Playing Video Games Isn't Feminine
No, I'm not saying that; I heard someone say it.
Yes indeed, believe it or not, I heard someone say those very words just a few days ago. It wasn't a joke; the statement was made in earnest, and believe it or not, the person who said it was quite familiar with video games. It wasn't as if an 85-year-old grandmother made the comment; this person said it in a matter-of-fact-way and is a self-admitted gamer. While my first instinct was to disagree, something gave me pause...I can't quite put my finger on it, though, because in all honesty, I've never met any women who play games.
Even so, there was definitely something stopping me from disagreeing. I did, however, want to make it abundantly clear that I thought certain video games catered to the girly-girl. As the industry has expanded, it has become much like other entertainment venues in terms of diversity and variety. In short, we're reaching a point (if we haven't reached it already) where I believe there's something for everyone, provided you look hard enough. He didn't disagree with this, per se, but he insisted that the practice of playing video games - at its core - simply wasn't "feminine." It lies in the nature of the hobby, which is two-fold: firstly, it's electronic-based and for decades, electronics and gadgets were almost solely the male's habitat. Secondly, it has to do with the subject matter of most games, which admittedly isn't "feminine."
Still, in this day and age, every soul alive has a cell phone or a smartphone, and it seems to be a commonly accepted belief that girls are more into texting than guys. They're also into Facebook and MySpace and what have you; and those are electronic "at their core." And as I just said, gaming is branching out; the variety gets bigger with every passing day. It's true that the most popular games may be considered "guy fare;" i.e., all the shooters, GTA, action games where you run around killing stuff, etc. And it's also true that the mainstream populace still views gaming as a male-oriented hobby. Therefore, if you include social stereotypes and other elements of the situation, perhaps we can say that playing games isn't...well, "ladylike."
I'm just wondering what people think about this. I have no experience in the matter; I can only go by what I see and second-hand information. No offense to any women out there, but I think this is worth discussing. Is it that different from saying interior design isn't "manly?"
4/7/2011 9:16:14 PM Ben Dutka