Blog Post #5

A visitor to this year's Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles plays a demo of "Warframe" at the Sony Playstation 4 booth.

This I sadly our last week of blog post and we’re ending it with world gaming for social change. This topic is controversial to me, I have mixed feelings on it. I have much respect for all those who game, You Go! But I guess being a 90’s baby I still don’t understand and fully support that kids/parents/families spend most of their time inside and stuck on a screen rather than out enjoying something else. Anyways something that did catch my attention and even though I don’t game it got me to want to support gamers was threatening negativity towards female gamers! In Chris Suellentrop’s article of Can Video Games Survive?, he mentions of a campaign called GamerGate who has nothing to do but to target and put down women who game or want to make a change in female portrayal in videogames. It upset me reading that two of the three women who received recognition in the gaming world had to flee there homes for receiving threats. Suellentrop also mentioned a woman who had to cancel her speech at a university on a threat of a mass shooting if she spoke. I find this beyond saddening and disturbing. Women are put down for every single little thing in the world, I don’t understand why males can’t seem to handle the fact that women can be just as good or even better at the same things as males are. Its sad because Suellentrop’s article does like he said make it seem like videogames could possibly have a backlash do to this negativity but I do believe that they will survive. I believe this because women have put up and fought so much more that I know this won’t stop female gamers, females in general especially when nearly half of all video gamers are women. In the article Nearly Half of All Video-Gamers Are Woman by Larry Frum talks about how women do undergo harassment and all this negativity for gaming and wanting to be involved in gamer communities but he also mentions how there is almost just as many females as males gaming. Frum says that there are 45% of female gamers, 46% are female game purchasers and 31% of adult women make up the gaming population. This is huge. Women are making it happen, they can accomplish so much if they all unite, keep gaming, creating and making positive changes. Frum also mentioned how there are some men gamers who sometimes stand up and defend women gamers just to look like a hero or as they are called “white-knights” once again. The thing is I truly believe that more and more female gamers will start showing that they are their own hero’s, that they are no longer damsels in distress rather the knights, and that they are just as good as anyone else at being gamers. This is why I have mixed feelings in gaming because things like this I’m like “yes go game make a change!” I guess all I can hope for is that games really do bring positive change for the world and humanity. I enjoy gaming and I will participate whenever I can but I am more of an outdoors kind of person if there is ever protests and events to support any good cause and I will be there!

If anyone wants to try out some games that help give a different perspective on social justice issues visit http://www.gamesforchange.com

I played the game called parable of polygons and it was okay but it was kind of intriguing. There’s two different types of shapes yellow triangles and blue squares and they all have faces. They are all mixed up and the point is you want to make them all happy or at least content as to where they are placed. So some will already be happy but some won’t and you want to move those who aren’t but the thing is the polygons will only stop being unhappy if there is at least 1/3 of their same shape living in their surrounding area. At first it was pretty easy but as you went on it became harder. There were more of one shape than the other or they were placed in a certain way that couldn’t be arranged to please both shapes. It just made me think of minorities and whit Americans how we all live in areas separated from each other and when a minorities start moving into white neighborhoods someone will be unhappy and when gentrification starts happening in low income neighborhoods we as minorities are very unhappy. Guess it’s just hard to please everyone.

Frump, L. (2013). Nearly Half of All Video-Gamers Are Women. CNN. Retrieved from http://www.cnn.com/2013/08/08/tech/gaming-gadgets/female-gamers/

Suelletrop, C. (2014). Can Video Games Survive? The Disheartening GamerGate Campaign. The New York Times. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/26/opinion/sunday/the-disheartening-gamergate-campaign.html?ref=international&_r=0

 

 

