I’m asking the World of Warcraft community (or one of them) to provide me with their definitions of feminism and feminists.
Let me bust out the soapbox real quick.
I can appreciate how much time and effort this has taken. The person who writes this blog also performs a game show of sorts based on her findings. That’s a lot of work.
But I don’t think is this going to prove anything, and here’s why:
World of Warcraft is not an accurate representation of how people really are or what they really think. When you go into a game where there is full anonymity, people tend to say whatever they want - many times it is things they would never say in front of their friends, family, or even a complete stranger if it were face-to-face. WoW’s trade chat is a prime example that people can and will say the most absurd things because there are little to no consequences, which is why people will incite political, religious, racial, and gender flame wars. This is why a lot of these screen grabs feature ridiculous commentary like “Well all you really need to know is pregnant kitchen dish’s [sic], naked, masturbate, shaven, and solid firm titties.”
It does not mean they legitimately believe these things and are just now saying them because there is anonymity. It means they are being dumb. Some of these people know you are trying to be serious and they are fucking with you.
It’s a good bet that if you took these same people and conducted the study where they could not hide behind an avatar, you would not hear these kinds of responses. It also must be considered that in a (young) male-dominated game, asking for serious responses about feminism is like jumping into a shark tank while wearing a meat dress.
There are similar issues in every internet community because of anonymity. It’s not so much a WoW-specific problem as it is an anonymous internet community problem.
I really do appreciate efforts by women such as this blogger to start a discussion about gender. Obviously it is something that will always warrant discussion. I just don’t think this method is the best way to go about it.