Anita Sarkeesian Was Just On Colbert Report

Anita Sarkeesian Was Just On Colbert Report

Video: Critic Anita Sarkeesian just made an appearance on The Colbert Report, in an interview which followed a section of the show devoted entirely to gamergate.

You can check out the interview in the clip below.

Anita Sarkeesian Was Just On Colbert Report


    I love Colbert, so this ought to be interesting.

    *stops reading comments right now*

    The best. Amazing. Great work Anita and Colbert.

      Didn't she support #cancelcolbert?


        #cancelcolbert was a result of the outrage at colbert's ching chong joke a while ago which I'm sure most people here would be aware. I doubt she was literally supporting the show's cancellation more so than just condemning the way the joke was done and supporting a fellow activist.

        Last edited 30/10/14 7:01 pm

          Didn't it turn out that he didn't even make that joke?

            He did make a "ching chong" joke. The episode in question that started the campaign, from memory, was pointing out the accepted racism in the Red Skins baseball team, by using an unaccepted racist joke.

            In no way did the joke reinforce or promote racism, and it was clearly designed to do the opposite. The laughter was derived not from laughing at or derogating a race, but by derogating racists.

            This is all from memory from watching the show when it aired, so i might be a bit off.

        Jury's out but she certainly used that hashtag on one of her posts. Apologists are try to explain it as her 'just wanting to join the conversation'. Critics are saying she supported the move to get his show cancelled.

        In fairness, the "ching chong" thing was not cool of him. Liberals and leftists are harsher on our own, because we expect higher standards of those who know better. Anyway, its history now

    Must be a Thursday. Another gamergate article.

      "We here at Kotaku US are tired about #gamergate..... so we will post something twice weekly on it despite trying to play down that it is a thing. Totally one sided of course."

      Remember gaming doesn't make you a violent killer it does makes you a basement dwelling, misogynistic, white nerd. So sayeth Kotaku.

        You're either with us, or you're with the enemy is the Kotaku vibe. I heard a really "intelligent" wise man say that statement a few times a few years ago.

        Either that or they have different writers, with different opinions. Whoa crazy idea.

          Fair enough let me just find that one that didn't blame everything on #gamergate..... hmmmmmm......

            You wouldn't have had to look far. Just read the top of the page. All it's saying is that Sarkeesian was interviewed by Colbert. That's it. No judgements.

            It's time YOU let go.

              Right after I see an article that isn't about Anita telling everybody how it is whenever this topic comes up.

              You know possibly unbiased journalism.

    Heh look how far her corruption has gone..this has never had anything to do with feminism.

      You'd better explain that to the people using gamergate to attack Anita, despite the fact it's about "ethics in journalism" and she's not a journalist.

      maybe if you look at how many down votes you have you might understand how completely wrong and out of step you are

        Aw no my fake internet points :\

        Maybe you should take a look at some of the other comments or you know, do some actual research about this and you'd realize how wrong YOU are, this whole gamergate shit was never, ever about feminism or sexuality, it has always been about journalism integrity but you like many others chose to believe the medias spin on it and gobbled up all that BS about how this is all about feminism and how male gamers hate and despise female gamers.

        Last edited 31/10/14 5:38 pm

          You keep saying that, it doesn't change the fact that there's a large number of people using gamergate to attack females in the gaming industry. Females who aren't even gaming journalists or involved in journalism. People keep attacking Zoe Quinn, a developer. Far less people are attacking Nathan Grayson, the journalist who allegedly promoted her game in exchange for sex (an allegation which has been demonstrated to be false).

          Anita Sarkeesian didn't involve herself in gamergate, gamergate went after her for her Women vs. Tropes videos.

          In the meantime, they seem to have done nothing about the supposed corruption in gaming journalism. You keep saying that's the focus, but no one is producing evidence to back up this claim. They just play the "no true scotsman" card whenever someone points out some awful thing someone is doing in the name of gamergate.

          I see by your downvote you disagree with my post, but apparently can't produce any evidence to refute it, so I assume my point is made.

      its ok man, most people done know why or how this started, it was originally about journalistic integrity which some people took as being sexist one shitpost led to another and here we are

    Since when was gamergate about sexism?

    I thought it was about shifty journalism.

      Everything is about sexism...

      #gamergate is about how the media grabbed something then reworked it by continually saying it was about sexism despite few sexist tweets with the #gamergate tag... So now it's about sexism because they've gone to mainstream. And mainstream don't actually research anything....

      End story... That's what it is.

      Last edited 30/10/14 5:59 pm

        It was a whole lot more than a few sexist tweets, dude...

        Last edited 30/10/14 6:52 pm

          Fair enough link away... All those misogynist tweets under #gamergate...

          It should be really easy according to you... Must be millions of them.... I can wait....

            Thought so.....


              Do your own googling, seriously...

                Yep Guardian... showing no tweets and saying #gamergate is "white men"....

                And still no tweets... Well played...

                Another fantastic white wash article with no tweets as proof that the #gamergate hashtag is misogynistic.... Just angry white females telling everybody it is.


