One of the most annoying and factually incorrect feminists on the Internet, which is a hard list to crack. The reason why? Her various attacks against the video game industry and gaming as a whole. This annoys me significantly as I love video games, probably my favorite hobby, next to “shoving my opinions down people’s throats”. This isn’t a pointless rant, this is something far more personal to me because of my love for video games. I’m usually able to ignore feminists but when they go after this, I need to say something. Get comfortable, this is gonna be a long one. Not only is it a great hobby that can help you relax at the end of a hard day, I think it is a really important and growing art form, along with movies and TV shows. The visuals, voice acting, storyline, and the gameplay itself can be an amazing experience that can go so much further than we originally thought. Great games such as Bioshock, Bloodbourne and The Last Of Us created absolute beauty in their games and it was an honor to play them. So why would Anita Sarkeesian attack this? Simple.
In 2012, Anita started a YouTube channel called Feminist Frequency and dedicated a large part of it to criticizing video games, a part called Tropes vs Women. I decided to watch a few of these last year and they angered me. They were heavily biased and inaccurate attacks on games where she edited out facts or just simply ignore them. I’m not sure if she deliberately does so it looks like the hundreds of thousands she raised for this show didn’t get to waste or is just really uninformed and has a very narrow view of the video game industry. Now, people attacking video games isn’t new, they’ve been blamed for mass shootings to bad language and every now and again, some feminist would go after a particular video game which they found offensive. But, Anita is different. She dedicates all her time on her show to constantly attack gaming that she is a self-proclaimed ‘expert on sexism in video games’, despite lying to her audience, who gave her their money to start the show, because she said she was always a long time fan of video games and needed the money to play for the consoles and games, when in reality, she had barely, if ever, played games before. The saddest thing is that her attacks have been seen so much that mainstream news outlets are giving her platforms to spew her misinformation in the form of talk show appearances and even a seat at the United Nations. Online news outlets make dozens of articles about her, praising her as some fearless feminist savior for calling out gaming and saying things like “The Gaming Industry’s Biggest Threat has only just gotten started.” I didn’t know fearless people turned off comments and likes on their videos to not hear any criticism.
Before I even did much research into her, I could see that Anita has an ideology view of what sexism is. She has tweeted that women cannot be sexist against men because sexism is prejudice and power and as men are the dominate gender, women cannot be sexist towards them. Of course, this is completely false. If you attack someone based on their sex or favor a particular sex over the other is sexist, no matter who does it. Don’t believe me, simply switch the genders and see if women can’t be sexist. I think Anita says this as a made up defense if someone calls her out for her bias and possible sexism. This defense isn’t based on facts or reality, it’s based on her ideology.
Another example of her ideology is that she believes that every system in the world is sexist, racist and homophobic and someone like her needs to point it all out. You pretty much name something to her and she’ll find some way to make it sexist. She thinks that princesses are part of a deeply authoritarian monarchy, ignoring that most girls choose to wear the princesses outfits. She’s called anime a sexist, disgusting and misogynistic art form that promotes rape culture, catering to perverts and losers. She has even blamed mass shootings on patriarchy. Her entire view of the world is filtered through this lens of sexism, changing everything she sees.
When it comes to video games, her bias is so transparent, it’s almost cringey. What she says is pretty much feminist propaganda and has had no real research involved in it. She made a video attacking game developers for their ass designs, saying that male characters have their butts almost covered while the females are exaggerated for sexual effect. However, if you had done research, you could have found at least a couple dozen examples of that with male characters. Or her video on The Witcher 3, one of my personal favorite games, which had many strong female characters and was even praised by certain feminists for that, not Anita though. In fact, she saw it as sexist as all the other games she’s covered, saying it included all the sexist stereotypes of female characters. Her examples? When you play as Ciri, a female character, the enemies call you gendered insults. That’s it. Also, she says that the insults thrown at the main character, who is male, don’t matter. Or Just Cause 2, where she attacked it for your ability to shoot female strippers but ignores that you can also shoot male strippers. Hey Anita, #StripperLivesMatter, not just women’s. She even goes after games for petty reasons like the way female characters sit in Destiny and the female characters in Saint’s Row 3 had too much sway in their hips and Mass Effect for the nickname the fans gave the female version of Captain Shepard, “FemShep”. I mean, who cares?
Now, sometimes she has been called out for her lies. Like her attack on the game Bayonetta, saying everything about it was made to serve the sexual pleasure of the male gamer, then being told that it was developed by a woman. In response to corrections like this, she now got rid of comments on her videos and blocks anyone who disagrees with her on Twitter. This just shows that she doesn’t care about actually finding the truth in what she says, as long as she can twist it into her propaganda, it’s fine by her. Male gamers are more likely to play games with badass male characters and sexy female characters, but it’s because they are guys. Developers know what sells and they know the majority of the gaming market is male so they appeal to them with badass and sexy characters. It’s perfectly fine to be a male and have interests, same as a female. Gamers don’t care about your race, ethnicity, age or your gender, they just wanna play their games in peace. Check your facts, not your privilege.
