Why Were There No Women Presenters At The PlayStation 4 Event?

Why Were There No Women Presenters At The PlayStation 4 Event?


Today we got a healthy dose of next-gen information, delivered to us by a bevy of excited, breathless developers and publishers. Here’s the thing: not a single one of the presenters at the PlayStation 4 event were women, and people noticed.

It’s not something folks are happy about, either.

This is a french Vita ad, which we covered before.

To contextualize the next couple of tweets: Elizabeth retweeted Leena’s tweet about no women presenters, and because of that, started talking about what she was going to do in response to the event.

Getting women in games development is a noted problem in the industry, but the last year has seen a rise in conversation when it comes to gender and sexism in this industry. People will notice if, like today, there are no women presenters at your event.

The question is whether or not that will change. I admittedly didn’t even notice there weren’t women presenters until someone else mentioned it, which probably says something about how used to situations like this we all are. Some won’t even bat an eyelash.

As a side note: the picture above are some guys from Bungie, who you might remember because they refused to raise their hands, ever.

Comments

      • Yes, Patricia, this is yet another misogynist conspiracy. How clever and perceptive you are to spot such a grievous slight against womankind.

        Seriously, though, STOP WRITING THESE SHITTY ARTICLES, Patricia.

    • I saw this on the US site but I was hoping you wouldn’t repost it here. I can forgive the US, they are overreacting nutballs when it comes to this stuff. I now imagine Patricia to be a man hating feminist who trawls for a gap where a female subjectively should have been so she can start another feminist diatribe whether it is warranted or not. Great fun to have these type of people at parties.

      I think the relevant question, if you want to use this to raise a question of sexism, is why out of all those presenters was there no female presence in the high end of all those video game companies. They were all guests and they were all CEO’s or head developers so this would show that none of those positions were filled by females. This is a relevant segue into the topic and could start some actual dialogue. As for Sony being sexist, I think that’s a mighty big straw you’re clutching as the presenters were mostly guests of Sony invited to present their work so far in development of games. Sony had two reps. Would it not be more sexist to add a token women just to pad out the sexes on show?

      • Looks like a bunch of people made the same observation. Are you one of the type to think that there’s swathes of “man hating feminists” lurking in the bushes or something?

        • I am the son of Lesbians dude, I’m very familiar with man hating feminists of this world. In fact they did indeed jump out of bushes at me but I fended them off with my knowledge by association and usually my Mum’s protected me.

          Patricia managed to highlight quite a few people that jumped on a bandwagon even though it was a very loose argument. she didn’t need to do it but she did. She has also previously pointed the gender agenda finger at other stories, many times on the money but just as in this topic she has missed the target plenty of times.

      • Is this article really so unreasonable? All the author has done is point out there were no female presenters and fish up some responses. I’m not sure if any of the people she’s quoted are meant to be notable figures though. Is the issue that people think she is cherry-picking comments that suit her agenda? (I’m new to Kotaku so I’m unfamiliar)

        It’s a disappointing article, to be sure. From the title I had hoped we were going to get an answer, or at least some insight as to why women are less prevalent in the games industry. The twitter posters do at least highlight that there is a noticeable problem (even if the writers don’t bother to contemplate the issue beyond tantrums and whining).

        Don’t get me wrong, I can see why there’s such a kerfuffle in the comments. I’m sure she isn’t “man hating”, but for someone who insists on concerning herself with issues so close to feminism, Hernandez doesn’t show any understanding of how to grapple with them. I haven’t yet seen her attempt to actually engage with any of the issues she brings up. She probably either doesn’t understand the problems past the superficial layer of what she can see, or these articles are just quick filler to pad out Kotaku’s front page. Its probably both tbh, and it’s just comeing across as unwarranted zeal.

        It would be great if the people in a position to publish content on these issues actually provided content, but at least they might act as a reminder every now and then.

      • Can you point out what exactly in this article makes you believe Patricia is a man hating feminist who is looking for opportunities to start a feminist diatribe? I ask because she herself says that she didn’t notice the lack of women presenters until others pointed it out, which in fact is what the article is about. The article isn’t about Patricia saying ‘I think Sony are sexist’, it’s saying that people did notice an issue with Sony’s presentation and observed that that is happening more and more. So again I ask, what in this article caused you to form your opinion that Patricia is a man hating feminist who is looking for opportunities to start a feminist diatribe?

        • I didn’t say she was, I said I imagined her to be. Just as I imagine Hulk hogan to be a closet knitting fan. This comes from the occasional mis-guided feminist article she writes. She writes lots of feminist articles that are on the money but ever so occasionally she gets the point completely wrong and on those occasions it speaks worlds of her deeper feelings on the topic. I don’t blame her, she has lived and is living through a deeply misogynistic point in video game history which has surely left scars but as I said, when the aim is wide it seems to indicate that the agenda is more important than the facts. Those few articles, as I read them, I imagine her squeezing a fluid filled stress ball shaped liked testicles, grinding her teeth until it it explodes and she slams her fist down on the arm of her leather chair, leans forward looking somewhere off into the near distance and screams, “men”. Just my imagination……I also imagine she looks like a young Kathy Bates.

