Women in eSports

Sachgau, Oliver. “Being a woman in eSports is still an uphill battle.” Thestar.com, 27 Mar. 2016, www.thestar.com/business/tech_news/2016/03/27/being-a-woman-in-esports-is-still-an-uphill-battle.html.

In this article in the star, it features a woman in sudbury named Jennifer Pichette, she is a female gamer and commentator. She speaks of the difficulties she has come across when working as a woman in a male dominated field.

 

Hayes, Elizabeth. Women, Video Gaming and Learning: Beyond Stereotypes. Vol. 48, TechTrends.

This peer reviewed article puts an emphasis on gender stereotypes in the gaming industry. It examines theories about gender differences in digital gaming and making assumptions that women and girls want to shop, talk, dress up or play nice instead of  also enjoy beating up monsters, driving fast cars, saving the world, getting a lot of gold and winning the game.


Episode Pitch Transcript

Esports. It’s a global industry that grows day by day. Whether or not you’ve heard of it, – esports has grown rapidly in terms of viewership and events held per year. The global esports audience was estimated to reach 385.5 million in 2017 with global esports awareness reaching upwards of 1.8 billion by 2020. This massive industry is led mostly by three giant gaming industries, Riot Games, Valve and Blizzard Entertainment. Blizzard’s newest game Overwatch, an FPS with a cast of diverse and interesting characters launched the Overwatch League, a professional esports league modeled after traditional physical sports organizations. Overwatch is arguably the most relevant esports title of 2017-2018, its large player base of roughly 25 million people, and its experimentation with traditional sports models puts it right in the forefront and makes it the model for all esports. Overwatch is setting a grand example for how the massive empire that is eports will grow. With that in mind, how then will the fact that the professional overwatch league didn’t sign a single female player to one of their twelve teams, set the scene for the future of esports? I wasn’t the only one wondering, an opinion piece on Mashable criticizes that Overwatch's premier esports league has launched without a single female player. It focus’ on one of the biggest female names in the Overwatch community, Geguri, and claims she was excluded specifically because of her gender. The article is filled with quotes from people in the professional league such as the Houston Outlaws general manager, Matt Rodriguez, who says,  “You have to go through all these hurdles, like if you pick up a player, is the press gonna call it a PR stunt, or is it because she was the best?” 

My name is Kerigan Beairsto, I am a nineteen year old female that has played video games all her life. It started with the PS1 and Spyro, then Call of Duty, than Destiny and a million after and in between, Then overwatch came into my life, and I was captured by the sheer amount of female representation in their characters, it was something I simply hadn’t seen before. I both actively play overwatch and watch the overwatch league, so when I saw that no female players were signed onto the first year of the overwatch league... I simply had to wonder why. Is this yet another place the evil spirit of sexism has slithered its way into, or is it simply just coincidence? Did it just so happen that the most skilled players in the industry were all men due to the fact that there are just more men that play these games? And what does this say about women’s future in eSports as a whole? That’s what I am here to dig into. I am eager for answers and well connected enough to the gaming community to see what everyone else thinks. Let’s play.