The Trouble with Jade

Jade Raymond

Jade Raymond makes video games. And she’s a beautiful woman. That’s a recap of most of the problem, right there. That’s basically all she did to deserve the pornographic comics about her that surfaced on the net last week. I work in video games as well, and although my company is less testosterone-fueled than most, I can still tell you that it’s far from the most welcoming industry for women. It’s not just the usual double binds that plague successful women; this is the industry where major games still feature collectible porn cards for bedding as many women as possible. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

(Hi, by the way. I’m Holly, and I’m back for a bit more guest blogging.)

This weekend I ran into some more of the iceberg. I’ve known of Raymond for a while–there aren’t that many other Eurasian women game producers around–and now she’s become one of the most well-known women in video games. That may not be the most difficult task, since it always feels to me like there are only a few dozen women involved directly in the production of major video games; a lot more of us work on the outskirts in educational games, online community stuff, or casual games. (If you’re me, all three.) But Raymond’s latest work is right in the thick of things. She’s been producing Assassin’s Creed for Ubisoft, one of the most hotly anticipated titles of the year. I’ve been playing it for the last few days, and it’s good, a hardcore medieval stealth-and-killing game that’s aimed directly at the traditional heart of the videogame market: adolescent and continuously-post-adolescent guys.

So of course, that’s where the real trouble began. At first it seemed annoying but harmless; prominent game bloggers like Kotaku’s Mike Fahey writing creepy posts like this one, entitled “Jade Smells Pretty At London Games Fest”:

Visitors to the London Games Festival this weekend will get a rare opportunity to get close enough to Ubisoft’s Jade Raymond to bathe in the warm, flowery scent she leaves in her wake everywhere she goes. She’ll be making an appearance at the flagship HMV store on Oxford Street on Saturday afternoon to promote some game about assassins doing some sort of thing, possibly killing that band that sang the “Can You Take Me Higher” song. The press release says something about showcasing new levels from the latest version of the game, but that’s neither here nor there. I’m personally hoping she announces a new game where you just move the camera around a 3D model of her person for hours at a time. I’d pay a hundred dollars. Or pounds. A hundred pounds of dollars.


Fahey knows this is creepy, and the tone is tongue-in-cheek, but guess what? He’s only half joking. And still creepy, especially when you add it to the fact that even the print media has persisted in calling her “the beautiful female game producer” and focusing on her looks, far more than they ever would for a gorgeous male game developer. Blog posts about her game feature her comparing the texture rendering capabilities of seventh-generation consoles and then slap a giant picture of her on the top, instead of say… the textures of the game she’s talking about? Every post and every message board thread about her has been studded with darling, mouth-breathing comments about how various dudes would do her, or are masturbating to her, or wish they had a hot gamer girlfriend like Jade. But that’s the internet, right?

Well, it gets worse. A couple weeks ago, a rumor started circulating that Raymond was posing for the December issue of Maxim. The fake message board post went something like this:

“so my friend is working as an intern editor at maxim and he says that jade will grace the cover of december’s issue which will feature “girls of gaming”! she will also have her own spread showing her in a green an white striped bikini in an exotic local (montreal). it will also feature other hot women in the gaming industry as well as competitive gaming. man i can’t fricken wait! i haven’t jacked to still images since 1999!”

Raymond and Ubisoft PR quickly quashed the rumor, but apparently she was offended by the whole thing. Wow, maybe she’d rather people focus on her work and her games, instead of making her out to be a swimsuit model? Shocking, I know. Apparently, a lot of people believed the Maxim rumor and started complaining about how Ubisoft was using her as a pretty face to promote the game. I’ve complained about Ubisoft before–the horrifically packaged line of “Imagine” games for girls, the Frag Dolls. It wouldn’t be a surprising move for videogame PR in general, but you know what? As a producer, it’s part of her job to talk about her game in the press, representing the whole team that’s making it. She speaks perfectly well about technical and gameplay issues; it’s just that half of the male audience seems to be too busy staring at her chest to notice. (I’m being charitable here by saying half… not all male gamers are mouth-breathing lunks, that’s another stereotype I’d like to see go away.) Or if they do hear what she said, it registers as “pretty girl said something smart… whoa, even hotter!”

Then a pornographic comic surfaced on the web.

I’m not going to link to the comic, because Ubisoft has been doing its best to scour it from the web–a futile task, since in the immortal words of Joe Garelli, “you can’t take something off the internet, it’s like trying to take pee out of a pool.” Unfortunately, it’s not hard to find the comic online, despite a number of site administrators who have been vigorously deleting links. I’ll describe it, because it’s important. Raymond is shown in a green-and-white striped bikini, just like in the Maxim rumor, saying this:

Hi boys! I’m Jade, producer and crate… uh… crate… erm… cray-ate… tiv… influence behind Assassin’s Creed! Please buy my game!

The comic then shows a bunch of mouth-breathing fanboys masturbating to her, (as described above). Then, for the rest of the comic, she performs oral sex on them so that they’ll buy her game. It ends with a bukkake shot. All I could think when I saw this was “way to go, assholes.” Sadly, it wasn’t a poorly drawn doodle by a talentless teenager: it was a pro-quality web comic done by someone experienced. (Update: it was in fact a published comic author who made it, see below.)

Actually, you know what pissed me off the most? Not the gratuitous sex-and-PR crap, but the portrayal of her as a ditzy idiot who can’t even pronounce “creative.” Raymond is a programmer as well as a producer; she helped start the first research & development group at Sony Online, was part of the team that built Jeopardy Online, and went on to be one of the producers for the Sims Online. Anyone following Assassin’s Creed has been able to listen to her blog about the development of the game and she obviously knows what she’s talking about. But apparently none of that matters next to the fact that she’s got a pretty face, that the media focuses on her looks, and that there are thousands of creepy dudes on the Internet drooling over her.

Gaming websites and blogs are still full of arguments about the comic. The predictable defenses have shown up. People can say whatever they want because of free speech! (Wow, congratulations on being lucky enough to have rights. Now stop using them to be an asshole, why don’t you.) It’s all Ubisoft’s fault for exploiting her as a poster girl! (Which is why it’s OK to treat her, personally, that way? Also, it’s part of her job.) Who does she think she is, wearing a cute top like that and standing in front of the other Assassin’s Creed developers? (Serious shades of Sweatergate right there.) It’s not her game and I bet she didn’t even do any of the real development!

It’s that last one that really gets to the heart of the matter: in some people’s minds, Jade Raymond is getting her comeuppance for daring to be a prominent woman in game development. For being in a leadership role. For being the public face of her game. For wearing cute shirts. And for being good-looking. They don’t believe that she could actually have the chops to play a creative role in a huge, mainstream game like Assassin’s Creed; if she’s in the spotlight, it’s either because she’s hogging credit or using her looks or both. That’s a double standard you’ll never, ever hear applied to male video game producers or designers who give interviews about their games. Of course, bloggers and journalists don’t bother to attach beauty shots of male developers either.

I think Raymond has every right to want pornographic comics about her off the Internet, even if it’s futile. But I don’t think Ubisoft sending cease-and-desist letters to Something Awful is going to help at all; it’s nothing Lowtax and other sewer-of-the-Internet site administrators haven’t seen before. The only thing you can do is point out what a hostile environment this creates for women in the game industry. The treatment of Jade Raymond sends a message to female developers everywhere that is what will happen if you’re “too pretty” and “too well-known” and “talk too much,” even if you conduct yourself with utter professionalism. Game industry execs often bemoan the dearth of female game developers and players, the gender-lopsidedness of their teams. This story ought to show them a very concrete reason why there’s a lack of women in some parts of gaming. A change in culture is way overdue.

UPDATE: It’s been brought to my attention that the comic was drawn by Dave Cheung, the creator of Chugworth Academy. I’m mentioning this in part because some might assume the comic was a hasty stick-figure scribble by a middle school brat. But Cheung is a published author who’s well known in some circles; you can buy his latest book on Amazon, but I wouldn’t recommend it unless you crave glossy schoolgirl wank material. Plus, the comic is still up on his Deviant Art page. Since he seems to enjoy degrading other creative professionals–enough to have created and posted a congratulatory “Made Jade Cry” achievement on his site–I figured his name might as well be out there too. Of course, he’ll probably just enjoy the negative attention, so please don’t feed the trolls.

ALSO: The awesome Miyuki Jane Pinckard of Game Girl Advance also takes on this issue and is right on the money.

Author: has written 94 posts for this blog.

http://www.feministe.us/blog/archives/2007/12/10/and-this-is-the-part-where-i-stumble-in-kinda-late/
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159 Responses

  1. Cara
    Cara November 19, 2007 at 12:35 pm |

    Wow, congratulations on being lucky enough to have rights. Now stop using them to be an asshole, why don’t you.

    Heh. Okay, that made me laugh out loud.

    And wow, I really wish that I hadn’t even skimmed through the comments on that kotaku post. What a mistake. Someone saying “well she seems to really have a problem with any depictions of her involving nudity.” OH REALLY? GEE, MAYBE THAT’S BECAUSE IT’S HER FUCKING BODY AND NO ONE WANTS PORNOGRAPHIC CARTOONS OF THEM ON THE INTERNET.

    Oh maybe, just maybe, the commenter doesn’t realize that because he doesn’t have to worry about that sort of thing, since he has a penis, and everyone knows that penises aren’t hot. That’s what boobs are for.

  2. tannenburg
    tannenburg November 19, 2007 at 12:42 pm |

    Considering the gaming industry’s stellar record in appealing to female gamers and respectfully representing women – I refer you to this… I’m not surprised there’s a lack of respect among most gaming consumers.

  3. Gayle
    Gayle November 19, 2007 at 12:58 pm |

    Holly, from your last link’s comment thread. You just knew it would be there:

    Like this doesn’t happen to every single hot famous female on the planet. Cmon, she should be flattered.

    Yes, bukkake face is so flattering!! Gee whiz and thanks fellas!!

    I admit I didn’t bother to read the whole thread. What I did read didn’t reflect any empathy towards her. . At All.

  4. nonskanse
    nonskanse November 19, 2007 at 1:15 pm |

    Women can make more money in “men’s” professions (construction, engineering, software), but this is what we suffer for it. I tried to explain to a male why it was wrong to judge women for their looks when they aren’t working in a looks-related field, and he couldn’t understand me.

    In college in computer science, the same thing. Like “wow you’re a (hot?) chick and you’re in my major, therefore you must appreciate me calling you a hot chick and bothering you. Even though you might be smarter than me, it’s ok for me to appreciate you for your boobs” all the fucking time.

    I often wish we could just control gender neutral robots then no one would know I’m a woman (although it seems to not matter at my current workplace,thankfully)

  5. Crawford
    Crawford November 19, 2007 at 1:21 pm |

    Teenage boys are drawing smutty pictures? Seriously, stop the presses!

    Seriously, I have been playing video games since middle school, and now I that I have less time, I play fewer of them, and I have to do a little research on the GameSpot and IGN type sites. Of the major games this year, I am only aware of the lead devs on two of them; Shigeru Miyamoto who is like a combination of Walt Disney, Chuck Jones, Steven Spielberg and Jesus, and put out the superb “Super Mario Galaxy,” which caused me to spend almost the entire weekend in my apartment, and Jade Raymond who has been all over Ubisoft’s marketing of “Assassin’s Creed.”

    I think she must be very talented. She’s young, it appears she was lead dev on that project, and it’s an industry where it must be difficult for women to advance. However, when I think about the people who make video games, I usually think in terms of studios, like Bioware, Epic Games, or Blizzard or Infinity Ward. Even when I know names of prominent devs, like John Carmack at iD or CliffyB at Epic, I don’t know what they look like.

    She’s really been present in the marketing to an extent that is extremely uncommon, and while that was almost certainly encouraged by Ubisoft, it’s going to result in her catching the same kind of withering internet fanboy flak that other people who become the public faces of gaming companies catch.

    Reggie Fils Aime, the president of Nintendo of America is a loud, public kind of guy, and his personal style is ripped on mercilessly. Similarly, there’s a guy who does public announcements for Microsoft’s Xbox brand and people hate him. And World of Warcraft players routinely make violent threats against the lead devs of that game. It’s very possible that putting herself in the crosshairs of anger-driven game bloggers and YouTubers was the devil’s pact that Raymond had to make to advance at Ubisoft, but she was out there nonetheless, and everything that gets thrown in the dog cages gets chewed on.

    Also, if there’s nudity in “Witcher,” I am very surprised. I have not played it; only “Halo,” “Call of Duty 4,” “Mass Effect,” and “Mario” made my short list for this year, but I know the ratings boards and the retailers are really prudish about sexual content, even in Mature rated games. A couple of years ago, a sex related minigame that had been cut out of “Grand Theft Auto” but was dormant in the game code was uncovered by hackers in the PC version of the game, and the PS2 and XBox versions, in which the material was not even questionable, were yanked from store shelves.

  6. Jeff Fecke
    Jeff Fecke November 19, 2007 at 1:23 pm |

    Boy, I just can’t figure out why more women don’t go into programming and game design. Must be because their girl brains don’t do math.

  7. Some Dude
    Some Dude November 19, 2007 at 1:25 pm |

    I just want to say that I see a lot of resentment for the way the media loves Jade, but hasn’t given this much coverage to any male game producer (in western culture anyway). And a lot of people are unfairly taking it out on her. No one deservers that kind of slander.

  8. Jeff Fecke
    Jeff Fecke November 19, 2007 at 1:28 pm |

    She’s really been present in the marketing to an extent that is extremely uncommon, and while that was almost certainly encouraged by Ubisoft, it’s going to result in her catching the same kind of withering internet fanboy flak that other people who become the public faces of gaming companies catch.[...]Reggie Fils Aime, the president of Nintendo of America is a loud, public kind of guy, and his personal style is ripped on mercilessly.

    So I assume, since she’s catching the “same kind of withering internet fanboy flak” as everyone else, that you’ve got a link to the Reggie Fils Aime bukkake porn. Right? No? Shocking! Why, it’s almost like the attacks on her are radically sexualized in a way that attacks on men are not!

  9. Crawford
    Crawford November 19, 2007 at 1:42 pm |

    So I assume, since she’s catching the “same kind of withering internet fanboy flak” as everyone else, that you’ve got a link to the Reggie Fils Aime bukkake porn. Right? No? Shocking! Why, it’s almost like the attacks on her are radically sexualized in a way that attacks on men are not!

    Well, I have no idea what’s out there about Reggie. I don’t read “Something Awful.’ I know that there are a lot of bad web comics drawn by people who probably spend too much time with internet porn and who mistakenly think they are as clever as the Penny-Arcade guys.

    I know that these offer windows into the minds of people whose minds should not have windows and whose heads should, in fact, be encased in cement. But this is fringe stuff from the weirdo edges of the internet. It’s not like Jade Raymond blowjob comics are on the front page of Gamespy or something.

  10. Crawford
    Crawford November 19, 2007 at 2:10 pm |

    Yeah Crawford, it was her fault that the websites, the blogs, the gaming magazines all focused on her and her looks. You know, even though she’s supposed to be giving interviews like every other lead out there, she should have known that would happen, and should have just turned down those interviews, or at least worn a paper bag over her head, right? Do you really think it was her actions, somehow different or above-and-beyond those of anyone else in a similar position on a major game, that caused this?

    And I don’t see male developers getting this kind of treatment. Sure, devs get death threats from a segment of lunatic fans. Sure, people talk about how Will Wright is overrated or how the CEO of this major company or that major company is a complete idiot.

    My impression is that it was Ubisoft who put Raymond in such a prominent position. I was looking into buying Assassin’s Creed, and all the videos of the game were actually her video blogs that looked to me like they had been produced by Ubi and distributed to the gaming sites, rather than produced by the gaming sites. Most interviews with game developers and most “developer diary” columns tend to be published as text.

    I don’t even know what Will Wright looks like. I don’t know the name of the lead dev on “Call of Duty.” Jade Raymond has been much more visible than a lead dev ordinarily is. I don’t know whether that’s her choice, or whether Ubi is making her do it. But she’s very visible in a subculture with some creepy antisocial inhabitants who live in their parents’ basements and have lots of time on their hands.

    This is neither surprising nor deserving of attention. The internet is a democratic medium where anyone can publish whatever they want. An interconnected world can be a good thing, but some people should not be connected to other people under any circumstances.

    Just go google “Witcher” and “sex cards” and you’ll see all the nudity in that game in short order. There’s a whole gallery of them posted somewhere online, I found it last week.

    As for teenagers drawing smutty pictures–I didn’t post the comic for obvious reasons, but what made it more upsetting was that it was fairly professional work. Around the same level of detail and polish as say, Penny Arcade or any number of decent-quality web comics. It wasn’t just some doodle.

    I’ll look it up when I get home from work. But an amateur with a copy of PhotoShop is still an amateur.

    Is the sex stuff in the US version, or just the European version?

  11. Gaming in the Media Blog » Link Round-Up - Jade Raymond Edition

    [...] Feministe’s Take on The Situation – The Trouble With Jade Actually, you know what pissed me off the most? Not the gratuitous sex-and-PR crap, but the portrayal of her as a ditzy idiot who can’t even pronounce “creative.” Raymond is a programmer as well as a producer; she helped start the first research & development group at Sony Online, was part of the team that built Jeopardy Online, and went on to be one of the producers for the Sims Online. Anyone following Assassin’s Creed has been able to listen to her blog about the development of the game and she obviously knows what she’s talking about. But apparently none of that matters next to the fact that she’s got a pretty face, that the media focuses on her looks, and that there are thousands of creepy dudes on the Internet drooling over her. [...]

  12. DeadMan
    DeadMan November 19, 2007 at 3:03 pm |

    Jade is just another producer here at Ubisoft. No more remarkable than my producer on TMNT (who is also a woman but we never hear about her). This whole thing has nothing to do with Jade as a person, or Jade as a producer, it has everything to do with the fact that Jade is an attractive woman. She’s actually pretty good as a producer … much better than some people I’ve had to work for anyway.

    But my concern is less with what the internets are saying about her, but more with how this will affect her ability to manage a project effectively. I’ve seen what happens when a producer can’t inspire confidence in her abilities and it’s not a pretty sight. So for reasons completely out of her control she may now have to suffer even more idiot boys being dicks to her because “she’s that hot producer who uses her body to sell games and isn’t a REAL producer anyway” (and those idiot boys already work here! And this kind of shit just encourages them to keep treating women in the same way … … and people wonder why there aren’t more women in the industry)

    There are times I’m embarrassed by the game industry and it’s fans … this is one of those times … and I feel bad for a co-worker who did nothing wrong except be an attractive woman in an all boys industry.

    DeadMan

  13. Benjamin Thelen
    Benjamin Thelen November 19, 2007 at 3:07 pm |

    Thank you Holly for this excellent post. I usually don’t comment on blogs, but your excellent post, along with this argument made above by Crawford, prompted me to say a few words. Also, I do happen to be a fairly avid video game player and a feminist, so this post caught my attention.

    When s/he talks about the “devil’s pact that Raymond had to make” to become a prominent game developer, Crawford seem to be making the oft-used against women cost-of-doing-business argument. This is the same argument that criticizes a rape victim for wearing provocative clothing or walking alone at night, the same argument used against Kathy Sierra when she suffered harassment for advancing in a male-dominated profession. She should have known this could happen, so the argument goes.