      • If you want to be Australian about it, note the lack of Aborigines on the stage.
        Cathy Freeman, we need a token minority person – and if you break your leg and use a wheelchair, you earn triple minority points.

    • Nope, you’re wrong, it’s important. Not even gonna say why, because if you don’t know, you need so much more educating than I could ever give you.

      • Thank you for your time. You have made real changes by adding intelligently to this and have swayed my views. Shall I begin a slow golf clap in your honour. My favourite part was where you showed me enough courtesy to assume I was intelligent enough to understand your point so you layed it out clear for me to see. Not at all a wasted post.

    • This is a sh/t article. There is no value to be found in this. Just because better contributors got to talk about the actual content of the presentation doesnt mean you get to push this garbage onto the site Patricia. (just note im not sexist at all…. be it the other way around id say the same thing)

  • Patricia…….. i think your sexist. Every article you write like this……. its just gender bashing.

  • I was hoping to see Amy Hennig and Naughty Dog! (For selfish I want to see Uncharted 4 reasons rather than diversity reasons, I admit. D:)

  • I prefer it in the older days where people would joke and call it a ‘sausage fest’ now It’s a sexist agenda created by us men.

  • Are you fucking kidding me? Ever thought that maybe the people that hold certain positions in their respected companies were men? I’m all for equality, and obviously I’m just assuming here, but wouldn’t it be just as bad if you told those guys “no you can’t go on stage, we’re just going to put women up there to calm the masses”.

    • Yep, exactly what I think when I read this drivel. So the point is that women ‘deserve’ these spots regardless of who is the best person?

      I think the real issue is that why the fuck is this even on a gaming site? What the hell happened to the actual gaming news?

  • I’ll always fight against sexism. But really, it’s sexist to not have at least one presenter that’s female? Shouldn’t the presenter be someone who’s capable of doing thier job? As in, presenting on stage in front of a crowd, keeping their cool, keeping the audience their attention, etc.

    It’s actually sexist to think you need a woman to talk because other women are too stupid to understand when a man is talking. Wasn’t that the problem with the first Assassin’s Creed game? They just kept walking the producer or something out on stage because it was a chick?

  • All my friends are white. Want to know why? NO! IT’S NOT BECAUSE I’M RACIST, IT’S BECAUSE I DON’T KNOW ANY BLACK PEOPLE! You don’t suppose the reason there were no women at the PS4 reveal was because coincidentally there were none who fit the criteria of any of the roles required for any of the presentations?

    This is seriously beyond a joke now.

  • I hadn’t checked Kotaku in a while, so I decided to come in and check on the Playstation 4 coverage. Then I see this story, and remember why I don’t check in here anymore. An observation inflated into a ridiculous accusation, backed up with Twitter comments.

    Note that the 3rd parties attending would have chosen their respective speakers themselves. Are they all sexist too?

  • It’s good to see people have had a gut full of the feminist PC crap that has been infesting Kotaku.
    People should be chosen by their ability not their gender, if that results in all men/women then so be it.

    • So no woman is capable of helping to speak at an event? No space for them on stage? Can not provide a role model for young girls, so they want to be a part of it instead thinking it’s a mans job? It’s politically correct to think that humans are equal?

      I think you’ve missed the point.

        • Nope. Ability is good and is the merit of everything. I completely agree. Fair point to call me out, it was a rather bad comment from that angle. Although I still stand it is not ‘PC crap’.

          I do not think there’s enough being done to say, yes you’re a woman and you can succeed in this industry. A representation is big difference to that. It can be sexist to put up a representative because she is female, but as long as she can do her part to present because her abilities helped create what is being presented there is not anything wrong. It’s social responsibility when there is such an disproportionate gender balance in the industry. It doesn’t have to be a 50/50 split, but it has to be better than what it is now.

          There’s just no incentive for 13 / 14 year old girl to pick up this industry and think that they can succeed.

          • I think the point that a lot of people with your attitude miss is that it doesn’t HAVE to be anything. It will naturally, over the course of time sort itself out. Any synthetic method to try and force it to be ‘equal’ will just end up hurting everyone involved. Someone will have to ‘lose out’ and the person (woman) who ‘wins’ will never really be a winner because she would have got there on a basis other than being the best.

            The flip side of this is ‘Do you think any one of these guys up there DON’T deserve to be up there?’. In the end, to try and put a female game designer up there is just as sexist as not putting one up there because she is female, but that isn’t the point here. The companies chose the best people to fit the bill and they just happened to all be men, case closed.

            This story is bullshit and I’m sick of people trying to push these agendas down my throat while I’m trying to read about god damned video games!

      • And I think you have missed carl’s point. You don’t just randomly choose a woman to speak at an event, you pick someone already in the appropriate position (like the mentioned CEO’s etc), and I think it’s safe to assume that they got there through hard work and being good at their job, not because they are men.

      • No watson,

        What carl is saying is that the criteria for choosing a presenter showing off a new console would be the capacity to present said console in an exciting and engaging way. The criteria should not be that you are a male or female.

