t treat women badly IRL” (Uh, congratulations? You get a gold star for not ACTUALLY beating women? No, dude–that’s just not being a fucking criminal, and it doesn’t mean you’re not supporting people who make misogyny into a game for men’s enjoyment).

I finally got through to him by telling him how watching him and a bunch of other male friends play that game made me feel–that they would never see me as an equal, that they just passively expected women’s bodies to be available for their humiliation as a form of enjoyment, and how betrayed and threatened I felt. Since he also was working under the delusion that geek culture was very inclusive, I asked him to think about what it felt like to a woman who enjoyed games or wanted to get into them when she walked into a convention hall full of thousands of strangers–mostly male–and saw this kind of thing projected on enormous screens all over the place.

I saw it sink in.

My hopes rose.

And then he spluttered, “It’s okay for guys to have spaces that are just for guys! It’s not my JOB to make everybody feel included.”

I looked at him in disgust and said, “No, it’s not your job. I guess it depends on what kind of person you want to be and what kind of culture you want to have. Just don’t ask me why I’m not crazy about videogames again.” And left the room.

So yeah, that didn’t last.

What I took away from this, apart from my apparently being incapable of discovering dateable men who aren’t defensively sexist asshats–even when they know they’re wrong and regardless of how generally decent they may be on other issues–is that this MRA bullshit is extreme, but it’s not actually all that divergent from what most of guys think. Not at all. Maybe especially not in the geek community, where these dudes are all busy thinking that they’ve been bullied on the playground too much to ever possibly be capable of bullying someone else, ergo the culture they’ve built is incredibly welcoming to everyone, and anyone who says otherwise is just looking to be upset. (Hint: That’s 100% incorrect.)

I’ve basically already hit that point of 0% worth described by the jerks from yesterday’s post about women’s market value, and, although I would very much like to have a partner, I have gotten very, very close to just giving up on that as a life goal. It would seem that the vast majority of the heterosexual, cisgendered, male population is too hell-bent on enjoying its privileges to acknowledge that women are as fully human as they are. And I would rather be alone than be with someone who reflexively treats me as a second-class person.

Cthulhu's Intern
6 years ago

You know what I find funny about this? This report just came out, which says that adult women are now the largest demographic in gaming: http://www.dailydot.com/geek/adult-women-largest-gaming-demographic/

Also, why do so many of these guys seem to hate the idea of women doing nerdy things? My idea is that they can’t get into a relationship (or, you know, have sex) with women and they like to believe that it’s because of their nerdy interests and they don’t want to come to terms with the fact that it’s because of some other factor, such as their personality.

ryeash
6 years ago

I’ve been gaming since I could hold a controller. My boyfriend has a meme on his Facebook page that’s a picture of the Nintendo Zapper and reads “If she doesn’t know what this is, she’s too young for you”. I countered with a picture of myself at about age 3 holding one. Fucking ridiculous, you can’t make a hobby a gendered activity. I wouldn’t give up gaming if you paid me. I do stay away from games like COD and Halo partially for the reason that any time I reveal that I’m a female, I get all sorts of shit talk. I don’t like run-and-die games like that anyway. Give me a nice open world rpg any day.

leftwingfox
6 years ago

They are careful to distinguish between feminists and women.

BAahahahahahahaha!

*cough*

Sorry. As much as they _say_ “I mean feminists, not women”, half of the core MRA complaints (Child support, court custody assumptions, alpha fucks/beta bucks, male-only military conscription, men working dangerous jobs) are the result of traditional gender roles which feminists oppose, and a lot of the complaints regularly use language that betray contempt and disgust for women in general.

Mr. Nick
Mr. Nick
6 years ago

This isn’t even about women. I’m not saying there isn’t sexism in the gaming/atheism/nerd community (there is) or that he isn’t blaming women (he is). But he seems to be blaming women for video games becoming popular in general. He’s like the hipster who complains because his more popular classmates have started listening to his favorite band and then keeps insisting that they’re not “real fans”.

Most people of all genders play video games now, not just the socially awkward young males. And I guarantee that if women stopped playing video games (which would never happen because video games are awesome), he’d still be complaining about the extroverted, popular guys who have invaded the shy boys’ safe space.

Not that it’s going to matter, since a multibillion dollar industry is never going to adopt this little introvert’s “Nerds Only” treehouse mentality. They literally can’t afford to cater only to that demographic.

Fibinachi
6 years ago

…. You know, it’s funny. I live in Denmark. I also work with live action roleplaying on a professional level.

