The Women Who Game panel took place on Saturday at Summer in the City 2015. It featured creators including Ellen Rose, LDShadowLady, and Amy Lee.
The panel was largely a question-and-answer session with the audience which centered around what it was like to be a female gamer on YouTube, the impact of games themselves on the outside world, and their responsibilities of being creators on YouTube. The panel consisted of Netty (NetttyPlays), Lizzie (LDShadowLady), Yammy (ChicksCanGame), Amy Lee, Cat Valdes (Catrific) and TheEnglishSimmer.
While Amy and Netty both said they didn’t feel that they had a different experience to male gamers, Yammy stated that she feels male-oriented gaming communities such as Counterstrike draw a lot more hate, and that it depends on what kind of community you’re in to the kind of response you get.
Cat Valdes, a YouTube vlogger and who also the runs a convention around League of Legends, stated that she doesn’t post gaming videos online as she is worried that it might take the fun out of it. She also said that gaming sites such as Twitch have such an intense viewership that she actively avoids using them.
When Ellen broached the possibility of an “Us versus Them” feel within the community because of the YouTube algorithm which has affected gamers in a more positive light due to the regularity of their uploads, the panel felt that wasn’t as much of an issue as perhaps anticipated.
Yammy said: “There’s definitely a separation, but more due to personality”. She went on to explain that she feels gamers are more introverted and stay in their room as opposed to vloggers who are more extroverted in their ways, such as talking to cameras in public areas.
A member of the audience asked if they felt that gaming impacted their audience in a negative way with regards to violence, and if they feel that age restrictions on games are effective. Yammy and Netty were in agreement that they were a good thing, as it means not having to explain the violence on screen to a younger audience. Lizzie felt that she has become desensitised to violence because it has been such a common component of the games she has played and age restrictions are important as a guideline for those too young to buy the game.
The conversation briefly turned to the view held by some that video games and film are to blame for violent outbursts amongst the younger generations. The panel didn’t agree that they were to blame, with Netty stating: “You don’t see people for example playing Minecraft and then going out and planting loads of trees.” Cat supported the sentiment by saying: “The problem was there before the game.”
When offered to make suggestions about how to improve the acceptance of female gamers into the general gaming community, Ellen suggested that perhaps if the women within the games were less sexualised, then it could positively impact the perception of women in reality.
A question from the audience which posed the idea of an exclusively female gaming community was met with a unanimously negative response.
“I hate the term ‘girl-gamer’. We need to make it so the term is just ‘gamer,'” stated Cat.
Want More From Summer in the City 2015?
Check out our Summer in the City tag, where you’ll find all of our coverage. Also, why not take a look back at our Photo Recaps from Friday, Saturday and Sunday?
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- Creative Process Panel at Summer in the City 2015
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