        What this article is suggesting is that Sony should have gone to extra effort to find less qualified or less engaging presenters and participants, entirely because of their gender, meaning that this article is not only stupid, but highly hypocritical.

        I sincerely think you’ve missed the point.

        For those of you out there who think otherwise, let me clarify. Equality movements are about opportunity. The idea is that no one should be *prevented* from doing anything that anyone else is allowed to do. Its not about forcing a group of people to do something that they don’t want to, aren’t available to, or aren’t qualified to do…

        …That, really is more akin to slavery.

  • To be honest I didn’t even think about that until I saw this article. If it were all women presenting it wouldn’t bother me. The only thing people should be thinking about is that the PS4 is going to be out by the end of the year.

  • You are the personification of an idiot, there are no words to describe just how fucking ridiculous you sound in every one of your articles. It’s woman like you that force men to resent the idea of equality because it’s not promoted intelligently, it’s promoted by halfwits like you.

    • Brilliantly said. This article is a joke. If Patricia grinds her axe any harder she’s going to lose a hand or something…

  • The ONLY person doing any gender bashing on this site is this bloody Patricia Hernandez. Why is she even working for Kotaku? Why not Jezebel? That way she’d get to be lord of the feminists and actually have an audience who cares.

    Edit: To add, the people on stage should be the ones who have the greatest ability to do the job. It shouldn’t be dictated by gender. (And by the looks of it these 4 guys certainly aren’t the best at being the public face of Bungie.)

  • God damn it. You aren’t helping! Pointing fingers willy nilly is both ignorant and presumptuous. There weren’t any black people either, nor were there Canadians or Bloodhounds. This dispicable idea of getting people to rally behind everything you don’t like is flagrantly irresponsible as well. I used to enjoy Patricia’s articles but now all I see is what people were telling me all along. It’s just gender bashing. JUST. Nothing else. JUST. I feel stupid for ever defending her, believe it or not, i’m passionate about gender equality. I’ve seen what certain women and people of different sexual orientations have been subjected to first hand, I know it exists and is rampant.

    What I don’t like is that she’s making a mockery out of everything. ANYTHING that doesn’t involve a woman (no one else matters, it seems) she starts putting words in their mouths. Usually along the lines of “we (women) are just…” She has no filter for relevancy or irrelevancy. There’s no optimism, no hope. Just this dreary, oppressive landscape she depicts that has enveloped every single thing we touch, see and hear and it hates only women. She has zero credibility to me now. This has to get to a point where she should be seen as damaging. It’s getting further and further away from equality and closer to a message of hate.

  • Patricia, you call yourself a gaming journalist right? You also call yourself a gamer?

    Why then, do you very rarely cover games? And when you do, why does the article always digress to some abstract sexism issue you’ve fished from nothing? Because you were LOOKING for it.

    • I think you’ll find that she posts a number of articles to Kotaku & that only a small percentage of them revolve around sexism in games, actually.

    • I am beginning to wonder when so many small minded people started posting on Kotaku AU. I’ve been away a while but the tone sure has changed.
      Why do they feel so threatened and upset by a women reporting a fact, that other people noticed there were no females at the press release? It is just an observation. The debate should be, as a few posters have pointed out, why were there mostly white males up on stage, representing high up positions in these companies?

      If you watched the news you might see that there are also efforts in many other industries to try and increase female presence. Particularly among boards of large companies. In fact boards with a mixture of sexes have been shown to perform better (Sorry I can’t recall the source of that stat).

      People need to chill out and actually read what was written, before putting there own ego into things. She reported peoples reaction. Asked an open question of whether that might change in the future. Why react like a bunch of scared boys, worried the evil feminists will take over and take away your jobs and your beloved video game protagonists.

      There is always plenty of room here for everyone.

      • Sure there were no women. But was Sony sexist and anti-female or is that just the way it is? Do we go out and call the construction industry sexist because it is heavily male dominated? Or nursing sexist because it has a heavily female representation and low male numbers? Ditto school teaching?

        Women have always been a part of the gaming industry but a minority. More women are getting more involved as culture changes and gaming becomes an accepted norm of entertainment. Views change.

        But labelling Sony as sexist because of male/female presenters ratio is broad brush and sloppy.

        As is the original tweeter for linking a lack of female presenters and an advertisment (which is sexist, but also French :P) out of how many 1000’s of Sony marketing campaigns? Broad brush, sloppy and manufactured outrage out of nothing.

        In fact it’s boarder line defamation. When you want to be part of the party you don’t go about it swinging bats, crushing skulls and throwing out allegations.

        • “swinging bats, crushing skulls and throwing out allegations.”

          How can you read this article and come up with that interpretation?
          She reported that people in social media noticed the lack of women and tweeted their feelings about it. The title of the article is a question; Why were there no women presenters at the PS4 event?
          Then she points out it is an industry problem. As all of those industries you mentioned also acknowledge as a problem.

          So please tell me where are the bats, crushed skulls and allegations in this article.

  • This article is to promote the fact that women are generally being ignored by a range of developers at the top. Which is an issue not just in this industry!? Yes, as a society, lots of people are trying to change this because the root cause is generally that men have always had these positions.

