So, I thought about writing about a few different things this week, maybe a focus on some great books or something, but the state of our industry and sister industry of gaming just has me too damn wound up and frustrated to focus on anything else.
For those playing catch up, gaming has been thrown into absolute chaos as it continues to deal with the growing pains of facing some really long gestating problems with sexism and misogyny in the industry. It’s a problem we here in comics know well. Many of us are “gamers” (or players perhaps is a better word) and even for those of us that don’t play games, there’s still a bond between comics and games – as “geek hobbies” we’re sister industries for good or ill. I guess it makes sense that both our industries are pushing on these boundaries and trying desperately to grow past these limitations at the same time and with some of the same disturbing results, but man has it exposed some truly nasty people and agendas.
Image for Anita Sarkeesian's "Tropes vs Women Video Games" Kickstarter
I’d like to open today’s column up a bit to your thoughts as I ask the question “Is it worth it?”
And when I say “it” I mean, is speaking out online and trying to move the needle on issues that are sometimes unpopular worth it in the end? We’ve had an excellent (and rather extreme) example lately in the case of Anita Sarkeesian’s Tropes vs. Women in Video Games Kickstarter, which I visited relatively early on and was weighing whether or not to fund (I was leaning toward yes when her Kickstarter went viral). But Sarkeesian’s project went viral and earned an unprecedented $158k+ (against her original $6k goal) primarily because the haters, misogynists, creeps, “ole boys club”, and trolls came out in force against her to a staggering (and frankly, horribly alarming) degree. Thus Sarkeesian’s project became a big news item, earned a lot more coverage, and a whole lotta people (nearly 7k) cried foul in the form of support – and cold hard cash.