                  How about the very first Gamergate tweet from Adam Baldwin?
                  You know, the one that links to youtube videos about Zoe Quinn. Before that, there was the Zoe post that started this whole thing.

                  Revisionism is much easier when there isn't an abundance of evidence to show that you are completely and utterly wrong about Gamergate having nothing to do with sexism.

                  Last edited 03/11/14 12:08 am

      According to Anita everything in the world relates to sexism, and it's all anti-feminist. Seriously wish people would go watch some of her posts on her YT channel before jumping behind her cause. She's absolutely delusional.

      Such a gronk....

        I watched them all and I agree with her about a lot of them.

        I don't think she see everything as anti feminism or sexism.

        I should put a disclaimer here, I'm a single, white guy aged between 18-30

          Not being a douche, genuine question, can you link me to some of her more reasoned arguements in the tropes series?

          In that interview with Colbert she says "that's what Gamergate is about ... it's about .. terrorising women for being in this industry", such sensational language, ridiculous. I understand idiots have made threats of committing mass murder to try and silence her, which is essentially terrorism but she's a sensationalist all the same.

          Last edited 30/10/14 8:47 pm

            "I understand idiots have made threats of committing mass murder to try and silence her, which is essentially terrorism but she's a sensationalist all the same."

            Well that's the most uncomfortable thing I've read in a while.

              Some people are terrorists and some people want to have a debate. Why can't we condemn the former and engage with the latter? I think slapping a #gamergate tag on things has stymied debate because people just lump everyone together under the one banner. Humans do have a tendency to want to compartmentalise though...

                Agreed. The debate is useless once it devolves to this point.

          Do you agree that Bayonetta 2 is disgusting for women?

            I don't know, I'm not a woman. But as a man, it's clearly designed to be as sexy as possible

        "According to Anita everything in the world relates to sexism, and it's all anti-feminism"

        Such sensational language.

        Last edited 30/10/14 9:53 pm

          No that's a sensational statement, the language used is not particularly emotive at all.

          Last edited 31/10/14 2:21 am

        I've watched them all, too. I like games, but women are frequently, but not always, represented as objects. If they weren't, Sarkeesian wouldn't be able to produce so many examples.

        Comics (e.g. Captain Marvel, Batwoman) are starting to catch on that women can be more compelling than that.

        I'll put a disclaimer that I'm a single male, 18 - 30 too. If I don't there's an increased chance some anonymous troll will threaten to murder me and shoot everyone in the same public place.

          I wouldn't ask Picasso to paint butterflies and unicorns.

          Games are an art and developers should be free to create what they want, and not be forced to cater to one persons hatred of not getting what she wants. Many artist have depicted how the real world is or would be; so if you want to change the game world then change the real world first.

      It hasn't been about gaming journalism in a while. The Zoe Quinn thing was debunked right out of the gate, but people still rallied around it. As much as I love gaming, it's an incidental hobby. Even the original intent of gamergate (keeping game journalism on the straight and narrow) wasn't worth all the abuse and escalation. Now I don't even know what's going on.

        Shhhh!! Your inconvenient truths are only feed the Gater rage beast to strive for new lows, newer absurdities in the battle for attention. Plus it just makes it harder for everyone to navigate this site without stepping in the bullshit...

        Nope, not debunked at all. Grayson is in the thank you credits for Depression quest since feb 2013. Quinn says she sent him an early version to play test and provide feedback. Grayson says he never playtested, but he did play and provide feedback (!).

        Kotaku sees no issues with this. Despite it being a standard practice to recuse yourself from any reviews if you were involved in playtesting.

          That's clearly not what they were alleging. Go back to when everyone was stamping their feet at the supposedly biased coverage and coloured review written by Kotaku for Depression Quest that... never existed. There wasn't a single shred of evidence that Grayson gave the game favourable coverage (and I went looking). The proto-Gamergate people jumped on a single blog post written by her jilted ex-boyfriend with zero scrutiny and after it was debunked, the squawking turned into a universal 'so what?' But by then the whole thing had outgrown the Zoe Quinn story, forget how meaningless its genesis was.

          On March 31, Nathan published the only Kotaku article he's written involving Zoe Quinn. It was about Game Jam, a failed reality show that Zoe and other developers were upset about being on. At the time, Nathan and Zoe were professional acquaintances. He quoted blog posts written by Zoe and others involved in the show. Shortly after that, in early April, Nathan and Zoe began a romantic relationship. He has not written about her since. Nathan never reviewed Zoe Quinn's game Depression Quest, let alone gave it a favorable review.

            Its relevance is arguable. Brad Wardell, as a developer, said to the Escapist: “[Whenever he'd] send copies of a game to a journalist to get critical feedback on before it ships, they have always (as in 100% of the time) recused themselves.”

            Grayson, says: “There wasn’t enough to write about, but I offered a couple lines of feedback. They basically amounted to, ‘This is a neat idea, but when I went through this these sorts of things happened.’ I battled depression for a pretty significant chunk of my life, so I felt like that input was warranted.”