    Generally a male dominated industry ostrachises women from those roles and make them feel uncomfortable. If anything this article is highlighting that more needs to be done to try and say it’s okay, you won’t be treated like an outcast in this industry or stared at by all the men in the room constantly like an object because you’re the only one there. Doesn’t history generally say that when a women starts trying to do what a male normally does, it’s inferior work or they’re not capable (from old office work to army or tradeswork?)

    The writer said nothing sexist what so ever. You’re all leeching on a couple of twitter posts that people generally are unhappy about a lack of women. Of course there’s no way to balance an argument because it IS sexist to say it’s a good thing no women are there.

    It’s neurological science that generally change triggers the same areas of the brain as pain. You have anger, denial, avoidance, bargaining then acceptance. Guess what I’m seeing a lot of in here? If you help alleviate this problem, just a hint, stories like this go away.

      • I actually had to urban that.

        I’m no conspiracy theorist, I just believe that there should be more done to promote woman in this industry like the equals they are. Clearly this isn’t happening and should be adressed.

        • Watson… there is far more spent dollar for dollar in *exclusively* promoting women in gaming (and enticing women to be part of the industry) then men by far. And all power to the groups that are doing it– they’re doing a fantastic job.

          You have to realise that even if cultural bias is removed from the picture (which I question whether it will ever happen anyway) that doesn’t mean you’re going to instantly have highly successful women in positions like these.

          Not only do things take time, but believe it or not, some people don’t want to do some things.

          Incidentally most of the most qualified and skilful game designers I know are women so it is happening. Perhaps they havent made their way up in a lot of the AAA studios or something yet, but that could have to do with a million things, including (lets not forget) the types of games they like to work on…

    • You think us doing something is going to make a difference? We’re here to play games. Most of us have no stake in this social commentary bullshit. If Patricia wants to make a difference she should take her beliefs to another site, one where people have the capacity to actually make a difference.

      • But I like this sort of article and I read the rest of kotaku, and I like to play games, sooo….

        Thanks for deciding for me what I can and can’t read, and what the editors can and can’t post on their site. I really appreciate you being the arbiter of this site!

      • You don’t have to do anything apart from discuss why there is not a quicker uptake of females in the technology industry and that it is apparent it is still a problem.

        By playing games you are partaking in a a cultural artform that shapes society. It makes the news daily. It gives men rolemodels and future career paths, it provides an entertainment that you can enjoy with your friends. If you do not want to comment on society right now when it is clearly uneven, you have no right to do so when video games are linked to society’s problems (how incorrect they can be), which a lot of commentators here do. I would say that because you play games, you’re the perfect person who can help this and improve society as a whole. So that eventually society can be equal where we can attack both women and men issues without prejudice.

        That last sentance. Think about that it. “We don’t want a woman reporting on women issue here. Take it somewhere else so others can deal with it. Even though we’re not sure anyone would treat it any differently over there.” is exactly the kind of sexist, dismissive attitude that stops this from becoming a non-issue where we can go on our way.

        Unless it pains you to change things, as it might make you uncomfortable.

        • I’m sorry, what? Are you implying that I’m being sexist? I’m not saying I hate Patricia (I’m not a big fan of her articles but anyway), and I’m all for more female reporters and game journalists. As long as the writing is good I don’t care. Man or woman, makes no difference to me. But, I think Patricia is barking up the wrong tree.

          What I’m saying is that THIS sort of article is wasted on THIS audience. If it was actually a decent article rather than “NO WOMEN AT SONY CONFERENCE, SONY MUST BE SEXIST”, then I’d be in approval, and you might actually get some people doing some stuff. You think industry professionals are gonna look at this and say “oh, wow, she has a point! I’ve never thought of it that way!”? No, they’re going to look at it and conclude that she’s grasping at straws. Perhaps my original comment was poorly worded.

          People don’t get pissed off at Patricia because they hate what she’s doing. They get pissed off because she does a terrible job at what she’s trying to get across and she ends up sounding like she’s grasping at straws.

      • You say you have “no stake in this social commentary bullshit”, yet you are commenting on a social commentary article. Therefore you do have a stake in it. By letting people know about these issues is making a difference. Think of how many females might read Kotaku. How many game developers read Kotaku? They have the capacity to make a difference by changing hiring practices, giving more women a chance in the industry.

        So I hope Kotaku keeps the diversity of articles it has. Thats why I come here.

    • Funnily enough when I was studying for my games dev degree, we had over 100 male students and 2 female students. This was despite the fact that over 50% of my lecturers were in fact women.

      Is there a place for women in the industry? Definitely.
      Will they ever get filled if women (in general) don’t want to work in the industry? Probably not.

      Now maybe the industry could do more to encourage women to join, but in reality it’s the entire IT industry that’s like this. Women are quite capable of doing the job, many companies want women working for them, but there simply aren’t the numbers of candidates available because women in general don’t want to study IT.

  • Sony can’t really help it if the studio reps are men. Naughty Dog has Amy Henig, but Naughty Dog wasn’t represented at all.

