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Default WoW - Sexual Harassment online

March 6th, 2008, 19:41
In response to the earlier newsbit I posted on gender (this is not totally unique to WoW of course) the women's section of the same UK newspaper has followed up here.
Anyone who has played video games with any regularity will know that character design is one of those areas where gender stereotypes run riot. Most pre-packaged characters are white, male and buff. Female characters are few and far between, and when they do appear they are usually highly sexualised or passive, or both. Game architects just don't seem to be able to look beyond those pneumatic breasts.
More information.
Last edited by woges; March 7th, 2008 at 22:41.
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March 6th, 2008, 19:41
Over generalization at it's worst.
Not worth the time it took to read.
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March 6th, 2008, 19:46
A bit overkill sure, but, there is certainly some bad taste around. I'm not a misogynist though so I don't get involved with that kind of behaviour.
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March 6th, 2008, 22:33
Learned the same during my last two days.

It's time the devs abandon these bloody steterotypes !

But they won't too soon:

- They're males anyway
- They're having males as customers in mind.

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March 7th, 2008, 18:06
Its not true for every game, but for MANY and especially some MMOs like WOW. Just LOOK the the style of male and female characters. ALL human males are buffed up Stallone guys and all females look like from some Playboy cover. Worse are many, many solo RPGs with their ridiculous females with chain bikinis on the boxes.

Its as machismo stupid as it is childish. Alas gaming is the only dinosaur in the entire media & entertainment where gender stereotypes run rampant. No such gross gender conservatism survived in that scale in ANY other entertainment form.
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March 7th, 2008, 20:39
There is a reason for this. It's called "a game". People, when you roleplay a guy do you want to look exactly like you do or act exactly like you do? Well, the acting part I normally try to do what I think I would do depending on his stats and race. Call me a pig or whatever but if I'm going to play a role I better be a hell of a lot buffed up or if I'm playing a PC girl she better look like someone right out of a high fantasy novel for example Kahlan from the Sword of Truth series. I wouldn't want to play Flints younger sister named pudgy.

I don't know maybe if they gave the option I would try roleplaying poor old Pudgy, but I doubt it.

It's also not fair to single out PC games with this sterotype, they do it in the movies and espcially "High fantasy novels" no fatties allowed in most of them or if they are they are just bit characters thrown in to either be some kind of greedy salesman or for comedic value.

Personally though I'm also getting burned out lately of always playing RPGs. I read magerette's sidekick thing and it sounded exactly like what I was thinking.I just don't care that much about saving the world anymore. So in that line of thinking if we take a step back and realize it's just a game, not some boss sexually harassing his secretary. It's all in our minds, people, when we click off the computer and step back into reality where there are real problems then it sorta sounds a bit silly to be getting upset over graphics or if the Amazon should have an A cup instead of a D cup bra.

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March 7th, 2008, 21:05
I have learned during the 2nd computer game conference in Cologne this week that games are still too often a male-only domain. Made by males for males.

Female games would perhaps be different. I don't believe that - if WOW was to 90 % played by women - sexual harrassment would be there in substantial numbers.

Although one would never know …

There is still sooooo much work to do …

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March 7th, 2008, 21:10
Of course, any social activity only reflects society itself. This problem is a much broader issue than just games/gamers.
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March 7th, 2008, 21:20
Can I file a lawsuit whenever my game charactor got shot, stab, murdered in virtal cold blood?

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March 7th, 2008, 22:02
Originally Posted by skavenhorde View Post
There is a reason for this. It's called "a game". People, when you roleplay a guy do you want to look exactly like you do or act exactly like you do? Well, the acting part I normally try to do what I think I would do depending on his stats and race. Call me a pig or whatever but if I'm going to play a role I better be a hell of a lot buffed up or if I'm playing a PC girl she better look like someone right out of a high fantasy novel for example Kahlan from the Sword of Truth series. I wouldn't want to play Flints younger sister named pudgy.
Do you really think your role-playing options for female characters boil down to a goddess in chainmail bikinis, or Pudgy?

If so, you might want to think a bit more.

Here are a few female characters that I think would be interesting to play:

* Granny Weatherwax, from Pratchett's Discworld books.
* Gogol, from Pratchett's _Witches Abroad._
* Ripley, from Alien(s).
* Joan of Arc.
* Tehanu, from _Tombs of Atuan._
* Chevette, from William Gibson's _Virtual Light._

More, anyone?
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March 7th, 2008, 22:11
Ah Earthsea I'd really like to see that done well.
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March 8th, 2008, 16:31
I love statements that are based on dubious studies of which noone can really say if they really took place, if they were representative, or flawed in design (the article doesn't even state what game(s) was used). And unless I've seen that study from Nottingham Trent University I'll just claim that this study is utterly rubbish. Simply because my experience tells me otherwise. I'm playing MMORPGs since the very beginnings of Everquest now and from my experience women less often switch gender in a MMO than men. Now, how can I know that? In all MMOs I've played over a long time I sooner or later ended up in a raiding guild and even at the good old Everquest times we used Teamspeak or similar technologies. With very few exceptions all the women in these guilds played female characters while quite a few male players created female avatars.

When it comes to the topic of sexual harassment the article certainly has a point. There seem to be quite a few male players around whose hormones are running wild as soon as they see a female character. But again I'd argue that depicting women as helpless victims is utter bull. Most MMOs have an ignore function nowadays and verbal harassment can easily lead to your account being closed. And, after all, female players can chose with whom they play and with whom not.
Another idiotic assumption is this one:
When it comes to multiplayer games, such as World of Warcraft, women must also face down a whole set of assumptions about their ability to play.
I can't of course say that it does not happen, but I've never seen it happening. In all my gaming time gender never played a role when it came to things like approving an application for a raid group or guild for example.

Character creation is also a thing which has to be seen in a rather objective and not feminist way. I would think that the majority of players, as Skavenhorde has already mentioned, does in fact want to play a hero that looks heroic and not like the village idiot (if you really want to look like one try LOTRO and play a halfling). I'd guess that this goes for men and women alike. Don't get me wrong, I'm not against giving players the possibility to make an ugly, fat and from a hygienic point questionable character, but for me it's perfectly understandable why the creators of MMOs stick to the "heroic appearance" pattern. Apart from that I'd really like to see the outcry from some feminists if a game would actually give you the possibility to change your (female) avatar's breast size…

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March 9th, 2008, 09:28
A much more serious issue is what can possibly happen to you if play too much WOW.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIWv6yDec_E
Watch the whole clip.

….and people are are concerned about sexual harassment.
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March 11th, 2008, 06:49
I admit im always saying things i shouldnt to female toons.
Theyre pretty !!!
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