    However, up until now, I have purposely misspoke, because this “argument” doesn’t even deserve that title. As empirical observations, these claims may be true. We do live in a sick society where bad things happen to women without justification. However, empirical observations are not moral conclusions, and, even if Raymond assumed this risk, she ought not have to bear it. Even if wearing provocative clothing increases the probability that somebody will rape a woman, women who dress provocatively do not bear any responsibility when men rape them. The victim is not responsible, and certainly not morally culpable, whatever they did, whatever they knew.

    People should stop making silly, non-arguments to justify the horrible things some men do to some women. Instead of slinging around nonsense in the vein of “boys will be boys” and “she should have known better,” we should put the focus where it belongs: on the perpetrators.

  14. Betsy
    Betsy November 19, 2007 at 3:48 pm |

    How appalling. The idea that a woman who is prominent in any way is “fair game” (see another post on the use of that phrase about women on the internet, either here or at Shakesville) is so offensive it shouldn’t even need to be spelled out, but apparently it does. Choosing to be in the public eye, whether as a politician, writer, artist, or executive, should open you to scrutiny.criticism for the words and actions that you make public. It should not open you up to scrutiny/abuse for anything about your body. The fact that it does so does not mean that scrutiny or abuse is legitimate.

  15. Betsy
    Betsy November 19, 2007 at 3:49 pm |

    *that should be scrutiny/criticism

  16. Amanda Marcotte
    Amanda Marcotte November 19, 2007 at 3:58 pm |

    But apparently none of that matters next to the fact that she’s got a pretty face, that the media focuses on her looks, and that there are thousands of creepy dudes on the Internet drooling over her.

    And hating her for being unattainable and trying to justify it to themselves by pretending she’s stupid. What they fail to understand is that pretty, smart women are unattainable by definition if you are a mouth-breathing, misogynist troglodyte, and maybe they’d have a lot less reason to resent her if they weren’t so busy making themselves such intolerable human beings.

  17. Silver Owl
    Silver Owl November 19, 2007 at 4:19 pm |

    Deadman,

    It is not Jade’s management skills you are concerned about but the fact that the tech team may become increasingly unruly, uncooperate, nasty, disrespectful, childish and unprofessional. If that is the case the team needs to be replaced.

  18. DrewK
    DrewK November 19, 2007 at 4:41 pm |

    Another unfortunate application of Rule 34 (34b in some lists). While I agree that Jade has been treated unfairly, and attacks on her character are wholly undeserved, I disagree that this is unique to her. I don’t think it’s representative of any endemic misogyny on the internet either. It’s just another case of some random person on the internet lashing out at someone else for reasons undisclosed and probably unknowable. So really, it’s just Rule 34 + Great Internet Fuckwad Theory. Someone said earlier that almost all public faces of video games get trashed. Jade, unfortunately, became the face of Assassin’s Creed, and the usual events took their course. Debate the moral and soceitial implications thereof all you want, but that’s it.

  19. Crawford
    Crawford November 19, 2007 at 5:09 pm |

    Thank you Holly for this excellent post. I usually don’t comment on blogs, but your excellent post, along with this argument made above by Crawford, prompted me to say a few words. Also, I do happen to be a fairly avid video game player and a feminist, so this post caught my attention.

    When s/he talks about the “devil’s pact that Raymond had to make” to become a prominent game developer, Crawford seem to be making the oft-used against women cost-of-doing-business argument. This is the same argument that criticizes a rape victim for wearing provocative clothing or walking alone at night, the same argument used against Kathy Sierra when she suffered harassment for advancing in a male-dominated profession. She should have known this could happen, so the argument goes.

    It’s got nothing to do with whether she deserves it. She wasn’t raped. Nasty things were said about her on the internet and someone drew a nasty picture.

    You are talking about a subculture where the phrases “die in a fire” and “shut the fuck up” are so prevalent that they are reduced to acronyms.

    Asking if someone who is a prominent game developer deserves to have nasty things said about them on the internet, that’s like asking if someone who walks outside in the rain deserves to get wet. It’s just inevitably going to happen.

    If the game is the product that is presented for discussion, even if it is a very good game, it will be the subject of much derision, because gamers go to the internet to deride everything. Ubisoft wrapped Raymond and “Assassin’s Creed” up together and attached her to almost all of their game videos which is not normally something that lead devs do.

    As a result, she’s going to get ripped on for shilling unusually hard for the game, and she’s going to get ripped on for the game’s flaws. I’m sure that she was deployed specifically to divert attention away from some of the game’s flaws. It is Ubisoft’s tentpole release for the holiday season, they have a lot invested in it, and there are five or six major new games that are getting better reviews.

  20. DeadMan
    DeadMan November 19, 2007 at 5:09 pm |

    oh totally, I wasn’t worried about her skills as a manager but how this will affect her ability to use those skills effectively. I’m not worried about Jade in anyway … I’m worried about all the bastards that work here who will make her life a lot harder than it needs to be.

    DeadMan

  21. DeadMan
    DeadMan November 19, 2007 at 5:42 pm |

    Oh and just so everybody doesn’t think Ubisoft is full of jerks this place is actually pretty progressive and takes its sexual harassment policies very seriously. But we are a large studio so the law of averages states we will have our fair share of jerks … and we do, just like every other large company in the world.

    Having said that I must agree with Holly that the game industry as a whole has a pretty major problem when it comes to women. And that problem needs some fixin’ if we plan on dragging our industry out of this boys club mentality we seem to be stuck in. The industry and it’s fans need to grow up and see that this thing we call “gaming” is actually a pretty powerful new media that SHOULD have a lot more to offer than big bouncing polygon boobs.

    DeadMan

  22. Brad
    Brad November 19, 2007 at 5:55 pm |

    I agree with everything you are saying here, but feel like I’m missing something. While the comic is creepy, disturbing, and immature… no question, the article presents this as if it’s a problem for her career.

    If that’s the case, isn’t it her co-workers and bosses that are to blame?

    I don’t think anyone is buying fewer copies of Assassin’s Creed because of this… (and man that game rocks.)

    I’m honestly curious. A few comments say the comic is “offensive.” In what way, exactly?

    You don’t hesitate to point out that she is pretty, in your view. Is that offensive? I assume since you are saying it you don’t feel that it is. So what is it that makes these things offensive? Is it the people who are saying them? The way they are being said? I’d really like to know.

    I try to put myself in her shoes, and I still can’t come up with anything.

    So, what am I missing?

    “she’s a beautiful woman”
    “the fact that she’s got a pretty face”
    “wearing a cute top”

    Seems like you are more attracted to her than I am… again, what am I missing here?

    “She speaks perfectly well about technical and gameplay issues”

    And apologizing for her intelegence more than anyone…

    “Or if they do hear what she said, it registers as “pretty girl said something smart… whoa, even hotter!””

    I’m attracted to smart pretty women. Is there something wrong with that?

    I don’t know Jade. I have no idea if she is smart or what. I’m just saying, if men are attracted to her because they find her to be good looking and intelligent, is that bad? Or is it the type of men who are attracted to her? Or their behavior?

  23. Riff
    Riff November 19, 2007 at 5:55 pm |

    Nonskanse, can you back this up or is this anecdotal?

    Women can make more money in “men’s” professions (construction, engineering, software), but this is what we suffer for it.

    From everything I have heard women still are getting payed less for the same work as men. Its good news if they are making equal or more but haven’t heard about this from another source. Sorry, my sociology minor is surfacing again. (:

  24. Clearly, We Do Not Deserve Nice Things And/Or People « Broken Toys

    [...] written by real girls and as has been shown, we just can’t handle this): Game Girl Advance Feministe Filed under: Industry   |   Tags: Assassin’s Creed, Game Journalism, I Hate [...]

  25. wiggles
    wiggles November 19, 2007 at 6:00 pm |

    Actually, you know what pissed me off the most? Not the gratuitous sex-and-PR crap, but the portrayal of her as a ditzy idiot who can’t even pronounce “creative.”

    The skeeze pissed me off plenty but the abuve pissed me off too. Not just in the stupid comic, but in comments to some of the blog posts I’ve seen linked – that because of the way she looks, she’s just being “pimped out” by Ubisoft and can’t possibly know what she’s really talking about or how to actually program worth a bent nickel.

    But of course sexism is a thing of the past and feminism is totally unnecessary and the prevalence of attitudes like these can’t possibly affect women’s wages or upward mobility. Nah!

  26. wiggles
    wiggles November 19, 2007 at 6:02 pm |

    I can spell. Those are typos.

  27. Henry
    Henry November 19, 2007 at 6:12 pm |

    And hating her for being unattainable and trying to justify it to themselves by pretending she’s stupid. What they fail to understand is that pretty, smart women are unattainable by definition if you are a mouth-breathing, misogynist troglodyte, and maybe they’d have a lot less reason to resent her if they weren’t so busy making themselves such intolerable human beings.

    That’s pretty much spot on, from what I can tell. Pathetic internet nerds reveling in the power and anonymity of the internet to disparage a woman who is clearly out of their league in real life.

    There’s a on-line comic I read regularly, and in the forums there’s a daily post where a moderator posts pictures of a model or actress or whatnot, and people rate the attractiveness of the woman. You would be struck dumb in amazement at some of these dorks rating women who make their living by being attractive as 3s and 4s for being “too skinny” or “having small tits” or being “too fat”. Women that, in actual life, these losers would stab their best friend to even talk to. It’s amazingly sad. Of course, that there’s a rating system in place at all is bad enough. But what really rankles is the idea that these people are qualified to pass judgment.

  28. Brad
    Brad November 19, 2007 at 6:13 pm |

    I think it’s also worth it’s possible she actually can’t program worth a bent nickel. We really don’t know anything about her abilities.

    It’s also possible the publisher is taking advantage of her looks.

    Nothing discussed or presented so far excludes those possibilities. It’s just as silly to assume they are false as true. If she is being exploited this way… that’s also a bad thing, no?

    Or what if she is actually an idiot? I’m not saying she is, just that it’s silly to make any sort of claims about a person you don’t know.

  29. littlem
    littlem November 19, 2007 at 6:19 pm |

    oh totally, I wasn’t worried about her skills as a manager but how this will affect her ability to use those skills effectively. I’m not worried about Jade in anyway … I’m worried about all the bastards that work here who will make her life a lot harder than it needs to be.

    DeadMan, with all due respect, this is a bunch of mealymouthed BS.

    Silver Owl handed you the solution right before you said what you said, and you just brushed it aside in favor of more politically-correct speak:

    It is not Jade’s management skills you are concerned about but the fact that the tech team may become increasingly unruly, uncooperate, nasty, disrespectful, childish and unprofessional. If that is the case the team needs to be replaced.

    I’ll go S.O. one better – if Jade has a problem working with her all-male team in the future as a result of this incident, and the problem really is the sexist attitudes of those men, the team needs to be replaced by a set of equally qualified women.

    And that problem needs some fixin’ if we plan on dragging our industry out of this boys club mentality we seem to be stuck in.

    You really want to do something about it? Or do you just want to keep wringing your hands and sounding as if you do? “Oh, wouldn’t it be ideal … but the world will never change …”

    The hell.

    I’m challenging you to put your money where your mouth is. I’ve worked in development in technical recruitment. If you observe that it turns out that Jade’s all-male subordinate team won’t work well with her after this incident, and you’re willing to say so, I have associates with whom I have worked on problems like this — say the word and we’ll find the new team ourselves.

  30. DeadMan
    DeadMan November 19, 2007 at 6:53 pm |

    “the team needs to be replaced.”

    is simply not an option … jade = 1 person … assasins production = 200+ people … … realisticaly who do you think is gonna get fired if there’s a problem. Should the team get changed if they’re acting like dicks? yep they should. Is it ever gonna be a solution that is used by this company ? nope, not in a million years.

    Also an all woman team would be impossible in our current situation, women are only 13% of our work force here. So that’s very impractical right now.

    We need to find a solution that will actualy be used.

    DeadMan

  31. wiggles
    wiggles November 19, 2007 at 7:02 pm |

    Or what if she is actually an idiot? I’m not saying she is, just that it’s silly to make any sort of claims about a person you don’t know.

    What if 99.9% of the dudes already in the industry are idiots? Seems silly to presume they’re not.

  32. wiggles
    wiggles November 19, 2007 at 7:17 pm |

    I’m honestly curious. A few comments say the comic is “offensive.” In what way, exactly?

    dude, are you f-in’ kidding?

  33. DeadMan
    DeadMan November 19, 2007 at 7:38 pm |

    “You really want to do something about it? Or do you just want to keep wringing your hands and sounding as if you do? “Oh, wouldn’t it be ideal … but the world will never change …”

    You have no idea what I fight for on a regular basis. Now I’m not saying I’m some big whistle blower or anything. But I do my share … mostly just talking to the men I work with and calling them on their sexist bullshit when it happens. Starting conversations about feminism and why it’s still important today. I’d say I’ve had a small impact if only by letting people know by my actions that this is a topic we can talk about here. I’m no activist, but I try in my small way and I’m proud of it.

    If Jade ever has any problems with a team, she won’t need me to whistle blow for her. She’s extremely capable. And like I said Ubisoft takes its sexual harassment policy very seriously so I’d hope the problem could be taken care of internally.

    DeadMan

    PS. for whoever said she may indeed be an idiot: she’s not. She’s actualy very very sharp.

  34. Elaine
    Elaine November 19, 2007 at 8:19 pm |

    (Holly: Got directed here via your comment on the girl_gamers LJ community.)

    DeadMan: I think it’s a huge leap forward that an entire team was actually willing to work under a female (very much unlike openly sexist men who proclaim ‘I’ll never work for a female boss’), and I would hope that the team actually rallies around her rather than shun her.

    On that note of Ubisoft ‘whoring out’ Jade – given that Assassin’s Creed was one of the most anticipated games of the year, it was only natural that they would capitalize on its publicity. I never thought Ubisoft was exposing a producer more often than usual, especially when you take into account the amount of publicity this game generated in proportion to other games that were similarly anticipated.

    I think the problem is that Jade is one of the handful of females in an industry dominated by men. She winds up ‘sticking out’ from the rest (a ‘token representative’), and we remember her better simply because she’s, well, different. It’s not hard to remember an exception to the rule, especially one as blatantly obvious as gender. This might have given the illusion for some people that the producer was being more exposed than usual – ‘I remember her, that must mean she’s been in every single thing I’ve seen about Assassin’s Creed!’

    I think it’s ultimately sad that certain females in other communities have actually taken a side against their own gender, making the same old arguments men have – ‘this is what happens when you use sex to sell’ or ‘suck it up and move on instead of perpetuating the stereotype that women are delicate little flowers’. I think they’ve really lost the forest for the trees in all this. This is a case of character defamation, and not retaliating is only another message for men to continue their misogyny.

  35. Rosehiptea
    Rosehiptea November 19, 2007 at 8:37 pm |

    I can’t believe some of the comments here. I’m a female fan of video games, and so are many people (mostly female) that I know online. I’m not “thin-skinned” (though I really have a right to be if I want to be) and I’m well aware of some of the stuff that gets passed around on the internet. To be perfectly honest, there are even some things about video games that I enjoy that other people might find sexist or offensive, though if someone said so I would try to listen.

    But how anyone can talk about incessant remarks about a woman’s body and bukakke cartoons like they’re something any developer is in for is just beyond me. She’s not even in a position where people have an excuse looking at and talking about her body, not that she’d deserve this at all if she were. Of course there’s misogyny here. As a video game fan it’s shocking to me that people can’t see that.

  36. wiggles
    wiggles November 19, 2007 at 8:53 pm |

    Holly:

    Sadly, I don’t think this sort of thing falls under the purview of most sexual harassment policies. Coworkers or team members losing respect for you because they think you were “weak” in the face of someone harassing your or defaming your image online? Not exactly sexual harassment even if does tie in with sexist attitudes about how women ought to be “tougher” or something.

    Any mistreatment on the basis of one’s gender is sexual harassment.

    If they’re above her on the chain of command and they treat her with contempt for her sex or for this matter, diminishing her job status, insulting her, she has grounds to file sexual harassment and/or discrimination charges.

    If they’re below her, and they insult her or refuse to do their jobs as she requires, it’s insubordination (and sexual harassment) and she can start them on the warning and termination process.

  37. brad
    brad November 19, 2007 at 9:08 pm |

    “What if 99.9% of the dudes already in the industry are idiots? Seems silly to presume they’re not.”

    Thankfully, that’s not how it works. When we don’t know something, we reserve judgment. Making any sort of assumption is a bad idea.

    And no, I’m not kidding. I want to know what is offensive about it. Is it because it’s sexual? Because of who is doing it? Seriously. Why is it offensive?

    People have sexual thoughts about other people. How could they express those thoughts in a way that doesn’t offend you?

  38. wiggles
    wiggles November 19, 2007 at 9:21 pm |

    # brad Says:
    November 19th, 2007 at 9:08 pm

    “What if 99.9% of the dudes already in the industry are idiots? Seems silly to presume they’re not.”

    Thankfully, that’s not how it works. When we don’t know something, we reserve judgment. Making any sort of assumption is a bad idea.

    unless you’re a woman. especially if you’re good-looking. then there’s the possibility you might be an idiot. if you’re male, no matter what you look like, that’s not the presumption. and yes presumptions about Raymond’s intelligence and professional abilities were made in those forum comments I referred to and they were entirely based on her sex and her looks.

    And no, I’m not kidding. I want to know what is offensive about it. Is it because it’s sexual? Because of who is doing it? Seriously. Why is it offensive?

    People have sexual thoughts about other people. How could they express those thoughts in a way that doesn’t offend you?

    if you can’t figure out why it’s offensive, imagine instead of raymond it’s your mom, or your sister… or you.
    if you have “sexual thoughts” about someone who’s expressed no desire to know about them, how’s about you can keep them to your damn self.

  39. Elaine
    Elaine November 19, 2007 at 9:27 pm |

    Brad: You seem to have completely missed Holly’s argument. Demeaning any woman as being shallow not only perpetuates the stereotype that women are inferior to men, but you’re also posting in a blog that is dedicated to feminism. Being portrayed as stupid is offensive; is that obvious enough?

    Jade has done what she has in her capacity of a producer and promoter, and never once used her body to sell. She was being professional, and yet she has become relegated to a sexual object simply because of her gender.

    It’s not ‘everyone thinks about sex’ that’s the problem here. It’s how these people have turned a competent woman into their own stereotype of a shallow, attractive girl who has only her good looks to get her by. That is clearly not the case for Jade.

    Turning women into sexual objects in public is not the default way of getting sexual thoughts across (or in Dave’s words, a ‘satire’).

  40. Crawford
    Crawford November 19, 2007 at 9:31 pm |

    Crawford: It doesn’t matter if offensive language and abuse heaped on game developers is the usual state of affairs. For one thing, that’s not exactly what I call an ideal situation; it keeps a lot of creative people from being able to communicate with gaming communities, including a lot of women. And that’s especially because — as everyone has been pointing out — women get a totally different kind of abuse. It’s not the same as just calling you a stupid shithead. Not in a million years.

    Another point–everyone keeps claiming that Jade Raymond has been the only public face of Assassin’s Creed which is simply not true. Patrice Desilets, the creative director on the project, has been giving plenty of interviews as well. It’s just that nobody makes a big deal over him. There are about four photographs of her out there; it’s not like they issued a press packet full of alluring photos of her. The gaming sites, the gaming media, the bloggers picked about two of photos up, drooled on them, and plastered them everywhere. Now that things have gotten uglier and webcomic artists are basically calling her an airheaded whore, it’s a little too easy to just look back and claim that she deserved it, or that Ubisoft deserved it. Even if Ubisoft is taking advantage of one of their employees’ looks, that’s no excuse to denigrate her, an individual woman, with sexually derogatory images.

