Liegh Alexander may be the most respected woman in the industry, she writes for Kotaku, Los Angles Times, Kill Screen Game Pro, to name a few. I think it's safe to say that she's been with the industry for awhile. Still, her latest Blog on Gamasutra made me sit down and think for a bit. I'm a tad disturbed by the message behind it.
I'm writing this because as of late, there seems to be some... concerns going on with gaming. It's no longer, just for fun, or a pleasant passtime. Lately, we've had some issues with the gaming industry as a whole. The issues seems to be a revolution of sorts, of regarding women and how they are dipicted in gaming... but it goes far beyond that, and I think I have to post this to simply get this off my chest before I can move on.
TO BE OR NOT TO BE!
This has spiraled out of hand as of late with death threats lashing out and nerd rage in it's most elegant pureist form of hate spew in all directions, with no end in sight. We can say, that it's a vocal minority, and that justifies that quite well. However, does that mean we can't have a normal discussion regarding this issue? Do we need to be petty to mearly dismiss the others point of veiw completely? I understand this is a tad touchy subject, it's hard to say one thing, without another group trying to ram the point home.
Maybe I'm just skirting the topic, but I fear that if I list my point of view, I may be unvalidating what I really want to talk about, which is, about respect for an individuals point of view. I think that's a more important conversation to have.
THE ISSUE AT HAND
In a sence, it's about respect, that may seem vague though, still, that is the core of it. Can we treat people how we want to treat ourselves on the internet regarless of gender, religion, occupation, race, or even point of view? Or do we simply restrict this to respecting those purely in the real world, and on the internet, let these evils surface? Basically, and quite bluntly, do we all need to be giant Lan Line Aholes?
My nerd rage, has usually been regarding developers, or a particular game, or defending/attacking a certain issue with the industry regarding a sales platform. (Example, Day one DLC.) My topics were never as important regarding anything beyond gun violence and against assigning blame on the gaming industry. I've had heated debates, but none beyond, nor as important as the discussion as this. Let's not beat around the bush, how women are depicted in video games is a HUGE topic. Though, we can't have a discussion, if all we focus on are negative aspects. What Liegh Alexander did is list several sites that showed examples of feral nerd rage. Though I think she failed to point out that what we need are less lists, we need less finger pointing. Lets face it, this has gotten out of hand on both sides.
I, personally, can't stand any of it, I find that if you don't agree with someone, can't we agree to disagree, and move on? Or, can't you have a respectful disscussion rather than posting hate from the highest tower? You don't need to harass people to get your point across, and it makes your argument that much more less valid because of it. I've mostly, just avoided it, tried to plug it out and focus on the games. That's what I've thought was always more poignant.
If someone wants to change how games are story writen, can't we have better writing instead of going for an easy out? Though, I digress, because I've always believed that if your a good writer, you don't need the easy outs. You can do without the, save the princess quests, the hero's a macho man. On the other hand, I still believe in free speech, and the right to be able to write what ever you wanted to make. I may not like the creation, I may not even play it, but I have that right too. There, maybe I took both sides, but I still didn't alienate one group over the other, I didn't trash talk, I didn't call out, I didn't harass.
My whole point is, if you want your point of veiw to be respected, it's going to be give and take. You have to respect other individuals regardless of if they're right in front of you or a million miles away. That way, they can respect you too, they may still not agree with you, but I don't think that's as important. Your not going to change hearts and minds on an issue this strong, and nerd raging the issue just makes it worse.
Maybe if we listened to the other side a bit more, maybe if we respected everyones opinion besides our own, maybe, just maybe the internet would be a better place. That's my two cents though, which is worth just that, two cents.