I spoke on this before, but the issue seems to need re-addressing with extra REEEEEEE because y’all are determined to make this a regular conversation.
Ninja went on record as saying that he chooses to avoid streaming with girls at all in consideration of his marriage and wishes to avoid clickbait articles, rumors, and general nonsense. You can read the article from Polygon here. The salient quote out of this whole thing being:
“If I have one conversation with one female streamer where we’re playing with one another, and even if there’s a hint of flirting, that is going to be taken and going to be put on every single video and be clickbait forever”
Unfortunately when you have things like this happening, this quote from him can be taken as a “general fact of the internet” where stupid things like this happen.
As a male-dominated gaming culture, we see women on Twitch or in the gaming community as thots, boob streamers, or some other thing other than their name instead of… ya know… women who purchased a game and a console they wanted to play it on and enjoy with other people.
Various people have put forth their thoughts on this subject matter on both sides and I’ll share two, then my own thoughts.
Ninja is out here afraid that any and all women gamers are trying to bed him/spread rumors about him and ruin his marriage because we don’t want to talk about how DrDisRespect legit was praised as ‘the greatest’ and cheated on his wife ‘not thinking.’
— Try Hard Waifu (@MsTwstd) August 12, 2018
When Sam and I got together, some of my viewers harassed not only him but his mother and sisters. I remember sobbing on a plane because I felt so terrible for the way he and his loved ones were being treated.
— Dodger 🏳️🌈 (@dexbonus) August 11, 2018
As for my own thoughts, I’ll try to be fair in my rage distribution. Let’s get my thoughts on Ninja’s statement out of the way.
Do I think he’s wrong? No, I don’t. I think he’s behaving in a way that makes sense given the environment he’s in. However, I wish that, rather than deciding to avoid the issue, he would take the influence he has to combat that tide. I understand that is a lot of asking, but I ask no more of him than I would ask anyone who wields influence and attention on the level he does.
That’s the thing here: we’re not critiquing him for being human, we are critiquing his use of the limelight that he’s in and a lot of people are missing that very valid point.
What would he use that limelight to address? That would be my next point.
THIS SUCKS FOR EVERYONE
As I’ve said, the decision in and of itself isn’t the problem. The problem is the culture which makes that decision necessary. Women are out here on twitch trying to stream and enjoy games with their friends, but the moment you play a game with a woman, this stupid happens.
I wish he had used his voice to address this, but I suppose I’ll have to do. These women aren’t here to jump your bones. They’re just out here playing Overwatch and being angry that Mercy got nerfed for heals but didn’t get any mobility. Women are out here reading the Riot patch notes and wondering why Yasuo got 100% more damage scaling with his Q. Women are out here world-building for D&D.
They aren’t soliciting us, but we act like they are. We act like the worst thing that could happen is someone shipping us with the ladies we game with (but somehow are perfectly OK with bromance?… but also not OK with gay people?)…
… but also, why are we shipping people? I see women in my office, in traffic, at the grocery store, at the movies, at the bowling alley. Pardon my necessary language here, but are we actually fucking all of these people? Are even a single one of these women even up for that?
Let me answer that: no. No they aren’t. We are trying to get coffee, get home, get groceries, and probably cuddle with people who we are dating OR trying to play games. Every woman everywhere who might have a male streamer they aspire to meet? Hang out with? Play with? This is a blow against that whole string of aspirations because, as a male-dominated gaming culture, we see women on Twitch or in the gaming community as thots, boob streamers, or some other thing other than their name instead of… ya know… women who purchased a game and a console they wanted to play it on and enjoy with other people.
If we’re being honest about this landscape, streamers are well able to destroy their relationships without playing with any lady gamers if they want to and that simply comes back to honoring the commitments and vows you’ve made instead of acting like an animal just because we know bro-culture and society in general will have our back when we do.
Let’s become better so that maybe one day, girls and guys can just play games. Together.