    And yes, in fact Will Wright’s face does appear in a lot of gaming media, and I know exactly what he looks like. Cliff Bleszinkski was highly prominent as the Unreal / Gears of War lead dev, and gave just as many if not more interviews. (No, I don’t care if you never heard of him. The interviews were there.) The difference is that gaming journalists, bloggers, and so forth, did not drool all over Bleszinkski.

    Yeah, I know who CliffyB is. I mentioned him above. But he has been running Unreal for a long time (although he is apparently younger than I thought he was). He is one of very few celebrity game devs, and is one because he has been producing the successful Unreal franchise for years. There are very few game developers who could reasonably be described as auteurs. John Carmack, Wright, Miyamoto, Hideo Kojima, Sid Meier, Peter Molyneux, Chris Metzen would be most of the list, off the top of my head.

    But do you know the name of the lead dev on “Hitman” or “Splinter Cell” or “Ghost Recon”? These are all big tentpole games, arguably better games than “Assassin’s Creed,” that are produced by large teams, the managers of which may do an interview or a developer journal with Gamespot or IGN, but who are generally not heavily promoted. And it is not at all my impression that Raymond’s role in Assassin’s Creed was analogous to CliffyB’s role in Gears of War.

    I think people do drool over CliffyB because CliffyB is awesome. The “Gears of War” cover system is the biggest new development in action games since the rocket launcher. And a gun with a chainsaw on it? That is the best idea since somebody decided to try chocolate and peanut butter together.

    CliffyB is much more accomplished, and Raymond is possibly more well-known at this point because she is promoting herself and the game in a way that is very unusual for someone in her role. Raymond has had her career very much improved, not harmed, because she is an attractive woman in a profession where there are apparently very few attractive women. If she’s seeing some backlash from the gaming community that is prone to lashing back, maybe it’s because she’s a woman. It’s hard to tell, though, because few male developers have attained her kind of public prominence with such a short resume. That’s probably a big part of why she’s being called an airhead. I think she’s more Harriet Miers than Monica Goodling, but she’s still probably being presented as a bigger star than she is. It would be great if there was a woman who had earned equal standing with the guys I mention above, but Jade Raymond has not got those credentials.

    Incidentally, it looks to me like the Jade-blitz is paying off for Ubisoft. A lot of people playing “Assassin’s Creed” seem to think it’s a pretty flawed game, and while some publications have called out its shortcomings, some gamers seem to think that some of the reviewers are going soft on the game because they like Jade.

  41. NicoleGW
    NicoleGW November 19, 2007 at 9:34 pm |

    Holly, this is a terrific post. I hadn’t actually heard about this issue because, despite the fact that I’ve been an avid gamer and programmer since I was about twelve, I avoid the online communities for these interests like the plague. I’m sure everyone can guess why.

    One thing that I want to point out, however, is that I don’t think that Raymond being attractive is one of the reasons why she’s being heaped with abuse– I think it’s a reason why the abuse takes this specific form. These assholes are going after her because she’s a woman, she’s in a male-dominated field, and she’s a visible target. Maybe part of her visibility is because of how she looks, but I’d bet that if she wasn’t classically attractive, and still had this level of visibility, she’d be getting shit for being ugly, or for being outspoken, or overly-aggressive, or any of potential point of fixation.

    When women start edging in on traditionally male territory, there are unfortunately far too many men who find this, at best, inappropriate, and at worst, threatening. When this happens they push back the easiest way they can find.

    In this case they’re reducing a smart, talented, successful woman in a leadership position to nothing more than her appearance and sexuality.

  42. brad
    brad November 19, 2007 at 9:36 pm |

    “unless you’re a woman. especially if you’re good-looking. then there’s the possibility you might be an idiot. if you’re male, no matter what you look like, that’s not the presumption. and yes presumptions about Raymond’s intelligence and professional abilities were made in those forum comments I referred to and they were entirely based on her sex and her looks.”

    Right, so let’s be better than all that and not make either assumption, okay?

    “if you can’t figure out why it’s offensive, imagine instead of raymond it’s your mom, or your sister… or you.”

    I can’t say that it bothers me. Believe it or not I did do exactly that before I posted anything at all. I believe I even said something about trying to imagine myself in her shoes. Should I be offended to imagine that my mother or sister are sexual creatures? I’m not. They both have had sex. They both have done all sorts of dirty things, I’m sure. I simply don’t care. Or am I supposed to be offended by it being implied they are stupid? Can’t say that I care either. My sister in particular is a pretty smart person in my view, anybody who thinks otherwise is simply ignorant. That doesn’t really offend me. It would offend me if this effected her employment in any way, and I think it’s absolutely wrong if there is actual sexual harassment going on. I also believe in professionalism in the workplace, and think it would be wrong for any of this to enter that realm. As I said, I agree with the article.

    Why are you having so much trouble explaining what is offensive? Why do you have to give me instructions and such? Can’t you just tell me?

    “if you have “sexual thoughts” about someone who’s expressed no desire to know about them, how’s about you can keep them to your damn self.”

    I don’t think people have the right not to be offended. The right people have to express themselves sometimes means that you will encounter something that offends you… weather you are the subject of it or not.

    Besides, how is that different from what Holly is doing? She referred to Jade as “pretty” and implied her chest was attractive, among other things. Should Holly have kept those thoughts to herself? She could have written the article without mentioning them, no?

    Does Holly know that her comments are welcome?

    Should we ask permission before having a sexual fantasy about someone?

  43. brad
    brad November 19, 2007 at 9:50 pm |

    “Brad: You seem to have completely missed Holly’s argument. Demeaning any woman as being shallow not only perpetuates the stereotype that women are inferior to men, but you’re also posting in a blog that is dedicated to feminism. Being portrayed as stupid is offensive; is that obvious enough?”

    “Demeaning any woman as being shallow?” I’m not sure what that means.

    Being portrayed as stupid doesn’t offend me. I’m not sure why it should.

    “Jade has done what she has in her capacity of a producer and promoter, and never once used her body to sell. She was being professional, and yet she has become relegated to a sexual object simply because of her gender.”

    Has she been relegated to a sexual object? I don’t see how you could possibly know that. Do have hidden cameras set up in her house? She seems to be a fairly successful career software designer to me. In what way has she been relegated to a sexual object? Are you confusing “a few people see her as a sexual object” with “she has been relegated to a sexual object?”

    “It’s how these people have turned a competent woman into their own stereotype of a shallow, attractive girl who has only her good looks to get her by. That is clearly not the case for Jade.”

    They turned her into that? They changed her personality that drastically? Again, I think you are confusing how a few people see her with reality.

    “Turning women into sexual objects in public is not the default way of getting sexual thoughts across (or in Dave’s words, a ’satire’).”

    Turning women into sexual objects in public is illegal… I think.

    Before you get upset at my mocking you… my point here is this. Nothing those people say or do changes Jade from whatever she is into whatever they say she is. Yet, your portrayal of the situation is far more dire. For all you know Jade is barely aware of all this…

    Then again, for all we know she did use her body to get where she is. I know the mere idea upsets you but my point is that you seem so sure she didn’t… and you really don’t know.

  44. brad
    brad November 19, 2007 at 9:52 pm |

    “In this case they’re reducing a smart, talented, successful woman in a leadership position to nothing more than her appearance and sexuality.”

    Another point. What do you mean by reduced? Isn’t that insulting the women who enjoy being attractive and sexual? Why is someone reduced to good looks and sexuality? Aren’t many women proud of those things? Perhaps Jade is even proud of them.

  45. Scott
    Scott November 19, 2007 at 9:58 pm |

    At some point, Jade, being as intellegent as she is, realized that Ubi is peddling her ass for cash. At the moment she realised how her likness is being used in the media, she had a choice… She chose to continue her appearances with full knowledge that she was being objectified.

    It was at that point she went from being a game designer promoting a game, to a sexual object promoting a game. She didn’t stop appearing with and taking interviews with sites known for mouth breathing xbox live gamer oriented articles.

    Fault is rarely one way. If she has become a teenage boy’s idealized gamer chick sex object, it’s because she has allowed her image to become as such.

  46. wiggles
    wiggles November 19, 2007 at 9:58 pm |

    Right, so let’s be better than all that and not make either assumption, okay?

    totally. so let’s not presume raymond “might be” an idiot, since we’re not doing that to any male gamers, hmm??

    Holly’s not being a stupid sexist entitled asshat. So yes, her comments are welcome.

  47. NicoleGW
    NicoleGW November 19, 2007 at 10:23 pm |

    Brad: “Another point. What do you mean by reduced? Isn’t that insulting the women who enjoy being attractive and sexual? Why is someone reduced to good looks and sexuality? Aren’t many women proud of those things? Perhaps Jade is even proud of them.”

    I’m pretty sure you’re being deliberately obtuse in hopes of tripping me up, and that you actually know exactly what I meant. There is a reason why I specifically said she’s being reduced “to nothing more than her appearance and sexuality.”

    Seeing someone as attractive and/or sexual? Not insulting. Emphasizing those traits to the exclusion of all other abilities and accomplishments is insulting, and is often used as a way of taking women down a notch.

  48. Elaine
    Elaine November 19, 2007 at 10:23 pm |

    “Demeaning any woman as being shallow?” I’m not sure what that means.

    That means what it means. You’re insulting the intelligence of women by portraying them as stupid.

    Being portrayed as stupid doesn’t offend me. I’m not sure why it should.

    While it may not offend your person, it does not mean your personal opinion extends to the general population. Certainly, this is a case of ‘your personal preference’, but women getting undercut every step of the way due to the stereotype that pretty women can’t be intelligent is incredibly insulting.

    Has she been relegated to a sexual object? I don’t see how you could possibly know that. Do have hidden cameras set up in her house? She seems to be a fairly successful career software designer to me. In what way has she been relegated to a sexual object? Are you confusing “a few people see her as a sexual object” with “she has been relegated to a sexual object?”

    Are you actually denying that she has been relegated to a sexual object by the general public? I see that you’ve completely blocked the comic out of your mind, and you also have failed to note the amount of fallout this piece of news was received. It is not a ‘few people’, it is a lot of people exhibiting public sexual prejudice. The many misogynist comments on multiple newsposts can attest to that.

    They turned her into that? They changed her personality that drastically? Again, I think you are confusing how a few people see her with reality.

    Again, I think you are confusing how ‘a few people’ means ‘many’. The comic turned her into a sexual object, and there were photoshopped pictures of Jade in the nude. I can’t put it any more obviously than that.

    Before you get upset at my mocking you… my point here is this. Nothing those people say or do changes Jade from whatever she is into whatever they say she is. Yet, your portrayal of the situation is far more dire. For all you know Jade is barely aware of all this…

    Whether Jade is aware of this or not is not the issue; it’s how women have been undermined by the sexual prejudices of men, which I have stated repeatedly. You too, seem to be missing the forest for the trees.

    Then again, for all we know she did use her body to get where she is. I know the mere idea upsets you but my point is that you seem so sure she didn’t… and you really don’t know.

    You have seem to have gone against your ‘don’t assume’ argument here. You actually want to speculate that women do use their body to get where they are. I see that you have trouble understanding that women are discriminated against when they become sexual objects. You also don’t seem to understand that stereotypes of women being pretty equates to being shallow are insulting.

    I now have the grounds to call you a misogynist pig.

  49. John
    John November 19, 2007 at 10:27 pm |

    First of all, lemme say I think the comic is in bad taste.

    But. Yes, there’s a but. But… Ubisoft has definitely taken advantage of Jade and her success in the Looks Dept to promote their game. It’s pretty fucking obvious that they are plastering her image all over the place because they know well and good that the typical gamer demographic will sit up and take notice.

    It’s no surprise that many cynical gamers, who are sick of game publisher marketing departments trying to make shit look like goldschlager, would immediately suspect this as some marketing gimmick to sell their game. Sadly, not all gamers have very good senses of humor, hence the comic… while, like I said, is distasteful, DOES get the point across.

    So… all in all, I think Ubisoft is just as much to blame for this as the wanker who drew the comic.

  50. Jody
    Jody November 19, 2007 at 10:29 pm |

    Wow. Brad is completely clueless and not very bright. Why do you all keep feeding him?

  51. jvdhk
    jvdhk November 19, 2007 at 10:35 pm |

    What do you mean by reduced

    oh FFS put away your strawman. Pedantry will never win the argument.

    Reduced means only looking at those qualities and nothing else. “Reduced” is accurate because she is more than good looking. Reduced is accurate because 5 of the six 6 positive attributes of the person in question have been removed. In case you still don’t get it, someone who is smart, talented, successful, leader and good looking becomes just “good looking”.

  52. pheeno
    pheeno November 19, 2007 at 10:43 pm |

    People have sexual thoughts about other people. How could they express those thoughts in a way that doesn’t offend you?

    Respectfully.

    Really, it’ not rocket science Brad.

    Showing her sucking dick to get guys to buy her game does not qualify as respectful.

    Where are all the cartoons of the me in tihs industry, down on THEIR knees gobbling down male gamers cocks? Where are THEIR bukkake shots? Hmmm? I’m sure there are lots of gamers out there who would love to fanatize about having men just like you being their personal cum dumpster. Since you find it so flattering, Im sure we can find a talented artiste ready to portray it. Post your picture so we can create a cartoon just like this one and then post it all over the net, making sure people you work with (and family members too) can see it.

    You dont find it insulting, so you should be totally on board. Right?

  53. Chris
    Chris November 19, 2007 at 10:44 pm |

    People, please ignore Brad. He’s obviously trolling.

  54. T.J. Narom
    T.J. Narom November 19, 2007 at 10:59 pm |

    @brad

    People here are offended because some asshats feel entitled to insult, defame and treat women like objects just because they’re women–and yes, these are insults and are clearly meant as insults.

  55. red
    red November 19, 2007 at 11:11 pm |

    What a load of BS – both the cartoon itself, and Brad’s whiny insistence that we explain to him in explicit detail why it’s offensive to be portrayed as less than human, i.e. a sex object, that despite your professional credentials you are seen as nothing more than a stupid ditz who will fellate any man who crosses your path. Go educate yourself, it’s not our job.

  56. brad
    brad November 19, 2007 at 11:13 pm |

    “totally. so let’s not presume raymond “might be” an idiot, since we’re not doing that to any male gamers, hmm??”

    That makes no sense. By default you assume that it’s not possible others are idiots?

    “Holly’s not being a stupid sexist entitled asshat. So yes, her comments are welcome.”

    Insults like the one you just used may be considered unwelcome by some. You avoided the question, and made yourself look hypocritical.

  57. brad
    brad November 19, 2007 at 11:20 pm |

    “People here are offended because some asshats feel entitled to insult, defame and treat women like objects just because they’re women–and yes, these are insults and are clearly meant as insults.”

    My question is what specifically offends you. Not if you are offended. But, maybe you answered me. Is it intention? The intention of the person that bothers you? If so, why do the intentions of others bother you so much?

  58. The Reckless Abandon » Blog Archive » Stupid People

    [...] principle difficulty that guys who play video games have is that at some point they begin to think that every woman they [...]

  59. brad
    brad November 19, 2007 at 11:28 pm |

    “I’m pretty sure you’re being deliberately obtuse in hopes of tripping me up, and that you actually know exactly what I meant. There is a reason why I specifically said she’s being reduced “to nothing more than her appearance and sexuality.”

    Seeing someone as attractive and/or sexual? Not insulting. Emphasizing those traits to the exclusion of all other abilities and accomplishments is insulting, and is often used as a way of taking women down a notch.”

    No, I simply don’t think that is an escape from the situation. What if someone has no other abilities or accomplishments? Say, a supermodel, for example. How about a porn star?

    I simply can’t buy into the idea that those traits are inferior to others.

  60. T.J. Narom
    T.J. Narom November 19, 2007 at 11:44 pm |

    Your insistence that she might be an idiot isn’t about avoiding assumptions at all. It is a notion that you entertain, not because it’s a valid possibility, but because you’re clearly feeling defensive. There is nothing to suggest that she is anything less than capable, and the only reason she’s being treated as if she isn’t is because she’s a woman. That’s the problem here.

    And as far as why this offends? She’s being treated like dirt–more over, people feel entitled, and even justified in treating her so poorly. If that doesn’t offend you to some degree, that says something about your character.

  61. L
    L November 19, 2007 at 11:54 pm |

    Bingo!

    Shorter Brad: “I put myself in Raymond’s shoes in my head, and I’m not offended, and because I have a penis, I must be right about this! She should be happy that she’s fodder for my fantasies. You’re all trying to censor me. And you all obviously hate sex. What is offensive about objectifying women? Answer my question so that I can ignore your answers and call you a hypocrite!”

  62. Crawford
    Crawford November 19, 2007 at 11:59 pm |

    One thing that I want to point out, however, is that I don’t think that Raymond being attractive is one of the reasons why she’s being heaped with abuse– I think it’s a reason why the abuse takes this specific form. These assholes are going after her because she’s a woman, she’s in a male-dominated field, and she’s a visible target. Maybe part of her visibility is because of how she looks, but I’d bet that if she wasn’t classically attractive, and still had this level of visibility, she’d be getting shit for being ugly, or for being outspoken, or overly-aggressive, or any of potential point of fixation.

    When women start edging in on traditionally male territory, there are unfortunately far too many men who find this, at best, inappropriate, and at worst, threatening. When this happens they push back the easiest way they can find.

    That’s ridiculous. She became a sort of internet celebrity and she caught an internet backlash. If you supply access to a mass-distribution medium to everyone with a computer, you’re going to get some cranks and sickos.

    If Jade Raymond weren’t attractive, she probably would not have positioned so centrally in promoting the game, and she would not have obtained such prominence. As DeadMan above points out, Ubisoft has lots of producers making lots of games, and none of them are as well known as Raymond. And whether it was her idea or the company’s that she should become famous on the internet, she’s certainly going to benefit from it.

    There are lots of men and older or less attractive women who have achieved the same level of professional accomplishment, and they are not well-known at all.

  63. wiggles
    wiggles November 20, 2007 at 12:11 am |

    If Jade Raymond weren’t attractive, she probably would not have positioned so centrally in promoting the game, and she would not have obtained such prominence

    How do you know? Maybe she’s actually that good at her job of design and promotion. The fact that any time there’s a press release issued with her name in it, some fanboi feels obliged to wax moronic about what she smells like or how her moles are configured is not her fault, it’s the fault of said fanboi. So if this was “backlash” it’s obviously misdirected.

  64. Elaine
    Elaine November 20, 2007 at 12:21 am |

    That’s ridiculous. She became a sort of internet celebrity and she caught an internet backlash.

    What you are implying is that misogyny plays no part in the backlash Jade received. Your argument, as I follow, was because Jade was overexposed, and you’re blaming Ubisoft for showing a woman in such a prominent position as she, and the ‘backlash’ becomes justified because she is famous.

    Whether or not Ubisoft really intended to ‘whore her out’ is going to be a debatable subject until the end of time, and speculating the cause seems to be building a house on sand, in my opinion. Regardless, famous or not, no one should be subjugated to sexual images drawn of oneself, especially when nothing was done to perpetuate such ideas.

  65. Crawford
    Crawford November 20, 2007 at 12:49 am |

    Seriously. Go count the number of interviews Cliffy B gave, and compare to how many interviews Jade Raymond gave. I think Bleszinski will come out ahead. The reason she got such absurdly, stupidly high “billing” above her game had nothing to do with her acting any differently than any game producer acting as a spokesperson. It had to do with other people’s reaction to her, which is out of her control.