( You may say that I nerd so hard at being an elf in the woods that I get paid for it, if you will. I certainly do, because HAH, I could have gone to med-school, but I’m an elf now and you can’t make me go back)

In 2006, something sort of odd happened. A school opened. A boarding school. A roleplaying boarding school. That’s 8 years ago now, not quite a decade, but still eight years. By all accounts from everyone I’ve talked to, it is a fun and interesting place that beats the hell out of the boarding school I personally attended (If you’re wondering, it was a financially and business focused educational facility where I was asked to write CVs for four hours every week for 51 weeks. My letterheads are graded as weapons in three countries).

Eight generations of school students have gone to this school, and among learning the usual requirement of courses to attend the danish Gymnasium (not quite high school, not quite college, bit of both), do mandatory roleplaying related activities like lan parties and sword fighting or leather custome building or something. This is a really large school. There’s like hundreds of people each year, across multiple grades.

YET some nerds still, when they commiserate about their lives, decide to go on about how the world is so vast and cruel and no one understands them and they’re social outcasts.

Social outcasts that graduated from a school among 200-300 others.
Full of social outcasts.

A school with a waiting list

I get that bullying happen on a vast scale, and I get that not everyone has hundreds of friends. That’s normal and sad. And I wish it wasn’t.

But the persecution complex is sometimes amazing.

And then it gets weird. Pocket Nerd has it completely right, there’s this weird unstated assumption that the participation of women in any kind of nerdish geekish thing is solely for them to have an in to the wonderland land of free attention, cookies and backrubs.

Which leads to conversations like this:

“You know, I really like [Co-Worker X]”
“Yeah, she’s pretty amazing. Studying anthropology and German, I think? Gave me a list of interesting books”
(Guess which part of the conversation is supposed to be me)
“Ah, true. Really, she isn’t like all those other roleplaying types”
“What?”
“You know”
“I… Sorry, I don’t. You forget, I don’t do the Larp thing”
“Right, right, you don’t, which is why [An aside about how I’m not good at my job] and anyhow, you know, all those roleplaying chicks really just want the attention and they’re damaged”
(Translated, the actual phrase is more akin to “filling a hole inside”, but damaged is the meaning)
“What, really?”
“Yeah man, you should see Østerskov, they’re full of attention-craving little ones who only go there because they want to be the princesses of Nerd castle”
“Uuuh, okay. So how does that… relate?”
“It’s the same with a lot of these types. They want the easy in because they know the nerds won’t get the attention from other people, ’cause they’re nerds”
“Nerds at a school full of nerds.”
“Right!”
“… where there’s… nothing but nerds? So they won’t be any….”
“Go there to get the attention. Yep. Anyhow, did I finish telling you about how you suck at your job? Here’s how:”

I realize this is all just vaguely on topic, but I’m sort of frustrated and stuck somewhere between amusingly amused and bitterly annoyed.

What does it fucking take to just… I guess let people enjoy what they want to enjoy? “Oh, you enjoy Dr. Who? That’s fun! I like this other thing. You might want to watch some of this and that.Oh? I should try Dark Angel? That’s a thing? I’ll have a look” and not the fucking constant slide slip in where somewhere in all that you get the mental appellation of “(And of course I understand you don’t really enjoy this, because women don’t enjoy this, and you’re only here to take away my stuff and make me cry and take over my space)”

ryeash
6 years ago

Another thing: WHEN did gaming become gendered? The closest I came to hearing anything about that when I was young was schooling some asshole in Smash Bros who thought that just because he was a guy and I was a girl, he could kick my ass. Suddenly years later I have some dude get all excited that I knew what an NPC was. It seemed like out of nowhere, video games were a boys’ club that I was infiltrating with my evil female-ness. I like shooting and/or stabbing pixellated things too. Just because I have a vagina, it’s suddenly not allowed? Kiss my Irish ass!

littlefish
littlefish
6 years ago

Hmm, well I guess I’m relegated to gardening and bird watching… no gaming, no anime, & no atheism for lil ol me cause I have lady bits. I best tell my friends too…
Who knew that the only reasons we got into gaming, atheism, and whatnot was because inexplicably, deep down we only wanted to chase poor, socially awkward boys away from their bastions of safety? Silly me, thinking we were interested in those things in any truthful or acceptable manner.

Cthulhu's Intern
6 years ago

So if atheism is a male space, what are women who don’t believe in any deity supposed to call themselves?

Incognita Secunda
6 years ago

Oh, no, littlefish. It’s not just that we want to deny them their safe spaces. We also want to either show up in skimpy costumes the better to friendzone them with or find the tech-geek billionaires and milk them for all their sweet, sweet nerd dollars–or, perhaps, BOTH. Bwhahahahahahaha!

