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Equal Gender Representation In The Gaming Franchise

3130 words - 13 pages

Equal Gender Representation in The Gaming Franchise
This paper tries to express how sexism/chauvinism ideas have infected the virtual-world of video games, and resulted in a male dominated video-gaming industry. Now, being that 49% of U.S. households own a dedicated gaming console (E.S.A. 2012), it is imperative that we address this issue. Gender disparity in the gaming business is exceedingly one-sided. Female employees constitute less than 10% of the gaming industry, and even though that shortcoming females have contributed to the video gaming franchise. A small number of females have indeed contributed to the gaming franchise as a result of the industries no-girls-allowed mentality which strongly suggest that old saying boys-only. In this paper, I will examine current research relevant to the video game industry and its representation of the female gender, provide personal accounts of sexual harassment within the video game industry and offer my opinions of what could be done to begin the steps in an extraordinarily difficult journey.
The Industry
Since their beginnings, by both female and male gamers have enjoyed video games. They are so beloved by their followers that the annual Entertainment Software Association reports the gaming industry at an estimated $17 billion dollars franchise; globally that number increases to $67 billion of which 48% is female and 52% male. Females are also part of the gaming population, representing 47% while the males represent 53% (E.S.A., 2012). This means that both males and females support the gaming industry, as well as production of their products, both financially and through its use; although, the gaming industry does not share this same support of gender equality.
The 11th Annual Salary Survey (2012) conducted by the gaming magazine, Game Development Magazine (GDM), compared male and female salaries. In the fields which make gaming possible: programmers, artist/animators, designers, producers, audio engineers, quality assurance testers and business/legal representatives there was a difference in pay between male and females ranging $10,000-$30,000:
• male programmers made $93,000 while females made $83,000
• male artist and animators made $80,000 while females made $53,000
• male game designers made $75,000 while females made $67,000
• male producers made $87,000 while females made $78,000
• male audio engineers made $83,000 while females made $72,000
• male quality assurance testers made $49,000 while females made $39,000
• male business/legal reps made $108,000 while their female made $73,000.
Female employees constituted below 20% in each field, going as low as 3% in the field of programmers (GDM, 2012). How does this reflect on to the female population? A few state that they felt a sensation of belittlement, especially when they were referred to as "girls" in the industry instead of women, and others say that they are termed as gamer-groupies and not as professionals. One's earnings are a...

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