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The “Ellie” Effect is a Massive Setback for Female Gamers

The furore around a male Overwatch player impersonating a female in order to troll gamers has resulted in a backlash - against the wrong target. As a result, female gamers have yet more hurdles to overcome in eSports, through no fault of their own.

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rainslacker6d ago

It's not a setback because some idiots decided to try and troll the community to try and prove a point. It just set the team back, because it's hard to respect someone, or a group who's ideals are so skewed, and ideas are so myopic.

Female gamers are still welcome in the gaming community, and I know of nothing that prevents them to join a comparative team.

What these people tried to present highlighted more that this notion of harassment of female gamers is overplayed, and over inflated, and most of the claims hold no merit. The same thing many gamers said back during gamergate. That should make female gamers be more skeptical of things which may keep them away from gaming, but ultimately, a female gamer interested in gaming shouldn't care what others say it think....same as their male counterparts.

So on behalf of the gaming community, I welcome anyone, male or female to join is and have fun

6d ago
Eonjay6d ago

Okay so the author is saying that because this Ellie was getting positive attention for being a girl gamer when if fact it was a boy. And the troll had set females back as a result.

I disagree. It is not like the existence of female gamers depended on Ellie being a real women.

And if his intention was malice, can we all admit how sad he would have to be as a human being and choose pity over anger with this one.

Michiel19896d ago

in theory that shouldnt keep them away, but the reality proves otherwise. I do feel women overplay the harrasment a bit, because not only females get raged at when they make a mistake in a game, while often they present it as if they are the only one on the receiving end of that. On the flip side, I do see females in games getting more harrassed than males in some games I play, and it doesnt surprise me that some female gamers are turned off by the idea of that. It's a shame because they should be able to be enjoyed by everyone. And if you try to defend them for it, you are called a white knight and doesnt make it better most of the time.

I do think that it is changing, if ever so slightly. Also look at twitch, there are a LOT more female streamers than a couple years ago (not counting the booby streamers) which might convince some females to play/stream where they otherwise shouldnt.

RememberThe3576d ago

Well said as well. There is nuance to the whole problem. Harassers need to be dealt with, but victimizing makes that harder to do. It sort of bothers me how people try to make human interaction seem so simple, makes me wonder how many people they actually interact with.

rainslacker6d ago (Edited 6d ago )

A lot of what I'm about to say is relevant to many things outside of gaming as well.

If women are anxious about joining, then they really shouldn't be. There are plenty of gamers who would welcome them, but there will be those that will be hostile towards them. Those that are hostile, are probably hostile towards everyone though.

If people are going to harass women over something as trivial as gaming, consider that they are probably threatened by women, and really shouldn't be looked at as people that need to be worried about. There is nothing at all that they need to do to try and gain acceptance, just be a gamer, and do what you want to do.

The reality of the situation is is that online harassment rarely ever amounts to much, and most of it is just bluster. It isn't common for the people who harass others online to be able to take it any further than their own posturing, and it shouldn't be taken seriously on the comments, or at least, it shouldn't get someone so riled up. I notice people get too upset because they take things personally, when more often than not, it's just people being trolls or idiots.

I see both men and women harassed all the time. The gaming community has it's bad seeds. The difference in the harassment is that the female gender is targeted as something inferior, whereas the harassment of males is more general. But if a woman isn't going to stand for such treatment outside of gaming, there is no reason for them to stand for it within gaming.

Anyone is going to be attacked by those doing the harassment, if they try to defend the victim. The gender is irrelevant. There are just defined terms for the type of attacks that are targeted at females. this is just the way things are, because most harassment is just people trying to get a rise out of others. It's trolling, and if it goes beyond some comments in the forums or community, then there is recourse through legal action, or just filing complaints with service providers or ISP's.

I guess what I'm saying is that while i can understand why some may not wish to join, there is no reason for them to actually be unwilling to do so. I don't play online games much because I don't care for the bad seeds in the community. The good people though are good, and I have no problem with them. I'm a male, and only marginally proficient at the games that tend to be most represented in online gaming. But the idiots bother me enough to not participate in that part of the community. Not because of gender, but because of not wishing to have my enjoyment ruined by idiots. Women should look at it the same way. No one is forcing them out. They are welcome as anyone else by the greater community. They just need to find what they like, and not worry so much about those they don't care to play with, and don't expect special treatment because they're women.

ziggurcat6d ago

"It's not a setback because some idiots decided to try and troll the community to try and prove a point."

the point was proven, though...

