One Girl Gamer to Rule Them All

Walk with me, if you will, into the mire that is YouTube comments…

Well, that’s a shitty invitation if I ever heard one. Are you still here? As my YouTube channel has been growing, so has the amount of terrible comments. I guess you can say that’s to be expected, though that’s really fucking sad. Some comments are so awful they can be immediately brushed off as coming from terrible, sad, angry people, such as “Fuck this dumb hoe” or “Die you cam slut whore”. Though, I would ask everyone not to refer to these kinds of comments as trolling. “Die, bitch” isn’t trolling. It’s harassment. I share the worst comments on Twitter because I like to call out this stuff, but it’s kind of losing it’s novelty. Can you believe at one point I thought to myself “Hey, my first harassing comment, I’ve made it.” The Internet is gross.

Anyway, those aren’t the comments I want to talk about. There’s another kind of comment, a more sneakily sexist kind. It intends to be complimentary to a woman but it does so by putting all the other women gamers down. Things like:

“You’re the first girl I’ve seen review video games, and you’re great at it!” This one is puzzling and makes me assume you live under a rock.

“It’s nice that you don’t get too much into gender politics and focus on content.” As back-handed as it gets. I like you, because you don’t talk about things that try to make me see the world from someone else’s perspective. Also, it assumes that anything outside of gameplay mechanics is not real content and makes me want to talk about gender politics more.

“Nice to see a female gamer  who is about something more than sex appeal.” I suppose that if I were to wear more low-cut tops (of which I own many), my credibility would fly out the window. Everyone knows that being interested in games and wanting to look hot are in direct opposition to one another (just as these kind of comments are in direct opposition to the ones I receive that focus solely on my looks and ignore what I’m talking about).

“It’s so nice to find a female YouTuber who’s actually a fan of gaming” or “Wow, a girl who knows about games!” Because all those other women talking about games (which don’t actually exist according to commenter 1 above) are faking it. Hours and hours dedicated to videos and streams on a topic they don’t even like, those liars.

This last one is the one that bothers me the most. A compliment that depends on comparing you to other women and putting those women down isn’t much of a compliment at all. I’ve gotten it on my channel, I’ve seen it on many other women’s channels. A man will decide that this woman is the one true female gamer, to be put on a pedestal. This woman knows what she’s talking about, she really loves games, she doesn’t spend too much time talking about things they don’t like. She stands head and shoulders above all the other women, who pretend to like games for attention or to push their social agendas. She’s real, and the rest are fakes.

This kind of thought process is really sick and kinda scary. Women gamers aren’t some special fucking unicorns.  They’re everywhere and what they wear, or the games they prefer, or whether they’ve been playing games for 1 year or 30 doesn’t make any one of them better or more real than any other. If you like me because I talk about retro games, shitting on the women who don’t doesn’t make me feel special, it makes me think you’re an asshole.

There’s this pressure to respond positively to these kinds of comments because hey, they like my stuff, they’re trying to be nice. But these really aren’t compliments, this isn’t nice. I mean, at least they’re not calling me a whore? That’s a pretty fucking low bar, because comments like these are indeed sexist. What if men on YouTube were treated the same? What if each viewer felt that there could only be one true male gamer, and the rest were garbage? There would certainly be a lot less content to chose from. Want to see more women talking about games? Stop making it a competition. Of course, I don’t think that seeing more women in games is really the desired outcome from the people who make these kinds of comments.

Tips for Commenting on YouTube

  • Stay on topic. If you’re watching a game review, a comment about the presenter’s appearance is not necessary. Also, unless the video specifically mentions your penis, never bring it up in a comment.
  • If you want to compliment the YouTuber, tell them why you like their video or opinions. Don’t compare them to other YouTubers, or put other people down.
  • Don’t send a private message when a public comment will do. It creates more pressure and is kinda weird. You can’t force a personal relationship.
  • Watch the whole video before commenting. If you’re going to ask a question or try to teach the video maker something about what they’re talking about, and it turns out that gets mentioned later in the video? You’ll look dumb.
  • If you want to insult or threaten the YouTuber, just go take a fucking walk instead. 

10 responses to “One Girl Gamer to Rule Them All

  1. Well said. I can’t empathize, but can sympathize.
    I’ve seen comments that talk about the ladies appearance in videos like dnews and always thought how they have anything to do with the video. They’re awkward to say the least.
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    • It is awkward. And if you call it out for being awkward, unrelated and inappropriate, then you get called names for not appreciating the “compliment”.

  2. It’s sad and infuriating and depressing that this is the kind of trial by fire you get to look forward to as a woman content creator.

    I wonder if linking to this post at the start/end of your videos would help reduce these comments? And/or putting it (the link) in the description?
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  3. There are an insane amount of women who do sexualize themselves and pander to guys. It caters to the hormonal teenage masses the same way that the near-porn that the game industry puts out does. I don’t see anything wrong with men appreciating someone who doesn’t pander to horny dudes.

  4. Oy! Everyday that goes by, I find more reasons to hate the blight on this planet that is our species. People wonder why I continually ask when we can hurry up and nuke ourselves so that the cockroaches can have their turn ruling this rock. It’s because we claim to be an advanced species, yet we can’t differentiate ourselves from the animals that we claim superiority over.

  5. You’re handling the nasty stuff and ignorant comments really well! I like your attitude and think we need lots more like you.

  6. It’s really depressing what some men think are compliments to female gamers. And the fact that some consider us so rare…really? I can’t remember where I read it but there are now more women who game than teenage boys.

    Honestly, one of the reasons I don’t make more videos is because I don’t want to get the sort of comments that you’re getting. I imagine that there are other women who avoid Youtubing for the same reason.
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    • I’m sure there are women out there who don’t put themselves out there because they don’t want to deal with these comments and people, or who have left video making because of it. It’s sad, and ends up reinforcing the belief that women don’t play or talk about games.

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