    I have a post above that hit the mod queue for some reason; Cliffy pretty much built Epic Games. Jade was brought on to head the production of a vaguely Prince-of-Persia-esque game developed by the Prince of Persia team. CliffyB is more prominent than Raymond because CliffyB has accomplished much, much more. Is he also good at self-promotion and self-marketing? Sure. And I am sure plenty of nasty things have been said about him.

    Being entrusted to head a team making a game with a multimillion dollar budget is a big deal and a big accomplishment. But it’s not as big a deal as inventing “Unreal,” Unreal: Tournament” and “Gears of War.” Ubisoft has lots of people at Jade Raymond’s level of seniority. Other studios have people at her level of seniority. And these people are not marketed. They don’t send out their head shots with the screenshots from the games. They don’t intercut video of themselves with game video. I am sure that Jade Raymond got put in charge of “Assassin’s Creed” because she was competent to do the job, and the game is apparently a decent game. But she didn’t get famous for being a great game developer. She got famous for being the hot chick game developer.

    And if creepiness and rage from random people on the internet are part of that package, I am sure the significant bump in compensation she’ll get for being a publicity magnet for the games she works on will more than cover that.

  66. Crawford
    Crawford November 20, 2007 at 12:58 am |

    Plus, the most important point, for the umpteenth time: nobody ever does that to male game developers. If any of you are STILL clueless as to where the misogyny is, it’s right there in front of your nose

    People on the internet call male game developers assholes and retards. People on the internet tell male game developers they wish they would die. And they are certainly called whores when they seen as caving in to their bosses or to mass-market gaming or to some other gamer faction some random angry guy on the internet doesn’t like.

    The only webcomic I read is “Penny Arcade,” and they make some pretty nasty jokes at the expense of game developers all the time. I expect that as you head more toward the fringes, into the creepier stuff like Mr. Cheung’s work, you’re going to find plenty of nasty stuff about plenty of people.

  67. Jamie
    Jamie November 20, 2007 at 1:03 am |

    That’s frigging horrible… just… gods.

    I used to read Chugworth Academy too, so I guess I won’t be going back there anytime soon.

  68. Cerberus
    Cerberus November 20, 2007 at 1:47 am |

    Someone actually gave me the book of his comics and I found them kind of unsettling and didn’t really know why. I do now. He’s an over-entitled gonad with a pathological hatred of women. I saw that in his original webcomic but I did the “normal” thing and sort of brushed it aside and assumed the best. Isn’t it always interesting that the complete wankers who everyone rushes to defend from criticism of mild racism or sexism always seem to one-up it shortly after and show just how racist/sexist they are?

    On the same score, I love how he defends himself by saying he bought her game and that she wasn’t even the target anyways and how he’s being oh so attacked by the vile evil meanies at Ubisoft and how he’s Penny Arcade against America’s Greetings and not a pathetic bastard with a hatred for smart women.

    On the flip, I can only think of one case of male developers sexualized like this and there was no porn about it and there was no “dumbing down” of the person and it was Penny Arcade in the early days and John Romero. The tired joke basically was that John Romero was easily mistakable for a really hot woman and one of the characters turned out to have a secret John Romero worship room.

  69. Cerberus
    Cerberus November 20, 2007 at 1:56 am |

    Oh and Crawford, despite your protestations, you are a misogynist. Stop defending yourself and the comic, you are digging into a deeper and deeper grave.

    And on a further sidenote, Ubisoft really has impressed me in a lot of ways. They made Beyond Good and Evil, they are sticking strong with Jade instead of taking the easy out and using this as an excuse to discriminate against her or to ignore her protestations. I have faith that they’ll continue to do the right thing no matter what the misogynists posing as geeks on the internet say (seriously what is with this vocal subculture on the net; geeks are looked down upon you say, well maybe that’s because you keep presenting yourself as them at their worst, jackass).

  70. nonskanse
    nonskanse November 20, 2007 at 2:31 am |

    From everything I have heard women still are getting payed less for the same work as men. Its good news if they are making equal or more but haven’t heard about this from another source. Sorry, my sociology minor is surfacing again. (:

    Riff,
    I’ve read in a few places that women who do men’s professions make a lot more than women who do “women’s” professions. Maybe still not as much as men, but I never said they make more than men.

    So

    Women can make more money in “men’s” professions (construction, engineering, software),

    “than in “women’s” professions.”

    So here I sit making a decent salary (field is mostly men) and our admin assistants (almost all women) make significantly less. Maybe anectodal but its a big company. I also sometimes spend time on salary.com sometimes looking things up for my city, although that’s not exactly solid evidence either.
    The point was mostly whinging and sympathy for Jade. Better pay = men’s jobs = more suck in other areas of life.

  71. brad
    brad November 20, 2007 at 3:12 am |

    I finally found the comic. Seemed pretty funny to me.

    Doesn’t mean I think it represents Jade in any way, or her career, or the games she makes, or any of that other jazz. Yet, I still found it funny.

    And I’m still playing Assassin’s Creed. It’s an amazing game. One of the best I’ve ever played. It will sell very well, Jade or no Jade… much less comic or no comic.

    It’s hard for me to see the comic as sexist. It portrays the male gamers with the typical stereotypes… geeky, overweight, whiny.

    The joke I got from the comic was this: “Young male gamers will buy any piece of crap game that comes out if the producer happens to be a sexy woman. The publisher is taking full advantage of this by giving Jade a lot of media time.”

    All false, of course… but that’s how I read it. I suppose both interpretations are valid.

  72. Ken
    Ken November 20, 2007 at 3:19 am |

    Being a woman in the game industry does not guarantee you a life of ridicule, contempt, and being the butt of crude jokes. I mean, how many crude jokes or “dick-sucking” cartoons have you seen regarding, oh, for instance…

    Paulina Bozek (producer and director of Singstar), or Rima Brek (AI programmer for Rainbow Six), or Jane Cavanagh (co-founder and CEO of SCi, and CEO of Eidos), or Linda Currie (co-founder of Sirtech, creators of Wizardry, and producer of Jagged Alliance), or Erin Hoffman (best known as the infamous “ea_spouse,” but also a game designer herself working on the DS versions of Marvel Trading Card Game and Puzzle Quest), or Ayami Kojima (the legendary artist for post-Symphony of the Night Castlevania games), or Arcadia Kim (product development director on several Sim series at Maxis, as well as for EA’s Lord of the Rings games), or Shara Miller (producer at LucasArts on Mercenaries, Star Wars Battlefront, and ThrillVille), or Rhianna Pratchett (Story designer and writer for Overlord and Heavenly Sword), or Shannon Studstill (the gorgeous producer of God of War)?

    Lemme answer that for you: None. And you wanna know why? Because they weren’t paraded around by their employers to draw attention to any of the games they worked on.

  73. tigtog
    tigtog November 20, 2007 at 3:55 am |

    It’s hard for me to see the comic as sexist.

    Okay okay okay – this amount of sustained effort to win the coveted Obtuse Twerp of the Week does indeed deserve some recognition, so I have decided that you deserve a special perseverance prize that you can treasure forever and share with you no doubt many friends..

    The artwork of you mispronouncing your workplace’s jargon, sucking customers’ cocks to make them buy your product, and a poster-size full colour foldout of the bukkake shot, will be on your workplace noticeboard next week. Bask in the envy of your colleagues.

  74. Tefnut
    Tefnut November 20, 2007 at 4:56 am |

    I finally found the comic. Seemed pretty funny to me.

    Fine. Then I second the suggestion made above: please direct me to an online picture of yours (if you’d rather email it directly to me, let me know and I’ll give you an email address), and within 48 hours I will send you, and every gaming and comics message board I am familiar with (quite a number, if I do say so myself), a well-drawn comic of you fellating a group of men, culminating in a bukkake scene.

    This is not a joke. If you stand behind your words, you “don’t find it offensive,” and find it “pretty funny,” put your money (or rather your face) where your misogyny is.

    Also, please let me know if you have any preferences as to the way you should be dressed – personally, I think I’ll have you on your knees, wearing a cock-ring and a butt-plug and nothing else. Maybe a harness. I thought about shoving a ball-gag in your mouth, but that way you won’t be able to open your mouth to catch all the jizz during the final multiple cum-shot.

    What do you think? (again – no joke. Send me a picture, and you – and the rest of the internet – will have that comic).

  75. a french swede is a rootless vegetable
    a french swede is a rootless vegetable November 20, 2007 at 5:07 am |

    Since you mention Dave Cheung’s Deviant Art page, here’s what he says about the whole thing:

    Hoo boy. Who’d have thought 2 hours of messing around in Photoshop due to random boredom one night could result in so much DRAMA! Actually, it was probably inevetiable since the internet is full of morons who think they know everything (myself included).

    So, to dispel some misunderstandings caused by up-their-own-arse moralistic faggots, here’s a “Buy Jade’s Game” MORAL-O-FAQ!

    Q: Did you Buy Jade’s Game?
    A: As a matter of fact, I did. I’ve had it pre-orderded since before I knew of poor Jade’s existence, since it looked quite nifty. Sadly, despite being promising in many areas, it gets very boring rather quickly, and has the most ridiculous plot since Star Ocean 3 (This is Jade’s game… with a Sci-fi/Horror twist). Oh well.

    Q: Why do you hate Jade? Leave Jade alone!
    A: Personally, I have nothing against her. I just found the entire situation of HER being more heavily marketed and gaining more “press” (and I use the term loosely) coverage, than THE GAME to be somewhat amusing. In fact, fair do’s to her working her way to a cushy position like “Executive Producer”, it really is the ideal job; since all you do is sit around doing nothing and get paid for it. RESULT!
    But I digress, this has nothing to do the matter at hand.

    Q: What statement are you trying to make with the Jade Comic?
    A: If you would take some time to read the links I originally posted along with the comic, you see that the primary reason for it’s existence is the “Jade Hype” on videogame forums, blogs and “news” sites like Kotaku (lolz). Although Ubi-Soft UNDOUBTEDLY whored Jade out to an extent, it really wasn’t any more than how say, Cliffy B whore’s HIMSELF out. The difference is, forum nerds, bloggers and Kotaku (lolz) got rather more hot and bothered for Jade than they would for old Cliffy.
    So, I suppose Jade could be classed as “Collateral Damage”, which may not be very fair, but honestly, if you really care about something as trivial as a comic, you’re a collossal faggot (that goes for you ladies too). A joke is a joke, and is only as harmful to you as you let it be.
    When someone makes a joke about you, it is YOU who chooses whether or not it becomes EPIC BUTTHURT, not the other way around.

    Q: What if Ubi-Soft sue you?
    A: They won’t, because they don’t have a case. As obviously tastless and unsubtle as the comic may be, it is no different to (for example) Dave Chappele dressing up as R.Kelly and pretending to pee in someone’s mouth or cartoons in newspapers showing George Bush as the devil. It is merely bullying tactics, and would reflect more badly on them than anyone else.

    Q: What is a “moralfag”?
    A: A moralfag is a person who’s principals are so far wedged up their own backside that they believe that any any remotely derogatory commentary made on anyone else is unnaceptable, unfounded, sexist, racist and, possibly, EVIL. That is, of course, unless they are the ones doing it. Moralfags are also utterly convinced that their view of morality is the ONLY view, and anyone who disagrees can GTFOTHX!
    In summary, a moralfag is 99% of DeviantArt users. OH SHIT!

    Q: Are you a moralfag?
    A: No, I’m just a self-satisfied cunt.

    Have fun flaming, arse-lickers!

    Interesting that one of the most distanced and nuanced comments about the whole thing I’ve found so far comes from one of the most centrally involved persons.

  76. weasel
    weasel November 20, 2007 at 5:54 am |

    I read the comic in a slightly different way. Instead of Jade being depicted there as herself, I think it was meant to be what the other characters were imagining (or reading in the magazine) while looking at the swimsuit shots and jerking off. The point of course being to criticize the swimsuit@maxim thing as a cheap marketing trick.

  77. Michael N
    Michael N November 20, 2007 at 9:50 am |

    Carol Shaw. Roberta Williams. Women who have produced very prominent games in the past. None of them spurring the kind of response like Jade Raymond.

    Why?

    Because Neither Shaw nor Williams needed to be paraded around as a show piece for their respective companies. It was never treated as “oh look, a girl made this, that’s special”. But Jade and Ubisoft seem to think Jade and her game are deserving of our attention simply because of her gender.

    That’s simply abhorrent. Sell the game to the public on the MERITS OF THE GAME and not the gender of it’s production crew.

    So when you use gender as a PR point you’re going to get backlash. Enter the comic. It’s not about porn. It’s simply a crude, overreactive hyperbole, quite common with the younger generations, in response to the use of Jade’s gender as a selling point on a video game. That sort of marketing BS is doesn’t fly with consumers anymore, especially with the target audience of the game.

    Trying to make this into anything else is simply, at best, ignorant or, at worst, a cheap and abusive attempt to promote a personal agenda.

  78. Jonas
    Jonas November 20, 2007 at 10:09 am |

    I like all my women pretty and smart, as my wife will confirm, so I’m appalled at this “Jade storm”. She’s where she is because of talent and she happens to look good; more power to her!

  79. Brad
    Brad November 20, 2007 at 11:20 am |

    Tefnet, you’ve misinterpreted a lot of what I said, or failed to read it.

    For one thing, I’ve said many times if Jade is being harassed in any way that is clearly wrong. I’ve also said I believe in professionalism at the workplace. If anyone is hanging up these pictures in her office or anything along those lines… that is wrong.

    You like to throw around the word misogyny a lot but I’m not sure you know what it means.

    What if ubisoft was exploiting Jade for her “looks?” We don’t know if they are or aren’t, but by assuming that they aren’t you could be making her life a lot worse. I mean, if that is what they are doing… shouldn’t we be all outraged?

    Finally, speaking of prejudice.. butt-plugs, cock rings, and a guy with jizz on his face? You sound like a homophobe to me, if you expect any of that to embarass me.

    As for being depicted as stupid… well, you’ve already implied as much and it hasn’t bothered me so far. I don’t expect a comic would effect me.

    However, seeing your homophobia, misogyny, and lack of reading comprehension I’m not going to be spending you my picture at this time. If those things improved, I’d likely be okay with it.

  80. Crawford
    Crawford November 20, 2007 at 12:06 pm |

    You’re still not getting it. The environment is different in the game industry for men and women, historically and in the present. Calling someone mean names is not the same thing as showing them fellating people and having jizz sprayed all over their face. Calling a man a “whore” for selling out is not the same thing as drawing a series of deeply creepy images of a woman who’s been targeted for her looks, performing sex acts for money. If you can’t understand that, you’re hopeless and I have no interest in discussing this topic any further with you.

    I am sure webcomics have gone to plenty of excessive lengths on prominent male developers. These people pay for their own websites, have no editors and many aren’t even ad supported. They can say whatever they want.

    I am aware that calling someone a whore is not the same as publishing a drawing of them blowing somebody. But I would not be surprised at all if someone, somewhere has drawn similar pictures of CliffyB or John Romero.

    Is your position that it’s different to say horrible things about a woman on the internet than it is to say horrible things about a man on the internet? Because if you are famous on the internet, people will hate you automatically.

    My point is that, when people on the internet say awful things, they usually say awful things about the game or the studio, because the individual makers are not presented very prominently. Raymond is getting attacked because Ubi’s promotional strategy has made her famous on the internet. She is more “out there” than most of her peers, and that is why she is catching more internet flak. Being out there will also improve her career.

    As for those of you who are still blaming the woman for the gross things other people say about her, what exactly would you have done in her situation, hmm? You’re a lead producer on a project. Part of your job is to represent the product to the media. The media drools over the way you look, and keeps posting the same exact photo of you on websites. What do you do? Resign your position? Stop giving interviews even though it’s your job? Wear giant baggy sweatshirts every time you appear on video? Insist that they all turn off the cameras? Put a huge, fake green wart on your nose?

    Do you really think that the fact that the schmucks in the gaming media seem to love her is going to hurt her career as a game developer? Having her doing interviews draws attention to the game while deflecting scrutiny away from the game’s flaws. She is going to gain huge career benefits that are tied to this rather than to her accomplishments as a game developer.

    I don’t know if this is an accident brought on by game journalists being undersexed losers, if this is a byproduct of UbiSoft’s PR strategy, or if this is an idea of hers brought to fruition. But the bottom line is that she seems to be a peer of Patrice Desilets, or possibly less experienced or accomplished, and, because she is attractive and female and articulate in front of a camera, she’s getting treated like she’s CliffyB, who has accomplished much more than Raymond or Desilets.

    When you consider the benefits of this fame from her perspective, having a nasty web comic drawn about you is a small price to pay.

    Have other members of your team give interviews too? (Oh wait, she DID do that, i.e. Desilets.)

    Most people who have Jade Raymond’s job don’t get famous on the internet for it. They give interviews that are published in text. Desilets actually appeared in one of the Ubisoft preview videos on Gamespot. But I expect that that was an office politics thing, because, googling him, I see him making several comments to the fact that he feels like she’s getting way too much attention and credit than her role in the game justifies. He sounds like someone who has been elbowed out of the spotlight on a project.

    Even Cheung’s assessment was that it was “Jade’s game.” That’s the way the gaming press has treated it, and that seems to be the way Ubi has treated it.

    I had never heard of Desilets before yesterday, or, if I’d seen his name, I’d forgotten it. According to his comments, their responsibilities on the team are roughly equal; I am not sure if she is his boss, or he is her boss or if they both answer to someone higher up. But it’s not like she’s granting him exposure on Gamespot or something. But nobody would draw a webcomic about Desilets because nobody knows who Desilets is.

    This is why most of the hate is directed to the games or to the companies that make them. Readers usually will not know who the individual developers are, so ripping on them would require too much exposition to be funny. Why would you draw Desilets blowing somebody when you could draw Altair, the character from the game, who is much more recognizable?

    Come on. Give me a break. The real kicker in this case is that she never did anything remotely unprofessional. Despite the woman’s credentials, people are just assuming she has the job of lead producer–which very often comes with these exact job responsibilities–because of her looks. And again, that’s another sexist assumption.

    I am not blaming her for anything. If you walk outside and you get shit on by a pigeon, and I say “that happens sometimes when you go outside,” I am not blaming you for getting shit on, or suggesting that you deserve to get shit on, and I am not defending the pigeon. I am just saying that shit happens.

    Unlike the pigeon, Cheung is absolutely responsible for the things he said. But people saying nasty things on the internet are like pigeons in the city. They’re ubiquitous, they’re gross and annoying, and they shit on everything.

    (And please don’t respond to this by talking about blaming rape victims. I am not comparing rape to pigeon shit and rape should never happen. But Cheung’s comic is not rape. Cheung’s comic is shit.)

  81. Jadewolf
    Jadewolf November 20, 2007 at 12:22 pm |

    Hm. I’m seeing several commenters saying that Ubisoft “paraded [Jade] around like a showpiece” and may be “exploiting Jade for her ‘looks.’” Dudes, she’s a producer. A producer’s job is to go out and get media coverage for the games. But because she’s a woman, the media coverage was about her, not the games she was promoting. That’s the fault of our press, which thinks women can only be sex objects, not professionals. She shows up to talk about the games, and the reporter wants to talk about her body. Think, for a minute, how you would feel if every time you tried to get something done at work, people said something like “wow, that’s a cute butt” instead of listening to you. And then they assume you’re a moron and draw cartoons of you being sexually abused. Fun times!

