I've been having an argument the past few days, thought it was going to be a discussion, but the other participant made it clear he had a set view of the industry and every time I disproved his view he finally broke down to name calling, bullying, and sexist remarks to me even claiming I was a social justice warrior. Triple A developers have tried for years now to attract women to the industry, but most of the attempts fail. I think the problem is in the angle of the attempts. Every angle I have seen has been "how do we get women to be interested in the industry", but I think the biggest question we need to ask is "how do we remove the misconception of the industry being sexist and rampant with sexual harassment".
Let me put it this way, if a city in the US has the reputation of 2,000 women going missing and never being seen again. What woman in her right mind would go near that city? Unfortunately the misconception of this industry is the same idea, with all these stories of women being mistreated with the publicized backlash from men and gamers. What woman in her right mind would come into an industry where she is worried her well being is in danger?
Now, I'm not naive, I'm sure there are cases of sexism and sexual harassment in the industry because no industry is immune to it. During my discussion I saw two viewpoints that scared me. One was that it was all made up and just a feminist movement to smear the industry. The other was that since they (one of the other participants) hadn't seen it firsthand so therefore it didn't exist.
After the discussion it got me wondering, what can we (as indies and hobbyists) do to help the Triple A developers remove this misconception that the whole industry is sexist so that more women aren't scared to join? With events like 1ReasonWhy, Anita Saarkesian, and Zoey Quinn and the unfortunate (and completely unneeded) backlash, I fear this is just making the misconception stronger.
So, yeah, the whole point of this rambling is mainly the question that started the paragraph above:
What can we (as indies and hobbyists) do to help the Triple A developers remove this misconception that the whole industry is sexist so that more women aren't scared to join?