  • I think this was a good article, reporting a wider communities response to what struck some people as a indicative of a wider problem in tech/gaming. I think it’s unfair of people to suggest the question of why there were no female reps shouldn’t be asked, because really, it’s a conversation that’s ongoing in many other industries and tech needs to be involved.

    More people from different backgrounds means we all get better games, and we should be fighting for as gamers, not shouting down writers who are involved in bringing this topic up.

    Keep up the good work Patricia.

  • I won’t deny that there may be gender equality issues in the videogame industry, but throwing the sexist tag on everything and everyone is definitely not going to fix the problem.

    • I completely agree with you. I don’t think Sony should be obliged to include one female in their events just because they have to.

      I’d like to think I’m not sexist just so you know.

      • Thats fair, also I can imagine that the developers would be the ones to choose who was to present at this meeting, so why is everyone calling Sony the sexist one?

      • No one thinks they should because they have too. Yet you have to wonder why out of all these major studios, only a sub-division studio in Naughty Dog has any female representation.

        • There are lots of women in the industry. Just because you don’t see them on stage or in promotional videos does not mean they don’t exist. And they certain aren’t entitled to a job position simply because there aren’t enough representatives.

          • So if there are lots of women, so this is not an issue, why aren’t they being promoted? If they are not good at their job, they would be retrenched like in any other business.

          • While there are some women, there aren’t lots of women in the industry.

            Over 88% of employees in games companies are male. So before taking sexism, nepotism and the like into account there’s likely 8 or 9 guys competing with every woman for any promotion.

            Some companies like Sierra quite famously had about 50% of their staff being female at one point, so there’s a tendency for many women in the industry to work in female friendly companies which would further skew the numbers in other companies making promotions even harder for women there.

            And there is a fair amount of sexism and nepotism in the industry too but even without it, just based on the numbers the likelihood of 5 companies picking one of their top developers and it being a woman is pretty low without even considering that.

    • So, you agree it is a problem? Right now, the only tool available is to label things sexist, to make companies and individuals think about why someone might level that charge at them.

      I’m all ear for another solution though.

      • Sexism is a problem everywhere, not just in the games industry. Always has been, hopefully one day it won’t be.

        While there are at times blatant examples of sexism that need to be called out, I guess my problem is when people are quick to anger over minor slights such as this which, when looked at rationally, could be completely innocent.

        I would prefer people use their energy to encourage the industry to be more welcoming of women into the industry, rather than constantly attacking it every time a woman is absent.

        • There’s a lot of people and energy, probably plenty to go around for every minor problem. This is the Internet after all 🙂

          Sexism won’t go away unless all of us stand up and say its not okay. The tech industry is under a lot of fire at the moment certainly, but only because there is so many passionate geeks of both genders, wondering why there isn’t as many of one gender being part of the making and selling of games.

          Wouldn’t you rather healthy debate than simmering anger that explodes in our face? I like not having an exploded face personally.

        • I think a way to do that is have a female presence there. It is a negative thing if it’s some model with her tits almost popping out as well. Don’t want that.

          Just some encouragement that’s all. It isn’t hard to fit in a minor female in the company who can be excited about their job and what is happening and encouraging females to come in. You don’t even have to directly say that females should come in. Over time this naturalises. Yet it’s a problem if women feel like their ostracised in the industry.

  • Is this really what we have come to? Does it really matter that there were no females presenting tonight? This says nothing about Sony being sexist.

    Sports programs sometimes have no females on them, does that mean those companies are sexist? Of course not!

  • Tiemachine = 100% record on white dudes on stage for the #PS4 announcement

    Well I’d hardly call that dude from Capcom white.

  • Sony wasn’t sexist, they just didn’t think. The launch of the PS4 is a global event covered by all branches & forms of media, not just the games related ones.
    Sony didn’t need to cart out “token” presenters but they did need to think about the image that they are portraying to the world about their products, games and gaming.
    The industry and it’s customers no longer longer primarily male and this should be reflected as such in a event of such significance.

    To the rage WTF commenters, you’re just proving that it is an issue.

      • No it would be token to have a female who had NFI what she was going on about to be on stage. Or on stage to simply be there.

        • No? You are confirming what I said. And to assume having a female professional in the same role as the males presenting would be tokenism is foolish; which is what you would have to imply is what I meant to begin your reply with “No”. You’re typing for the sake of being an arse.

  • So stupid.

    They were developer and Sony bigwigs selected for the event. What, they should go out and just hire some random females to present?

    Jesus, its like trying to force a woman onto Top Gear, or a man onto The View.

    • Yeah, what a ridiculous idea, because women know nothing about cars, and men know nothing about feelings and relationships? Or did you mean they shouldn’t be on the shows for another reason?

      As to your other point, it’s really about why there isn’t women in those positions, not that Sony should just hire some. The question is broader than just affirmative action.

        • It could be that simple, absolutely, but isn’t it unusual that computing and gaming, literally an industry without physical limitation, has so few women in it? Why is the participation rate only around 10% when it was closer to 40% in the eighties?