  82. Rosehiptea
    Rosehiptea November 20, 2007 at 1:43 pm |

    She chose to continue her appearances with full knowledge that she was being objectified.

    Because a nice woman would have just stayed in the house forever after that?

    If she were a male game developer no one would ever have accused anyone of “parading her around.”

    And what does that mean, anyway? I saw a TV commercial for Assassin’s Creed last night, and there was no giant picture of Jade, or indeed any mention of Jade, in the commercial. I realize in certain circles people are seeing her face but she’s hardly the big selling point of the damn game for the general public.

  83. Roy
    Roy November 20, 2007 at 2:08 pm |

    That’s such bullshit Michael:
    Carol Shaw. Roberta Williams. Women who have produced very prominent games in the past. None of them spurring the kind of response like Jade Raymond.

    Why?

    I don’t know, maybe because Williams retired a decade ago, and because her last game, the final chapter of an adventure series, was released at a time when computer gaming was dying and the adventure game, in particular, was considered largely dead?

    And Carol Shaw? River Raid Carol Shaw?
    You’re asking why a woman whose best known work was a game from 1982 didn’t get the public attention that a woman producing a game over two and a half decades later is getting?

    Let me introduce you to a lovely little thing I like to call “The Internet.” That, combined with the rather significantly changed perception of gaming makes your comparison rather beyond ridiculous. Nobody knew what gamers looked like back in the day, and with gaming still a fringe hobby and without the internet to create fan-sites and help drive publicity, it’s not really a huge surprise that few people knew or cared what Roberta Williams or Carol Shaw looked like.

    Because Neither Shaw nor Williams needed to be paraded around as a show piece for their respective companies. It was never treated as “oh look, a girl made this, that’s special”. But Jade and Ubisoft seem to think Jade and her game are deserving of our attention simply because of her gender.

    Also bullshit. Jade is the public face for Assassin’s Creed because it’s her game. It’s not “parading her around” when she gives interviews, because that’s her fucking job. Nobody jumps on other producers for promoting their games: no criticism of Konami when Kojima gives one of his crazy interviews full of weirdness and mystery, accusing them of “parading” him around like a pony, because that’s his job. No criticism of Miyamoto or Nintendo when he trots out another Mario interview. Raymond’s job was to give interviews and help get out information on the game she was producing. It’s her job to be the public face. The fans jumped on it because she’s “the hawt chick making games” and made it a big deal. I never saw Ubisoft out there going “Hey! Over here! She’s HOT! Look!”

    That’s simply abhorrent. Sell the game to the public on the MERITS OF THE GAME and not the gender of it’s production crew.

    What’s abhorrent is the way that fanboy morons drug her through the dirt, went on and on about how much they jerk off to her picture, and she gets criticized for it, as though it’s her fault that a bunch of sexist assholes can’t seem to control their penises. Assassin’s Creed was promoted on the virtue of the game- it wasn’t until fanboy dipshits started going on about how hot Raymond was that it stopped being about the game.

    Trying to make this into anything else is simply, at best, ignorant or, at worst, a cheap and abusive attempt to promote a personal agenda.

    Unlike ignorant, intellectually dishonest attempts to excuse and justify repeated attempts to drag her through the mud by placing the blame at her feet for daring to be a woman who is the public face of a game? Please, tell me more about personal agendas.

    Crawford:
    I am sure webcomics have gone to plenty of excessive lengths on prominent male developers. These people pay for their own websites, have no editors and many aren’t even ad supported. They can say whatever they want.

    Who said that they can’t? That’s a non-argument. The fact that they can doesn’t automatically justify anything. They can, but sometimes, when they do, it makes them assholes.

    I am aware that calling someone a whore is not the same as publishing a drawing of them blowing somebody. But I would not be surprised at all if someone, somewhere has drawn similar pictures of CliffyB or John Romero.

    Is your position that it’s different to say horrible things about a woman on the internet than it is to say horrible things about a man on the internet? Because if you are famous on the internet, people will hate you automatically.

    People have said shitty things about Romero primarily because of his association with Daikatana. Raymond is being harassed and targeted because she is, apparently, too hot to be working on games.

  84. Crawford
    Crawford November 20, 2007 at 2:47 pm |

    Also bullshit. Jade is the public face for Assassin’s Creed because it’s her game. It’s not “parading her around” when she gives interviews, because that’s her fucking job. Nobody jumps on other producers for promoting their games: no criticism of Konami when Kojima gives one of his crazy interviews full of weirdness and mystery, accusing them of “parading” him around like a pony, because that’s his job. No criticism of Miyamoto or Nintendo when he trots out another Mario interview. Raymond’s job was to give interviews and help get out information on the game she was producing. It’s her job to be the public face. The fans jumped on it because she’s “the hawt chick making games” and made it a big deal. I never saw Ubisoft out there going “Hey! Over here! She’s HOT! Look!”

    It’s NOT Jade’s game, though. Kojima games are Kojima games, and Miyamoto games are Miyamoto games. Assassin’s Creed is a Ubisoft game, and Jade Raymond was in a management position on the project. The other familiar names are the lead creative guys who create iconic characters and great games.

    Jade Raymond is not to “Assassin’s Creed” what Hideo Kojima is to “Metal Gear Solid.”

    And most people with her job are not the “public faces” of their games. The Hit Man is the public face of “HitMan.” Sam Fischer is the public face of “Splinter Cell.” Lara Croft is the public face of “Tomb Raider.” You wouldn’t ordinarily promote the developer of “Crash Bandicoot,” you’d just promote Crash.

    Link and Mario are probably more famous than Miyamoto, the most famous developer in the world. Marcus Fenix is more recognizable than CliffyB, even to gamers. Snake is much more recognizable than Kojima, and he puts his name all over the product.

    Altair was clearly designed to be the same kind of franchise character, but at some point the buzz stopped being about the game and started being about Jade.

    Whether she orchestrated that, or Ubi orchestrated that or the web editors did it, or the grassroots nerds latched onto her, that happened. Usually, you get interviews with the lead creatives and shots and footage of the game. Somehow, Assassin’s Creed became the Jade show.

    When you compare Jade Raymond to Hideo Kojima and Shigeru Miyamoto, it’s because she has been presented as the person who made the game in the same way that they are in control of creative on the games they make. But based on your link, and most discussion of the subject I’ve seen, her role on Assassin’s Creed was much smaller.

  85. yunk
    yunk November 20, 2007 at 4:22 pm |

    Regarding these two quotes:

    “all the videos of the game were actually her video blogs that looked to me like they had been produced by Ubi and distributed to the gaming sites, rather than produced by the gaming sites. Most interviews with game developers and most “developer diary” columns tend to be published as text.”

    “Most people who have Jade Raymond’s job didn’t get famous on the internet for it”

    Most videos I saw of Age of Conan had the devs and producers talking in them on camera. And that game actually has nudity. Maybe you just didn’t notice when the producers talked in the other videos because they were men?

    This is the fallacy known as Survivor Bias. Having a selective memory because I’m a man does not mean those other videos and press packets featuring less attractive producers don’t exist. They are all out there. But we ignore them. That is OUR problem, not the attractive woman’s problem.

    The fact is almost everything I saw about Creed showed the game and talked about the game. Sure she is there sometimes, but I didn’t really notice more than I notice any other attractive woman.

    Again, does the whole controversy say something about Ubisoft or about us?

    “I am not blaming her for anything. If you walk outside and you get shit on by a pigeon, and I say “that happens sometimes when you go outside,” I am not blaming you for getting shit on, or suggesting that you deserve to get shit on, and I am not defending the pigeon. I am just saying that shit happens.”

    Actually I think that’s even worse. The idea that she or Ubisoft should just EXPECT this kind of treatment because of what she looks like is far far worse than the morons like the comic artist. People like that exist and thankfully are few and far between. But for so many people to automatically assume if an attractive woman did something, then it MUST follow that the company purely uses her for her looks, or she got where she was because of her looks, and they MUST expect to be treated poorly because of her looks, is far more troubling and offensive. One is an idiot, the other is a large amount of people who should know better.

  86. Phoenix Woman
    Phoenix Woman November 20, 2007 at 4:25 pm |

    So Crawford’s saying that Ms. Raymond deserves to be treated like trash because she had her picture taken?

    Hoo boy! Blame the victim alert!

    Meanwhile, let’s turn to Actual Grownup Male, Jeff Fecke:

    So I assume, since she’s catching the “same kind of withering internet fanboy flak” as everyone else, that you’ve got a link to the Reggie Fils Aime bukkake porn. Right? No? Shocking! Why, it’s almost like the attacks on her are radically sexualized in a way that attacks on men are not!

    You win the internet, Jeff. As does Roy.

    But you both knew that already. (Though I must warn you: Getting a complement from a woman for defending Jade Raymond will no doubt make you “pussies” and gender-traitors in gaming circles, to judge from the comments section of this Broken Toys post.)

  87. Toonces
    Toonces November 20, 2007 at 4:26 pm |

    Personally, I love me some troll porn. The idea of Brad being depicted in an erotic comic with a butt-plug up his ass and on his knees is hot. Especially when I think of him surrounded by the maurading hillbillies from Deliverance taking turns sticking their hillbilly cocks in his mouth. (You got a purty mouf, boy!) But you’d like that, wouldn’t you Brad? Yeah, you’re just a dirty little cum-guzzler. Take that cock, boy. Take it ALL! Yeah, that’s it…..Mmmmm. I can hear those banjos playing now!

    But that’s totes cool, right Brad? I mean, I’m just a hetero woman attracted to images of internet trolls sucking cock. Is there something wrong with that? And while a cartoon depicting that might be considered creepy, immature or disturbing, it’s okay that it’s out there, right? Especially since it wouldn’t affect your career or other’s professional estimation of you in the workplace.

    Oh, and your straw hissyfit saying you wouldn’t submit a pic for a cartoon rendering of your image on the basis of Tefnet’s supposed “homophobia, misogyny, and lack of reading comprehension” has to be disqualified, I’m afraid. Cuz, yanno, Jade didn’t get to have that choice when she was depicted on her knees sucking cock. A cock’s a cock, Brad, no matter whose mouth it’s in! And there isn’t anything homophobic about buttplugs, cock rings, or jiz on a man’s face. So sack up, Brad and stop hiding behind the strawskirt. Give Tefnut the pic.

    And besides, it will turn me on. And that’s all that really matters here.

    You KNOW you want it.

  88. Brad
    Brad November 20, 2007 at 4:39 pm |

    “I’m seeing several commenters saying that Ubisoft “paraded [Jade] around like a showpiece” and may be “exploiting Jade for her ‘looks.’” Dudes, she’s a producer. A producer’s job is to go out and get media coverage for the games.”

    Let’s say someone at ubisoft was thinking this: “Jade’s hot. Let’s get her in as many publicity videos as we can. That should sell some games.” Would that be okay?

    Do you know for sure that isn’t occuring?

    It’s funny how willing you are to make assumptions.

  89. Brad
    Brad November 20, 2007 at 4:46 pm |

    “So Crawford’s saying that Ms. Raymond deserves to be treated like trash because she had her picture taken?”

    See, this is frustrating. You try to have a conversation with someone, and they just start making shit up.

    You are assuming:
    #1: She is being treated like trash.
    #2: Crawford thinks she deserves it.

    Both of which you are assuming. Again and again I’ve seen people who think they are defending Jade do so merely on the basis of assertions that support their pre-concieved notions. They are far more biased than the man who drew this comic. None of you know what Jade thinks of all this. Stop pretenidng like you are her best friend.

    “Getting a complement from a woman for defending Jade Raymond will no doubt make you “pussies” and gender-traitors in gaming circles, to judge from the comments section of this Broken Toys post.”

    I’d wager, but it’s merely that, many guys who support supposedly femminist causes do so because they think it is what women want. I would call them spineless. Of course, I have no idea if the specific guy in question is doing that. It’s just very common.

  90. Brad
    Brad November 20, 2007 at 4:55 pm |

    “This is the fallacy known as Survivor Bias. Having a selective memory because I’m a man does not mean those other videos and press packets featuring less attractive producers don’t exist. They are all out there. But we ignore them. That is OUR problem, not the attractive woman’s problem.”

    You were probably looking for selection bias or confirmation bias. Survivor bias is something different.

    “But for so many people to automatically assume if an attractive woman did something, then it MUST follow that the company purely uses her for her looks, or she got where she was because of her looks, and they MUST expect to be treated poorly because of her looks, is far more troubling and offensive.”

    Speaking of fallacies. This one is called “straw man.” You, and your fellow commenters, keep changing around the statements of the people you are arguing against.

    They say: “It’s possible the company is using her for her looks.”
    You say: “then it MUST follow that the company purely uses her for her looks”

    They say: “Shit happens sometimes.”
    You say: “they MUST expect to be treated poorly because of her looks”

    Do you see the difference between what people are saying to you and how you are interpreting it?

  91. Roy
    Roy November 20, 2007 at 5:02 pm |

    You are assuming:
    #1: She is being treated like trash.
    #2: Crawford thinks she deserves it.

    Both of which you are assuming. Again and again I’ve seen people who think they are defending Jade do so merely on the basis of assertions that support their pre-concieved notions. They are far more biased than the man who drew this comic. None of you know what Jade thinks of all this. Stop pretenidng like you are her best friend.

    I don’t think you have to be someone’s “best friend” to think “you know, she probably doesn’t like that someone drew a comic where she’s depicted wearing a bikini, unable to pronounce the word “creative” and shown giving blowjobs to wanking fanboys.” And, given the responses from herself and from Ubisoft in relation to this and to other events surrounding this dust-up, you’ll pardon me if I continue to work on the reasonable assumption that no, in fact, she probably doesn’t really appreciate the comic.

    Now, if you’ve got some reason to believe that Raymond thought that the comic was all kinds of awesome or didn’t care, by all means, show us. Otherwise, why, exactly, should we assume that?

    I’d wager, but it’s merely that, many guys who support supposedly femminist causes do so because they think it is what women want. I would call them spineless. Of course, I have no idea if the specific guy in question is doing that. It’s just very common.

    And now who is assuming things? How do you know that these guys support “supposedly feminist causes” because they think it’s what women want? Have they told you? Did they write about it on their blogs? How do you know how common it is?

    Weird how opposed you are to the (reasonable) assumption that a professional producer probably wouldn’t like having a comic circulated around the internet that depicts that producer giving blowjobs and talking like a moron, but you’re fine with assuming that men are “spineless” about their support of “supposedly feminist causes.”

  92. T.J. Narom
    T.J. Narom November 20, 2007 at 5:48 pm |

    “It’s funny how willing you are to make assumptions.”

    Dude, you’re the only one I see making wild assumptions (and boy, they are really far out there). And you’re doing it purely for the sake of leaping to the defense of some really shitty people.

  93. JohnLarry
    JohnLarry November 20, 2007 at 5:52 pm |

    It’s Ubisoft’s fault for using her as a PR machine, and they were naive to think this wouldn’t happen. I mean seriously she wasn’t the only person

    Not that I’m saying this is a good thing, but SomethingAwful does this type of thing a lot. And most people hadn’t heard of the comic until Ubisoft pulled the “We’re sueing you” stunt.

  94. T.J. Narom
    T.J. Narom November 20, 2007 at 5:58 pm |

    “See, this is frustrating. You try to have a conversation with someone, and they just start making shit up.”

    Delicious irony.

    “You are assuming:
    #1: She is being treated like trash.
    #2: Crawford thinks she deserves it.”

    No, those things are clearly true.
    Would you like to debate the color of the sky next? Sure, people say it’s blue but what do they base that on? Why do people just assume it’s blue without backing that position up?

  95. Crawford
    Crawford November 20, 2007 at 6:50 pm |

    This is what I said Narom:

    I am not blaming her for anything. If you walk outside and you get shit on by a pigeon, and I say “that happens sometimes when you go outside,” I am not blaming you for getting shit on, or suggesting that you deserve to get shit on, and I am not defending the pigeon. I am just saying that shit happens.

    Unlike the pigeon, Cheung is absolutely responsible for the things he said. But people saying nasty things on the internet are like pigeons in the city. They’re ubiquitous, they’re gross and annoying, and they shit on everything.

    Jade Raymond’s star is on the rise for reasons wholly unrelated to her videogame-developing abilities, and if she can accept that as the fruit of her celebrity, than she can deal with the annoyance of some dudes on the internet being creepy and gross.

    If you are famous on the internet, then people will talk shit about you on the internet. To quote Clint Eastwood, “deserve’s got nothin’ to do with it.”

    Is it right? I don’t know. But shit talking is protected by the Constitution. How is it that we’ve got people lambasting Rudy Giuliani for going after the Brooklyn museum for exhibiting paintings of the Virgin Mary covered in shit, while simultaneously objecting so strenuously to drawings of Jade Raymond, covered in semen?

    If we really supported liberal principles and the inviolability of fundamental rights, like free speech, we’d be mad at Ubisoft for using intimidation tactics to get SomethingAwful to pull speech that they know is clearly protected and that they could never sue to enjoin.

    Constitutional protection isn’t just for speech that offends other people.

  96. Crawford
    Crawford November 20, 2007 at 7:23 pm |

    Actually, that reminds me of a good example of similar treatment of a man: Hustler magazine published a joke ad about Jerry Falwell having sex with his mother in an outhouse.

    He sued them for it, and lost in the Supreme Court. They told Rev. Jerry that the ad was protected and that gross and insulting or not, if he wanted to be famous, he had to learn to shrug that stuff off. The whole proceeding was seen as a triumph for free speech and free everything against the forces of repression. They made a movie about it.

    Exact same situation.

  97. nyk0n
    nyk0n November 20, 2007 at 7:26 pm |

    “The idea that she or Ubisoft should just EXPECT this kind of treatment because of what she looks like is far far worse than the morons like the comic artist. People like that exist and thankfully are few and far between. But for so many people to automatically assume if an attractive woman did something, then it MUST follow that the company purely uses her for her looks, or she got where she was because of her looks, and they MUST expect to be treated poorly because of her looks, is far more troubling and offensive. One is an idiot, the other is a large amount of people who should know better.”

    What you’re forgetting is that this is the internet.

    Aside from certain places known for stupidity and general dipshittery, mostly everybody has thought “WTF is this jackass talking about?” in response to this comic. The rest of the internet is either manned by idiots who really have no clue and are just spouting off in terms of he said/she said (in which case, whaaaa get over it) or they are deliberately being jackasses because, well, it’s the internet and it’s kind of allowed.

    The fact that any of you here are making such a big deal about it only gives it strength and power (and “purpose” and “intent”) where none existed before or no one gave a shit before. Therefore, like most other people in similar situations, you are creating your own poor victim-laden sexist “problem”.

    In reality, no one gives a shit. I’m sure it doesn’t make her feel great, but hopefully she understands that most people don’t consider that she “slept her way to the top”. I mean, she’s attractive and intelligent, which by default makes her sexy, but she’s not “dude, I totally bet that she would suck our cocks just to get us to buy her game”. Not by a long shot.

    Secondly, it’s pretty hypocritical and sexist when you automatically assume that because someone is making fun of someone and “demeaning them” and they just happen to be a female that they MUST BE doing so because they are mad at her vagina, purely because the “offender” happens to have a penis.

    If you’re going to make fun of someone, you’re going to use material that generally fits the parameters or occasion. You’re not going to make fun of a fat guy by calling him a bean-pole and teasing him about going to the bathroom to throw up his freshly eaten lettuce, are you?

