Portal developer Kim Swift has called on woman in the games industry make themselves more visible in an attempt to bridge the gap between genders, and has discussed why it would set a positive example to future generations of game-makes.
In response to the 1ReasonWhy campaign on Twitter, Swift said on her blog, “I have a secret wish. Whenever I’m in the public eye, whether it’s doing PR or giving a talk – and this is going to sound amazingly corny — I hope that there’s a little girl out there that sees me and thinks to herself, “Oh look! Girls make games too.”
“I say this because this problem isn’t going to change on a dime. A grown adult isn’t going to change their mind about their inherent beliefs or their personality because someone gave them the stink eye (or an Internet reaming).
“Kids however are impressionable and full of those innocent hopes and dreams that may one day turn into reality. I was one of those kids that dreamed of making video games one day. When I looked at the gaming landscape and browsed through Nintendo Power, I didn’t see a person with two X chromosomes that I could point and go ‘Yes, if she did it, so can I!’
“Thankfully, I lucked out with some insanely supportive parents, but without that I doubt that I would be making games right now. And so when I blather endlessly about a game I’m working on until my eyes bleed, in the back of my head, I hope that there’s a little girl out there that realizes her dreams are achievable.”
To get to this stage however, Swift fees that much still needs to be done to address the gap between genders, but that action should be taken now in order for the next wave of coders and industry employees to thrive equally.
Said Swift, “We need to change the make up of our industry, because games are a reflection of their creators. I see the solution to this problem coming not a year from now, not five years from now, but twenty.
“When this current generation of kids sees the good example that we should be setting now. And though we may not be able to tell it completely like it is just yet, there’s still plenty we can do to help future generations of game developers.”
What’s your take on the issue at hand? How can the industry convince young females to approach a career in the industry with optimism, rather than reluctance? Let us know below.