            One of those statesments indicates an ethical standard. The other is a personal opinion. Grayson playtested the game and provided feedback. Quinn thanked Grayson for this. Grayson then used the Kotaku platform to promote the game. Not okay.

            As theralphretort puts it:
            A journalist helped support a developer, gave that developer input on her game, gave that developer exposure on at least two separate occasions – one instance of which included the game he gave feedback on – and then slept with that developer. Because journalistic standards in this industry have gotten so lax, we’re told he didn’t do anything worth being fired over.

            The Kotaku/Quinn/Grayson party line here is that there wasn’t any sex-for-coverage, so it’s all kosher. GamerGate was clearly, clearly, in the wrong. Well, I guess it would cool, if we wanted to be oblivious to the greater context of their involvement, and pretend that sex-for-coverage is the only possible bias ... It’s not about sex-for-coverage…it’s about coverage-for-sex

            I think thats relevant. I've never played DQ and have no issue with Quinn or Grayson. But those actions to me, are incredibly unethical and unprofessional. I don't think the media should be doing this.

            Last edited 03/11/14 7:23 am

              As theralphretort puts it:

              You seriously can't use an anonymous Twitter handle with "#GamerGate 4 Life."

              Grayson then used the Kotaku platform to promote the game.

              A journalist helped support a developer, gave that developer input on her game, gave that developer exposure on at least two separate occasions – one instance of which included the game he gave feedback on – and then slept with that developer.

              Again, this is entirely fictitious. There wasn't any Kotaku story pimping the game in any record, so the entire conceit of his argument is nonsensical.

              The only thing that may hold weight is whether Grayson should have recused himself from writing upon receiving the game. It's certainly valid, but if you're going to be pointing fingers at unethical games journalism, there are much, much bigger fish to fry. Let's call a spade a spade and acknowledge that the issue at hand wasn't garden variety journalistic dodginess.

                He's certainly not anonymous after he was doxxed while broadcasting live from the studio.

                Grayson using quotes from quinn from the game jam in his article March 31st. And his rock paper shotgun article called DQ "a powerful Twine darling" in a spotlight list of 50. Which had DQ at number 1 and used it for the article image.

                Yes there are other more egregious examples of corruption and unethical behavior. What bothers me is that totilo is only supportive of this kind of behavior. At least a slap on the wrist was warranted.

                Last edited 04/11/14 9:35 am

              @keiranj - "Grayson playtested the game and provided feedback. Quinn thanked Grayson for this. *****Grayson then used the Kotaku platform to promote the game.***** Not okay."
              FABRICATION HIGHLIGHTED. See the post JUST above yours which demonstrates that your claim here is categorically MADE UP.

              I've posted the relevant lines here again:

              "On March 31, Nathan published the only Kotaku article he's written involving Zoe Quinn. It was about Game Jam, a failed reality show ... Nathan never reviewed Zoe Quinn's game Depression Quest, let alone gave it a favorable review. "

              Either you don't know the facts, or you're deliberately misrepresenting them to make your point. Regardless, your claim is FALSE.

              Last edited 05/11/14 6:08 pm

                Disagree. I think that is promotion. Plus, he put it at the top of a list of 'spotlight' games on rock paper shotgun. So at best, change the 'Kotaku' in that sentence and it still applies.

      What has gamergate done exactly for issues concerning ethics of gaming journalism?

      Since when has gamergate not responded to the women concerned without mostly torrents of sexist abuse and threats?

      How can you not see this ethics shit is just a weak facade for legitimacy?

      since a whole bunch of loser males decided to start sending threats of rape, terrorism, violence against women. It started out about ethics but it stopped being about that after the first week.

    Is Colbert being sarcastic/ mocking gamergate in his statements and questions or does he actually think that way.

      honest clarification: have you seen the Colbert report before?

      It's more of a reverse mock. I think he's just taking the piss out of the whole issue.

      As someone who has thought that Sarkeesian has in the past made a couple of good points, but has on the whole is flawed in her conclusions, she just came across as a fool in this interview. It's just become a one-eyed crusade now, completely dismissing the whole ethics discussion.

      Last edited 31/10/14 12:14 pm

      I think he would have gone further if he wasn't about to step into letterman's shoes. He's probably contractually obliged not to step on any toes until he makes that move.

    Hopefully this finally shuts them up.
    (but I doubt it)

    She's hot, I'd save her if she was stuck in a castle.

    What she described is an awesome parallel to when the Wii created a "casual" and "hardcore" rift to open entirely based on the insecurity of the neckbeard community.

    But I take exception to her beef over Dragon age.

      Lots of her stuff I don't actually agree with that much, to be honest.
      I'm all for inclusion, don't get me wrong.
      Gaming should be all inclusive.
      The more the merrier, and I don't see any problem with having more prominent female lead characters in games.
      That's great!

      Take that Dragon Age clip.
      Yes it may be seen as sexism, but it's simply portraying the era that it is set in.
      That's where I'm a bit, "Yeah, it's sexism, but it's based on the setting, not based on values or morals or anything".
      It's not being sexist, it's portraying sexism.

