Hundreds of game developers were moved into silence at GDC’s #1ReasonToBe session today as powerful written statements were displayed depicting the experiences of a number of women in games and how they feel in the industry.
Veteran designer Brenda Romero called out the hate campaigns that have plagued the industry in the last year, and said many people had been stunned into silence, while others had even left the industry altogether as a result.
"If you’ve wondered why they aren’t here, it’s probably because they can’t be," she said, adding this was due to fear or being told not to discuss the issues openly.
A series of powerful, short statements from those affected by sexism and internet hate campaigns were then flashed up on the TV screens, moving the audience into complete silence.
Statements included: "Just because it didn’t happen to you doesn’t mean harassment is non-existent".
"Read the comments, pretend they are talking about your daughter."
"I avoid all opportunities to be on camera or interviewed because I am terrified of the harassment that might ensue."
"I just want to make games, I Just Want To Make Games. I JUST WANT TO MAKE GAMES."
"When does it stop?"
"I’m not going away."
Following the statements, Romero said: "These are brave people and those are some heartbreaking stories."
The statements resulted in a standing ovation from the audience – a mix of men and women from all backgrounds.
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