[MUD-Dev] Sexism in design

Amanda Walker amanda at alfar.com
Wed Nov 23 17:55:43 New Zealand Daylight Time 2005


On Nov 20, 2005, at 1:29 AM, Lydia Leong wrote:
> On Nov 17,  5:06pm, Otis Viles wrote:

>> I still browse TMC and avoid mudmagic, but it seems like all of
>> the good talk is happening at www.mudlab.org now. It's smaller
>> but it's staying on topic a lot more then TMC does these
>> days. The focus there is pretty much on dev.

> Speaking of MudLab, there's a funny thread going on there at the
> moment, in a kind of sad, pathetic way:

>   http://www.mudlab.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=81&start=0

> It's about creating gender differences in games, and how inferior
> women are to men.

Sigh.  Unfortunately, though, not all that surprising.

> The earnest debate going on in that thread is an interesting
> example of how MUDs-for-experimentation can differ from commercial
> gaming projects -- but also a worrisome illustration of how far
> embryonic future game designers still need to go in their
> thinking.

I agree--and I also think it's an indication of broader social
trends.  In some ways, gender roles and preconceptions have re-
strengthened quite a bit over the last 20 years, which has spilled
over into gaming.  What was once a "geek" hobby is now a mainstream
"guy" hobby (oversimplified, but I sure do hear a lot more
matter-of- fact "well, girls aren't really into gaming" than I used
to, right along with "women don't really make good programmers").

Amanda Walker
(whose office wall has as a picture of the USS Hopper and her
namesake prominently displayed)
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