      Overall though I agree with her.
      Games and gaming should be all inclusive, and the sooner this Gamergate nonsense is over the better.

        but it's simply portraying the era that it is set in.

        Although a medieval aesthetic, DragonAge is set in a mythical land in an unknown time, it's not set 'on earth' as such. Due to that fact, I think it's fair to use that clip in the sense that you could quite easily change up the standard 'rules' of the world. In some cases they did, with strong female characters, but other female characters, less so.

        Personally, I think Dragon Age is both a good AND a bad example, both for the reason you said and the one I said. On those grounds, given its contradictory nature, or at least confusing nature, I would say possibly pick something better like Lollypop Chainsaw.

          I stand by what I said.
          The setting for Dragon Age is clearly based around medieval times, with a fantasy twist.
          Themes, attitudes, values, morals, you name it, the world is built from a medieval ground point and up.

          Like I said though, it's not being sexist with regards to the clip shown, it's purely portraying the sexist nature of the setting and the world.

            This is exactly how discussions of conflicting opinions work.

              I dunno man, this polite debate thing is all wrong. I think Incubus above has the right idea. Bile and text speak is where it's at.

            I haven't watched the clip, so I'm commenting in general, but I don't think fantasy settings should be safe havens for discrimination because the creators are bound to the feel and vibe of the historical settings around which their worlds are inspired. In medieval times, I don't think there were a lot of African American knight captains, but that doesn't stop you them from being included in DA games.

            I'm all for games portraying discrimination against women, elves, demons or whatever. Those are compelling themes to tackle. But there's no reason a creator needs to be bound to the values of a certain historical culture when it's so far skewed already.

              It's a good point.
              Games should feel free to explore more thematically, and to be a bit bolder with their approach. That's what makes them games, after all.
              Heck, I want games to be bolder, personally.

              Part of me feels as though the reason for not being more ambitious is that straying too far away from common situations / scenarios might be too jarring for some.
              From a story driven perspective, I get it.
              Making the game more relatable by including common issues helps draw the player in.
              With the Dragon Age example, it's clearly set up to be reminiscent of medieval times, so themes from that era carry over (such as sexism). That's to make it relatable to the player.
              They are familiar with this world.
              The fantasy aspect is mixed with the relatable to make it new, and exciting, and wondrous, which works well, cause it feels like it could be a related, but whole new, world.
              It brings a sense of familiarity to an unfamiliar world.

              Developers should feel free to explore more narratively though, and to experiment more with different possibilities, but I fully understand the reasoning and approach they take in making themes and issues that are familiar with the player.
              That's partly why I don't view thematic / narrative issues, such as sexism, as actual sexism when it is in the context / setting of the world.

              Scantily clad women with no armour who are nothing more than a sex object on the other hand.
              That's sexist.

                In all honesty, I don't think anyone is saying "this fantasy medieval setting feels less valid because women are able to hold high ranking military positions" or "this medieval fantasy setting feels more genuine because it reflects the patriarchal attitudes of medieval Europe".

                I honest think the visual vocabulary of green fields, castles and chainmail communicates more than enough without having to go down to the cultural nuances of the period.

                I don't think emulating the patriarchal systems enhances the medieval flavour of a fantasy setting like dragon age when every peasant dude has muscles, abs and a full set of white teeth. There's so many elements in high fantasy games that contradict actual medieval history that it makes no sense to include sexism or racism as an element that enhances the validity of the setting.

                But once again, I support the right of any dev to create a world where a specific gender or race or whatever is oppressed/discriminated against. My favourite books are the dark elf books by R.A Salvatore, they a matriarchal society where men are cattle and women rule the government.

            At the end of the day the setting is completely irrelevant to whether or not it's OK to portray sexism or any other offensive behaviour. Should Disney's The Hunchback of Notre Dame be lambasted because Frollo is prejudiced against Gypsies? Of course not, it's just part of the story, a story they have absolute licence to do with as they please.

          I disagree about Lollipop Chainsaw. I think it is similar to Bayonetta where even though the protagonist is 'hot' and 'sexy', it is her choice and she totally owns it. I believe the word is 'agency'.

            The reason Lollipop chainsaw would be a better example, would be down to the idea that the character is specifically created to be ogled and fapped over. She was designed for instance by a male, put into a school girls outfit and little touches like getting a trophy for doing an upskirt view do nothing to help that cause. That's not to say it's not a fun game, I quite enjoyed it and found it hilarious, however I do recognise parody in one sense in regards to it but also the issues put forward in relation to it. I think to disregard it all on the basis you feel 'she own's it' is a tad short sighted.

              It is interesting though that we are starting to look behind the superficial and start examining the thoughts and motivations of the game creators. In that sense critiquing a video game character is becoming more like, say, critiquing a character from one of Jane Austen's novels. You look into who the creator of the character was, the time he or she lived in etc. Makes it interesting that there are a couple of layers of appreciating a game and its characters.

                Apologies on saying 'short sighted' that was unwarranted and a bit aggressive. I agree about looking at the thoughts and motives of the creators. Quite often when we look at an issue, we see the surface, not the deeper part, under the skin. The character is essentially 'the skin' and the devs themselves can be seen as either 'the issue' or 'the saving grace' in that respect for sure.

