Tobold's Blog
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
 
Girlz Don't Exist on teh Intarweb

It is well known that Girlz Don't Exist on teh Intarweb. Thus anyone playing a MMORPG with a female avatar must obviously be faking it, and should be banned. The funny story of the week comes to you via Random Battle: A Chinese MMORPG company banned all accounts of female avatars, unless their owners could "prove" their sex with a webcam picture. Read Random Battles list of problems with that approach.

I always considered avatars to be sexless, because in most games they can't even touch each other, but would walk right through each other instead. Being incorporeal makes performing sexual acts pretty much impossible, you can only pretend the visuals for some clever screenshots. The only problem I have with men playing female toons is one of grammer: Do you refer to such a character as him or her? Or it?

Guys create female avatars for many different reasons. Most famous is the "staring at an ass in tights all day" argument of Francis from Scott Kurtz's PvPOnline comic. It has also been reported that males are more helpful and generous towards female avatars than to male avatars. (Same source mentions that statistically 1 out of 2 female toons are played my a man). And then there are simple roleplaying reasons. I had a female gnome warlock with pink hair in WoW, because I liked the dissonance between her cute looks and her "evil" profession. Why any of that should be bannable is a mystery to me.

Most probably the game makers were trying to "protect" the Chinese youth from accidental gay cybersex. Or they were lonely and tried to get their female customers to send them some photos. I don't think this is something that a western game company would ever try.
Comments:
Haha. It IS pretty funny when you talk to an ingame friend/guildmate for the first time on a voice chat program, and hear a decidedly male voice coming from one of the female avatars.

My friends tease me for assuming, until I learn otherwise, that the player matches the gender of their character (which I know is often not correct). But most of them just assume that EVERYone is a guy, which doesn't seem right to me either.. oh well. ;)
 
There are plenty of girls playing WoW, which becomes obvious when you are on VOIP.
One question I would ask is, do any girls play male characters? As far as I know (from all the girls I know online), the answer is no. Seems girls want to be treated as girls even in cyberspace.
 
That was a pretty entertaining link. My guild master is a girl. She has met a few of us in RL, so there is proof! And while the guild has far more men than women, we have plenty of wives, girlfriends, and just girls who like WoW playing with us. Maybe it’s because of my long affiliation with this guild that I never considered this to be such a weird issue. The idea of her speaking on vent and essentially wiping a raid from shock is just hilarious. I just can’t quite relate to the outrage and amazement.

Out of habit or whatever I actually do assume the player’s gender matches the character until told otherwise (even if I know I would likely be wrong). I guess that is just how my brain works. Even after I learn a male is playing the female avatar, I still refer to them as “she” and “her”. “I’ll send her some netherweave stacks so she can level up tailoring”. People often refer to my female character in the same way; even though I make it commonly known I am a guy. My main is a scruffy male dwarf, but when I am on the female toon I get referred to as her and she, and it doesn’t bug me.
 
Aren't all of WoW's blood elf females played by guys? ;-) The main argument I hear there is the male blood elves look like sissies too much for most guys to play one.
 
re Girlz Don't Exist on teh Intarweb article

lol, that article was great.

Must have been writen by a guy ;) because Girlz Don't Exist on teh Intarweb
 
LOL @ Anon! Nice one :D

Our Guild has several married couples and in my experience, all of the RL girls I know use female avatars. But several males in our Guild, myself included, also have female toons. I have a female NElf 29 Twink and am currently leveling a female Gnome Rogue. The Gnome actually got propositioned by someone once, yes, to Cyber. Even more twisted was the offer came on the heels of a comment that I (my toon) looked about 12 years old. Scary.

I think the "Photos Plz!" request is a doube-edged sword, no matter which way you swing it. If you don't provide the photos it's proof you're not a girl. If you do provide them nobody believes they're your pics, or you get ragged on for being ugly, or hit on for being hawt!

Want to cyber? Fag! Ur not a grrl! Grlz dont exist on teh interweb!
 
"The idea of her speaking on vent and essentially wiping a raid from shock is just hilarious."

Actually, the first time I used voicechat in WoW was a while back -- summer 2005, during early MC runs. At the time I was the only girl (or at least, the only one willing to speak on Vent), and I got quite a few suprised comments. No wiping due to it, though. :)
 
@heather. You are right! I started a Blood Elf male, and after a couple of weeks I had to delete him and start the character anew as a female. I just could not relate to the 'camp Legolas' look.

While I think the Belf female is too skinny, she is much more preferable than the male.

Oh, and sometimes the number of female voices in our raids outnumbers those of the males!
 
Joystick calls bullshit:
http://www.joystiq.com/2007/09/25/rumor-control-shandas-anti-gender-bending-mmo-policy/

Also, reading the comments, people haven't even found the game in any website of its supposed developer.

Seems that while the world is often a funny place, more often the funniness is based on unfounded rumours. Don't worry, I was fooled too. :)
 
Tobold as you well knwow i play a female avatar - and have done for a long time. as much as i agree with you about sexless avatars if im going to browse at someones backside all day may as well mak it female (even an undead one)
 
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