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Although the video game industry continues to flourish, the diversity of its staff does not; A variety of theories exist to explain the lack of women involved in the industry.

Despite today's economy, the video game industry continues to thrive. The diversity of its employees, however, does not.  According to a 2007 survey by Game Developer Magazine, women comprise less than 1 in 5 workers in the video game industry and make up only 3% of game programmers.

The women who do make up this small portion of workers also make less money on average than males in the industry. According to the survey, women in all positions within the video game industry made an average of $64,643 last year. Men on the other hand, earned $74,459.

"Historically, the people who play video games have tended to be more male," said Kathy Vrabeck, president of the casual games division of Electronic Arts Inc. (one of the world’s biggest video game publishers). "So it's not surprising that these boys grow up and aspire to work in the industry. That's why we've seen fewer women think about it as a career choice."

Some theories regarding the lack of women gamers reach back to elementary school. EA’s executive vice president of human resources, Gabrielle Toledano, describes, "It goes back to school, during those early years when you had that teacher who either encouraged you in math and science or didn't…It's the same reason why the statistics on women enrolling in [college] computer science programs have been way down. So, by the time we go out and hire, the pool of candidates is already skewed."

Brenda Brathwaite, a game developer who teaches game design at the Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia, shares another theory involving a common perception of the industry as a party atmosphere. "Some of the recruiting ads scream 'college fraternity,'" Brathwaite explained. "And there are still companies that throw recruiting parties with strippers. Now, if you say you want women to work at your company, why would you hire strippers?"

The stereotype of the industry as a man’s atmosphere also received support in the past through the Electronic Entertainment Expo. This trade show, the biggest of the gaming industry, used to be known for its costumed "booth babes", who were eventually banned from the shows in 2006, in effort to help break the stereotype.

The industry’s long hours may serve as another reason for lack of female involvement. Each game consists of a two- to three- year commitment, with longer hours during “crunch time”, which occurs around 12-26 weeks before a game is sent to stores. These conditions can make it difficult for women to obtain time off in order to have babies or raise children.

Aside from looking at women’s involvement from the working sense, some game executives also look at this group as a market with great potential, especially for purchases involving consoles such as the Wii and the PlayStation 3. A lot of the same executives also believe that an increase in women developers would result in increases of women purchasing video game products. According to a 2005 Michigan State University study, girls rated video games higher that were designed by teams of all women than games designed by teams consisting of all men. The girls did not know the gender groups of each game's designers prior to their rating. 

The Sims program, which has sold more more than 100 million copies and largely appeals to women, also shows how females can affect game development.  

"Some of the human qualities of The Sims didn't come out until women started working on it," Lucy Bradshaw, general manager of EA’s Maxis Studio, said. "It wasn't until we added kids and relationships that things changed. It became more about these little human beings, these 'Sims,' rather than just the objects in their lives." 

People continue to work toward increasing female involvement in this field, understanding that for the video game industry to truly flourish, it must become more diverse by venturing out from such a specific market of young males. Among all other arguments, women do make up a greater percentage of buyers, creating opportunities for increases in sales.

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By the goat on 10/22/2008 9:19:06 AM , Rating: 5
It is not sexiest to realize that men and women are different. Their bodies are different and their brains are different. The fact that men and women gravitate to different jobs is not surprising at all.

In short the small number of women in the video game industry reflects the fact that a small number of women want to work in the video games industry.

By FITCamaro on 10/22/2008 9:33:49 AM , Rating: 5
In short the small number of women in the video game industry reflects the fact that a small number of women want to work in the video games industry.

You mean all industries shouldn't be subject to racist and sexist hiring practices I mean affirmative action hiring practices like government contractors are?

By omnicronx on 10/22/2008 1:03:26 PM , Rating: 5
Playstation Three useless comment # 2342342

Here are some others to add to the books:

1. Sorry but i need the trees to breath
2. Honestly, i would like to see Yahoo along with its Microsoft going bunkrupt.
3. Even Pentium II 350Mhz from 1998 outperforms current slow as trash Atom 1870Mhz processor.

And my personal favorites
4. PLAYSTATION 3 is performance beast even at 4K HD resolution.
5. PLAYSTATION 3 is 22 times faster than the fastest PC at this moment.
6. Pentium 4 478 is 130nm while Q6600 is only 45nm it means it will get worn out faster.