I’m not the only one who thinks Anita is spewing out bias propaganda, in fact many other YouTuber’s, including feminist ones for her lying and misinformation. One of these YouTubers is the biochemist, Dr. Phil Mason AKA Thunderf00t on YouTube found Anita and her channel to be so incorrect that he made a video about her. He said that humans are part of a sexually dimorphic species, a species that has significant differences between males and females. This is the reason why men and women compete in sporting events like the Olympics, that have been divided by gender, because men and women are physically different. In fact, on average, men’s upper body strength is between 40-50% stronger then women’s and their lower body strength is 20-30% more stronger. This is why men are seen as the stronger sex, because men are stronger and more powerful while women are more flexible and faster. However, to Anita, this is a “Deeply ingrained socially constructed myth” and “Completely false”, yet provides no studies or anything in her sources in the video’s description, but uses it as an attack against the trope that women are usually damsels in distress in video games.
I know that I could go on and on about how Anita is biased and a liar, but that’s been done. Dozens of videos have been made on her, debunking pretty much every video she makes. I wanna do something a bit different. Anita once said this;
“So why does any of this matter? What’s the harm in sexually objectifying women? Well, the negative impacts of sexual objectification have been studied extensively over the years and exposure to these tropes could reinforce the idea that women are sexual objects, created for a man’s pleasure.”
This is a pretty strong statement as she is basically saying that sexism in games or really, sexism in any kind of media, leads to sexism in real life. Now, I do admit that games, films and TV shows do have a lot of sexualized women and in games with this, violence against them is allowed like in GTA V. If you watch the Tropes vs Women series, you’d think it’s everywhere, almost like we are in a sexist epidemic with games thinking women’s only use is sex. However, if you are a real gamer, you know this is entirely untrue. As the games, she uses these examples are usually repeated, like Hitman: Absolution is shown six times throughout the series. This asks a question, if all she shows is examples of sexism in games but shows the same games over and over, how many games does she find sexist?
From 2012, the year Feminist Frequency started, to October 2016. Anita called out 99 games for sexist tropes. However, this goes through those four years of games being released, you’ll see that 2,716 games were created and released in this time frame. 99 out of 2,716 is just over 3%, doesn’t seem like too much of an epidemic now. Also, that list of 99 contain games she only finds one or two things wrong with a female character only being the main character’s girlfriend and having no real story behind her. The games that she thinks are straight up sexist and misogynistic adds up to 46, less than 2% of the 2,716 games released. Now, I know what your thinking;
“But she can’t possibly play every single game released on every platform, aren’t you being unfair.”
Well, no actually. I’m not asking her to play every single game ever made before saying her argument, plus I know she’d probably find most of the 2,716 games sexist, I’m just saying that the entire gaming industry is full of sexism based off 99 out of 2,716 games is just wrong. She’s painting the entire industry with one brush and lies to her audience to believe that she’s right. And if you do think any of those 46 or 99 games problematic, then you can play any of the other thousands available. Games are very inclusive, something for everyone. Anita is right about one thing. Those 46 games are mostly played by hardcore group of dedicated gamers who are mostly men. But Anita uses this as ‘evidence’ that sexism between gamers is common because of these games and they don’t even know it, saying that it effects them without them even knowing it. Bullshit.
Gamers, however, are used to being branded as horrible people. For years, the industry has been attacked by religious people for inciting the devil and by conservatives for causing violence like mass shootings. One of the most infamous people for this was lawyer Jack Thompson, who for years made the claim that violence in video games made the gamer violent in return, calling them ‘Murder Simulators’. He filed many multi-million dollar lawsuits against video game publishers for inciting violence. In 2007, he tried to tie a mass shooting at Virgina Tech to the video game Counter Strike and threatened to sure Bill Gates. However, these lawsuits ended in the publisher’s favor and Thompson lost his job over them due to studies that proved video games actually reduce stress and violent behavior and showed that as video games became more popular, violence with teens has been doing down steadily and exposed his biased studies that weren’t conducted correctly.
So if people blamed video games for violence but were easily proven wrong, what’s the difference with the sexism allegations? My answer is nothing. Anita is using the same tactics people like Jack Thompson used, viewing games from a narrow viewpoint, lying about games or taking certain scenes out of context and only showing a fraction of the amount of games in their examples, the getting all the media to side with them, leaving the ‘violent and sexist’ gamers to defend themselves. Anita always say that studies have proven the link with video games and sexism, but never shows them in her provided links. So I decided to look myself on her website for these studies and all I found was articles and blog posts, no actual scientific studies. I decided to research this myself and the closest I got was that dedicated gamers are more likely to find sexist jokes funny. So gamers have a sense of humor? These feminists need to play more PS4. What we need is a large study to look into the possibility of sexism in the game industry, just like what was done with the violence in video games.
Oh, wait. There has been one already.
It was conducted in 2011, a year before Feminist Frequency started and covered over 800 gamers for over 3 years and was independently funded. It was based on the theory that long term exposer to video games can change your view of the world. The conclusion found no link between sexism behavior and video games, absolutely none, just like with the study of video game violence. Does Anita know this? I think she does but she doesn’t want you to know it as it makes all her videos pointless and a waste of time and money.
In conclusion, Anita Sarkeesian is no different from the radical Christians who attack video games for violence, never ending with there constant need to be heard despite the evidence not being on their side. She has an extremely narrow minded view of gamers in general and lies and twists facts to support her feminist propaganda. She also lied for donations, saying she was an expert on sexism in video games and has played games since she was a child despite there being video evidence of her saying she had never played them before and hated the idea behind them, which would explain her endless attacks on them. She should re-fund everyone she lied to in order to get the hundreds of thousands to make her propaganda.
Anita needs to go away or just be ignored, to know that we’ve seen through her lies and we don’t care what she has to say. We all need to say night night to our game hating feminist.