As two of the three leaders of [TWIT], AJ and I have been kicking around an idea for a while of something we’d like to do as an in-game event, and we’re finally kicking it off this week.
This event is a girls night, where we group up with any women that are interested in coming along, and do stuff in-game together with no men involved.
We have quite a few reasons for wanting to do something like this, and I’m simply going to quote what I wrote elsewhere on this subject.
Girls Night events are for women only. This is not to be exclusive – rather this is to try and build a space for women to play. Gaming is an industry that is very hostile to women, despite the fact that we make up half of all gamers. Games are rarely marketed for us, and the ones that are aimed towards women tend to just fall on tired-out stereotypes.
The vast majority of gaming communities are extremely male-oriented, and most tend to not be kind to women “invading”…when really all we want to do is play a damn game. And thus, we have to turn to creating our own spaces to play in, until the rest of the gaming community wakes up and realizes that yes, we’re going to be playing these games, we have just as much right to be here as anyone else, and we aren’t leaving, so get used to it.
And we also know that not all women are comfortable enough in the face of such constant sexism to stand up like that. And that’s okay. Everyone handles things differently.
There are also times where we just want to escape and be on our own. To be able to talk about things we wouldn’t feel comfortable with when guys are around. To have fun on our own. This is not a bad thing.
AJ and I have high hopes for these events. We’re starting small, but we’re hoping to build this into something big. But it all revolves around creating a space where women feel safe and welcome while gaming, and it would fall apart immediately if we did not hold to that core.
Guys, 99% of gaming is yours. Let us have our spaces as well. It won’t hurt you, we promise.
So far, the response has been almost entirely positive. Lots of women have expressed an interest in coming, with a few that I didn’t even know played GW2! That, I think, makes this something of a success before the first event has even stated. These events are things we hope to do monthly – just once a month, pick an evening where we all meet up together in-game and hang out and play and create our own part of the community.
Our first event will be this Thursday evening; we’ll be meeting in Caledon Forest, at Astorea Waypoint, on Jade Quarry at 6pm CST (4pm PST/7pm EST). That’s right when the daily reset hits, so we can work on doing our dailies before deciding if we want to branch out and do other things as well. This event isn’t just for members of our guild; it is open to any women that want to attend. AJ and I both have characters with commander icons so we shall be easy to find. More info can be found in this thread on our guild’s forums.
Ladies, hope to see you this Thursday!