By Spuke on 10/22/2008 1:26:06 PM , Rating: 5
And my personal favorites
ROFLMAOWTFBBQ!!!! OMG I think I just blew a chocolate chip out of my nose!!! Is there an award for Dailytech Dumb Sh!t of the Year?

By omnicronx on 10/23/2008 10:58:36 AM , Rating: 5
As opposed to non physically capable? Is there something wrong with my body that I don't know about? Perhaps am I somehow typing this very message without any brain activity?

Sorry.. but you make it way too easy..

By Suganami on 10/25/2008 1:57:28 PM , Rating: 5
What in holy hell does that mean?

By Desslok on 10/28/2008 11:00:51 AM , Rating: 3
Just ignore PS3, he is off his medications.

By christojojo on 10/29/2008 10:41:38 PM , Rating: 2
I cant believe you haven't realized that this is good ole G.W. Bush's speech writer. He previously did speech writing for Dan Quayle, various doublespeak politicians, and countless sports commentators.

By the goat on 10/22/2008 10:55:23 AM , Rating: 5
You mean all industries shouldn't be subject to racist and sexist hiring practices I mean affirmative action hiring practices like government contractors are?

All hiring should be done in a sexual, racial and religious neutral way. In fact for most jobs the the company should try to not know the applicant's sex, race and religion.

I have always been confused as to why job applications include an affirmative action section that asks about these things. They say the information is need to ensure there is no prejudice in the hiring process. From my perspective giving the information only encourages prejudice. If they simply didn't have the information then it would be impossible to be prejudice.

By FITCamaro on 10/22/2008 12:21:12 PM , Rating: 2
No the stupid thing is when they say they don't hire based on age, race, religion, sex, etc but then they send you diversity questionnaires after getting hired talking about how they need the data because they are subject to affirmative action guidelines.

By omnicronx on 10/22/2008 12:52:58 PM , Rating: 1
Ya can't they cut us white/male folk a break? I mean its not as though these laws were not passed 40 years ago, when it was nearly impossible for a visible minority or a woman to get/retain a job of any importance.

And for the record, it was Nixon that first implemented federal policies that guaranteed minority hiring, so don't go blaming the 'hippy' democrats for everything like you usually do...

I understand that affirmative action may not be needed like it once way, but you really can't disagree with the results, which is visible minorities are now prevalent in the workplace.

By Tacoloft on 10/22/2008 3:40:06 PM , Rating: 5
Sorry, beg to differ...
Taken from the NOW website:
Affirmative action, the set of public policies and initiatives designed to help eliminate past and present discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin, is under attack.

Originally, civil rights programs were enacted to help African Americans become full citizens of the United States. The Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution made slavery illegal; the Fourteenth Amendment guarantees equal protection under the law; the Fifteenth Amendment forbids racial discrimination in access to voting. The 1866 Civil Rights Act guarantees every citizen "the same right to make and enforce contracts ... as is enjoyed by white citizens ... "
In 1896, the Supreme Court's decision in Plessy v. Ferguson upheld a "separate, but equal" doctrine that proved to be anything but equal for African Americans. The decision marked the end of the post-Civil War reconstruction era as Jim Crow laws spread across the South.
In 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed Executive Order 8802 which outlawed segregationist hiring policies by defense-related industries which held federal contracts. Roosevelt's signing of this order was a direct result of efforts by Black trade union leader, A. Philip Randolph.
During 1953 President Harry S. Truman's Committee on Government Contract Compliance urged the Bureau of Employment Security "to act positively and affirmatively to implement the policy of nondiscrimination . . . ."
The 1954 Supreme Court decision in Brown v. Board of Education overturned Plessy v. Ferguson.
The actual phrase "affirmative action" was first used in President John F. Kennedy's 1961 Executive Order 10925 which requires federal contractors to "take affirmative action to ensure that applicants are employed, and that employees are treated during employment, without regard to their race, creed, color, or national origin." The same language was later used in Lyndon Johnson's 1965 Executive Order 11246.
In 1967, Johnson expanded the Executive Order to include affirmative action requirements to benefit women.
Other equal protection laws passed to make discrimination illegal were the 1964 Civil Rights Act, Title II and VII of which forbid racial discrimination in "public accommodations" and race and sex discrimination in employment, respectively; and the 1965 Voting Rights Act adopted after Congress found "that racial discrimination in voting was an insidious and pervasive evil which had been perpetuated in certain parts of the country through unremitting and ingenious defiance of the Constitution."

