#1reasonwhy: Women gamers speak out

Lara Croft of the video game 'Tomb Raider.'

Last November, a man went online and posted a blunt query: "Why are there so few lady game creators?" The question quickly spawned an international response under the Twitter hashtag #1reasonwhy.

"One reason why" there are so few women game creators? Well, just the other day there was a post about a 7-year-old girl in Philadelphia who created a mobile game app, but organizers asked her to prove it was her work after assuming her brother did it. She proved it no problem, but would a boy have been asked?

"I was contributing to the 1reasonwhy hashtag with some of my industry experiences, and as I typed away and hit 'tweet', I suddenly thought who are we helping with this?" says veteran video game writer Rhianna Pratchett, who just finished an overhaul of the 'Tomb Raider' game where she set out to bring depth to the famous protagonist, Lara Croft.

Pratchett worried about hashtag horror stories scaring off people who might want to break into her industry, so she started a supplemental discussion, hashtag #1reasontobe, with reasons for women to be in the video gaming industry.

Though Pratchett says her personal experience with sexism at work has been limited, she notes that there's video game developers may need an attitude adjustment.

To hear Prachett's "reasons to be", click on the audio player above. And tell us, do you work in the tech world? Could you distill the issues facing women in your industry into one tweet or one hashtag? Tell us in a comment below. 

About the author

David Brancaccio is the host of Marketplace Morning Report. Follow David on Twitter @DavidBrancaccio

Comments

I agree to American Public Media's Terms and Conditions.
With Generous Support From...