    She happens to be a girl, and she happens to be hot. You might not like the stereotypes that go with that (And boo-hoo by the way. Stereotypes are HUMAN NATURE and you are just as guilty of them yourselves.) but that’s really all this guy had to go on. That just shows how lame he is. She has done nothing worthy of this action, as evidenced by the fact that this guy couldn’t even find anything to tease her about and thus had to resort to “default stereotype” in order to try and express his random issue.

    Plus, the internet is full of nerds who magically become bullies when they are graced with anonymity. Why? Because nobody likes them in real life, no girls like them in real life, and they essentially have no life. They get “bullied” in the real world so it makes them feel special and cool when they can get together with other losers and “bully” people online. Therefore you can directly attribute his comic as a way of “sticking it to her” or anybody else he thought it might apply to PURELY FOR THE SAKE OF drama and pushing their buttons.

    In fact, it’s MUCH MORE LIKELY that he approached her at some game convention after pacing around behind her for two hours to get up the courage, and she rejected him due to his being a creepy jackass, and now he’s all butthurt by it and is going to call her a whore for not dating him.

    “Personally, I love me some troll porn. The idea of Brad being depicted in an erotic comic with a butt-plug up his ass and on his knees is hot. Especially when I think of him surrounded by the maurading hillbillies from Deliverance taking turns sticking their hillbilly cocks in his mouth. (You got a purty mouf, boy!) But you’d like that, wouldn’t you Brad? Yeah, you’re just a dirty little cum-guzzler. Take that cock, boy. Take it ALL! Yeah, that’s it…..Mmmmm. I can hear those banjos playing now!”

    Ha ha, but actually if you want to be accurate it would be a comic showing him going down on a group of women in order to convince them to buy his game.

    Duh.

    Women usually have sex with guys, hence the cocksucking. Anyway, this comic makes no sense anyways, every video I’ve seen of her she’s been talking about the game and what’s coming up next like any other person would. Granted she happens to be very cute, she seems smart, and she’s into fucking video games. Excuse me while I go into a little trance about how hot she is. She has never once EVER seemed like she was “the token hot chick” or whoring herself out to get people to buy her game, so this comic only makes the writer look like a jackass (and give him attention which you are all happily contributing to) AND makes him look like all he really wanted to do was draw her half-naked and put her in the position of giving out blowjobs.

  98. Gayle
    Gayle November 20, 2007 at 9:11 pm |

    Exact same situation.

    Oh no, it isn’t !

    Falwell was a public person. This woman, in the role of producer, certainly is not.

    Not that it would make it any better if she is, but she’s not.

    All I’m gleaming from the above is that the geek boys decided to take her down because, they feel, her boss used her looks. A thinking person would take the boss to task for this.

    Maybe the critics are right when they claim too much gaming rots the brains. Lots of evidence of that here.

  99. Mighty Ponygirl
    Mighty Ponygirl November 20, 2007 at 9:42 pm |

    Just FYI — this article in Feministe was linked to by Ars Technica’s gaming forum, which used to be pretty egalitarian but recently has seen an influx of misogynist trolls. Gird yourself for battle.

  100. wiggles
    wiggles November 20, 2007 at 10:47 pm |

    # Crawford Says:
    November 20th, 2007 at 7:23 pm

    Actually, that reminds me of a good example of similar treatment of a man: Hustler magazine published a joke ad about Jerry Falwell having sex with his mother in an outhouse.

    He sued them for it, and lost in the Supreme Court. They told Rev. Jerry that the ad was protected and that gross and insulting or not, if he wanted to be famous, he had to learn to shrug that stuff off. The whole proceeding was seen as a triumph for free speech and free everything against the forces of repression. They made a movie about it.

    Exact same situation.

    The Nazis in Skokie did more for the 1st Amendment than Larry Flynt ever did, just FYI.

    I am not blaming her for anything. If you walk outside and you get shit on by a pigeon, and I say “that happens sometimes when you go outside,” I am not blaming you for getting shit on, or suggesting that you deserve to get shit on, and I am not defending the pigeon. I am just saying that shit happens.

    If the pigeon has a 4 pound brain (I’m being generous here) and takes aim at you specifically, the blame is on the fucking pigeon.

  101. As
    As November 20, 2007 at 10:51 pm |

    Actually, that reminds me of a good example of similar treatment of a man: Hustler magazine published a joke ad about Jerry Falwell having sex with his mother in an outhouse.

    He sued them for it, and lost in the Supreme Court. They told Rev. Jerry that the ad was protected and that gross and insulting or not, if he wanted to be famous, he had to learn to shrug that stuff off. The whole proceeding was seen as a triumph for free speech and free everything against the forces of repression. They made a movie about it.

    Exact same situation.

    I don’t think the problem is with the comic in question. Yes, it’s in extremely poor taste, but fair enough, it’s inevitable. I suspect Jade has the skin to deal with this poor exercise of free speech, and I hope she will continue to advance in the industry.

    The real problem with this whole mess is that the attitude has arisen in some circles that this attack on Jade’s personal character is justified; that she somehow personally provoked the backlash.

    - It’s justified because she is “whoring out the game” by being prominent in her producer role.- It’s justified because she is only famous for being hot.- It’s justified because producers do nothing and she isn’t the driving creative force behind the game.- It’s justified because she doesn’t have a proven track record of mega-game accomplishments.

    Jade has always conducted herself in a professional manner; while a gaming blog writes about her that she smells pretty she’s right there, doing her job, talking about the game. She does not deserve the kind of hateful treatment where people see fit to call out her professional qualifications and blame her for attracting a disproportionate amount of geek attention.

  102. Crawford
    Crawford November 20, 2007 at 11:16 pm |

    Oh no, it isn’t !

    Falwell was a public person. This woman, in the role of producer, certainly is not.

    Not that it would make it any better if she is, but she’s not.

    All I’m gleaming from the above is that the geek boys decided to take her down because, they feel, her boss used her looks. A thinking person would take the boss to task for this.

    Maybe the critics are right when they claim too much gaming rots the brains. Lots of evidence of that here.

    Hard to tell. She’s not rock-star famous, but within the gaming subculture she has become very prominent, because she’s been giving lots of interviews to gaming media. As I mentioned above, if Cheung didn’t think his audience would know who she was, there wouldn’t be much point in making fun of her. Are people under the misconception that Cheung works with Raymond or something? They don’t know each other.

  103. Coldorderful
    Coldorderful November 21, 2007 at 3:05 am |

    One thing that I want to point out, however, is that I don’t think that Raymond being attractive is one of the reasons why she’s being heaped with abuse– I think it’s a reason why the abuse takes this specific form. These assholes are going after her because she’s a woman, she’s in a male-dominated field, and she’s a visible target. Maybe part of her visibility is because of how she looks, but I’d bet that if she wasn’t classically attractive, and still had this level of visibility, she’d be getting shit for being ugly, or for being outspoken, or overly-aggressive, or any of potential point of fixation.

    When women start edging in on traditionally male territory, there are unfortunately far too many men who find this, at best, inappropriate, and at worst, threatening. When this happens they push back the easiest way they can find.

    Precisely. I’m still amused at this idea that she’s being called stupid just because she’s an *attractive* woman, as if less classically attractive women are given loads of respect for their intelligence. I’m quite sure that if she were a larger sized, poorly dressed woman with bad hair, none of these misogynist twits would be giving her any more credit for her work–”hey, she must be the lead person on the game, look at her, she looks so intelligent!” Instead, they’d probably be saying she’s stupid plus lazy, and making cartoons where she has sex with animals (musta slept with the boss’s dog to get the job–get it?) or something. She’s always going to be considered an unqualified fraud as long as she’s a woman in a male dominated field.

    But Jade and Ubisoft seem to think Jade and her game are deserving of our attention simply because of her gender.

    But then again, that’s an excellent point. Bitches don’t know their place, these days. Sure her job is to market this product, but when she was called for interviews or asked for pictures she should have refused on principle or only agreed if she knew that the interviewers were also talking to her competitors. She’s responsible to make sure the gaming press does its job properly, call it playing mommy–mommies like to ensure fairness, I hear. If a bitch steps forward, she deserves to be ridiculed for being too pretty, too ugly, the wrong gender. It’s all so obvious now I don’t know why anyone can’t see it. If she couldn’t have the decency to call attention to her gender by not being the default gender, she should at least have had the decency to not try to work in this industry.

    Now, if you’ve got some reason to believe that Raymond thought that the comic was all kinds of awesome or didn’t care, by all means, show us. Otherwise, why, exactly, should we assume that?

    brad would reply, but he’s in the hospital. Seems there was a car accident on his street, and as people pulled themselves from the wreckage, they compalined that they didn’t love the experience of having their bodies mangled. He was extremely befuddled, repeating over and over, “I don’t UNDERSTAND. Why is it difficult for you? Why don’t you love it? Why can’t you EXPLAIN? Why do you assume that if you touch bright, shiny, leaping objects called “flames” it will produce a painful sensation?” until they got sick of it and kicked his ass. Luckily, an ambulance was already on its way, but you should have more sympathy for how difficult basic comprehension is for the incredibly dense.

  104. exholt
    exholt November 21, 2007 at 5:25 am |

    Brad’s obtuseness reminds me of the “hardcore computer geek” co-workers who were long on arrogance and talking a good game about their “skillz” they gained from their CS degrees, A+/MCSE certs, and playing with computers since childhood when I started working in the IT field.

    It was clear after a few weeks that they knew just enough to really screw up…and the fact they had to be frequently corrected by “inferior” female CS graduates and non-CS majors such as myself only angered them more. Fortunately, our managers were alert enough to realize what was happening and fired them to our great relief.

  105. Hrm. I May Have Been Wrong About Our Wee Industry. « Eating Bees

    [...] have said more eloquent things on the topic of Jade. There have been some that have been more philosophical. And some people know [...]

  106. Brad
    Brad November 21, 2007 at 11:21 am |

    “Now, if you’ve got some reason to believe that Raymond thought that the comic was all kinds of awesome or didn’t care, by all means, show us. Otherwise, why, exactly, should we assume that?”

    We shouldn’t. We just shouldn’t assume it’s the other way around either.

    I’d wager, but it’s merely that, many guys who support supposedly femminist causes do so because they think it is what women want. I would call them spineless. Of course, I have no idea if the specific guy in question is doing that. It’s just very common.

    “And now who is assuming things? How do you know that these guys support “supposedly feminist causes” because they think it’s what women want? Have they told you? Did they write about it on their blogs? How do you know how common it is? ”

    Yes. They have told me. I hear this from guys all the time. In relationship counciling services it is a common question guys ask. “If she says something I disagree with, should I just go along with her?” Things along those lines. Guys I know say and do this all the time.

    “Dude, you’re the only one I see making wild assumptions (and boy, they are really far out there). And you’re doing it purely for the sake of leaping to the defense of some really shitty people.”

    Name one.

    ““You are assuming:
    #1: She is being treated like trash.
    #2: Crawford thinks she deserves it.”

    No, those things are clearly true.”

    #1 is subjective, so can’t be “clearly true.”
    #2 you have no evidence for. Crawford never said he thinks she deserves it.

    Quite the opposite. “To quote Clint Eastwood, “deserve’s got nothin’ to do with it.””

    Clearly Crawford feels her deserving it or not is not at issue.

    Simply put, you are lying, or you failed to read what Crawford wrote.

    “The real problem with this whole mess is that the attitude has arisen in some circles that this attack on Jade’s personal character is justified; that she somehow personally provoked the backlash.”

    Thank you. This is the first reasonable explanation I’ve seen here. I’m not sure we know what Jade was thinking, but I agree that is a misogynist attitude.

    This also makes the statements of other commenters make more sense. They need to believe Crawford, others, and myself, feel she deserved it because that is their preconcieved notion. Dispite us directly saying that isn’t the case, they insist. Over and over. Now I can see why.

    “Precisely. I’m still amused at this idea that she’s being called stupid just because she’s an *attractive* woman, as if less classically attractive women are given loads of respect for their intelligence. I’m quite sure that if she were a larger sized, poorly dressed woman with bad hair, none of these misogynist twits would be giving her any more credit for her work–”hey, she must be the lead person on the game, look at her, she looks so intelligent!” Instead, they’d probably be saying she’s stupid plus lazy, and making cartoons where she has sex with animals (musta slept with the boss’s dog to get the job–get it?) or something. She’s always going to be considered an unqualified fraud as long as she’s a woman in a male dominated field.”

    There are heaps of female game developers. Personally, I think you are the one with an issue here. No one made comics about sex with dogs, that’s just what is in your head.

    “If a bitch steps forward, she deserves to be ridiculed for being too pretty, too ugly, the wrong gender. It’s all so obvious now I don’t know why anyone can’t see it.”

    This is another example of a straw man argument. He didn’t say any of that. You are just making shit up. Why lie like this? What does it accomplish?

    “brad would reply, but he’s in the hospital.”

    You sound frustrated. Is that because you lack the ability to defend your position?
    “Brad’s obtuseness reminds me of…”

    Another person, same story. If you don’t want to actually discuss the issue, that’s fine. Ad hominems just make you look petty and intellectually impotent.

    If you are that frustrated in your inability to defend your position, perhaps it’s time to rethink your position.

  107. Confutatis.org
    Confutatis.org November 21, 2007 at 11:26 am |

    My misogyny has nothing to do with me; it’s your fault I’m showing it!…

    Having followed Assassin’s Creed for a while before it was released, I already caught a glimpse of the sexism that pervades the male-dominated gaming community. Jade Raymond is the producer of Assassin’s Creed, and she had given interviews …

  108. kali
    kali November 21, 2007 at 12:37 pm |

    There is something so frustrating about a truly stupid troll. You can pwn his ass ten thousand times over and you’ll never feel the joy of it, because he’s just too fricking dumb and concrete-skulled even to know when he’s been beaten. Plus– and I know this is an Issue that I should Address– I have a peculiar hate-on for dumb guys who think they’re smarter than everyone else in the world. In totally related news, this thread makes me sad.

    Also, I was interested in this little twitter of insecurity.

    Ha ha, but actually if you want to be accurate it would be a comic showing him going down on a group of women in order to convince them to buy his game.

    Duh.

    Women usually have sex with guys, hence the cocksucking.

    I’m not sure what to say about someone who thinks that fellatio and cunnilingus are constructed identically in the culture, and that a guy-with-a-group-of-girls is the exact equivalent of girl-with-a-group-of-guys, other than that they are unbelievably, extraordinarily unobservant and lacking in awareness. But I think there is something else here besides stupidity, heteronormativity and a denial of the ways in which heterosexual sex is commonly depicted as being degrading for the women concerned (said denial , of course, simultaneous with an inability to distinguish between “sex with guys” and degradation.)

    It’s like, he doesn’t think that images of a man giving multiple blowjobs for commercial reasons and being wanked on are equivalent to images of a woman giving multiple blowjobs for commercial reasons and being wanked on, because he thinks being a woman is an already-degraded position. He doesn’t think there’s a massive difference between being a woman and being a whore. But to depict a guy as a whore– well, that’s different. It just is. Because that’s not what men are for. I diagnose someone who watches way too much porn and interacts with way too few actual women– and I know that’s a cheap shot to throw at a gamer*, but that comment absolutely reeks of it.

    (and the most sexually-accomplished-for-his-age guy I ever knew was a hardcore gamer, so there’s that. But he actually likes women. Plus he’s genuinely smart. I hate people who conform to stereotypes.)

  109. Roy
    Roy November 21, 2007 at 12:57 pm |

    Another person, same story. If you don’t want to actually discuss the issue, that’s fine. Ad hominems just make you look petty and intellectually impotent.

    If you are that frustrated in your inability to defend your position, perhaps it’s time to rethink your position.

    The problem, Brad, is that you’re not presenting a position. Most of your post is a series of pedantic nitpicks. “You’re assuming that she thinks she’s being treated like trash.” Well, duh. None of us know her personally, I think, but the evidence certainly points to her being unhappy about the treatment- from her statements about the rumors over an appearence in Maxim to the company issuing C&D orders, to the fact that most people wouldn’t really be happy about seeing a comic that depicts them as idiots giving blow-jobs to strangers as substitute for the actual work they do. Regardless of whether she thinks she’s being treated like trash, the bulk of the conversation is about the ways she’s being treated as illustration of larger problems, not as anlysis of her personal feelings about it. Maybe she doesn’t have particularly strong feelings about it, or maybe she just thinks it’s a bunch of stupid fanboys acting like morons- that’s not really the point- the point is an analysis of the things that people are doing, not her reaction to them. We’re talking about the shitty behavior of the sorts of people who’d make a comic like that, or who would choose to focus on her breasts instead of the actual work she’s doing. Saying “You’re assuming that she doesn’t like it” doesn’t acutally address any of the content being offered. It’s a non-issue. In a way, I really hope that this stuff doesn’t bother her, because it’s pretty nasty stuff, and I hate the idea that she’s getting attacked and treated like shit over this kind of thing. If she’s able to not be bothered by it on a personal level, good for her.

    Earlier you were hung up on “Well, we don’t know her personally, so what if she is stupid and can’t program, etc? What if Ubisoft really was exploiting her appearence?”

    The response is: why does it matter? Do any of those things justify or excuse the treatment that she’s received at the hands of people like Cheung? If Ubisoft is exploiting her looks, it still doesn’t excuse fan reactions to her. That Ubisoft might be doing something shitty doesn’t excuse or justify the tons and tons of “fans” who are doing something shitty.

    You repeatedly asked “why was it offensive?” Quite frankly, it’s hard to take that question in seriousness, given how explicitly it was spelled out all over the place and in numerous comments, but, whatever. You asked:

    And no, I’m not kidding. I want to know what is offensive about it. Is it because it’s sexual? Because of who is doing it? Seriously. Why is it offensive?

    People have sexual thoughts about other people. How could they express those thoughts in a way that doesn’t offend you?

    It’s offensive that she’s dragged through the mud for doing her job. It’s offensive that a lot of gamers can’t see a woman doing her job describing and promoting what is one of the most highly anticipated games of the year without talking about how much they’d like to fuck her or how hot or not hot they think she is, as though those things are at all relevent to a discussion of the gameplay mechanics of Assassin’s Creed. It’s offensive to make a comic about her that depicts her as an idiotic airhead who can’t even pronounce the word “creative” but will give blowjobs to get people to buy the game because it ignores the many intelligent interviews and releases she’s made and reduces her, once again, to a sexual object- the implication isn’t just that she’s hot- it’s that her only value was as a sex object. This whole blow-up is troubling and offensive for myriad reasons.

    This whole “we shouldn’t make any assumptions what-so-ever” thing is absolute garbage, too. Assumptions aren’t inherently bad- everyone makes assumptions every day, throughout the day. When you get work done on your car do you personally instruct the person how to do it, test them to make sure that they know what they’re doing and monitor every minute of progress? Of course not- that’d be stupid, and a waste of time. You assume that the people working on your car have some training in doing so. At best, you probably ask for recomendations or check reviews of some of the shops in your area, and you maybe look at their certifications. You let people work on your care based on their qualifications and you assume that the qualifications mean that they’ll do a good job.

    You’ve contributed precisely nothing to the conversation other than playing a cheap, annoying game of “gotcha” that seems to be aimed at proving how intellectual and clever you are, and how able you are to remain coldly dispassionate about these sorts of things. If you agree with the article, and you agree that many of the comments that were levied at Raymond were sexist, then what, exactly, are you trying to prove? What’s your point?

