France wants to promote games with « a positive image of women »
The government is working on several measures to fight against sexism in videogames, like finances given to works with a positive image of women.
After the law on e-sports in France, it tackles the topic of diversity in videogames. From our informations, the state secretary in charge of digital matters, Axelle Lemaire, gather in may several representatives of the fiel to tackle sexism in videogames. Like many other new technology industries, this field hires few women. These past few years, several scandals have risen on games' content or the sexist behaviour of some gamers. The french government is thinking today of several measures to fight against this problem. Among the methods is the creation of a label or finances fiven to games « with a positive image of women ».
By the end of last november, the green lawmaker Catherine Coutelle had mentioned the topic with Axelle Lemaire through a conversation with the government. She had presented, with other lawmakers, an amendment to the Digital Republic law project to forbid video game tax cuts to studios making « degrading » games on women. It was ultimately taken off.
Axelle Lemaire's response was published tuesday in the Official Journal. « Video game encounters these past few years a structural movement in favour of women's rôle in studios […] and among video games themselves, in retaliation for example to violent polemics on the topic on social media », she wrote. The state secretary references, without mentioning it, gamergate. This conservative and sexist movement online led to harassment of many video game professionals, mostly women. In her response, Axelle Lemaire quotes Feminist Frequency [ndt : god fucking shit's sake I swear to god america it's always your fucking fault can't you just get bombed for once], a series of videos analyzing the representation of female characters in video games. Its author, blogger Anita Sarkeesian, regularly is targeted by gamergate, and has several times been threatened of murder and rape.
According to Axelle Lemaire, « France is on the foreground » of a movement in favour of a better rôle for women in videogames. The state secretary presents several french realisations as examples for their « female main characters carrying a positive image of women », like Beyond good and evil, life is strange [ndt : I apologize to the entire planet for this game, I really do] or Dishonored 2. She wishes from now on to encourage « production of video games promoting equality between men and women, by tackling for example specifically and seriously topics linked to sexism and violence towards women ».
This effort follows three steps, still being discussed between the various ministries being concerned and the industry's representatives. First is about « promoting video games giving a positive image of women ». The CNC [ndt : a state institution participating financially to french culture's promotion, growth, etc.], through its Fonds d'aide aux jeux vidéos [ndt : Helping Fund to Video Games], could then give a financial bonus to french games pushing for diversity. The ministry also considers the creation of a label to distinguish on game covers the works that respect women's image. Sweden [ndt : YES SWEDEN GET LOST FUCKBOY] had considered such a tool in 2014.
Axelle Lemaire wants to make it harder to promote « games inviting sexism ». This step would include modifying the PEGI system [ndt : age rating in Europe]. A game considered sexist could be put in the « discrimination » category. For now, it concerns incitation to hate towards some religious or ethnic groups. A game put in this category would automatically receive a +18 rating. Those titles couldn't be allowed advertising on TV on prime time.
Axelle Lemaire focuses as well on promoting women and minorities in the field of video gaming, which are still very male-dominated. This would involve new scholarships or promotion of studios most advanced on the topic during big mainstream events like Paris Games Wekk.
Last step, tolerance in gaming communities. This final action could partner with popular game-youtubers. At this year's start, the pro-gamer Kayane had participated to a promotion campaign for e-sport the government had organized.