          • Isn’t it also unusual that we don’t have more men in the nursing, teaching, stay-at-home-parenting, and child-care professions? We do not have an endless supply of percentages. There are 100. Just 100. If you try to balance a traditionally male-dominated profession, you have to balance a traditionally female-dominated one as well. The cries for more stay-at-home Dads don’t seem to be quite as loud.

            How much of that is social barriers, and how much of that is natural (learned/instinctual) inclination? For fuck’s sake, we only started NOTICING imbalances as a problem a generation ago, people need to give society a chance to catch up a bit, let the new breed actually start taking classes and doing what they want instead of what their pressured by society to do.

            “How dare they not have any female peers stand up on stage!”
            “Well what do you want them to do about it?”
            “We want them to remove all cultural barriers to entry for equal gender representation!”
            “We kinda thought we had… but we’re not getting as many applicants as we thought.”
            “Then clearly there are still pressures in place and you’re not trying hard enough!”
            “Or maybe there are differences – not inequalities – between feminine and masculine drives and desires, and sometimes they manifest in women not weighting games-development equally with other goals?”
            “HERESY! Equal = The Same! Maybe not biologically, but psychologically!”
            “But actually, we’re learning that psychology is heavily influenced by biolo–”
            “Stop making excuses for the patriarchy!”

          • Seriously took the words right out of my mouth (hands?).

            You should probably have this response saved somewhere, so you can pull it out on all of these articles. But next time comment a little higher up, so we can put a stop to these discussions that go around and around and around and around slightly sooner.

  • I don’t see how this is Sony’s problem, but rather a lack of interest from females in becoming game developers. All the presenters on-stage we’re very experienced game developers, ie: they have been in the industry for 20+ years (when females in the video game industry was an extreme rarity).

    As the other Kotaku commenters have already said, this is a ridiculously stupid article. How many female Leads are there at any of the big dev studios. Guarantee you it’s 90%+ male. Fact is, its a male dominated workplace. Deal with it, or get a job at a dev studio and quit your bitching.

    • That’s kind of the point though, why is it only men who are in these positions for these periods of time? I’m willing to entertain the idea that women aren’t capable of performing the job at that level, but I think it’s doubtful. Isn’t it more likely that women have been actively discouraged from participation in the industry because of sexist attitudes and policies? I’m open to other reasons though.

      • Thats not the reason. The PlayStation Event was hosted by mostly game developers who have been in the industry for 20+ years. Back then, It was a very male dominated industry ( which is slowly changing) Why was it a male dominated industry? Probably because it was mostly men that played hardcore videogames.

        • Actually, your wrong. In the 80s there were more women in computing than there has ever been, and it’s been steadily declining since then. This type of article has never been more pertinent because of this.

          Why this is is the reason we need articles like this. There’s a lot of reasons, and they should be discussed.

          • in computing? sure…but i’m talking about games development. I cant think of 1 successful project lead that was a female from 85-90s.

            We don’t need articles like this. What the tweets in the article are saying (especially from Deloria), is “lets include female speakers at press events for videogames, Even if the project leads and heads of the studios are not female. So lets just put some random female in there, because otherwise Sony is sexist!”.

            I’m happy for an article on Kotaku to be about females in the gaming industry, as long as it doesn’t label and bash studios/companies as being sexist.

          • Dude, Roberta Williams from Sierra was one of the best known game developers of that time period.

            Part of the problem is women (in general) simply aren’t willing to study IT.

  • Seriously guys? This article is merely reporting a clear observation and the social response, as well as highlighting a completely legitimate point that reflects a larger problem in the industry. Is it entirely Sony’s fault? No, of course not. But could they have had a think about it – looked to show some diversity in their presenters (who would have no doubt been available from the developers that presented) and think about how it looks having one gender entirely absent from a two hour presentation for a console they might like to reach a broad audience with (considering almost half of the gaming population is female)? Yeah, it’s worth a thought and is an oversight in terms of marketing strategy if nothing else.

  • *groans* I’d rather there be no women at all rather than a woman being the token childbearer up there. Seriously this is a fucking non issue. Are we getting bullied? No. Are we being selectively not chosen to represent companies? Perhaps – but without knowing the real reason, or IF there was actually a woman in the high echelon of the companies in question, we can’t point finger at sexism.

    Plus the changing of the guard between workers – be them male, female, etc WILL TAKE TIME. Female devs aren’t going to suddenly multiply at whim just because Patricia wants them to be.

    • Exactly; everything takes time. Just because there’s been an increase in women getting into the gaming industry over the past few years, doesn’t mean they are currently in a position in the company where they can present a new game, etc at such an important event. Eventually, maybe. But not right now. When that time comes though, I hope these women are promoted based on their skills and knowledge and not their gender.

  • I hadn’t noticed all the presenters were male until Patrica pointed it out. I was too busy actually taking notice of what they were saying and what they were presenting to notice that they didn’t have the same bits as myself.

    Frankly, I don’t care that they were all male. The presenters were chosen not based on gender, but based on their position in their respective companies, their contributions to the industry, and for their knowledge. Personally I believe choosing a female presenter just to balance out the male to female ratio is even more sexist because it’s choosing a presenter based more on her gender and less for what she has done and what she knows. I suspect though, that the women complaining about the lack of female presenters would also complain about a female presenter being chosen just because of her gender.