          Yeah, they are literally aliens and therefore have nothing in common with humanity at all..............

            Actually, they're on a seperate planet to earth, so yeah, they pretty much are aliens :)

              Not 'pretty much'. Literally. Like I said. They are literally aliens. However, that is a stupid stance to take. They are clearly humans in a fantasy settings. They behave like humans. Claims of different worlds is nonsense. May as well claim that since there is no lore about their nostrils, they aren't nostrils at all.

              That logic translates Star Wars into not being Sci fi, since it is "Long Long ago"

                This is just silly and those are some pretty far reaching points.

                  Its a fictional land which behaves exactly like earth and humanity except: magic. So its not a different world. Claiming its a completely different world to explain anything other than magic is a far reaching point.

          I played Lollypop Chainsaw and liked it.

          She's a sexy character. And, as I recall, you see her butt quite a bit. I liked that.

          So is the main female character sexualized? Yep. I don't see the point in arguing otherwise. You could argue otherwise, but it would be a weak argument at best.

          So the next question is, is it wrong to sexual female (or male) characters?

          If it is deemed that it IS WRONG to sexualise characters, then we have an issue. And at that point it would be wise to identify if it is only female characters that are sexualised (it isn't), and if games are the only media in which this occurs (it isn't), and if there is anything illegal or unethical about such sexualisation (there isn't).

          If it is deemed that it IS NOT WRONG to sexualise characters then there is no issue.

          We live in a world in which we have freedom of speech and freedom of content.

          We have ratings systems in place.

          We have porn available at a click of a button, on our PCs and handheld devices. Prior to the internet we have porn movies, magazines, dvds etc.

          Sexualisation of women is not a new thing. To target current games for sexualisation is absurd, unless it's a part of a complete attack on sexualisation - which it isn't.

          There are those that oppose porn, but the masses have decided that we want it.

          There are those that feel that the over sexualisation of movie stars, pop stars, models and even teens and pre-teens is offensive. But it's all still legal and dominant.

          Now if you (someone) does oppose games that sexualise women, what should you do about it? Well, what can you do about it? You can't legitimately oppose those that are perfectly within their entitlements. To do so, as Sarkeesian does, is pointless and wasteful.

          All you can do is not play those games.

          And if you want to have a cry because most games don't appeal to you, then have a cry about it - but do it quietly in the corner because the rest of us aren't interested. We don't have to be. No developer is beholden to our demands, and they're not beholden to the demands of a trumped up feminist that lacks the coherent argument and backbone to tackle the subject holistically.

          Last edited 31/10/14 3:14 pm

        Full disclosure, I've never played a Dragon Age game, so maybe what I'm gonna say doesn't apply in this particular instance, but "portraying sexism" is still a problem when it's the only representation of sexuality or gender in a game. You can point to GTA as satire or Bayonetta as bizarre, provocative cultural appropriation - those games are at least doing something with the sexism they depict. But for a lot of games there's no comment or judgment or thematic relevance to the sexism on display. It's just there. It's the very definition of casual sexism.

        The whole point that Sarkeesian is making is that these are wholly artificial worlds, even if they're set in the real world, so designers are free to craft any type of character, scenario and story they want, and the majority of the time we still wind up with "female in danger" "female is sexy" "female is a whore" etc. Depicting sexism in a game wouldn't be a problem if there was a reason for it. But there rarely is, and worse it's generally the ONLY depiction we're served up.

          It's a fair point, but there are many leading female characters in Dragon Age who go against this "damsel in distress" stereotyping.

          All I was getting at is that in the clip that was used, the context in which the sexism was taking place was in a way that is representative of the world that the game is set in.
          It was used to show how that world is.
          It's different from having a character that is purely there for sexist reasons (big boobs, no armour, etc).
          It is setting up the backdrop and narrative of the world.
          I don't see that as being sexist, because in my mind, that isn't sexist.

          Take Mass Effect.
          If I recall, there's a section on either the citadel or one of the planets where there is female dancers in club.
          But then you have your leading female crew who hold their own and are some of the strongest story driven characters, and other female NPCs who don't fall in line with sexist stereotyping either.
          The dancers weren't there for gamers to ogle at, or there to be sexist. They were there to set up the context of that location, kinda thing.
          It was purely for narrative purposes.

          And this is where I differ with Anita in what I regard as sexist portrayal of women in video games. In her view, if you use those age old tropes, your game is sexist and has sexualised views on women or has instances of sexism. I disagree with that. There is nothing inherently sexist about damsel in distress, or female is sexy, female is whore, and what have you. It's only a problem because as you say, that's the only depiction we get.

          My argument for that is, writing artificial worlds is difficult. Like, really god damn difficult. Tolkien, who crafted the foundations of western fantasy was able to do so because of his academic background in linguistics, philology, and philosophy. Even then it took him decades of previous work to serve as the foundations for LotR. Modern video games as we know them with the ability to craft a narrative and world through game play is what? Two decades at best? Writers are still learning, the best option they have is to draw upon our real world and history just like Tolkien initially did. Unfortunately, our real world is still pretty fucked up. Kudos to those writers who are able to portray themes such as sexism in a way that makes the player aware and invigorate thought, because that's what good writing should be like.

