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Do you mask your gender when playing MMOs?

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Do you mask your gender when playing MMOs?

Post by TheHidden01 on Tue Jun 03, 2014 7:19 pm


Last month, Polygon published an article about the invisible privileges some gamers enjoy without realizing it. The author, Jonathan McIntosh, included among those privileges the idea that men "probably never think about hiding [their] real-life gender online through [their] gamer-name, [their] avatar choice, or by muting voice-chat, out of fear of harassment resulting from [their] being male." Granted, he was specifically talking about gender; plenty of men online have every reason to hide aspects of their identities to avoid being harassed on the basis of their nationality or ethnicity or religion or handicap or sexual orientation or age, for example. But gender itself is generally pretty safe for straight male gamers compared to female gamers.

We've asked before whether you roll characters that match the gender you identify with in the real world, but today, we're expanding that question: Do you go out of your way to hide your gender when you're playing MMOs? Do you avoid voice-chat, lie about your name, or alter your avatar choice, as McIntosh suggests, to avoid the potential for harassment? Or are MMO players just more socially well-adjusted than the typical gamer such that this is less a problem for us?

TH

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