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  • pelargonia
  • Member Since Sep 16th, 2010

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Why is Blizzard still OK with gender inequality in World of Warcraft? {WoW}

Apr 4th 2012 12:15PM I do think the article has a valid argument. I am a female and I have not found a great deal of sexism aimed at me or my female toons by the people I hang around with in game. Part could be the type of guild I am in and part could be that I always chose to hang out with decent people. I HAVE had creepy or offensive things said or done by strangers in game. Mostly I have put that up to the size of the player base. You cannot have that many people playing and not find jerks, sexists, or creepy people as part of the mix.

I do know that in PuGs I have been in and even some runs my son has been in where I heard his vent that there are sexists and a lot of profanity as well as just plain offensive stuff that goes on. While my son was underage I could monitor what he was exposed to and luckily he has always had a strong sense of what is socially acceptable.

The main point of this article, however, deals with how the game itself perpetuates inequality.

I was taken aback when Ji used those lines in the beta and did not even hear what he said to male players as I always roll female toons. I actually did think it seemed creepy. Like a boss or a teacher coming on to an employee or a student. Heck, if he was going to be creepy to my female toon he should be just as creepy to the male toons and call them gorgeous too. Better yet, make him not creepy at all. I have always enjoyed compliments about my strength or abilities, ever since i was a little girl. There is no reason not to compliment the female Pandaren the same as the male. There are both men and women that would speak that way to someone, calling them gorgeous when it is not exactly appropriate but it does not seem to be necessary to perpetuate it in the game.

Since vanilla I have complained about the armor inequalities. I felt it perpetuated old 1950s and 1960s style scantily clothed helpless women from the sword and sorcery novels. I do not see how a piece of armor is suppose to be functional when it does not cover you. One commenter claimed that players do not have to wear those pieces if they do not want to, but frequently, the best gear you can get, especially while leveling is just such gear. When I was leveling my mage I had weeks of her running around in what looked like lingerie because that was the best gear I could find without paying a fortune to twink her. I know that mages do not melee so armor is for stats not protection, so an argument can be made that it does not need to look functional, but really, running around in lingerie while questing out in the world? Come on. I had similar issues on my shaman, which I leveled as enhancement. She was melee and going into battle with her midriff showing. That just looks silly. A leveling toon is unlikely to be able to afford transmogging out of the bikini top if that is the best gear that has dropped for them. --Some of us like to feel that our armor looks more practical or more realistic in its ability to give protection.

If the female toons have to wear such silly armor then the male ones should too, regardless of "conventional" aesthetics that men tend to like to look at scanty clad women while women tend to like to look at well clothed men. This is not exactly the case. A woman browsing an online dating site is definitely going to go for a guy that is better dressed and thus seems less intimidating and aggressive. This does not mean those same women do not like to look at the swim suit clad gym guys in the appropriate setting. Heck, we all know that men like to see skimpy clothes on women, that is no reason to make female toons wear such outfits. I do know that some women (and men playing female toons) like to look risqué or have dominatrix type outfits and that is okay with me, I just do not think it should be forced on us. In fact with enough gold, people can change their armor to look like almost anything they want now and if they choose the lingerie style that is up to them but where is the same type of style for the men to wear if they want to? That is where the inequality comes in. Those 1950s and 1960s novel covers had scantily clad men on them too. In a way, they had more equality in wardrobe than WoW does now.