What We Missed

On Porn and Power.

Tim Geitner thinks that if women ran Wall Street, we wouldn’t have a financial crisis
. (Hint: This is not what feminists mean when they canvass for women to get in power, the assumption that women have inherent qualities that make them better or worse leaders is sexist.)
Obama to sign a new law that takes banks out of the student loan business.
And isn’t it Stupak’s fault that the health care bill become synonymous with “baby-killing?”

Join the Conversation

  • geek_girl

    loans: If 10% of one’s income is less than the interest on the loan, there’s going to be trouble. And will the federal loans provide hundreds of thousands per student, or will there be a cap?
    Stupak: what goes around comes around I guess.

  • Heina

    The porn article was interesting, but it tried to cover too much ground, I think.
    To me, the real problem with porn is that its standards for sexual activity are kind of weird. With the dearth of exposure to healthy and varied sexuality here in the United States, straight men actually start believing that most women must come from penetration, love big dicks only, want their genitalia spat upon, enjoy facials, and various other notions. http://makelovenotporn.com/ takes on this issue (NSFW)

  • creebakthedestroyer

    Geitner didn’t say anything like that. He made a joke that women couldn’t possibly have done a worse job then the men running wall street did.

  • manthd

    I think that’s the first time ever heard “but it was a joke” and have it actually seem to be true.
    The phrasing does say that women couldn’t have done exactly equally as bad, but I think that might be excusable as a bain-o.

  • South

    I look forwards to gettin home so I can read that page. In the mean time http://www.menagea3.net/d/20081030.html
    (a comic but also probably NSFW)

  • konkonsn

    Yeah, there wasn’t really anything in the actual article that supported the title. It seems like some editor thought it would be a catchy to title to pull a bait and switch.

  • Sarah

    Me, I am also wondering what in the world to make of this: http://www.girlgamer.com/zine/article/683/
    Honestly, I am not sure what to say.

  • Doug S.

    The latest Order of the Stick strip, titled “The Rouge’s Guild”, is made of win.

  • ahopper

    See, when I look at that article and I look at the site, I see a lot of similarities towards attitudes about sex work and attitudes about the PlayDates of GameCrush.com.
    I’m doing a bit of research into it, but the responses on girlgamer.com (and on womengamers.com) are both the traditional “slut shaming” that goes on as well as a continuation of the stereotypes they want to destroy. They insist that those who become PlayDates (which can be male or female, although its obviously geared towards hetero males) are not “true” gamers and that “true” gamers wouldn’t do that, and that you cannot play games and be sexy, that they are “sluts” etc. They draw parallels to prostitution and then look down on it. The article and responses are completely problematic. The arguments are the exact same as used against sex workers. Real women wouldn’t want to do sex work, they must be poor or they’re sluts, etc. Its really sad to see that.
    No matter the critiques you can offer on Gamecrush (and there are many), shaming those who would use the site or be PlayDates as somehow less than is unacceptable.

  • Sarah

    I did not write those comments. Why are you blaming me for me them? I just said that I did not know what to make of the whole service. I linked to girlgamer.com because that is where I first heard about it. I should have just linked to Penny Arcade, as they gave a response I agreed with more than your long tangent about slut shaming (http://www.penny-arcade.com/2010/3/31/ ):
    “We spent a substantial amount of time discussing GameCrush this week, trying to discern exactly what was going on there, and I’m not certain we managed to pierce the shell.
    Their site suggests that they are still down on account of ten thousand requests in five minutes, something which happens on a daily basis here at Penny Arcade, even though we don’t rent women from our digital storefront. I want to think this is a thing that will wither and fall, dry and crisp, dying on the stalk. Am I wrong?”
    I do not think there is anything wrong in wondering if something is maybe a little off about a site where female gamers get rated on their “sexiness” and “flirtness” by random strangers, where female gamers are reduced to nothing more than sexy stereotypes rather than, you know, maybe gamers who just happen to be female.
    Oh, but apparently, according to you, I am not allowed to wonder that, because then I am slut shaming. Well, if that is the case, I guess I am just not a feminist then. Because, personally, as a gamer, my “sexiness” and “flirtiness” has absolutely nothing to do with my video game playing.

  • ahopper

    Sarah,
    No where did I blame you for the article or comments. I’m sorry that you got that impression. I responded to the article you linked and the comments therein.
    The site is actually more than it seems and if you can get past the main page (which is fairly easy to do), you can navigate it more easily to see more of what the website is about.
    I have no issues with critiquing the site. I have issues with the specific article you linked, the responses to it, and some of the others I’ve seen on the net.
    As for GameCrush.com, its target audience is definitely hetero males, but PlayDates do not have to be female (although there is an assumption that they will be) and any PlayDate is scored on a series of things including their gaming skill but certainly centered on their appeal to the client. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with critiquing the site at all. Its something I intend to do once I’ve gotten as much information as I can about the site and how it works. There are certainly problematic aspects of it.
    I argued specifically against the article you linked, not against the site as I am still looking into it more before I start making a full critique.
    As for that article, well, here’s what I call slut shaming,
    “In my humble opinion, though, I think the site is a bunch of bulls**t and encourages the way of thinking that serious gamers (who just happen to be female) have fought against for years! Pay to game with an “attractive” girl. How demeaning is that to any girl who is a gamer? . . . So, what this is saying to me is that in order to be a “gaming star” and a female writer and contributor to this site, you have to be deemed “hot” and a tease…basically a slut. Of course, they added a third category of “gaming skill” but let’s be real here. How much of that is actually going to matter? . . . Yes, guys, go visit a site that is paying girls to game who probably will pretend to game because they are in need of cash or who are actual gamers demeaning themselves by taking on the role of an escort. Brilliant.” (emphasis mine).
    That’s from the article and the comments are worse.
    “This is an insult to females who love video games everywhere. Sure, ANY of us on here could be one of these girls. But…we are REAL gamers, who take passion in an epic story and unforgettable characters. We are not X-Box-itutes. :)”
    “A gamer escort? It’s sad on both accounts; whether you’re a girl who’s hiring herself out or you’re a guy willing to pay. ”
    “Things like this really burns me up…
    I am soo grateful that we are a part of a greater community with honest, respectable, REAL gamers…male or female.”
    “Well done creators, this is probably one of the worst ideas ever… the idea of making guys pay to get access to these women is so demoralizing, whats next? Watch a girl play COD on webcam? If a guy is really that desperate to talk to a girl he should hold his dignity, turn off the console, go outside and meet a genuine girl.”
    That, my friend, looks a whole lot like traditional slut shaming to me. That’s not critiquing the site or what it is about. Instead, its judging the hypothetical users of the site. I have a real problem with that and I think its unacceptable.
    Do I think the site is empowering to women gamers? Not particularly. Do I think its innately degrading to women gamers? No. At this point, I think it has patriarchal, heteronormative elements and its ultimately problematic with its use of women’s bodies to market itself. Still, I think there’s something interestingly subversive going on as the site is very clearly and intentionally not limiting gender or sex identities of its PlayDates in any way. Signing up as a PlayDate does not require you to pick a sex or gender descriptive or a sexual preference, which I think is very interesting. Like I said, I’m still in the process of finding out info.
    I’m sorry you felt I attacked you. I didn’t mean to come across that way at all. I think you’re absolutely right to question the site.