So yeah, hippie democrats...

By FITCamaro on 10/23/2008 12:02:29 PM , Rating: 1
Very nice my good man.

By Ringold on 10/22/2008 6:37:23 PM , Rating: 3
so don't go blaming the 'hippy' democrats for everything like you usually do...

Tac responded, but I'd point out it's hard to tell that either party is the same party as those that existed prior to Carter. Carter, and the end of Vietnam, fundamentally changed everything. Making comparisons across those time periods is useless. Democrats, starting prior to the Civil War, were fierce advocates of free trade; it was an issue that precipitated the civil war. This year, by omission Democrats have killed 3 free trade agreements with staunch American allies, and look forward with glee to carrying on with their anti-trade agenda. See the futility?

Hell, the parties have even morphed quite a bit since the 90s.

By geddarkstorm on 10/23/2008 3:12:21 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, the two parties basically traded names during the years following the civil war, as their agendas totally reversed. It's an interesting study to see how they changed.

By Oregonian2 on 10/23/2008 6:29:28 PM , Rating: 2
This still happens even on a small daily scale. I forget what the big issue was, but there was one a year or two ago where the democrats vilified the republicans in the press for "how dare you have such a vile insensitive attitude" for the proposals the republicans were pushing for something. It was shot down. Then a couple months later, the Democrats quietly proposed and passed those very same identical things -- it was after all the sensible approach to the problem that was being solved. They tend to have the same ideas but play games in the press for taking credit or blame or both (although the press favors helping one side more than the other). Sometimes retroactively.

By JasonMick on 10/22/2008 10:29:20 AM , Rating: 1
I disagree. Recent studies have founded that nearly all young women play video games, as I recently wrote about

I think Brenda Brathwaite hit the nail on the head -- video game developers try to promote a frat-like atmosphere. It's true women don't want this, but I think they would probably be perfectly happy to do the real business that these companies are in -- making video games. Its a shame that companies fall into this sort of atmosphere, as they're losing real talent, men as well (not all men want to work in this kind of atmosphere, either, i.e. those with families).

I think in time this trend will shift and you will see more women in the industry, just as you today see more women in the general software and hardware industry than 20 years ago.

By FITCamaro on 10/22/2008 10:41:17 AM , Rating: 5
It's not a matter of playing video games. It's a matter of getting the education to make them. Female enrollment in CS programs, while yes higher than it used to be, is very low. Now art and music majors yes women have a higher interest in. But few want to sit and program all day.

By austinag on 10/22/2008 12:18:23 PM , Rating: 2
FIT has hit on an excellent way of judging gender equality in hiring practices: if college or adult education enrollment for a career path is 80% male 20% female it makes no sense to expect that employer to hire 50% of each gender.

By CloudFire on 10/28/2008 9:18:47 AM , Rating: 2
i agree. if you go to a major university campus and into a CS class or engineering class, you'll see a vast majority of males. i attend UC Davis in california, and the CS classes here are roughly 195 males, and 5 females in a 200 capacity class. no joke.

By jadeskye on 10/22/2008 10:44:27 AM , Rating: 1
i agree jason. it's just going to take time to thin out the male dominated aspect of the industry and women will occupy as much of the system as men.

I think we'll know we're there when at E3 we don't just have scantily clad women/sexy cosplay girls. we also have scantily clad men and Cloud/sephiroth cosplayers :p

By MatthiasF on 10/22/2008 10:53:09 AM , Rating: 2
I stopped going to E3 because of the women. If they have buff men in barely any clothing, I'm pretty sure it'll scare off even more people.

How about we just agree to no sexual exploitation at all?

By FITCamaro on 10/22/2008 12:23:32 PM , Rating: 4
Because that's boring.

By robinthakur on 10/24/2008 5:11:21 AM , Rating: 2
Well, basically the cosplayers and scantily clad girls are there to add some adult level of entertainment to keep the majority of visitors (i.e. adult hetero men) happy and allowing them to look past the fact that the majority of games are made for teenagers/kids. Putting hot semi-clad men on display, whilst it will diversify the market to adult women and gay guys going to the show is completely unnecessary and superfluous. These elements are already in the market, they just don't necessarily want to work in the industry for what ever reason, and this will start to change as the games industry becomes more and more analygous to the music and movies industry than it already is.

