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.