[NetBehaviour] We need more women in games.

Corrado Morgana corradomorgana at blueyonder.co.uk
Mon Aug 3 13:38:39 CEST 2009

Whilst I agree, I can't help but think that the study is a little dated
(2005-06). Things move very fast in Digital Media and 3 years is an aeon in
Digital Games. Sure it's a quantitative study and plus ca change and all
that..the situation is probably the same (I'm too busy researching hacking
and modding than gender but I know a thing or two)

I agree there do need to be more balanced roles, especially removing the
usual pink branded shovelware that normally gets branded as games for
girls-mainly for teens.
And I dread to think what ethic interest games would be..as a Welsh born 2nd
generation Italian a pox on the developer that produces Sheep Shagging Pizza
Mama for WII!!!
And substituting blokes with swords for chicks with swords doesn't really
work either...

I dunno..

However does the study mention player customisation where a player can
design their own avatar in any gender, shoe size etc? a large proportion of
games offer this unless the narrative is character specific like in GTA.
Mass Effect f'rinstance main character Commander Shepherd could be male or
female, Fallout 3 offers gender customisation as does Project Gotham 4, a
racing game.

Before the usual witch hunt about games it'd be interesting to do the same
quantitative study for mainstream cinema?

Emma Westecott is a colleague of mine 
Check this.. http://www.womeningames.com/



-----Original Message-----
From: netbehaviour-bounces at netbehaviour.org
[mailto:netbehaviour-bounces at netbehaviour.org] On Behalf Of marc garrett
Sent: 02 August 2009 12:01 PM
To: NetBehaviour for networked distributed creativity
Subject: [NetBehaviour] We need more women in games.

We need more women in games.

Guardian article.

A new study shows that females are missing from videogames, in which 85%
of the characters are male. Videogame players may be more diverse than
ever, but for game characters the digital realm is still very much a
white man's world. A study published this week looking at gender, race
and age has found that female and minority characters are severely

US researchers examined the top 150 games from March 2005 to February
2006, including titles such as Doom 3 and Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.
They discovered that 85% of characters are male, compared to just 49% of
the US population. The figure rises to 90% for player-controlled characters.

Black, Hispanic and Native American characters also fail to reflect
their real-life counterparts, and mainly appear in sports games or
titles that reinforce racial stereotypes, such as 50 Cent Bulletproof.
Turning to age groups, children and the elderly are almost non-existent
in games, with adult characters making up nearly 87% of the total.

Previous studies have examined questions of representation in games, but
this new research is the most comprehensive so far. The findings also
take sales data in to account by weighting the most popular games as
more important, under the assumption that they have a larger effect on

Dmitri Williams led the research, published in the journal New Media &
Society. He suggests that media under-representation can be an indicator
of social inequality.


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