  • I notices a lot of posts started or had sentences containing “I am all for [insert sentence here] or I’m not [insert sentence here], but….” are generally saying the opposite.

    “I’m not racist, but…”
    “I’m all for equal pay, but…”
    “I’m not against boat people, but…”
    “I’m not sexist, but…”
    “I liked BF3, but…”

    • Absolute bullshit, it’s that mentality that manifests hostility in these issues. People start sentences with “I’m not racist, but…” because nut bags like you, have set the prerequisite for being racist or sexist SO LOW, when it comes time for logical, reasonable and intelligent people to speak on the matter, they feel compelled to say “I’m not racist, but…”.

      We shouldn’t have to say that, but for some fucked up reason, we do. I’m not racist and I’m not sexist but I’m realistic, logical and immune to bullshit.

      Where is this going to stop? Should entire industries prostrate themselves to the female master sex? Should we prioritize sex over capability? Should we prioritize sex over REALITY? It’s people such as Patricia, yourself and those agreeing with you, that distort reality for illogical agendas such as equality. There is no equality in industry, there are those that excel at what they do and there are those that fail and end up flipping burgers until they die.

      IF you had a woman and a man with equal intelligence, skill, persona etc… would you hire the woman just because she’s a woman? Sounds pretty sexist to me, oh but wait, be careful because if you hire the man, you’re also sexist… but this time it’s real sexism, the one sided one.

  • There weren’t any children or elderly on stage, Sony are ageist.

    There weren’t any black people on stage, Sony are racist.

    There weren’t any women on stage, Sony are sexist.

    There weren’t any gays on stage, Sony are homophobic.

    THERE WEREN’T ANY EMUS ON STAGE.

    WHERE THE FUCK WERE THE EMUS?!?

  • You guys should see the response to the article on the main, US Kotaku, page. http://kotaku.com/5985822/why-were-there-no-women-presenters-at-the-playstation-4-event

    I don’t feel that it matters whether the people presenting the unveiling of a new console and supporting media are male or female or of any other distinguishable attribute. I care about what is being presented – not who is presenting it. For example, most people don’t turn to TMZ to get their daily update of political developments around the globe.

    It doesn’t (or SHOULDN’T) matter what sex/age/race/ethnicity/creed the person is, so long as they know what they are doing and are doing so competently, in their given role.

    Stating that a person is less qualified to be a company CEO, lead developer (or similar) or any job that might have lead someone to present during this event simply because of one of the attributes mentioned above is what is discriminatory.

    Sony and the various companies who presented at this event are not to be pointed at and labeled sexist. To do so is to overlook the fundamental cause of the problem.

    The pointed at inequality is rooted in the current corporate and employment culture more so than in the culture of any single game development company and/or media publisher.

    Buying a competing company’s product to spite the other for not having shown any female talking heads during the event is childish, a waste of time and money.

    Instead of constantly playing the blame game when raising the question of “why haven’t we seen more of at this event doing ?”,we should spread messages of encouragement. Raising awareness does not have to result in self-pity or vilification.

    If men (as the default problem in this article – it seems) are to be more accepting, supporting and encouraging of their counterparts to join then in the industry in bigger and more equal numbers then it needs to be a positive thing.

    Guilt tripping, shaming, labeling and other negative practices will yield ultimately negative results.

  • Too many game journalists trying to find things between the lines for things that don’t exist purely to create some sensationalist outrage. All to feed more ridiculous outrage until its just outrage about the outrage of the outrage of something that was never there!

  • Hadn’t read Kotaku for months and thought I’d have a quick look to see the PS4 coverage… and I’m confronted by this sensationalist, desperately reaching, click-bait rubbish yet again. This is why I no longer read Kotaku.

  • Please. Give me a break. This just goes to show people will complain about ANYTHING. Apparently modern society requires an equal male to female ratio no matter what it is. I wonder if all these women would be bitching if there was no male presenters? I doubt men would actually give two shits.

  • I agree. Where were all the homosexuals? Is Sony homophobic?
    And why didn’t they include any animal presenters? Do they hate animals? Why do they hate animals?

  • I was going to comment on this article to point out how disappointed I am in Patricia Hernandez’s attempts at journalism and social justice, but at this point I’m not. She has failed to surprise me. This isn’t even a new low for her.

  • Oh it’s one of Patricia’s articles? That explains why it seems so silly.

    Remember when she tried to convince us gamers are happy with date rape because two people were roleplaying…. in game?

  • Who would have thought? Nerds getting angry in the comments section of Kotaku AU when you call them the “S” word…

  • Kotaku writer collates shorthand argument on salient topic in gaming. Kotaku community takes a prominent deconstructivist and reductionist perspective on said topic by the use of misdirection and absurdist satire.

  • So, Ive been reading through the US comments and they pretty much echo what we are saying, but this one stood out the most:

    Flinn1
    You know, people have been complaining about Kotaku ever since Crecente left. I thought they were over-reacting; I really did. This is the first time I have questioned coming to this site.

    techjunkie452 reply @Flinn1
    Go to Polygon – It’s where some of the former editors of Kotaku, Joystiq and some others have went to. Crecente writes for them now. I’d also recommend kotakucore if you dont want the commentary bs.