"a female gamer interested in gaming shouldn't care what others say it think"

perhaps if they weren't constantly harassed, berated, and threatened they wouldn't...

ninsigma6d ago

The point wasn't proven. The reason the "player" was harassed for having dubious stats, not for being female.

ziggurcat6d ago

no. that's not the reason why, that's the excuse people hide behind.

rainslacker6d ago (Edited 6d ago )

What point is that? That there are those that will immediately say its harassment when people question the validity of a player? That those same people will lump the greater community into a generalization of being sexist if they are trying to prove their point? That there is too much political posturing trying to prove points, instead of encouraging others to be a unified community? That the only way to counter any argument by these people is to shame people into submission?

They proved a lot of points, but they did nothing at all to prove that the greater community has a problem with female gamers.

"no. that's not the reason why, that's the excuse people hide behind."

And you once again prove the first points that I stated in my comment. That there is no discussion, when there is no way for you to let the other side win.

This was an ill-conceived social experiment, by people who don't understand the nature of these kinds of things, and had no control group. They conflated the issue by making all criticism into what served their own pre-determined conclusion. Instead of addressing the issue to see if it escalated, they poked the bear to make it about harassment of women, instead of trying to tackle the valid concerns first. There was no attempt to try and remain unbiased. There was every attempt to troll.

Them claiming it was a social experiment was just an excuse to troll and incite the conversation, only proving that the whole issue is conflated by methods which dismiss valid concern, and arguments which are only supported by ignoring the greater debate.

Chexs19906d ago

"perhaps if they weren't constantly harassed, berated, and threatened they wouldn't..."

Bro, if you think that's a reason to abstain from playing games, then nobody would be playing anything.
Online gaming is basically like being on the web: You toughen up, learn to retaliate, or gtfo :)

This sentiment goes for both male and female gamers.

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letsa_go6d ago

I think we have an SJW mod that is going on a comment hiding spree. Pathetic. Can't even handle differing opinions! YOU MUST BELIEVE OUR WAY OR WE WILL SILENCE YOU! Kinda scary actually, that you can only have one opinion here.

beulahland6d ago (Edited 6d ago )

Opinions are so scaryyyyy. Mod them!

FlameBaitGod6d ago

It was a guy pretending to be a girl lol......

CaptainObvious8786d ago

Setback for female gamers?

Actually, no. All it did was put on full display the hypocrisy from the sjw games "journalists".

It also proved how privileged female gamers are (an unknown player makes a professional esports team because they're female. The team virtue signalled how Ellie could be a beacon for female gamers) in the gaming landscape.

bluefox7556d ago

It also demonstrates a very clear double standard applied to males and females. This guy was a relative nobody until he assumed the role of a female, suddenly he's on a pro team. If men and women are equal, why hold them to different standards?

rainslacker5d ago

He was a nobody though. Both as a male and female. They didn't have enough of a play history, which is why people questioned the validity. The actual person may have been someone though. This whole thing about the validity of the player probably would have gone unnoticed by the greater community as well, if it wasn't made into something about gamers being sexist. Otherwise, I doubt many people here would care.

But because of the actions of Second Wind, they conflated the issue into something else, into a topic which is much more sensitive for the community, and cast shame upon the community in an attempt to prove a point. That back fired on them.

There are male and female competative players now. Outside of people who follow such things, they're still nobodies. Their entire popularity rest within a bubble of ESports, and a fake or real female player probably would have remained there as well. At least going by the fact that there are now female ESports players that the community doesn't have a problem with, and don't harass because they're women. At least I'm assuming that's the case, since reports aren't made about them.

This entire experiment is anecdotal, and it's poisoned because it was done in a way to provoke the community, not see if the conclusion would have come in it's own time.

If this was a known female player, who had a history to have the credentials they had joining the team, there is nothing to suggest they would have been "harassed" in any way beyond the normal idiocy that you see around, which tends to be minimal, and easy to ignore.

CorndogBurglar6d ago

I read the article and I think I'm missing something.

So this guy pretended to be female. Joined an Overwatch league. Blizzard reached out and told the team she/he wasn't what she/he appeared to be, so they "violated her/his privacy to get to the bottom of it? Am I getting that right?

So it sounds to me like they had a reason and it had nothing to do with the person's gender. I mean, the thought they were recruiting a female, right?

Failcube6d ago

I think how it sets people back is due to harassment any new female players will get - immediate assumptions they're fake, and more trolling than they already get. It's so toxic as is, this is just another type of negativity added to it.

rainslacker5d ago

Except there are other female competitive players in many ESports games, and their credentials aren't questioned. They may be harassed by some, but not enough to say that it's indicative of a larger issue with the community. To date, I can't think of any other report that a female joining a team, or competing in a competition was harassed to the point of making them want to quit. The only instance of harassment I can think of in ESports against women was an individual on a team, who harassed another female player. That case has been a while, but that guy seemed like a douche. The end result wasn't that the player quit, but that the guy doing the harassing got banned.

There just isn't enough corollary evidence of other instances of this happening to suggest there is a problem with the community. This case is tainted by the fact that it was deceptive, and staged to apparently perform an experiment.

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