We are truly evil.

Redcap
Redcap
6 years ago

Given that almost all of my female friends in elementary school played video games, I always side-eye guys who bemoan the “invasion” of women. Dudes, we were there all along, you just put your horseblinders on and ignored us. There’s a reason that Pokémon Crystal added a female PC, and it ain’t because the boys wanted to play a woman.

As an aside, I started playing tabletop games this summer, and they’re unbelievably fun. It’s like acting and writing smushed together (both things that I enjoy).

ikanreed
ikanreed
6 years ago

“So if atheism is a male space, what are women who don’t believe in any deity supposed to call themselves?”
— Cthulhu’s Intern

I think the MRAs make it clear Women are clearly incapable of establishing a personal identity based on beliefs and hobbies. So you just describe them by their physical features. They can be blondes or brunettes.

Incognita Secunda
6 years ago

@ Cthulhu’s Intern–First things first, that screen name is awesome. Thank you for being awesome. Second, uhm, maybe we should call ourselves athiestas? Atheiesses? Athi-ettes? I kind of like that last one: we could have a kick-line at the beginning of each meeting. In which, of course, we would drink tea with our pinkies extended and then crochet the Doilies of Blasphemy. Pink doilies, of course.

Mr. Nick
Mr. Nick
6 years ago

Redcap: “…and it ain’t because the boys wanted to play a woman.”

Actually, I have been seeing a lot of guys playing as female characters in RPGs. I haven’t played pokemon in years, so it might be different for that community. And it isn’t only because they like staring at the skimpy outfits; I’ve been seeing it a lot in the Dark Souls and Demons Souls games where the armor sets are mostly unisex and there are very few skimpy outfits.

Littlefish
Littlefish
6 years ago

Incognita Secunda…
Gah, I forgot about the friend zoning. Though I admittedly don’t do costumes, I sometimes am accidentally nice to guys in games. My silly girly brain doesn’t realize that being polite equals “I’m totally into you, please proceed to flirt and/or harass me!” My awkward personality and lack of picking up social cues tends to leave me not realizing that the awkward guy on the other side is doing some attempt of hitting on me. I’m not sure if me being socially awkward makes me not really a woman or not. Anywho, I forget that women can not have male friends, because men can’t be in an opposite sex relationship that doesn’t involve sex… I mean, how dare I chat with a guy without there being pay out for him? *sigh*

Aunt Edna
Aunt Edna
6 years ago

Gotta laugh (? I suppose…) at no-means-no being such an imposition. Poor nerdz.

Emmy Rae
Emmy Rae
6 years ago

Ahh, they are distinguishing between feminists and women, two mutually exclusive groups with no common cause. Well, no worries then! Thanks a lot for clarifying, Tefo.

/sarcasm

Pocket Nerd
6 years ago
Reply to  Mr. Nick

Thus Spake ZaraMr. Nick:

Actually, I have been seeing a lot of guys playing as female characters in RPGs. I haven’t played pokemon in years, so it might be different for that community. And it isn’t only because they like staring at the skimpy outfits; I’ve been seeing it a lot in the Dark Souls and Demons Souls games where the armor sets are mostly unisex and there are very few skimpy outfits.

I do that too. The primary idea behind a roleplaying game is pretending to be somebody or something else — and I already know what it feels like to be a white male. It’s strange that some people think “female” or “person of color” is somehow more of a stretch than “elf wizard” or “space marine”.

A Wolverine
A Wolverine
6 years ago

The amount of mad I’ve seen over the cosplay stuff is really sad.

You tell them that a chainmail bikini isn’t a goddamn invitation to grab her ass and its like you just kicked their dog

kirbywarp
kirbywarp
6 years ago

@ryeash:

I really wish I could find the article, but my google-fu is failing. The answer is quite recently. Back in the days of pac-man, games were aimed mainly at adults in bars. Plenty of advertisements showed women relaxing after a day’s work in front of an arcade machine. Sexism obviously still existed, but there were women working in the industry.

Then, suddenly, everyone started marketing to young boys. I don’t know what caused it, and I don’t think the article I would have linked to knows either. Advertising just decided all of a sudden to focus all of their advertisements on guys. That basically caused the entire industry to be perceived as male.

Marketing changed society, society affected the make-ups of game companies, game companies decided that only guys where into games, so all the protagonists had to be male friendly, etc. My understanding is that it was pretty damn sporadic, and started by marketing concerns rather than cultural concerns.

Emmy Rae
Emmy Rae
6 years ago

@Mr Nick – This isn’t even about women.