Bottom line is that if the industry is boring to you without these added cheap thrills, then maybe you should find a new one. Maybe hire the girls and the guys to present but just keep them more clothed or professional looking. There's nothing wrong with sexual exploitation as long as its done tastefully ;)

By SavagePotato on 10/27/2008 9:51:05 AM , Rating: 2
At least cliffyb would be happy with the buff men, and hey maybe celebrity guests like John Travolta would stop by and make it a star studded event, pun intended.

By the goat on 10/22/2008 11:01:33 AM , Rating: 2
I disagree. Recent studies have founded that nearly all young women play video games, as I recently wrote about. . .

Why do you bring this up? I never said anything about women not playing games. I only discussed women wanting to get a job in the game industry. There is no connection between the two.

Why would playing a video game make somebody want to join that industry? I drive my truck every day. I have no desire to work in a truck factory. I eat food every day I don't want to be a farmer. I wear clothes every day I don't want to be a tailor. etc. etc.

By omnicronx on 10/22/2008 12:13:52 PM , Rating: 2
There is no connection between the two.
Yes, there is.. One being interested in the field they work in has everything to do with woman wanting to join the industry. You don't see too many people going to medical school that don't want to treat patients or illness, or many computer programmers that are not interested in computers, or perhaps a teacher that does not like kids(yes they do exist, but you get my point).

The most productive workers are usually those that genuinely enjoy working in their chosen industry, and as such, I can draw the conclusion that a woman that plays video games is more likely to want to join the video game industry.

By MatthiasF on 10/22/2008 1:20:48 PM , Rating: 2
While I admire you fighting the good fight, I think you're being a bit too idealistic.

There are doctors that want to become a doctor to be wealthy. There are computer programmers that went into the field because they were good at it, and not because they loved computers. And yes, there are teachers who do not like children (and I'm pretty sure I had one). There are productive workers that are working at jobs of which they have no great passion.

The real issues revolve around the gaming industry being relatively young and limited exposure of games to women up until recently.

So, the tide will certainly come in when all the young ladies playing games today decide they want to make games too. We as consumers need to make sure this macho culture described is eliminated if we want more women in the industry.

I for one do, since I was a huge fan of several games that had female game designers (Witcher for one).

By the goat on 10/22/2008 1:56:19 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, there is.. One being interested in the field they work in has everything to do with woman wanting to join the industry.

What you are saying makes absolutely no sense. Using a product and wanting to make/design that same product have no relation to each other.

By your logic I can say, women talk on the telephone more then men. Therefore the majority of telephone engineers must be women. But that is clearly not the case. The majority of telephone engineers in the real world are men. This is because engineering jobs appeal to men more then women. There is no conspiracy.

By Hieyeck on 10/22/2008 1:11:23 PM , Rating: 2
Of COURSE they're trying a frat-like atmosphere. Women QQ too much and Brenda is a perfect example. Crying and whining doesn't get anyone anywhere. You wanna hire more women? Demand half the room and get male strippers. Anything ingenious that women do, men will just flip and copy without hesitation. Anything igenious that men do, and all women do is cry about it.

Get jaded enough about life and EVERYONE realizes this - my friend works for a medium business, who's managers are instructed not to hire women, because the CEO thinks women cause too much drama. Before you feminists go crying about sexism, the CEO is a woman.

By Spuke on 10/22/2008 1:31:22 PM , Rating: 2
Before you feminists go crying about sexism, the CEO is a woman.
That would actually still be considered sexism, woman or not. And the managers have a duty to report her.

By omnicronx on 10/22/2008 1:55:42 PM , Rating: 2
For all we know she just wants to have all the men to herself.
Hell if I was a CEO, i'd hire all woman ;) It would give office parties an entirely new meaning =D

By robinthakur on 10/24/2008 5:15:31 AM , Rating: 2
lol since lots of women in close proximity every day tend to adjust their periods unconsciously to match each others', you run the risk of all of them getting pregnant nearly simultaneously and there being a tumbleweed blowing through the office whilst they're all off on maternity leave lol. There's no delicate way for a manager to suggest that Tracey only gets pregant once Brenda has come back from leave (if she ever wants to come back)

By MrTeal on 10/26/2008 11:51:19 AM , Rating: 2
You realize there's other factors involved in getting pregnant, not just the timing of a woman's period, correct?

