Results tagged “sexism”

"This is our normal. How do we get better?"

Amidst certain troubling things I’ve lately read, I found welcome succor in Erin Kissane’s article “How to Kill a Troll”. It responds to the deeply disturbing harrassment of feminist game-and-culture critic Anita Sarkeesian, and more specifically to the confusion and anger that overwhelms those engaging online hate head-on, only to spill over and stick to bystanders like me just trying to make sense of it.

I am so far from having an answer, but I have a suspicion that counterattacks are not working. It’s worthwhile to cover horrible things like the attacks on Sarkeesian and Penny Red and so many others because doing so can help uncommitted or passive readers understand and defend against this behavior. But as cathartic and entertaining as it might be, skewering trolls and attacking jerks is never going to change their minds. Putting people on the defensive only hardens their positions.

When it comes to actually changing minds, I think we’re stuck with love.

Recognizing the humanity of people who do awful things is one of the core challenges of being human. (We have enough trouble recognizing it even in people who are like us.) But it’s the only way out. Even when the worst trolls are beyond visible redemption, the way we handle them is visible to so many others who are still capable of feeling empathy or recognizing pain or changing their minds.

These chilling events have shone a light on a pervasive sickness within the enormous and important online culture around videogames, and I have read no article that more eloquently diagnoses this illness and begins to prescribe a medicine more subtle than mere shoveback. Please go read the whole thing.

Winceful games-for-girls marketing

On Ian Bogost's Twitter feed, we find this striking photograph by Allison Moore of a Nintendo DS game retail rack:

Yes, it's one little slice taken out of a greater visual context, and its true that I'd have no reaction either way to seeing any one of these titles sitting by itself. (And you won't hear me saying boo about Peggle, in any case.) But it's still hard to look at this particular picture and not think of another culturally representative game, albeit one from over 40 years ago...

Miles to go.



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