The Tweetup Teams’ Response to the Sexism in D&D Debate

Posted: May 11, 2012 in Uncategorized

Sexism in roleplaying is the big topic at the moment, and covers a massive range of factors, from the ratio of male to feamle art shown, to the type of art, to the party roles assigned to certain genders. It is certainly a larger topic than I can wrap my head around, and I’m thankful that there are people in the RPG community who can, and who have the ability to discuss it openly and sensibly.

I was involved in such a debate last night, and it attracted the attention of big names like Wolfgang Baur, Sarah Darkmagic,  Geeky Lyndsay and Trevor Kidd. There were a few points where my comments certainly could have done with more explanation than 140 chars allows, and I felt there were a few comments that were a little too directed (including some made by myself), but on the whole the discussion was honest, valid, and fruitful.

I continued this discuss in private with a few people, and I’m very aware that as one of the core sources of D&D events in the UK, it is the UK D&D Tweetups’ responsibility to support the views of the wider D&D community.

To this end, all events run by or promoted by the Tweetup team will try to adhere to the following:

1. Any pre-gens provided for an event will show a equal representation of male to female characters. If this requires re-writing official pre-gen backgrounds, altering artwork or other such actions, will will engage with the people who have the skills to make this happen. If the pre-gens are built by the Tweetup team, we will ensure that there is a male and female version of each character.

2. We will put in place a confidential feedback system, so that if you have an issue with a DM or player at an event run by the Tweetup team, you can report it and know that it will be acted upon. This could be anything, from what you feel is a bad rules call, to a sexist comment, or worse. The team cannot improve the experience if we don’t know what the problems are.

3. We will pro-actively endorse the female gaming community. We will link to blogs from prominent members regarding this topic in order to ensure that the uk community has a chance to read the various opinions and view in this debate, and to enable them to put forwards their own views on the matter.

While these 3 steps are small and limited in scope, we feel they are steps in the right direction to creating a gaming culture where the female members of the scene, new or old, feel comfortable.

Comments
  1. Sarah Barker says:

    I keep seeing this subject coming up on the interwebs recently too. I’ve never seen sexism from players or DMs, always been made to feel very welcome. Worst I’ve seen is the typical male banter a couple of times in the shop where guys are collectively poking fun at their wives, joking about the “joys” of being married – know what I mean? But it’s pretty mild stuff and not D&D related, I’m side-lined by those conversations at work too, where I’m surrounded by guys as well!

    As for characters, no I don’t like playing males. But the solution does seem like simple common sense. Just print two versions of each pre-gen, same class and race but male/female names? Maybe it’s a bit more work where there’s a background written up. But as long as someone has a mini that looks vaguely right, it’ll do. :)

  2. breacher18 says:

    Not too long ago I joined a group of gamers and I have to say I have always been made to feel welcome. We all banter as a group and it never gets personal. I’m quite used to male groups as I work in IT and my interests tend to be more male populated. It’s never been a problem although now and again you get the odd person who can makes things difficult, but I tend to just put that down to them not knowing how to interact with women. As for character creation, I have noticed the other guys never play female characters but then I never play a male character. So a couple of weeks ago I decided to mix things up a bit and created a male character called “handsome” a lathario fighter. I though to myself let’s not just play a male character but make him the epitome of the male gender and I have to say I’m having quite a lot of fun doing so. Hopefully my example may encourage the rest of the group to do a bit of gender swapping, when it comes to rolling those D20s.

  3. breacher18 says:

    Reblogged this on Jay Draeger’s Blog.

  4. rstacey says:

    I 100% approve this. I miss the good old days where pregenerated character sheets had a blank space for name and sex, and any artwork on the sheet was minimal or abstract. Imho, that’s how it should be. It’s up to the player to choose these things, not the graphics department.

  5. […] The Tweetup Teams’ Response to the Sexism in D&D Debate by Adam Page at UK D&D Drowathon: The UK D&D Tweetup events have adopted a few policies to foster inclusion. These seem like great ideas which are easy to implement. […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s