By Hieyeck on 10/22/2008 3:40:31 PM , Rating: 2
Don't report her, and she gets what she wants.

Report her and you prove her point because her direction is causing all that drama. She still wins.

You, good sir, lose. Clearly you don't work in IT, or haven't for long. You lack that cynical logic.

(PS. I SHOULD mention, that her sales and support force are entirely women aka human interaction jobs. You're damn right it's sexist, but it's sexism backed up with ten thousand years of evolution.)

By CascadingDarkness on 10/23/2008 2:15:45 PM , Rating: 2
I completely agree with you with one note about that study to point out. 12 to 17

The huge increase in women gamers has yet to reach the level of post college (or even starting college, CS level), where they could be getting game development jobs.

Not sure how no one else caught this, but maybe none of you were looking for a 20+ girlfriend gamer. (Damn high school guys have it easy)

By jlips6 on 10/22/2008 5:10:37 PM , Rating: 2
My sister has shared revelations with me of her personal experience in learning to program.(She learned after she left for college) She felt that even if there were people who encouraged her, there was a larger number of people who discouraged her, both directly and through implication. (Mostly through implication.) She said that among her female friends as well there was discouragement, and an attitude along the lines of:
"Can girls really do that?" or:
"Why would you want to do that?"
I have no doubt this would vary depending on your friends.

your post is correct (in my opinion), and it was refreshingly straight-forward and not biased by being politically correct. regardless it does not detract from the relevance of the article, because while biology is one thing, society and psychology is another.

By AlexWade on 10/22/2008 10:10:54 PM , Rating: 2
There are certain jobs that there are a majority of women in. And that is fine. But why is nobody asking why there are not more men in those areas? The real question we should be asking is why are we trying to make a square peg fit in a round hole? Men and women are different and have different strengths and different weaknesses. Focus on what you are good at, minimize what you are bad at. Apparently the PC crowd would rather force people into doing something they neither like nor are good at just because it is politically correct.

By Oregonian2 on 10/23/2008 6:48:30 PM , Rating: 2
When I was in EE school (admittedly not recently) my sophomore EE class had several hundred men and one woman who dropped out or changed majors before graduation along with about half of the men. Those hiring would have a bit of trouble if they were forced to hire equal numbers of men and women Elec. Engineers from my school back then -- it was 100% male.

By kkwst2 on 10/24/2008 4:36:52 PM , Rating: 2
It is not sexiest to realize...

Freudian slip? I like make sexy time.


By Operandi on 10/27/2008 1:40:37 PM , Rating: 2
Are there really that many differences or dose society just tell them they are different?

I'm not saying you are wrong (or right), just putting another perspective on it.

I'm a girl.
By jadeskye on 10/22/2008 10:39:37 AM , Rating: 4
I'm a girl of 20 working for EA in england.

Yes it's pretty obvious to everyone that the gaming industry is male dominated but i really think the female populace is increasing all the time.

I know some girls (including myself) that could whoop pretty much everybody at call of duty 4. We can play just as well as the boys ^_^

i just think a lot of girls don't see it as either a viable career, or they don't want to be in a male dominated industry or they enjoying playing too much to do it as a job.

my 2 cents.

RE: I'm a girl.
By FITCamaro on 10/22/08, Rating: 0
RE: I'm a girl.
By amanojaku on 10/22/2008 12:02:59 PM , Rating: 2
Nearly every industry is male dominated. You want to change the gender you need to put more women into the field. The number of American women in executive positions has increased as the number of women in the work force increased. Additionally, women are taking on more characteristics considered to be success factors for males: assertive, driven, and unyielding.

As to tech work being a viable career, how is that different from any other industry? Plenty of people start in a crappy field and work their way up to something society considers worthwhile. I say society because I know plenty of people happy with a job as a waiter or janitor. I didn't get it until I saw unhappy CEO's with $20M/year salaries. Do what you love and you'll go far; that's how I went from a Burger King job to enterprise IT consultant in less than 10 years.

RE: I'm a girl.
By Ringold on 10/22/2008 7:19:02 PM , Rating: 2
Additionally, women are taking on more characteristics considered to be success factors for males: assertive, driven, and unyielding.

