GLAAD Panel: Pearls Of Wisdom And Points Of Discussion

GLAAD Panel: Pearls Of Wisdom And Points Of Discussion
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I’ve got a re-cap of last Saturday’s Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation right here, but if you’re looking for quick quotes and interesting issues to rehash, here are a few gems.

Caryl Shaw, Senior Producer at EA’s Maxis
To developers: “Who doesn’t want to be a gay super hero? Are you thinking about this stuff when you’re making your game? Well you should be!”

Dan Hewitt, Senior Director of Communications & Industry Affairs for the Entertainment Software Association
About the ignorance of the general public toward gaming: “We need to come together. We need gay and lesbian gamers to step forward. Come out, and then come out again as gamers.”

Stephen Toulouse, Program Manager for Policy and Enforcement, Xbox Live
On expressing sexuality in Gamertags: “Who we choose to love is part of our identity.”

Cyn Skyberg, Vice President of Customer Relations at Linden Lab
On expressing sexuality online: “The process for how we display ourselves as we really are [determines]what are the values we have as a virtual community.”

Flynn DeMarco, founder of and Kotaku alumnus
On blogs and gaming sites censoring the n-word, but not the other f-word in headlines: “They need to let people know that it’s not okay [to use that word] .”

There were two other issues that came to mind as a result of the panel that, sadly, I didn’t encounter until after the Q&A ended. The first was brought up by my friend over at GamesRadar, Henry Gilbert: On Xbox Live, you can download McCain/Palin and Obama/Biden icons – so is the message that it’s somehow more acceptable to express political orientation than sexual orientation?

The second issue stemmed from the part of the panel where moderator Justin Cole brought up the Flash game Watch Out Behind You, Hunter!, where players have to shoot gay men to keep from being raped: I thought to myself, what if you re-skinned the hunter to be a woman on her way home late at night from a club? Would that somehow make the game more acceptable because it removes the anti-gay sentiment? Or is it equally uncool because the game still advocates murder as a solution to sexual assault?


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