          One of the great mysteries to me is how Bayonetta is apparently the epitome of a character that caters to the sexual fantasies of straight males. We argue that there aren't enough female protagonists who are strong in their own right who do not have to rely on a male crutch. We get Bayonetta, no nonsense, unafraid to put a fucking bullet in your head, sensibly portioned and actual clothing. To me, she is the epitome of the female power fantasy. She is to women what most male protagonists are to suppose to be for men. That was the intention of the very person who created her, a women. Oh, and I've read the arguments that being designed by a women means nothing when the boss is male, as is just about the rest of the studio. Really? You can't for one moment imagine that the lead artist has enough say in the studio to dictate character direction just because she's female or that her male colleagues respect and share her artistic vision? Where's the sexism now?

          This is why I've more or less disconnected with what Anita has to say these days, she paints in broad strokes, uses fallacies like they're free and her brand of feminism I just cannot agree with.

          EDIT: Finally got that off my chest. Sorry that it's a long reply to you. Note that I don't disagree with you or that there's anything wrong with your post, just your comments was the perfect chance for me to just rant about something I've wanted to for a while now.

          Last edited 31/10/14 1:12 am

            For starters, the whole point of arts criticism is to further a given art form. So Sarkeesian talking about things like gender roles and stereotyping in video games is exactly the kind of thing that's going to help move the industry beyond 'the princess is in another castle'.

            And I completely disagree that writing artificial worlds is difficult. As I said earlier, every piece of writing for any medium is creating an artificial world. How writers choose to populate that world is completely up to them, and it's either laziness or something more sinister that results in female characters generally being treated the way they are.
            And besides, it's a massive cop-out to say that video game writing is still finding its way. The written word has been around for centuries. Film has been around for over 100 years. Just because the form has changed slightly, doesn't mean we're starting from scratch. Not to mention the fact that video game writers seem to be able to craft male characters just fine when they want to.

            As for Bayonetta, she literally gets naked as she kills things. Now I've only played the demo so again I can't comment too much, and from what I've seen it's so over-the-top and so Japanese that there's probably not much to read into, but I can definitely see how people would be be pissed off about it.

            I guess some good examples of the kind of thing I'm talking about are Cortana in Halo, or Lara in the newest Tomb Raider. Cortana is basically the co-lead of the Halo series, and she's treated seriously as a character. And she spends the entire series completely naked. Sure you can argue that because she's an AI she doesn't need clothes, but again, this is a completely artificial world that Bungie/343 have developed. They can make her look anyway they want. And they decided it wasn't enough that she was strong, well-written and played a leading role, she needed to be naked too.
            Similarly, heaps of effort went in to crafting a reasonably believable arc of Lara 'becoming' the Tomb Raider from the earlier games, overcoming all sorts of adversities, gaining physical and mental strength etc. And yet we're still burdened with a bad guy threatening rape (albeit less overtly than the initial controversy made it seem) and oddly brutal death scenes - neither of which are integral to the plot or gameplay, and neither of which would take any great effort or creativity to replace.
            It's these kinds of cliche scenarios from writers (and responses from players) that need to be highlighted, because at the very least it's bad writing and at worst it excludes female players. A female character in danger shouldn't automatically mean "rape threat" or "male needs to save her", and a female character shouldn't have to be designed as a sex object. As I said before, every other form of writing has figured it out, there's no reason video games shouldn't either.

            Last edited 31/10/14 3:16 am

              And how many video game writers actually have degrees in literature and philosophy though? Until 20 years ago, the only thing video game creators needed to worry about was whether their pixels worked and whether game play was ground breaking enough to separate it from the pack. It was only when 3D graphics improved that allowed developers to create these fully fleshed out worlds that narrative become a much more important element of video game development. Many so called writers for studios were basically programmers or artists who could write the best short story out of the group to fit the game they were making. I'm not saying one requires a degree in lit or philosophy in order to write compelling narrative, but unless you're well read and have a strong grasp in different forms of writing it's going to be pretty hard.

              Video games are unique from other forms of media because of the very element of interactivity that can contributes greatly to form part of the narrative. No other medium requires user participation, and it has only been recently that part of that experience was breathing in these fully realised worlds. It's only recently that studios are realising that they require people who actually know how to write as opposed to plucking someone from development and telling them to pen something.

              Film, as you has been around for over a century, but how many of them still portray women in a sexist light?

              I'm not saying it isn't a problem, because it is, and big one. My views on what the actual problems are and how to solve them are just different to hers.

              Last edited 31/10/14 10:03 am

            Just an aside, but Bayonetta doesn't seem 'sensibly portioned' when her legs alone are 7.5 heads tall. Not saying I don't like it, but her proportions are truly astounding!

