By Mia Wallace
June 14, 2016
On Monday, we had the chance to sit down with and talk to Brian Baglow, video games and digital media expert. He describes himself he as an “ambassador, advocate, speaker, supporter, lecturer, educator, writer, communicator, and expert on the interactive and creative industries”. He has worked with many huge video game companies, most notably Rockstar Games who created the highly successful and controversial Grand Theft Auto franchise. In which you can steal cars, beat up hookers, and basically just be a horrible, violent person for two hours and then turn off your controllers and return back to your normal, benevolent state (check out one of my favorite Conan clips where he plays GTA 5).
In a room full of women learning about an industry that has always been known for it’s rampant and obvious sexism, the big question on all our minds was “what is up with all the misogyny in video games, Brian?” I was happy to see that he wasn’t one of those video game experts who refuses to acknowledge that inequality is a prominent issue in video games today. He said that the industry is taking strides to recognize and put an end to the social injustices that are within the games and leave the “old genres, cliches, and misogyny behind.” As to how the industry is taking strides to do this, he went into how questioning ethics is the main discussion taking place. Which brings up questions along the lines of how women should be represented and what type of roles they should have in the game so equality can persevere.
What brian wanted us to take away from this meeting more than anything else is that “interactive media is fundamentally changing every aspect of the creative industry.” The internet, social media, video games, iPhones, Androids, tablets, Candy Crush, Wii — they are all here to stay. Entertainment and technology will only get more advanced and interactive media will only continue to grow. This is a fairly young industry and it’s already one of the most innovative and influential industries to date. Games and information are so easily accessible for us, that if you really wanted to you can buy a fridge that allows you to not only surf the web but play Angry Birds. And the crazy part is this is only the beginning. With the industry continuously changing — ethically, morally, and innovatively — I see a future with games about heroines who wear normal clothes and have male sidekicks that my kids will be able to play through their implanted video game brain chips! I can’t wait 🙂