    You don’t seem to be interested in “having a conversation” with people on here, you seem to be interested in scoring points. It’s great that you wouldn’t be offended by the things that were levied at Raymond. It’s clear that a lot of people would be. It’s also illustrative of what many people see as larger issues of sexism within the gaming culture. If you don’t agree, that’s great, we can discuss that. But being a pendant

    Yes. They have told me. I hear this from guys all the time. In relationship counciling services it is a common question guys ask. “If she says something I disagree with, should I just go along with her?” Things along those lines. Guys I know say and do this all the time.

    They did? Really? All of them. I did? Thomas did? The guys at Feminist Allies did? What about Kevin from Slant Truth? Or Hugo?

    The fact that the guys that you know say something doesn’t make it common. It could be that you happen to know a lot of sort of shitty people. It could be that a lot of people who go to relationship counciling services do that, but maybe they only represent a tiny fraction of the whole. You haven’t got a clue, but, hey! It’s your experience, so it’s totally okay to generalize out to the larger whole, right? Sort of the opposite of what you’re expecting other people to do, but, whatever.

    Thank you. This is the first reasonable explanation I’ve seen here. I’m not sure we know what Jade was thinking, but I agree that is a misogynist attitude.

    This also makes the statements of other commenters make more sense. They need to believe Crawford, others, and myself, feel she deserved it because that is their preconcieved notion. Dispite us directly saying that isn’t the case, they insist. Over and over. Now I can see why.

    I’m not sure why this is coming as a surprise to you, since that point was pretty much made in the original post: “Who does she think she is, wearing a cute top like that and standing in front of the other Assassin’s Creed developers? (Serious shades of Sweatergate right there.) It’s not her game and I bet she didn’t even do any of the real development!”

    and

    “in some people’s minds, Jade Raymond is getting her comeuppance for daring to be a prominent woman in game development. For being in a leadership role. For being the public face of her game. For wearing cute shirts. And for being good-looking. They don’t believe that she could actually have the chops to play a creative role in a huge, mainstream game like Assassin’s Creed; if she’s in the spotlight, it’s either because she’s hogging credit or using her looks or both. That’s a double standard you’ll never, ever hear applied to male video game producers or designers who give interviews about their games. Of course, bloggers and journalists don’t bother to attach beauty shots of male developers either.”

    Note that neither of those assumes to know what Raymond was feeling about this- it’s about the ways that people are reacting to her. It’s about the things that fans are saying and the responses to criticisms of their actions.

    If you really want to have conversations with people on here, it might behove you to, you know, actually make an effort to converse, not try to play the Socratic teacher. You’re not Socrates, and you’re not doing a particularly good job of pretending.

  110. Brad
    Brad November 21, 2007 at 1:28 pm |

    I find that usually when people get frustrated in an argument it’s because they are unable to justify their position.

    They channel these feelings towards others and become angry.

    Ever notice how anyone who takes a contrary position to the majority in a comment thread or message board is labeled a troll?

    Trolls argue for the sake of argument, yet someone who is genuinely curious is called a “troll” even when they are more than willing to have a civil discussion.

    “Pwned” is a term that I feel speaks volumes about a person. A person who uses this term is saying they see discourse as a conpetition. They picture themselves as being the winner. Though, in reality, if something is learned by any participant, I consider that a win for everybody.

    Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that I’m a misogynist. What have your comments taught me, if that is the case? That women have to lie to rationalize their arguments? That they resort to insults and personal attacks? Just like the men they claim to hate so much?

    I see countless lines of venom, mixed in with the occasional attempt at rationality. Great job. You’ve done a real service for your sex.

    The good news is I don’t really take you seriously. Using words like “pwn” tends to have that effect.

    Sadly, this conversation has gotten so bogged down by a few rabid people who felt the need to vent at Crawford, others, and myself. My apologies to the few people willing to discuss the issue ratoinally, like “As,” who managed to answer several of my questions in a few sentences while others spent paragraphs lambasting me and accomplishing nothing.

  111. Brad
    Brad November 21, 2007 at 1:57 pm |

    “The response is: why does it matter? Do any of those things justify or excuse the treatment that she’s received at the hands of people like Cheung?”

    I totally agree. That’s my point. Why does it matter? It doesn’t. It’s pointless to keep bringing it up like it has anything to do with the issue. It’s implies that women who are undereducated, for example, do deserve such treatment, which is crap. It doesn’t matter. Exactly my point.

    “You’ve contributed precisely nothing to the conversation other than playing a cheap, annoying game of “gotcha” that seems to be aimed at proving how intellectual and clever you are…”

    Sadly, that’s what it has become, but not because of me. I started out by simply asking questions, and it was answered by exactly what you describe. People trying to “beat” me at a conversation. I shouldn’t have continuted to participate, but I did, and have learned that in the future I shouldn’t respond to such things.

    “They did? Really? All of them. I did? Thomas did? The guys at Feminist Allies did? What about Kevin from Slant Truth? Or Hugo?”

    This is why it ends up being this point-by-point thing you are complaining about. That’s NOT what I said. At all. You are making a rediculous charactarization of my statement, and it’s unfair.

    “It’s your experience, so it’s totally okay to generalize out to the larger whole, right?”

    If you payed attention to my initial claim, you would have known that it was only my experience I was claiming to have knowledge of. I specifically said this may not be what that guy was doing.

    “It’s about the things that fans are saying and the responses to criticisms of their actions.”

    I’m not ashamed to admit I didn’t pick that up from the article until it was pointed out to me. As I said, I was missing something.

    I don’t have any issue with the article at this point. Only the commenters who are responding.

    Much like people feeling it is justifyable to be critical of Jade, they feel it is okay to be critical of men they don’t know anything about. They feel it’s okay to make assumptions about Jade and her personality (in this case, signifigant ones, not trivial ones like mechanics can fix cars, if you can find anyplace where I say all assumptions are bad I’d like to see it).

    Assuming UbiSoft, for example, isn’t taking advantage of her. What if they are? Isn’t that something they should rally against as well? If that is what Ubisoft is doing, it’s unfair to her, and it’s unfair to the public. It’s just as bad as the comic itself.

    You ask what my point is, and that is one of the major ones. Just because one party is wrong that doesn’t make another party right.

    Along the same lines some people seem to think it’s okay to assume Jade’s co-workers are a bunch of sexist pigs. That is also wrong. I don’t know, maybe they are, maybe they are not… but it’s a bad assumption… and frankly sexist. There is another point for you.

  112. Roy
    Roy November 21, 2007 at 2:40 pm |

    I totally agree. That’s my point. Why does it matter? It doesn’t. It’s pointless to keep bringing it up like it has anything to do with the issue. It’s implies that women who are undereducated, for example, do deserve such treatment, which is crap. It doesn’t matter. Exactly my point.

    It’s being brought up because other people continual attack her as being unqualified, or like she’s some brainless moron. They’re not being brought up as justifications for treating women who aren’t intelligent and capable, but, rather, as a response that “uh, you’re claiming something that isn’t true.”

    This is why it ends up being this point-by-point thing you are complaining about. That’s NOT what I said. At all. You are making a rediculous charactarization of my statement, and it’s unfair.

    “It’s your experience, so it’s totally okay to generalize out to the larger whole, right?”

    If you payed attention to my initial claim, you would have known that it was only my experience I was claiming to have knowledge of. I specifically said this may not be what that guy was doing.

    And if you had paid attention to what people were actually talking about, you would have known more about the conversation that was taking place. The one about fan reactions, not Raymond’s reactions.

    My other point, however, stands. Your statement was “I’d wager, but it’s merely that, many guys who support supposedly femminist causes do so because they think it is what women want. I would call them spineless. Of course, I have no idea if the specific guy in question is doing that. It’s just very common.”

    You stated that you weren’t sure about me in particular, but that it’s “very common” and that “many guys who support supposedly feminist causes” etc. You were generalizing. You weren’t specifying that it was just guys you know that you were talking about- you were making a sweeping generalization about many men, going so far as to say that it’s “very common.”

    Much like people feeling it is justifyable to be critical of Jade, they feel it is okay to be critical of men they don’t know anything about. They feel it’s okay to make assumptions about Jade and her personality (in this case, signifigant ones, not trivial ones like mechanics can fix cars, if you can find anyplace where I say all assumptions are bad I’d like to see it).

    How is “Jade probably doesn’t like her work being portrayed as a brainless blow-job machine” a significant assumption? She’s a producer. She has a job to do. There are a large number of videos that show her doing her job. It’s not a significant assumption to think “You know, this person who dedicates a lot of time to promoting a game and talking about it in an intelligent manner probably doesn’t like having all that work reduced to a crass depiction of handing out blowjobs.”

    Assuming UbiSoft, for example, isn’t taking advantage of her. What if they are? Isn’t that something they should rally against as well? If that is what Ubisoft is doing, it’s unfair to her, and it’s unfair to the public. It’s just as bad as the comic itself.

    Most people haven’t weighed in either way as to whether Ubisoft is exploiting her appearence. They very well might be- many of us have been critical of Ubisoft in the past for their use of the Frag Dolls, so it’s hardly like we’re giving them a pass. Even if they are using her in part for her looks, it doesn’t excuse what fans are doing. And, no, quite frankly, I don’t think that it’d be just as bad as the comic itself.

    The difference is that we don’t know if that’s what Ubisoft is doing, but we do know that there are lots of fanboys out there being assholes about the fact that they think she’s hot.

    You ask what my point is, and that is one of the major ones. Just because one party is wrong that doesn’t make another party right.

    Noted.

    I’m not sure where you think people are giving Ubisoft a pass or saying that Ubisoft are the corporate equivalent to angels. What’s mostly been said is that nothing Ubisoft has done would justify the treatment has been levied at Raymond.

    Along the same lines some people seem to think it’s okay to assume Jade’s co-workers are a bunch of sexist pigs. That is also wrong. I don’t know, maybe they are, maybe they are not… but it’s a bad assumption… and frankly sexist. There is another point for you.

    Where is someone suggesting that her co-workers are a bunch of sexist pigs?

  113. ColbyCheese
    ColbyCheese November 21, 2007 at 3:09 pm |

    Here’s how I see everything. I would even go so far as to call them “Facts”:

    1- “Shit” happens.

    2- Mr. Cheung has every right to draw any cartoon he likes. Matters of taste aside.

    3- Ms. Raymond has every right to be upset about anyone “saying” unflattering things about her on the internet.

    4- If Ms. Raymond doesn’t like things being said about her, she has every right to pursue a ciivil case against them.

    5- Ubisoft has a “history” of displaying questionable motives when it comes to women, gaming, and marketing (See Frag Dolls and their “Take Care of the Baby” game, or whatever it is)

    6- The gaming press (Kotaku, and everyone else) has a history of alternating between blatant fanboy-ish behavior and exclaiming “Damn it! We’re REAL journalists!”. That was especially illustrated by all the articles devoted more to Ms. Raymond than to Asassin’s Creed.

    7- For one reason or another, Ms. Raymond has received what most people would say is an unusual amount of attention as an individual. I’d guess mostly because of #5 and #6.

    So basically, it’s a bad situation. Hopefully, the artist and the subject can work it out, or not. Whatever, but I believe it’s fair to say that both Ubisoft and the gaming press had quite a bit to do with this situation.

    I tell my daughters often that nobody said the world was a “fair” place, so they just have to learn to deal with it. It sucks, but that’s the way it is. Some people are born without arms. Deal with it. Women get mistreated in many ways, all over the WORLD. It’s a problem that’s MUCH bigger than teh game industry. I don’t think we’re going to change the rest of the world by pissing all over each other in web forums. Lighten up. All of you.

    Additionally, I’ll add that THIS is what happens when you allow people like Ms. Chobot to become prominent people in the “industry”.

    If I recall correctly, she was a model, and she elbowed her way into being a “industry professional” (ie – “Game Journalist) by passing around a photo of herself in which she’s licking her PSP. I seem to recall people complaining that she was being treated like an object, even though she was selling herself as such. I actually just saw a picture of her holding a magazine while sitting on the toilet.

    So now, we have a true industry professional who gets “demoted” to a media object and we have the nerve to object. If the stream runs one way, why can’t it run the other?

    By allowing people like Ms. Chobot to “con” their way into “the industry”, we’ve essentially said it’s ok to assume that most female game industry professionals are looking to sell themselves on the basis of their physical attributes, and not on their accomplishments/talents.

    That, my friends is where OUR fault lies. We shouldn’t have given people the impression that our industry works that way.

    Or does it…

  114. Elaine
    Elaine November 21, 2007 at 4:15 pm |

    It’s implies that women who are undereducated, for example, do deserve such treatment, which is crap.

    I fail to see how Roy’s question of justifying misogyny against a professional woman can lead to ‘it’s okay to be sexist against a stupid woman’. One does not imply the other. Misogyny cannot be justified, which is what you’ve been attempting to do, by going around in circles of ‘portraying women as sexual figures isn’t offensive; look at the porn stars!’

    Sadly, that’s what it has become, but not because of me. I started out by simply asking questions, and it was answered by exactly what you describe. People trying to “beat” me at a conversation. I shouldn’t have continuted to participate, but I did, and have learned that in the future I shouldn’t respond to such things.

    This is a common thing on the internet; and yes, you should have known better to have posted in a blog that was dedicated to feminism (of all things) trying to justify why sexualizing females isn’t wrong. You’ve then later ignored valid rebuttals and shifting the blame that you’ve become the antagonist in all this on insults by others (‘pwn’ was only used once in the multitudes of people that replied to you). I found many things hilarious about the ‘troll porn’ and ‘anti-feminist bingo’ comments made against you. Did you find it funny?

    This is why it ends up being this point-by-point thing you are complaining about. That’s NOT what I said. At all. You are making a rediculous charactarization of my statement, and it’s unfair.

    Seeing as you called men who supported feminist causes ‘spineless’, I hardly see why you should be nitpicking his argument, when your own statement was ‘rediculous’ enough to begin with. For all your criticism and ‘ad hominem’ arguments, you seem to have fallen into one yourself.

    Much like people feeling it is justifyable to be critical of Jade, they feel it is okay to be critical of men they don’t know anything about. They feel it’s okay to make assumptions about Jade and her personality (in this case, signifigant ones, not trivial ones like mechanics can fix cars, if you can find anyplace where I say all assumptions are bad I’d like to see it).

    Again, I fail to see where, in any comment, that gave this impression. As Roy (and others) have stated repeatedly, Jade’s response is a non-issue. It is the sexist response that was garnered and people attempting to justify that response. Of course, we are going a step too far here, seeing as you still have problem understanding why objectifying women is an issue.

    Assuming UbiSoft, for example, isn’t taking advantage of her. What if they are? Isn’t that something they should rally against as well? If that is what Ubisoft is doing, it’s unfair to her, and it’s unfair to the public. It’s just as bad as the comic itself.

    What are you trying to accomplish with all this? You’ve been waddling between preaching the gospel of ‘don’t assume’ to others by making a great deal of assumptions yourself. That aside, this is yet another oft-repeated argument of ‘blame Ubisoft’. It’s ‘unfair to her’ that Ubisoft paraded her around to sell the game, against her will. You’ve been focusing so much on ‘exploring all possibilities’ that you’ve missed the entire point of this blog post: the response from fanboys were sexist.

  115. Phoenix Woman
    Phoenix Woman November 21, 2007 at 5:02 pm |

    It’s been brought to my attention that the comic was drawn by Dave Cheung, the creator of Chugworth Academy. I’m mentioning this in part because some might assume the comic was a hasty stick-figure scribble by a middle school brat. But Cheung is a published author who’s well known in some circles; you can buy his latest book on Amazon, but I wouldn’t recommend it unless you crave glossy schoolgirl wank material. Plus, the comic is still up on his Deviant Art page. Since he seems to enjoy degrading other creative professionals–enough to have created and posted a congratulatory “Made Jade Cry” achievement on his site–I figured his name might as well be out there too. Of course, he’ll probably just enjoy the negative attention, so please don’t feed the trolls.

    Of course he’d enjoy the attention — he’s only 25 years old and he acts as if he’s still fifteen and living with his parents in Glasgow. I’m sure they’d be so proud of their boy if they knew about that lovely Jade strip he did. His mother in particular would be thrilled, don’t you think?

  116. red
    red November 21, 2007 at 6:47 pm |

    Anyone else finding it interesting that the descriptions of a man being in the sexual service of multiple men is described by Brad as ‘homophobic’, but the same actions depicted in a graphic cartoon are not misogynistic? How the hell does that work? It’s not offensive to see it in pictures when directed against a woman, but it is offensive to see it directed against men in written form. What’s the difference, other than the person being depicted?

  117. Jovan1984
    Jovan1984 November 21, 2007 at 10:02 pm |

    Holly has a point about C&D letters. C&D letters don’t always help. Which is why Ubisoft should have served those misogynist assholes with lawsuit papers for aggravated libel, aggravated slander, aggravated defamation and aggravated harassment. I would go after every single dime from these male pigs if they made those remarks about a female employee.

  118. Crawford
    Crawford November 21, 2007 at 11:28 pm |

    Holly has a point about C&D letters. C&D letters don’t always help. Which is why Ubisoft should have served those misogynist assholes with lawsuit papers for aggravated libel, aggravated slander, aggravated defamation and aggravated harassment. I would go after every single dime from these male pigs if they made those remarks about a female employee.

    That’s why they’re lawyers and you’re just an angry person who hates freedom. Unfortunately for people like you, we have protections in the United States under our Constitution, and we enjoy freedom of speech, which means that people like you can’t try to squelch the speech of people they dislike by suing them. Nothing sickens me more than self-proclaimed liberals who start advocating totalitarian policies the minute someone uses free speech to say something they dislike.

    In fact, Ubi has no case at all, whatsoever. Publishing or disseminating untrue allegations, while representing them as true statements can constitute defamation, and defamatory speech is not protected by the Constitution. But defamation is very narrow.

    For example, if Cheung had a blog like Kotaku, and published a false allegation that Raymond had been blowing people to get them to buy the game, and that was something that might lead a reasonable person to believe that Jade Raymond was actually trading sex for game sales, that would be libel. However, mockery, ridicule, and insult are one hundred percent, all-American free speech.

    People are depicted in cartoons doing all kinds of things that they didn’t actually do, and no reasonable person believes that cartoons about people are depictions of actual events. There is no cartoon conceivable that would be defamatory, and there is no cartoon I can think of that would not be protected speech, except maybe one that violated a copyright and failed to meet the parody exception (for example, a sculpture by the artist Jeff Koons that incorporated Odie the dog from “Garfield” was found to be a copyright violation).

    This was decided in a case that was very similar to this, in which Hustler Magazine published a mock advertisement that appeared to be an interview with Jerry Falwell, in which Falwell purportedly said he lost his virginity when he had sex with his mother in an outhouse toilet. Falwell sued Hustler for defamation and lost.

    Ubi’s lawyers knew they had no right to sue over this cartoon, in the same way that content owners have been mass-mailing C&Ds that don’t hold up to YouTube about anything they don’t like. It was a total bluff; Ubi could not have sued successfully, and probably would have been sanctioned if they had tried.

    What they did accomplish was to get blogged about all over the place, reported on every game site, and, accordingly, got a bunch of free publicity for “Assassin’s Creed” and for Jade Raymond, who is more famous than ever because of this.

    Next time, before you angrily rant for Stalinesque speech codes consider the implications. What if George W. Bush could sic the White House lawyers on everyone who mocked him? What if Ann Coulter, or Bill O’Reilly or Rush Limbaugh could sue their detractors. I’m sure there are plenty of crude cartoons about all these people.

    What if Cheung could sue you for calling him a pig or an idiot? Would you honestly believe that, if your policy were enacted as a generally applicable rule, it would represent a good policy ideal?