              I've always just brushed that one to strange Japanese art styles when it comes to legs haha (a lot of non mainstream moe manga have women with really long legs). That and I'll take disproportionate legs over breasts the size of tankards any day heh.

              Last edited 31/10/14 10:27 am

                Yeah, I've never really seen the attraction of, say, the girls in Senran Kagura games.

          Gamergate crap be damned. I'm mad you never played DA : ORIGINS!!!!! Skip part 2 though, you won't miss anything. lol.

        I think we're in furious agreement in general, and I wanted to comment on your middle point.

        Look at it this way - it's not that any one example in one game is particularly egregious. You're absolutely right that in this case it's justifiable as part of the set-up and story, and it's portraying sexism not being sexist.

        It's just that when you go to another game (or film, or tv show) you'll see the same thing again, and again in another, and another. It's *all* justifiable in context, but it's the pattern of using the same lazy tropes over and over that is an issue that writers and developers could ameliorate if they avoided going straight to the scantily clad women, or burly muscly rugged lead male lead, or the implied rape scene and they mixed it up.

          Having watched the clip now, I think that's why Anita was reluctant to target any specific games as examples, despite Colbert's prodding. Instead she says it's about the status quo, and not one game in particular.

            Exactly right. :) GTAs for example are great games, but because they're satirical they use every sexist, nationalist, political and racist trope in the book. It would be unfair to say "these are sexist games" because they're satire, but if they didn't feature as examples of the tropes being used that would also be wrong, because they're tropefests from end to end.
    I found this to be very apt.

      yes because in reality its the women delivering the death threats to the gamergate people, not the other way as the media would have you believe.

      classic kotaku commenter.

        To be fair, I very much doubt that's what Trogue12 was attempting to say. In this instance the media was quite presumptuous about Gamer-gaters as a whole, lumping specific individuals (abhorrent and reprehensible) actions together with the "cause" of "Gamergate" which is not always the same thing.

          Yes. Thank you ctrsaltdelete.
          @aldonis , no women should get death threats over a game or it's industry, scratch that, No one should at all.
          I don't like anita, not one bit, but i wouldn't loose any sleep over what she does. I'm sure gamer gate started out legit, but now it's just a excuse for trolls to get nasty under a hash tag and sadly the media only is seeing that bit.
          As for me being a classic kotaku commenter, you are wrong. I say what i see and don't tickle ears.

          Last edited 31/10/14 2:28 am

      In this instance, yeah. I'm no GGer, but that was far from a fair representation of the movement, if it can be called that, as a whole.

      I find it quite irritating though that people use "cherrypicking" as a reason that someones argument is invalid; cherrypicking is exactly how everyone makes their arguments.

      I think you could just as easily swap gamergate and gaming press. Both sides are picking a lot of cherries.

        i cant upvote this comment, the amount of death threats and doxxing that being thrown out from both sides is just disgusting and its worse that only one sides version is always being shown

      awww poor little gamergate boys are being pick on, how very sad, cant men just act like complete tools and put the fear of god into women for their own amusement. shakes head. nope they are just a bunch of brainless thugs to scared to open their minds and see that some of these women have some very good points to make (one doesnt need to agree with them but at this show them respect

        Was this comment intended for me?

          No, Mypetmonkey, by the looks. The shoe fits...

          Last edited 31/10/14 10:09 am

            I'm asking if it's intended for me because it basically stated stuff that i already covered in my reply and rants about a thing i already explained.
            and before some on calls me a gamer gater, i'm not. I don't use social media.

            Why because I down voted it?

            So the only opinion valid is yours and the 4 white knights eh?

            Free to downvote your heart out but others dare not!

    whats a gamer gate? and who left it open? Games for EVERYBODY!!

      I read that in the skyrim cheese wheel voice

      This is australia, we are born knowing we need to leave the gate in the state we found it in. To that end I vote we close this "gamergate"

        *kerchink* Get yer chuzwozza off my liddlylawn you dirty dingo! Leave that free games thingamajig open damn you!

    Okay, so I've been staying out of this as long as possible, but I couldn't watch this for more than 20 seconds after she came onto the show. God, its actually so embarrassing how completely wrong and biased this. I know its catering to mainstream audiences, but far out, it has well and truly brought my piss to a boil. Sure, women should enjoy equal rights and not be subjected to pathetic threats and all that jazz in the industry or gaming culture at all, but this controversy is only being represented from her side and is worsening it for these poor, endangered species female game developers as its just making the sane people more and more frustrated at the misrepresentations and driving the wedge deeper into gaming culture. At the expense of sounding melodramatic, way to undermine the perception of gamers as a group and take us back a solid ten years in that regard, Anita. This actually sucks.

      [I won't watch it because I know that the arguments are going to be skewed.] - EDIT: Watched the interview, my predictions below turned out to be correct.

      I don't hate her, I just know the sort of arguments she'll make having watched a few of her femfreq videos and seen her tweets (I do follow her), of which I've come to realise I agree the fundamental points but not her delivery. My only complaint about this whole thing is how the threats and stuff have only served to elevate her up onto a platform in which her brand feminism and flawed arguments can reach a much larger audience, further pissing off her detractors. At the same time, there is no one present with the knowledge and/or nuance to present a counter argument, making the whole thing ridiculous on mainstream media.

