Effects Of Sexism In Video Games

1445 Words 6 Pages
As video games become more widespread, many complaints have been placed on the level of violence and sex present in these games. What is less spoken about is the level of sexism in video games, both in and out of the game. Research indicates that sexism in these games is a prevalent issue that needs to be addressed as video gaming becomes more popular, especially the effect this has amongst females. Thus, sexist video games are a harmful influence on female players, resulting in lower self-esteem and withdrawal from active participation to discouragement from playing. This is evident through the degrading sexist depictions of female characters, sexual harassment from male players during online gaming, and the controversies and sexism in the …show more content…
Many games now include the ability to play and interact online with other people in real time. What should be a time to enjoy playing the game with other people becomes an area full of male gamers determined to show off their hypermasculinity, an exaggeration of stereotypical masculine behaviour including callous sexist behaviour to women to prove their masculinity to other men (Brehm, 2013). When these male players realise that they are playing with a female, they call them out in rude, sexist ways. Gray (2012) recalls her own experience of playing an online game, when she apologised on her microphone for some mistakes, her group responded “Oh you guys hear this? That’s why you suck. You’re a fucking girl! What the fuck are you doing in my room?” (p. 412). Reasoning that she was bad at the game based on her gender enforces the belief that women are not good at video games simply because they are not men. This type of harassment occurs regardless of skill which Fox and Tang (2014) agree with, noting that in many studies, pre-recorded voices of females received more harassment than their male counterparts. Brehm (2013) gives many examples of harassment in online gaming, one example in particular comes from a female player who when playing as a female character, a group of male players “offered to pay her 100 g to take off her character 's …show more content…
This is due to the sexist depictions of female characters in video games that are unrealistic and encourage the idea of having unhealthy thin bodies and big breasts, creating self-esteem issues in female players of all ages. Furthermore, there is the sexual harassment that female players receive in online video games based on their gender, forcing women to either conceal their identity or put up with the behaviour. Lastly is the sexism and controversies of the video game community outside the games that directly attack women for speaking out against misogyny and making female players fearful. Together, these arguments point out that video games are not welcoming to females, whether they play the games or not. The video game industry becomes larger every year, bringing in more players of all kinds. Video gaming should be an activity that anyone can enjoy without being made to feel objectified or harassed. Sexism in video gaming needs to end to prevent further harmful influences on female players, new and

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