Sexism, racism, homophobia and general name-calling are longstanding facts of life in many parts of the online/offline video game world. The average player in the United States is 37-years-old and 42 percent of players are female but still a sexist culture thrives online and offline the video game world.
Anita Sarkeesian, who identifies as a Canadian American born to Armenian immigrant parents, found herself in the center of a sexist and racist attack mission after she called out gaming culture for its “limited and limiting ways women are represented.”
“I’d like to share with you a story about how I accidentally became the villain of a massive online game in real life,” Sarkeesian says at the beginning of her 10-minute TED talk.
It’s a 10-minute clip but stick with it. Upworthy.com’s Rebecca Eisenberg has mapped out the highlights of the video: “at 1:00 she talks about why she loves video games, at 2:02 just try to imagine yourself in her shoes, at 3:45 she sticks the people attacking her under a microscope, and at 8:15 she doesn’t just win the game, she absolutely destroys it.”
Video games are expected to be the fastest-growing form of mass media over the coming decade. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers the global video-game market was worth around $56 billion in 2011 and predicts sales will rise to $82 billion by 2015. The Economist Magazine points out “that is more than twice the size of the recorded-music industry, nearly a quarter more than the magazine business and about three-fifths the size of the film industry, counting DVD sales as well as box-office receipts (see chart below). PwC predicts that video games will be the fastest-growing form of media over the next few years, with sales rising to $82 billion by 2015.”