Monday Linkdump: LAN Party Bans Women to Avoid Sexism

I bet these dudes in Texas were not expecting that the whole internet would be mad at them for “solving” the sexism problem at their LAN party by banning women at their upcoming Battlefield 3 launch party.

It’s a private party and the organizers can do what they like, legally speaking, but let’s not confuse what is legal with what is ethical. Just because they are legally entitled to cater to the misogyny of their target audience by excluding women doesn’t mean that they are therefore also exempt from criticism. And there was some pretty amazing criticism:

I can actually sympathize with the event organizers. I don’t want to spend time and energy nearly every day being confronted with this shit, and I’m pretty bummed when I’m having a good time — playing a video game or doing anything else — and some shitstain comes along and feels entitled to wreck my fun with a specifically sexist or racist or homophobic comment. The difference is, I don’t have a choice. There are no safe spaces for me.

source Male games for male gamers: A case study at Two Whole Cakes

That whole article at Two Whole Cakes is the best analysis of the situation I have read so far (and I’ve been reading about this all weekend, when I wasn’t collecting bear asses as an orc). You will be smarter after reading it. It’s that good.

A lot of the discussion on the comments to articles criticizing the LAN party turns to the question “What about all women gaming event or clans?” implying an equivalence. It’s not the same though.

The problem is clear: Male gamers are often misogynists. Female gamers form exclusive groups because otherwise they have no safe place to play without receiving abuse. Male gamers have plenty of safe places to play already without needing them to be exclusive.

comment by Ink Asylum at Colony of Gamers