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Re: should these be reworded?

On Thu, Jul 24, 2008 at 03:22:00PM -0600, Monique Y. Mudama wrote:
> On 2008-07-24, Kevin Mark penned:
> >
> > "Our priority is our users" might have originally been "Our priority
> > is our male users", not that I think Dev's did it intentionally. So
> > any attempt to add a 'wishlist' feature in a way that makes our
> > software more inclusive of 'all' of our users, sounds like a great
> > suggestion.  And anything that does not 'heat the coffee of the
> > cabal' aka invoke flamewars is a good approach. I did not mean to
> > single-out magicmaze, it was just something that crossed my view and
> > sparked the idea. So thanks for the great feedback.
> Warning -- rambling post without concrete answers to follow.
> This is a difficult issue.  If games in general provided a greater
> variety of protagonists, we probably wouldn't be bothered by the few
> that didn't.  One game having a male protagonist isn't a big deal;
> (almost) all of them having a male protagonist is more problematic.
> Then there is a question of how best to spend development time.  If
> the game wasn't written to accomodate multiple protagonists, it may be
> a large (and potentially tedious) effort to add them.  How many users,
> potential or current, will benefit from the effort?  Can that even be
> measured?
> And what does it mean to have female protagonists?  Are the behaviors
> exactly the same as the male protagonist, just with a different body?
> Or do they change, and if so, how?  And if they change, will the
> resulting changes come across as realistic and correct, or patronizing
> and sexist?  Different people might have different answers.
> > Could a suggestion to: "make your software more inclusive of
> > different users based upon gender, race, etc. when possible" sound
> > too forcefull?  -Kev
> As a feature request for particular games, I think it's great to
> submit feedback that you'd like to have more options -- especially if
> you can frame it in terms of people who would actually change their
> behavior based on the change.  In other words, it may be a bit empty
> to suggest that the developers should make changes to their game just
> in case some women would be more likely to play, or feel happier
> playing a game they already play, or because in a nebulous way having
> a female option would make all gamers more aware of gender issues.
> Something more concrete, like "my daughter is interested in your game,
> but is put off by the lack of a character with whom she can identify"?
> Or even better, "I'm a man, but I like to play female characters
> sometimes; I find that enhances the replayability of games for
> me."  I think some number of men might be tempted to submit a feature
> request for an attractive female protagonist, in the case of a
> non-first person view.
> And of course, you have to be careful what you wish for =)  A lot of
> female characters are portrayed in ways that make some women wince.
> Is the adjustable breast size in Age Of Conan a step forward or
> backward in society's perceptions of women?  I'm not sure there's a
> simple answer.
> So ultimately, while I think the intention of having greater variety
> in gaming protagonists is a great idea, I wonder if it's not a more
> complicated request than it seems at first blush.  And I don't think
> it belongs in any Debian developer guide ...
> But, I'm just a random Debian user, not anyone with authority =)

Thanks for the thoughtful answer. It certainly bringings up more
questions. Hopefully one game in Debian can have a female character that
is not a bad steriotype.
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