Really? The whole issue seems to be that women/feminists are attacking perceived male only spaces and ruining them. The complaint is not about too many people gaming. It is specifically about women gaming and ruining it by expecting to be treated like people.

since a multibillion dollar industry is never going to adopt this little introvert’s “Nerds Only” treehouse mentality. They literally can’t afford to cater only to that demographic.

Maybe they won’t cater to nerds only, but a huge amount of games and gaming is aimed specifically at presumed straight men. It may be bad business, but movies and gaming have survived and thrived despite rampant sexism, objectification and alienation of women.

TL:DR I’m not buying your argument that this about some broader group of people being included. They are specifically concerned that women are ruining gaming, etc.

fruitloopsie
fruitloopsie
6 years ago

These dudebros make me laugh at the fact they lack self awareness and just being hypocrites.

Cthulhu’s Intern
“You know what I find funny about this? This report just came out, which says that adult women are now the largest demographic in gaming: http://www.dailydot.com/geek/adult-women-largest-gaming-demographic/

if you shown all the dudebros that they’ll proberly foam at the mouth. This calls for an evil laugh
http://youtu.be/J-o0Dyt2voI

Mr Nick
“I guarantee that if women stopped playing video games (which would never happen because video games are awesome), he’d still be complaining about the extroverted, popular guys who have invaded the shy boys’ safe space.”

Yeeeep

fruitloopsie
fruitloopsie
6 years ago

But Mr. Nick they just don’t want to treat women like people so it’s really about women and feminists.

Johanna Roberts
6 years ago

I’ve been gaming longer than some of these louder dudebros have been alive. I’ll be damned if I leave it because they’re angry they have to treat me like a person.

Incognita Secunda
6 years ago

@ littlefish–I hear ya. Aforementioned Gamer Ex had a male “friend” who had spoken to me one single time before I started dating Gamer Ex. Unbeknownst to me, my not telling him to just go take a flying leap in response to his predictable “Are You a Fake Geek Girl” interrogation apparently meant that I was TOTALLY HIS. (Choose your analogy: I was a fire hydrant and he was a loveable mutt, I was the clean laundry and he was the rakish tomcat, etc.) Thus, when I started dating Gamer Ex, Mr. Polite-Means-Yes was furious with me–as in, would not speak to me and gave me the stank eye every time he saw me. For six months.

Of course, Gamer Ex told me I was imagining things (Gamer Ex was on point with his gaslighting game). And, of course, within 48 hours of our break-up, Mr. Polite-Means-Yes started cyberstalking me across every social-media platform he could find. When I told him that he was being inappropriate and to stop contacting me, there were torrents of “ERMAGEHRD, I just thought we could be FRIENDS. Okay, whatevs, HAVE A NICE LIFE.” (I am not even kidding; he literally said “Have a nice life,” like we were still in 6th grade.)

I blocked that jackass with extreme prejudice.

tl;dr–It’s not your fault, littlefish. You’re not being socially awkward; you’re being nice to people, which is a good thing. There are just too many clueless Nerdboys out there who think that any woman who is not downright rude to them obviously wants to bear their children. If they weren’t thinking of women as Sex Dispensers in the first place, they might have considerably less difficulty with navigating their social lives. Their social awkwardness is not an excuse to be an asshole.

btw, Dr. Nerdlove has a beautiful column on this at http://www.doctornerdlove.com/2014/03/socially-awkward-isnt-an-excuse/.

Littlefish
Littlefish
6 years ago

“The primary idea behind a roleplaying game is pretending to be somebody or something else…”
My friend played only male characters… which she did partially because she didn’t want guys hitting on her. One reason I’ve been given for guys playing female characters is because they’d rather be looking at a female ass while running around. I can also see not liking most of the male models in some of the rpgs and mmos (though admittedly I’m not a big fan of the muscle bound look).

lhsimm
lhsimm
6 years ago

Women were in the forefront in the development of computer programming: Grace Hopper who created COBOL, ENIAC (the first commercial computer) was programmed by Betty Holberton, Jean E. Sammet developed FORMAC… Centepede and River Raid were programed by a woman, Carol Shaw.

Seems like those whiney nerds just want to kick women out of something they’ve been involved in since the beginning.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/when-computer-programming-was-womens-work/2011/08/24/gIQAdixGgJ_story.html

Kakanian
Kakanian
6 years ago

Reminds me that some He-Man toy message board apparently had enough weight to get a woman character in that recent ongoing series a new hair colour and a reasonable set of fantasy armour, but for some reason feminists are destroying comics.

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