    And that’s really the policy justification behind what I’ve been arguing throughout the thread. If you like free speech, you have to put up with people being assholes sometimes. If you start advocating jackboots on the throats of people like Cheung, sooner or later, you end up in the ovens along with him.

    The harm done by people being assholes on the internet is much smaller than the harm that would be caused by anything that could possibly be done to stop people from being assholes on the internet. The internet is full of people who spam all kinds of invective out into the world from the comforts of their own homes.

    It’s mass-publication with no barriers to entry, so there’s something out there to offend everyone. You can either engage it or ignore it. Cheung should probably be ignored. So should you. By engaging him, Ubi has publicized his work and sent lots of traffic to his website. By engaging you, maybe I’ll convince you to think twice before advocating un-American, unconstitutional speech codes.

  119. Phoenix Woman
    Phoenix Woman November 21, 2007 at 11:50 pm |

    Anyone else finding it interesting that the descriptions of a man being in the sexual service of multiple men is described by Brad as ‘homophobic’, but the same actions depicted in a graphic cartoon are not misogynistic?

    I sure am. Not that it surprises me, though.

    How the hell does that work?

    It works only if a) you think that sex is nothing but a power trip, b) there are only tops and bottoms, and bottoms have no status, and c) men are always supposed to be tops.

    In other words, it works only if you have some majorly effed-up ideas about sex, gender and life in general.

    It’s not offensive to see it in pictures when directed against a woman, but it is offensive to see it directed against men in written form. What’s the difference, other than the person being depicted?

    (snark on)

    But women are supposed to be sex slaves! It’s demeaning to men to be used that way!

    (snark off)

  120. Phoenix Woman
    Phoenix Woman November 21, 2007 at 11:55 pm |

    It’s been brought to my attention that the comic was drawn by Dave Cheung, the creator of Chugworth Academy. I’m mentioning this in part because some might assume the comic was a hasty stick-figure scribble by a middle school brat. But Cheung is a published author who’s well known in some circles; you can buy his latest book on Amazon, but I wouldn’t recommend it unless you crave glossy schoolgirl wank material. Plus, the comic is still up on his Deviant Art page. Since he seems to enjoy degrading other creative professionals–enough to have created and posted a congratulatory “Made Jade Cry” achievement on his site–I figured his name might as well be out there too. Of course, he’ll probably just enjoy the negative attention, so please don’t feed the trolls.

    Of course he’d enjoy the attention — he’s only 25 years old and he acts as if he’s still fifteen and living with his parents in Glasgow. I’m sure they’d be so proud of their boy if they knew about that lovely Jade strip he did. His mother in particular would be thrilled, don’t you think?

    It just occurred to me: Does Cheung realize that Raymond is Eurasian? Does he know that he’s reinforcing some rather bizarre and racist Western stereotypes about Asian women and their sexual appetites?

    He’d just better hope that his Mumsy doesn’t find out.

  121. Elaine
    Elaine November 22, 2007 at 1:03 am |

    The summary of Crawford’s tl;dr: But you’re oppressing my right to free speech! It’s okay for me to hate on women by drawing demeaning comics of them! IF YOU DISAGREE YOU HATE FREEDOM!!!11one! OPPRESSHUN!

  122. obsy
    obsy November 22, 2007 at 1:22 am |

    I stumbled across this link from another website. I am a woman who has very little to do with the gaming industry, and quite frankly, there’s nothing here that makes me want to have anything to do with the gaming industry. I used to game in multi player formats (Asheron’s Call), but you couldn’t convince me to now. This is the most upsetting pile of shit I could hope not to put my foot in.

    I just started trying to describ WHY a cumshot is demeaning and then my brain shut down. Let me try again, although I can’t believe that it’s neccesary- but I’m an optimist.

    Imagine saying something you don’t believe- “Hillary will be the best president” or “Bush has never told a lie” or “I am not a virgin”- and imagine that every day someone walks around saying you said that. They walk around lying about YOU. And they don’y lie about what you say. They lie about what you do.

    Because some of you say you don’t give a shit about the lies that are told about other people. You wouldn’t find it offensive that someone has drawn a comeshot over your face? The only way you can claim that it doesn’t matter is to be disingenuous. Because if someone drew that poster and put it up in your your neighborhood, you’d care. And it sucks to be her, but Jade’s neighborhood is the internet.

    She was asking for it b/c Ubi “pimped her out”? She did her job. To say that she did otherwise is to ignore what other developers have done. Do you really want women in your tiny little corner oif cyberspace? It doesn’t seem all that inviting to me.

  123. Crawford
    Crawford November 22, 2007 at 3:46 am |

    The summary of Crawford’s tl;dr: But you’re oppressing my right to free speech! It’s okay for me to hate on women by drawing demeaning comics of them! IF YOU DISAGREE YOU HATE FREEDOM!!!11one! OPPRESSHUN!

    Why the hell do people keep trying to tell me what I’m saying? I’m not being ambiguous here.

    It has nothing to do with whether it’s okay or not. I’d rather have things said that are not okay than to empower some authority to decide what’s okay to say.

    No matter who you are or what you believe, there is someone out there saying something that you find offensive. Anyone in the public eye will probably be the brunt of an unpleasant joke by someone somewhere.

    Whether it’s okay doesn’t enter into the question. It’s just inevitable when you have free speech and a mechanism for universal publication that someone will take it into their head to say something nasty about anyone who is prominent.

    By the way, Gabe Newell, the lead developer and lead creative behind the stellar “Half-Life” games, is ridiculed mercilessly because he is overweight. A post linked earlier in this thread notes that it is a cliche to threaten to murder and “skull-fuck” developers and community representitives of both sexes.

    If it is your belief that women are treated with scorn and excluded by gamers, and men are treated with respect, you’re very mistaken. In general, most male gamers rein in the insults directed at female players encountered while playing, though Cheung certainly decided to go at Raymond with both barrels.

    The common mode of discourse in the gaming subculture is to criticize viciously, to insult and to threaten. People seem to say things in games and on gaming message boards that they would not say elsewhere.

    I recently asked a black guy I play with sometimes how he could put up with people using racist expletives so freely in Call of Duty voice chat, and he said “Because it’s just Xbox.” He’s got kind of a point; he’s subjected himself to an environment where the other guy can use the n-word without reprisal, but it’s also an environment where he can shoot that guy in the face with a shotgun. This is an outlet for competition and aggression, compunded with the anonymity of the internet. Civility is not part of the vernacular.

    Whether it’s “deserved” or “okay” doesn’t enter into the question. It simply is. It doesn’t need your approval. It doesn’t want your approval. These people will revel in your disapproval. Your expressions of disgust are humorous to these people, and they will take pride in their ability to elicit them. Cheung has already characterized the outrage over his comic as an “achievement.” I expect that this thread is being linked to and laughed at on a number of gaming forums.

  124. Crawford
    Crawford November 22, 2007 at 3:51 am |

    By the way, in reference to the question of whether sexual degredation is exclusively reserved for women in gaming communities, I wish to inform the non-gamers of the common practice of “teabagging” as illustrated here:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teabagging

    This is so prevalent, that “Call of Duty 4″ has a bonus ability where your player can drop a live grenade as he dies, so anyone attempting to “teabag” your corpse will get blown up.

    If Jade Raymond were treated with kindness and civility, she’d be just about the only one.

  125. Hawise
    Hawise November 22, 2007 at 9:48 am |

    As a lifelong gamer, you are not doing this hobby a favor by extolling this behaviour. It may be common and even built-in to many games by immature, irrational designers and producers but it is hardly a worthy quality.

    I would hope that Ubisoft gets around to hiring more creative lawyers to go with its design staff. I would like to see Cheung dealt with jurisdictionally, he is playing on an international playing field and not all countries protect immature sexual predators by allowing them to score points in such a hateful manner. The US may consider that cartoon free speech but the laws are different elsewhere. If he ever wants to be treated professionally he may find that difficult if he is considered an unwanted alien at every international crossing point. He can then sit in his mother’s basement and stew for all I care.

  126. Crawford
    Crawford November 22, 2007 at 4:27 pm |

    I would hope that Ubisoft gets around to hiring more creative lawyers to go with its design staff. I would like to see Cheung dealt with jurisdictionally, he is playing on an international playing field and not all countries protect immature sexual predators by allowing them to score points in such a hateful manner. The US may consider that cartoon free speech but the laws are different elsewhere. If he ever wants to be treated professionally he may find that difficult if he is considered an unwanted alien at every international crossing point. He can then sit in his mother’s basement and stew for all I care

    That’s a great idea. You kidnap people and smuggle them into other countries where there are no human rights, so you can do things to them that would be illegal to do in the U.S.

    What can we call it… I know! Rendition!

  127. Hawise
    Hawise November 22, 2007 at 10:11 pm |

    Wow, here I’m talking about nations restricting the man’s access to their territories and you get ‘rendition’ out of it. I know that Canada has vastly different ideas of what constitutes hate speech to what the US does, as do several European nations. If those countries decided that they wouldn’t grant him visas then it would be well within their rights. Heck I know someone who can’t leave the US because he gets full body cavity searched everytime he comes back- once is chance, twice is coincidence, three times is a trend.
    Get a grip.

  128. Dear Mr. and Mrs. Cheung: Can We Talk? « Mercury Rising 鳯女

    [...] for Ms. Raymond, she also happens to be both pretty and Eurasian, two things that seem to bring out the worst in male gamers. Equally unfortunately, your son Dave [...]

  129. Crawford
    Crawford November 23, 2007 at 4:56 pm |

    What on earth makes you think she’s Asian?

  130. red
    red November 23, 2007 at 6:57 pm |

    Also, Crawford, your understanding of ‘freedom of speech’ is really quite wrong. Read the Constitution. The first amendment reads “Congress shall make no law . . .abridging the freedom of speech.” Congress. Individuals can abridge ‘freedom of speech’ however much they want – in fact, it wouldn’t even be called ‘freedom of speech’ at that point, because it doesn’t involve the government. So please, don’t start waxing poetic about the Constitution when you show no evidence that you have ever actually read it.

  131. Crawford
    Crawford November 24, 2007 at 5:45 am |

    Also, Crawford, your understanding of ‘freedom of speech’ is really quite wrong. Read the Constitution. The first amendment reads “Congress shall make no law . . .abridging the freedom of speech.” Congress. Individuals can abridge ‘freedom of speech’ however much they want – in fact, it wouldn’t even be called ‘freedom of speech’ at that point, because it doesn’t involve the government. So please, don’t start waxing poetic about the Constitution when you show no evidence that you have ever actually read it.

    I am familiar with the Constitution and I have read most of the leading First Amendment cases. You just have no idea what you’re talking about.

    I have no idea how you think individuals can limit others’ speech. If you mean that individuals who own a private outlet for speech can deny others’ access to it, you’re correct. The bloggers here can ban people from commenting on the site. Cheung’s ISP can refuse to host his content if they disapprove of it. Abortion clinics can bar protesters from their property. Neiman Marcus can kick anti-fur demonstrators out of the store. You are correct that free speech rights cannot be claimed against private entities refusing to offer the speaker access to a privately-owned forum.

    Beyond that, I have no idea what you’re talking about. Suing Cheung would certainly involve the government, because a court is a government institution. Rights wouldn’t be meaningful if anyone who disliked your exercise of them could sue you and get a punishment meted out by the government.

  132. Flight Papers » Blog Archive » “Feminist gamers” might just turn out to be an oxymoron, and other small notational difficulties

    [...] Otherpeople have already written about the insanity surrounding Jade Raymond, and I’m not going to rehash it all here. Suffice to say, the whole thing is just a catastrophically depressing illustration of how ridiculously sexist gamer culture is—and will for continue to be, for the foreseeable future. It’s beyond sad to me that an attractive woman can’t be the public face of a product without everyone in the damn room assuming that she was put there to titillate a male audience, that she’s being “whored out” (just a great term, by the by), and, necessarily, that she’s being degraded. It’s downright heartbreaking that said (male) audience goes on to assume that she is somehow unqualified or brainless, or that she is in some way complicit in the deeply sexualized harassment that would follow. (Inevitably, of course—these things aren’t ever the product of worthless individuals making shitty decisions, they’re inevitable, like fucking earthquakes). [...]

  133. donna darko
    donna darko November 25, 2007 at 5:38 am |

    It just occurred to me: Does Cheung realize that Raymond is Eurasian? Does he know that he’s reinforcing some rather bizarre and racist Western stereotypes about Asian women and their sexual appetites?

    I avoid gaming culture LIKE THE PLAGUE because of the sexist, young men but I saw this comment by Phoenix Woman. Not only does he reinforce dangerous stereotypes about Asian women (in the sense it encourages men to go to Asia to have sex with child prostitutes, etc.), he reinforces the stereotype Asian men are sexist.

  134. Flying Low : I Don’t Like Comic Book Stores

    [...] The Trouble with Jade Clearly, we do not deserve nice things and/or people Character Assassin’s Creed My misogyny has nothing to do with me Ubisoft threatens lawsuit [...]

  135. Janel
    Janel November 25, 2007 at 3:27 pm |

    First let me say that I believe that men and women deserve to have exactly the same rights and standards applied to each other. I view men and women as equals. What bothers me is that so many women feel that they deserve equality in some areas but not in others. Many women want the power of a job, but don’t want to be critiqued. The problem is men treat us exactly the way they treat themselves. Have you ever heard what guys call each other? How they treat each other? They slap each other on the butts in locker rooms, and call each other horrible names. I’ve seen it firsthand, through my husband and his buddies on the force. The was even a study published that I read a few months ago that affirmed this (Sorry, but I don’t remember the study otherwise I’d reference it). Most women want the prestige, power and benefits associated with being equal to men, but not the negative aspects.

  136. Janel
    Janel November 25, 2007 at 3:36 pm |

    In addition, men are motivated by sex and tend to think of it quite often. While I agree that it is disrespectful to do to anyone what was done to her, I must mention that she is not the only this has happened to, and that it is not only women who are targets of such defamation. No one seems to mind as much when it happens to a man though. People cans slander men as much as they want, but don’t even think about focusing on a womans beauty. Double standard?

    P.S. Does anyone know for certain if she is a good programmer? For all we know, Ms. Raymond is just a pretty face to boost sales. Such a thing is not unheard of.

  137. Armetius
    Armetius November 26, 2007 at 4:18 am |

    Welcome to the internet, may I introduce you to rule 34?

    Rule 34: If you can think of it, there’s porn of it.

  138. welle::erd.ferkel
    welle::erd.ferkel November 27, 2007 at 4:00 am |

    Zwei Dinge, die mir beim Morgenkaffee auffielen…

    Erstens brachte die Zeit einen Artikel über Assassin’s Creed, ohne weiter auf Jade Raymond einzugehen, was für jemanden, der wie ich immer noch viel zu viel von der Computerspielpresse mitbekommt, recht überraschend ist und positiv auffällt (man k…

  139. escapingbabylon.com » Women in gaming
    escapingbabylon.com » Women in gaming November 30, 2007 at 1:33 pm |

    [...] a recap of what was going on and a good summary of why I’m mad read The Trouble with Jade excerpt: Jade Raymond makes video games. And she’s a beautiful woman. That’s a recap of most of [...]

  140. Geek Girls Rule! #29 - Jade Raymond and Why You Can’t Get a Date « Geek Girls Rule!!!

    [...] nothing yet, sunshine.  Links to other articles supporting Ms. Raymond:  Jade Raymond Is For Real The Trouble With Jade Assassin’s Creed Shows Its Artistic Direction *Yes, I’m bracing myself for the [...]

  141. MTV Multiplayer » Women Working in Games: G4’s Morgan Webb Talks ‘X-Play’ and Being a Pin-Up

    [...] extreme and public cases, such as the recent sexualized comic about “Assassin’s Creed” producer Jade Raymond to even subtle instances where [...]

  142. Feministe » And this is the part where I stumble in kinda late

    [...] that makes little plastic bricks. So I have opinions about a lot of subjects, including of course video games and problems in the video game industry. I’ll probably write a bit about my own games too–and more about process and social [...]

  143. Awkward First Posts or Blogging Backgrounds « teh feminists are coming!

    [...] And one more random story:  Jade Raymond designed a game, got harassed, then made fun of cause she didn’t like it.  Read about it at <a href=http://www.feministe.us/blog/archives/2007/11/19/the-trouble-with-jade/>feministe</a>. [...]

  144. saltyC
    saltyC January 3, 2008 at 9:19 pm |

    I guess Michael didn’t know that Roberta Williams appeared on the box for a Sierra text adventure game called “Softporn Adventure”, in a hot tub, apparently naked. (She’s armpit-deep in water). But that was a different time, 1980, when women weren’t summariliy punished for showing their faces.

  145. Jade Reporting » Back from Break: January 5, 2008

    [...] The Trouble with Jade [...]

  146. navi
    navi January 6, 2008 at 9:18 am |

    love the game nerd stereotype that’s perpetrated in the comments even as the post states that’s invalid as well.

    game nerds who ‘get it’ on a regular basis from their somewhat conventionally attractive wives still make infantile comments. so the whole ‘they are disparaging her for being attractive and unattainable’ may be true for some, but not all. so its not ‘spot on.’ and really that’s more rationalizing the reaction than it deserves, on top of stereotyping a group of people while at the same time arguing against stereotyping yet another group of people. which well, doesn’t make any sense.

    On whether or not she’s being promoted as a producer more than others? I wonder if its a case of the media/online community/promoter actually paying more attention to this producer and effectively promoting her more than they promote others, so maybe its not so much of an Ubisoft decision as it is a media decision. Perhaps you know her because the media has chosen to pay attention to her because of her looks, and not because she’s been promoting herself more than any other producer. even the internet doesn’t provide you with the whole story. While she may post video blogs where most have written blogs, I’m sure there’s other producers out there with video blogs.

  147. The Bungie Experience « Half Awake
    The Bungie Experience « Half Awake March 11, 2008 at 6:09 am |

    [...] I see here haven’t trickled down into a prominent company like Bungie. Perhaps after the Jade Raymond controversy, this shouldn’t be a surprise. After getting some press during promotion for Assassins Creed, [...]

  148. Stupid People at The Reckless Abandon

    [...] principle difficulty that guys who play video games have is that at some point they begin to think that every woman they [...]

  149. kelkel
    kelkel May 27, 2008 at 2:37 am |

    Creed was NOT Jade’s game. She was not the lead developer on this. She had very little to do with it actually. Holly, you keep talking about Cliffy B but he actually worked on the game as the lead dev. Most of the other people mentioned worked on their respective game. Jade did not. She doesn’t even have the status those guys have within the gaming community. At least they have background. Jade worked on fucking Jeopardy before she became a Producer for There.com. Other than many The Sims Online everything is shit that she has been a part of. Yet they have her doing interviews like she is some major person in the industry and a big part of AC. Plus, Ubisoft knew the response they were getting from her promoting the game like that. But instead of asking the blogs and sites to tone down and ask for comments to be taken down they ride it out until it crashes and burns with a comic. If you don’t think Ubi pretty much set this entire thing up then you need to get your eyes checked.

    Ubi gets the most blame because they had to see what was happening yet kept pushing it anyway. Jade also had to know what was going and being said. It is their job to watch the internet and everyone knows what the internet is like. They just didn’t give a shit as long as they were getting views and publicity.

  150. More On Why Some Games Aren’t Funny « random babble…

    [...] one of the leading woman developers of a major and anticipated game, Assassin’s Creed, Jade Raymond. Boy Bloggers, gamers and gamer websites everywhere had a field day w/ her, even went as far as [...]

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