#1ReasonWhy: Game Communities and the Invisible Woman

Author/Creator ORCID





Citation of Original Publication

Blodgett, B. M., & Salter, A. (2014). # 1ReasonWhy: Game communities and the Invisible Woman. Foundations of Digital Games, 1-8.



As Cliff Bleszinski [6] states in his blog post the video game community has its own type of religious police charged with enforcing a doctrine regarding gender representation within the gaming community. From the difficulties faced by Anita Skareesian to the resignation of Jennifer Hepler, women who are visible within the industry regularly face threats from the very people who claim to be their entertainment comrades. With the rise of the #1ReasonWhy hashtag on Twitter in 2012, the experiences of women who aren’t in gaming community’s spotlight were also brought to the forefront. This paper uses a thematic analysis of tweets made between November 26th - 29th in the #1ReasonWhy to examine how the explicit and implicit threats of violence, rape, and harassment have manifested within the working world of game development. Through examination of these tweets the authors will show how these threats both from the general gaming community and inside the office workspace shape the experiences of women and continue the decades long cycle of limited participation by women. The authors point out how the cultural dialogue about the potential good games offer to our society may be outweighed by the hostile community climate which places those who could benefit most at risk.