How Many Times Do Women Gamers Have to Say We Exist Before Anyone Notices?

In the comments to an article about social inequality of women on college campuses at Pandagon (a good article, you should read it), the commenters discuss the strange phenomenon of girlfriends watching their boyfriends play video games. The commenters rightly identify forcing an uninterested third party to watch you game as a pretty rude thing to do.

Gaming isn’t the focus of that post, nor even of the comments. But the assumption in most of them is that it’s always the guys doing the gaming, that women are “video game widows” — and I get it, these are comments on an article about how men dominate college life and women have to go along with them to get any social status. Nonetheless the unspoken assumption that gaming is something guys do and women put up with made my brain itch.


The framing of the discussion elides women gamers. POOF. We’re invisible again. I don’t want to be too harsh on Pandagon. I like that place. But if female gamers are invisible to feminists interested in pop culture than what are feminist gamers? Unicorns?

Here I am again, waving my freak flag high and yelling, hello! Hello! We are here! We play games and we are women! Can you see me? Our name is legion, for we are many!