I'm not sure why this news item is surprising or even revelatory. Thomas Sowell, and other economists, have studied the issue, made a little buzz about it, and in the circles I run in at least this question of why women are not in fields like this has been settled. Women have babies. Tough luck, that's just how we evolved. Because of this social responsibility that men have the ability to relatively easy shirk, and the social pressure on men to provide for families, men are more willing to go in to technical fields. By technical I mean fields that need constant improvement or maintenance of skills. Women lean to other fields with no such requirement, like education. Why? Simple. Men expect to work basically non-stop until retirement or death. Women have had, for ages, to expect to take long stretches of time off work to raise children. If a video game programmer took 3-4 years off to raise children and didn't keep up with his skills, he'd be screwed. If a woman did the same but was a teacher, she could get right back in to work. Teaching doesn't change.

But as women leave the traditional roles and expectations of them (and birth rates collapse), as you point out, this changes. Slowly. Why slowly? I don't know, I do economics, not psychology, but I'd point to the fact that some people would interpret those same qualities as being a bitch. I don't, I love women with fire, but you know others do.

All the above also explains slight wage inequality. Studies have shown that professional, childless women with PhD's make more and get promoted faster than equivalent childless professional men with PhD's. So when the playing field is level, inequality actually reverses.

So even 50 years from now, if you come to me and say with shock there still aren't as many female quantum engineers or whatever is hot at that time, I'd still not be surprised.

RE: I'm a girl.
By robinthakur on 10/24/2008 5:39:03 AM , Rating: 2
Although nobody tells you this at school, some people find that money does actually make them happy ;) Its a bit of a stereotype to reference the $20million CEO who is unhappy with life. Maybe he was unhappy that he's being paid in dollars, who knows? Its unlikely he'd be any happier with having to flip burgers in a McJob once the novelty of dealing with a non-white, non-english speaking workforce wears off.

RE: I'm a girl.
By Raidin on 10/24/2008 5:45:01 PM , Rating: 2
that's how I went from a Burger King job to enterprise IT consultant in less than 10 years.

Dude! I like, did that in under 3 years! Beat that!

*hands you the controller*

So if women are a small fraction of the industry...
By Fenixgoon on 10/22/2008 10:35:05 AM , Rating: 2
Does it really come to surprise that men make more money on average?

After all, fewer women total means fewer women to occupy higher positions, meaning their average salary will be lower than the men's average.

No to mention, as far as math/science abilities go, men typically occupy the extremities more than women do. The average stays the same, but the distribution is different (this was in some standardized testing assessment a few months ago, IIRC).

By tjr508 on 10/23/2008 11:09:39 AM , Rating: 2
After all, fewer women total means fewer women to occupy higher positions, meaning their average salary will be lower than the men's average.

Wow, just wow. That's bad logic on a political scale. You need to run for office.

By Fenixgoon on 10/24/2008 12:20:57 AM , Rating: 2
bad logic? it's called probability and statistics.

and no, i'd never make it to a political office because i'd actually use logic and facts. it's a problem that comes along with being an engineer.

By tjr508 on 10/24/2008 2:21:39 AM , Rating: 2
You used the word average. If there are 100 men in low positions and 10 in high, and 10 women in low positions and 1 in a high one, the averages are unaffected. Perhaps you need to choose another career field. It's really not that complicated.

By Fenixgoon on 10/24/2008 2:45:49 AM , Rating: 1
how do you compute that average?

do you do a number average? (sum of N*M / sum of N)
weighted average? (sum of N*M^2 / sum of N*M)
Z-average? (sum of N^2 *M^3 / sum of N*M^2... IIRC)

each of those is an average and will give you a different number.

and of course, low and high are relative. how low is low, how high is high? are there distributions of in the low and high ranges? you also assume that for every N males there are X females in the same position, and for every A persons in the high position there are B persons in the low position. chances are this isn't the case in the real world.

By robinthakur on 10/24/2008 5:26:06 AM , Rating: 2
Is that why my female counterparts operating at my level in management, who joined at the same time as me and are just as qualified make far less? There's a reason you are banned from discussing pay scales...!

