This morning, a link to this article appeared in my Twitter feed. (Warning: some of the replies to that Tweet are pretty rage-inducing. Click at your own risk. The article doesn’t have comments, and is fairly well written, although there is one small issue I have with it, which you will see below.)
Because sexism and gaming and the current culture surrounding both is something I care about, I read the article. I found myself nodding, agreeing. This was a good, reasonable argument written by one of the few men I’ve seen willing to speak out about something so pervasive that a whole lot of people don’t even see anything wrong.
Then, I got to the end of the article and my eyes rolled so hard they almost got stuck that way. I don’t normally read Rock Paper Shotgun. I avoid gaming sites on purpose for two reasons: 1) I don’t have the time or monetary resources to game enough that I need to be kept up to date on upcoming releases. And 2) the usual culture on gaming sites is so boobs-and-guns-and-more-boobs that I got jaded a long, long (long) time ago.
Being web-minded myself, I realize that “related posts” type algorithms don’t have the best logic sometimes. Computers are incredibly smart, but they can also be pretty dumb. So I’ll say right off: I don’t blame RPS for this section appearing at the end of their article.
No, I pretty much just chalk this up to the prevalence of the shit that women have to deal with on a daily basis. When I reached the end of the article, this is what I saw:
Let me blow that up for you a bit:
That’s right. 4 out of 5 “More From the Web” links on an article about misogyny and how we must continue to rail against it are links to things that contribute to the problem the article is talking about.
Again, I realize this is a screwed up computer programming thing and not at all the fault of RPS or the author of the article, but this proves the problem! Even our computers see an article about sexism and figure we probably want to read about swimsuit issues, shaving pubic hair, and brothels.
This is is a sign that something is deeply wrong with us.