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Blog Post #4

Comics and diversity is the topic of week 5 in my Pop Culture class. As mentioned in Comics, Community and The 99, “it’s simply easier (and, for many, more fun) to slag on someone else’s hard work than to praise it” (Elayne Riggs). I agree with her that it is frustrating when people continually comment and say negative things or find things to pick at that are wrong where there just simply isn’t. For example in the reading Islamic Super-Heroes, it talks about how people and journalists do not agree with “The 99” because it doesn’t follow the world view of a superior West or the story of a White American saving the day (Jannis Haggman). Which I find completely ridiculous because “The 99” was aired in other countries without a problem but of course self-centered America would be the ones to find an issue with the inclusion of diversity. Comics being a type of read that I actually do not mind because I like pictures and diversity being something very passionate I’m about brought a lot interest to me. Growing up every super hero or princess was white, there was no connection from them to who I was. Reading The Good and Bad of Diversity in Comics the major thing that stuck in my head because it has always bothered me is that super hero creators try to make woman superheroes out already existent male characters, like a female hero Captain America, Thor, Bat Woman, etc. I am all for the inclusion of women I don’t only believe there should be diversity in heroes with in race but gender as well. Girls and women need female super heroes too and I love the idea but I do not understand why super hero creates lack creativity when it comes to making women super heroes. Create beautiful, powerful, smart, different race, independent female super heroes. Some that come with their own identity because women and all of those thing and there is no reason why they should be portrayed based off male characters. Which I really enjoyed the article, How Comic Fans Got Their Faith Back. It portrays a beautiful plus size super hero which is a major deal, I think media often forgets that women are humans, we come in shapes and sizes. It’s sad that the ideal portrayal of women is an unrealistic one. Any woman super hero or any woman in media is always thin and yes, great for having powerful women out there in general but it just makes little girls believe that the only form of beautiful is thin. I like the the hero Faith she’s not the norm of woman portrayal and she’s still body positive, being fat is just as normal as being thin and I’m glad it shows that. I am also very pleased with In Jordan, The Comic Book Superheroes Fight Extremism, I love how it talks about the way Suleiman Bakhit, creator of superheroes, tackles ways to encourage youth to believe in more and in better people. In the comic it mentions how children in the Muslim country had no idea of what superheroes were like so they were given free comic books in which they found comfort, awe and the belief that there is and there could be so much more out there. I think diversity into comics is great and should keep pushing forward. Reading comics is a form of education and creating diverse superheroes does educate and create real diverse superheroes. Maybe not with super strength, flying ability or laser eyes but heroes who are of all races, gender and religion and create technology for the future, become doctors, writers, scientists, who knows. Minorities need to see that they can be so much more even if its just through a comic, it builds a sense of hope.

 

Cambro, E. (2015 April 5). the Good and Bad of Diversity in Comics. Sequart Organization. Retrieved from http://sequart.org/magazine/56401/the-good-and-bad-of-diversity-in-comics/

Claire, P. (2016 April 15). How comic Fans Got Their Faith Back. The Atlantic. Retrieved from https://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2016/04/faith/478386/

Haggman, J. Islamic Super-Heroes. Qantara.de. Retrieved from http://en.qantara.de/content/the-99-cartoons-islamic-super-heroes

Rafaeli, JS. (2015 Mar. 30). The Jordanian Cartoonist Trying to Tackle Extremism with Comic Books. Vice. Retrieved from https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/suleiman-bakhit-profile-js-rafaeli-395

Riggs, E. (2007 Nov. 28). Comics, Community and The 99. Comic M!x. Retrieved from http://www.comicmix.com/2007/11/28/comics-community-and-the-99/

Blog Post No.3

this week’a focus in my pop culture class was the form of journalism through comics. After reading Persepolis, Journalism, How Comics Journalism Brungs Stories to Life,  Comics Journalism Comics Activism, The Power and range of the Graphic Novel Memoir, ‘They Planted Hatred In Our Hearts’, and the discussions in class all I could think about was how effective this form of journalism was to inform people of critical real life issues to people all ages because as Jared Gardaner in Comics Journalim, Comics Activism said “it’s not just for kids anymore.” Patrick Cockburn in ‘They Planted Hatred In Our Hearts’, mentions how certain events will bring up little international attention and the be forgotten about. It is so true, there are so many things that go on around the world that should be known and brought up more but our generation is no longer into watching the news or reading textbooks to become informed. I believe that the way comics work with the images is a better way to get people engaged in what it is they are reading. Julie Gerstein says in The Power and range of the Graphic Novel Memoir, “The images in these memoirs can act to big reinforce and contradict the powerful emotional messages held forth in their pages.” Which is why I like that in How Comics Journalism Brings Stories to Life, Rui Kaneya mentions that Hibdon, an illustrator tries to make it a point to go on as many reporting trips when possible; I find it important for the artists who are illustrating the pictures for the comics to be present when the reporting is being done so that they first hand can see the emotion of those being reported on and get the feel of the actual scene so that they can make a good depiction and make the readers feel like they themselves are present too.  I completely agree, with comics people can become so engaged and lost into what they are reading and seeing through these pictures because they could reflect brutal and critical honesty towards all the players in this ongoing tragedy (Jared Gardner). Although since comic’s form of images is like cartoons I also believe how Julie Gerstein mentioned that readers can choose to connect or disconnect with the information they are intaking. Peole will do as they please with what they gain but comic journalism I think is still a very smart and effective way to highlight and enhance the emotionally fraught images with words and vice versa(Julie Gerstein), to inform and educate those who can’t become engaged in other forms of news.

 

Kenaya, R. (2014). How Comic Journalism Brings Stories to Life. Retrieved from http://archives.cjr.org/united_states_project/illustrated_press_chicago_comics_journalism.php

Gardner, J. (2012). Comic Journalism, Comic Activism. Retrieved from http://www.publicbooks.org/comics-journalism-comics-activism/

Gerstein, J. (2012). The Power and Range of the Graphic Novel Memoir. Retrieved from http://www.signature-reads.com/2012/05/the-power-and-range-of-the-graphic-novel-memoir/

Cockburn, P. (2009). ‘They Planted Hatred In Our Hearts’. Retrieved from https://mobile.nytimes.com/2009/12/27/books/review/Cockburn-t.html?_r=1&&referer=