Whilst I'd also like to say that its purely down to statistics, I highly doubt it. Employers are purely factoring in the fact that most of the women in the work force will likely have maternity leave at some point and all the training etc. will leave the company. I see nothing wrong with that really. It seems far fairer than any alternative i've seen, assuming that women want to go on having babies and keep replenishing the human race. The last ticme I checked, you needed a man to get pregnant (barring A.I. for the tiny minority) so why not expect the man to take some responsibility for underwriting the child's welfare?!?

The only time its unfair is for women who consciously do NOT want to have children, but then all women are told to declare this in the interview these days whenever its raised so it doesn't hold a huge amount of water.

Affirmative Action
By monitorjbl on 10/22/2008 12:44:43 PM , Rating: 2
Personally, I've never found the principles of gender equality to based in reality. Yes, men and women are of equal worth, and are (usually) of equal intelligence. I would go so far as to say that the two are equal overall . But, and this is a rather large but, men and women are not equal at everything . Men are physically constructed differently, guided by evolution to be (again, usually) stronger and faster than women. Women are, of course, better physically suited for childbirth and rearing. Studies show that female brains generally work better with topics involving emotion and subjective opinion than a male's. And similar studies show that males are generally better at topics involving hard data and objective opinion. And please pardon the rather simplistic examples, I've just gotten out of a horrible exam, and my brain is partially melted.

The long and short of this is that men and women are NOT the same, are not necessarily equal in EVERY field, but OVERALL men and women come out to be the same. There are areas that women are better at than men, and vice versa. Affirmative action isn't aware of this, and though it is still necessary (sadly), I would hope that most people are aware of the limitations it places on employers.

Oh, and I swear to the gods that be, if someone replies to this with something like, "Well, I know a girl that graduated top of her class in Computer Science...," I will hunt you down and beat you; I've been talking in generalizations for a reason.

RE: Affirmative Action
By MatthiasF on 10/22/2008 1:09:19 PM , Rating: 2
No one argues that men and women are equal. We argue for equal rights.

If a woman grows to be a valid candidate for a position, she should get the same consideration, respect and pay as a male counterpart in the same position.

This is not some "grand feminist conspiracy" (although there are some women who take this way too seriously). It is an extension of capitalistic democracy.

Variety of perspective has a great deal of advantages. We should all strive to make sure a great mind can get into a position to do great works and not be held back by bigotry.

RE: Affirmative Action
By monitorjbl on 10/22/2008 2:06:28 PM , Rating: 2
I would agree with everything you just said, but affirmative action requires quotas to be filled with respect to gender as well as race. It isn't designed for equal rights, it's to enforce equality across the board, which is just plain stupid in some cases.

RE: Affirmative Action
By MatthiasF on 10/22/2008 5:25:15 PM , Rating: 1
The only way to fight bigotry is to let the bigot get to know those they unfairly judge and realize they're wrong.

Since bigots are rarely open to challenging their stereotypes, something has to be done to force the issue.

Affirmative action is a way of forcing this interaction and will hopefully make itself obsolete after a generation or two.

The first generation is mixing into the workforce now, so statistics like discussed above is helpful to see how we should tailor the quotas to help the next generation and eventually decide on when we can stop to watch nature take it's course.

RE: Affirmative Action
By FITCamaro on 10/23/2008 12:09:15 PM , Rating: 2
Actually women are generally faster as they're genearlly smaller. Men maybe able to be stronger than women. But speed doesn't just rely on strength.

Studies show that female brains generally work better with topics involving emotion

Watch that new movie Quarantine and you might think differently. God I was glad that chick didn't survive. :)

I will get dinged but..
By Expunge on 10/22/2008 11:12:30 AM , Rating: 2
it has to be said.. :)

The stereotype of the industry as a man’s atmosphere also received support in the past through the Electronic Entertainment Expo. This trade show, the biggest of the gaming industry, used to be known for its costumed "booth babes", who were eventually banned from the shows in 2006, in effort to help break the stereotype.

This was a sad, sad day when E3 made this decision, and suprisingly E3 has never recovered.

You cannot deny what everyone knows, sex sells. We see it in all aspects of our society, from magazines, to advertising, to TV shows and everything else.

Suprisingly this also applies to why women choose to shun this career path. You throw a decent looking woman into a pack of programming nerd geeks.. well to say it is a distraction is putting it mildly. To say the woman will be harrassed by said non-social society is a given.

They are not going to put up with that type of behavior and they shouldn't.