    I think Ill start going to Polygon now too. This article is about the last straw for me at Kotaku.
    After 35+ years of gaming I never gave a damn about what sex a gamer was. But now Im sick to death of Patricia turning my love of gaming into a sexist, male hating debate.
    F*** you for tainting what I love!

    • Anyone notice that “Ian Cheong” is always first in line for the latest moral outrage on Twitter? I followed him for a while – he cracks it about “x”, then spends the next hour retweeting the pat-on-the-back tweets he receives.

      Stop giving these imbeciles a forum. Confine them to their own Twitter bubble.

  • It’s obvious Sony is part of a Machiavellian plot to keep women in the kitchen and breeding. One word…. Happenstance.

  • Seriously. They wanted to show that their console was good, and they brought the games that could show that. It’s just a mere coincidence that it was all males.

  • what do you do with a broken dishwasher?

    you slap her. thats blatant sexism, having no women present is a desperate womans plea.

  • She posts about this sort of wank constantly. As soon as I saw the title of the article I knew it was her work. Honestly, it’s sexist and insulting to post such bulls***t over a conference – but since I’ve seen this in the past from her, it didn’t surprise me.

    +1 to the man-hating feminist argument.
    Get rid of her Kotaku. She can spread her hate elsewhere

  • You thinking it is a requirement for a woman to be on stage when it literally doesn’t matter whom is presenting this content (which I can assure you was their thinking) makes you far more sexist then what you are blindly grabbing your pitchfork and declaring sony to be, grow up you child.

  • I know that a lot of you can’t pick the subtle signs, but there’s no lizard people on stage either. Is Sony prejudiced against our hidden reptilian overlords?

  • If Sony had a history of acting sexist, or making sexist decisions, the accusation of them deliberately choosing all men to present (to spite women) might carry some weight. However, the reality is that the presenters were chosen because of their experience and reputation within the industry, and to lend some gravitas to the announcements.
    If the article had been phrased in more of a neutral tone than a combative / shaming tone, I imagine that it would have had more of a positive response and actually generated some meaningful discussion. I also think a majority of Kataku readers would have absolutely no problem with women in developer / project leader / executive roles, and would actively support them if their work merited it.
    Personally I suspect that the low number of female developers in the industry is more of a reflection of a lack of interest in the field from women themselves rather than a hidden agenda by men to keep women out of the business.
    This whole situation reminds me of the witch scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zrzMhU_4m-g

  • Pretty sure Sony didn’t go to all the dev companies when they are organising it and say “Hey, can you please only send males from your dev team to the event”.

    Seriously… I don’t quite understand where the angle is on this one.

  • Women at the event would have been a message in and of itself. It wasn’t a conversation that Sony were interested in having; it would have distracted from their core brand. Sony absolutely need to be having that conversation but their most important gaming product annoucement in seven years was not the place they wanted to start it. They had a fairly simple message and they wanted to stick to it. Besides which, they were likely trying to deliberately evoke some of the feel of and nostalgia for the heyday of the PS1 and PS2, and that was certainly a time when women were a smaller part of the gaming demographic.

    What I’m saying is that it was likely a calculated PR decision, and while it was socially and morally questionable it was absolutely the right one to support their branding of this product.

  • You guys are all kind of disgusting, bashing the writer for making a perfectly valid observation, and citing others who have noted it also. There were no women. The industry has shown us all many, many times how sexism is deeply ingrained in game development. This was a media event. Sony should have considered every angle on how every aspect of their presentation would be received. I bet they argued for hours over dozens of pointless, trivial details, but clearly not one single person noticed the complete lack of women. It’s pretty damned hopeless when you think about it.

  • Fuck off, This is blatant entitlement.

    There must be one woman one black person one disabled person etc etc in every workplace. What ever happened to hiring people based on their skills?

    GTFO

  • How dare they forget to tell the invitees to bring along FEMALES cus that is what I tuned in to see, I didn’t care about the PLAYSTATIONS I clicked a link saying it was about that, but what I really care more about is seeing is Females!!! They must be everywhere inside everything otherwise it is SEXIST.

    Everyone agrees with me because we worship vaginas!

  • I’m seriously torn – I’m not sure which type of article I dislike more – those crappy zynga facebook game advertorials, or these pathetic sexism witch hunts.

    They’re equally unintelligent rubbish articles. I guess with the Brandy Shaul posts Kotaku at least gets a healthy funding boost.

  • After this war on terror business is over, the war against men will begin and we can’t defend ourselves because that would be sexist. BTW i didn’t see any gays, trannies, mexicans, short people, disabled people on stage. My girlfriend wanted to have sex after watching Thor and I aint even mad bro!

  • Good article I agree it is a problem…… the PSP touch commercial showing the woman like a sex object was particularly distasteful

  • Is anyone going to point out that it should be ‘female presenters’ or ‘women presenting’ because it’s really getting on my nerves and this being a featured article is not helping I never wanted to be that person.

Show more comments

Log in to comment on this story!