      In the grand scheme of things though Gamergate, whatever it was or has become, actually involves a minute amount people within the global context. The Asian gaming scene literally gives zero fucks in part because they've never heard of it to my knowledge anyway. This time next year, this thing will have died hopefully and we have all moved on because it's getting stupid and like you say, setting back perceptions by years assuming it's only her side that gets heard.

      Last edited 30/10/14 6:53 pm

        Nuanced counter argument :) say no more

          Thank you good sir! I watched her previous vid and didn't realise she had released a new one on GG.

          EDIT: Incredible and concise video.

          Last edited 30/10/14 9:15 pm

            No problem I could have written some long wordy thing espousing "global truths"but as a somewhat casual supporter I'm settling for the ole occasional nudge here and there. Happy Gaming To You Sir!

          One of the most rational videos for or against #Gamergate I've ever seen. Most videos I can feel the narrator practically screaming at me desperate that I join them. This video was calm and rational the whole time which for me made it that much more convincing.

          Ethics in Journalism, I'm all for it. I don't think anybody will argue that we want more back door deals in this industry which is currently plagued with exclusives for retailers and Review numbers. Heck in a 1 to 10 scale, a 7 is meant to be good. Now it means awful.

          But #Gamergate, despite intentions just seems to me to be filled with jerks hiding in the ranks screaming abuse at people. I'm not denying both sides do it, but I'm yet to hear about the #Gamergate supporter being Doxxed and fearing for their life. Maybe it's time for the #Gamergate supporters to give up anonymity and say the douchebags don't represent us. The thing about being a faceless mob is when somebody screams out something horrific it's not that guy it's the Mob. When your quotable it's harder to paint you with the same brush as the nutjob hiding behind a screen name,

            The problem is the nature of hashtags though. ANYONE can join a hashtag, by simplying using that tag. That's how twitter works. Because of this, it is next to impossible who to determine is a troll, who is hijacking the tag, who supported the tag's initial causes, who is warping the cause, and what the tag truly represents when used as a platform to discussion. Twitter is a horrible medium for discussion, it's good for nothing other than buzzwords and sound bytes. When you try and use it to discuss issues as complex and multifaceted as this, you get Gamergate (the scandal it has become, not the scandel that started the hashtag).

            Last edited 30/10/14 10:21 pm


            Don't know if anyone has checked out any of the "/v/ the musical" stuff on youtube but I've never believed that ostracising ppl these creative from your community has ever been valuable.

            I'll admit some made me chuckle.

        I just imagine its a lot like arguing with a fanatical religious zealot. You're going to go nowhere and probably make no real progression except incite a lot of anger.

      If anything, it's the reaction/torrent of abuse towards her that has given gamers a worse reputation.

      Last edited 30/10/14 6:56 pm

      What about it makes you so mad though? The idea of publicly talking about the want for inclusivity is by my perception taking steps in improving the perception of gamers, it's showing the desire for maturing. She's only condemning people who threaten and abuse, not gamers in general.

        'Gamers' take it as a personal attack that some people want what is largely a very juvenile hobby to mature as a medium.

        No, it makes me made because all she's doing is rallying an ill-informed mass of mainstream, weekend warrior style activists to hate on every day gamers. I respect her intentions, but she doesn't mind slandering the majority to twist perceptions in her favor.

          But there has been threats and abuse, how is that twisting perceptions? I don't recall her ever implying the majority of gamers acted this way either.

          I am a gamer, I know many others who are gamers too and feel the same as me, and I've never seen any evidence of hate against me. So I'm not sure what your implication of an every day gamer being hated on is meant to be?

          Last edited 31/10/14 10:19 am

            Because its implies that this IS the norm and this IS how the majority of gamers behave which isn't true. I don't care about her, I'm only talking about how the audience is perceiving everything she's saying.

      (W)omen should enjoy equal rights and not be subjected to pathetic threats and all that jazz in the industry or gaming culture at all.That's probably where you should have ended.
      If you wanted to expand on that you could change "Women" to "Everyone".

      Last edited 30/10/14 8:54 pm

    I'm sick of hearing about this woman, she's getting way more attention than she deserves.

    “It's now very common to hear people say, 'I'm rather offended by that.' As if that gives them certain rights. It's actually nothing more... than a whine. 'I find that offensive.' It has no meaning; it has no purpose; it has no reason to be respected as a phrase. 'I am offended by that.' Well, so fucking what."
    - Stephen Fry

      It's usually the people who aren't on the receiving end of abuse who say that sort of thing, so I'd be careful with using that quote.

        But I'm not talking about abuse at all (plus I think Fry, an atheist and gay man who's copped plenty of abuse for his views and lifestyle, can say what he wants). Being abused and taking offense at something are completely different things.
        Someone getting offended (and vocalising their offense) by someone else's artistic vision is just bonkers. And then others being offended by that first persons view, to the point of making death/rape/physical harm threats is even more bonkers. The whole situation is ludicrous.