Being in the IT field let me finish by saying I would love to see more "qualified" women in my field. I know they can be a benefit not only professionally but socially, unfortunately the inner geeks in most of us IT folk tend to not give them a chance or run them off.

RE: I will get dinged but..
By kyleb2112 on 10/22/2008 3:14:44 PM , Rating: 2
I'd be happy to see the booth babes go. At one point they were using retired porn stars at SIGGRAPH. The resulting huge lines of horny, middle-aged geeks eager for their five seconds of fluff girl attention left me disgusted. If you need a T&A fix, go to a strip club. They're better at it.

RE: I will get dinged but..
By MatthiasF on 10/22/2008 5:40:40 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed. I stopped going to E3 after I noticed some booth girls with body paint. This kinda thing with booze on the floor created quite a few awkward situations.

Funny thing is...
By TomCorelis on 10/22/2008 1:45:53 PM , Rating: 2
...among the social group I hang out with, a considerable portion attend the video-game development program at the Art Institute in San Diego. Among those people, about half of them are women.

RE: Funny thing is...
By TomCorelis on 10/22/2008 1:47:33 PM , Rating: 2
One thing I have noticed, however, is that then women in the videogame industry tend to gravitate towards the art side of things. The actual number of videogame programmers that are female, I think, is really just a reflection of the male-dominated programming industry as a whole.

How about games like Guitar Hero???
By sixeight on 10/22/2008 8:12:42 PM , Rating: 2
Games such as Guitar Hero, I think, really get the entire crowd involved. It seems like there was a gap from the days of Mario Cart to now. I think the industry is trying to get the entire crowd involved a little bit more...I know a girl that can really play some Guitar Hero.

By piroroadkill on 10/23/2008 9:36:42 AM , Rating: 2
Women playing games is nothing new at all, this is about women in games programming

By MatthiasF on 10/22/2008 10:47:44 AM , Rating: 2
The 12% difference mentioned above is pretty good considering only 3% of game programmers are women and a majority of the higher paying jobs in the industry are game programmers. This disparity is most likely heavily skewing the averages.

I wonder how the averages compare if the game programming incomes were pulled out.

By adiposity on 10/24/2008 5:01:02 PM , Rating: 2
Why is there an assumption that women are less likely to work in an environment where there are strippers??? That's a sexist statement. Men and women should be able to equally enjoy strippers.


Vanity holds back the female numbers
By daar on 10/25/2008 12:04:34 AM , Rating: 2
Most girls would drop out of comp. sci if they were offered even a low paying modeling job on the spot. I've witnessed it happen to one of my best friends, who I had respected a lot because for a long time she snubbed her nose at girls dressing scantily to oogling guys and pursuing intellectual things. Turns out, she enjoyed the attention just as much but had sour grapes of not being popular in high school.

It's stereotypical, but in fields like this, the only way to get more girls is if the general consensus among them is that it's cool and fashionably smart or something along the lines of that. I don't know how that'll happen, I'd tell them they're awesome if enjoy programming, but really, they don't care about hearing that from nerds like me. The girls that fill up in gaming arts, it's not really because they're really into gaming, it's mainly cause they want to tell their friends they are artists for a living, not a game designer.

That part about a girl asking if they're even able to program sounds made up...every girl I've met believes they are just as capable, if not superior, to guys in everything except in areas of physical strength. I don't doubt this, I find it entirely possible. But vanity will hold back the numbers. I know many guys who will go into a field fully knowing they won't have many friends or will be considered by some to be nerds/losers/etc, the number of females I've met willing to do the same is very small.

It's just that guys and girls have different basic priorities in life, in fact, I know most guys would absolutely LOVE to have more girls in their programming classes and would welcomed with open arms. If there's any work to be done socially to get more females into these fields, it will have to come from their side. Or maybe if guys like Zac Efron say they find female programmers to be hot.

a few "quick" points
By senbassador on 10/27/08, Rating: 0
So we can thank women..
By Reclaimer77 on 10/23/08, Rating: -1
RE: So we can thank women..
By AssBall on 10/24/2008 6:55:59 AM , Rating: 2
Right, because one of the most successfully selling franchises in video game history is a "craptastic waste".

What a moronic comment.

"Google fired a shot heard 'round the world, and now a second American company has answered the call to defend the rights of the Chinese people." -- Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.)
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