EA: Blaming sexism for lack of women in our industry is a cop-out
"If we want more women to work in games, we have to recognize that the problem isn’t sexism."
- Gabrielle Toledano, executive vice president and chief talent officer of Electronic Arts, says that blaming sexism for the lack of women in the video game industry is unreasonable.
In an article for Forbes
, she noted that the video game industry is being painted as a more sexist environment than other male-dominated workforces, and that this simply isn't the case at all.
"As an insider, I find this argument is misguided," she says. "It's easy to blame men for not creating an attractive work environment - but I think that’s a cop-out. If we want more women to work in games, we have to recognize that the problem isn't sexism."
She notes that, while sexism is definitely not something to take lightly, the real reason that there aren't enough women working in video games is that there simply aren't enough to hire.
"Our industry needs and wants more women," she says. "The only way to be successful in a creative industry like gaming is to stay on the cutting edge and innovate. You can't do that if your team all looks and acts and thinks the same."
But she adds, "We'd love to hire more women but we can't find enough of them to hire, especially in engineering... If women don't join this industry because they believe sexism will limit them, they're missing out."
She concludes that, while sexism is unfortunate, women looking to get into the video game industry should put aside any preconceptions they may have. "I can tell you firsthand that in the video game industry women are not just welcome, we are necessary and we are equal," she says.
Toledano's thoughts clash with those of the women in the video games industry who took to Twitter last year
to raise their concerns over sexism and harassment via the #1ReasonWhy hashtag.