March 01, 2016

Debating the truth about women and video games with Adam Conover ("Adam Ruins Everything")

Lauren SouthernArchive

My guest Adam Conover joins me to discuss feminism, GamerGate and his popular TV show, "Adam Ruins Everything."

As the show's name implies, Adam's Tru TV program exposes the popular myths we often accept as true simply because they're repeated so often -- such as whether or not engagement rings are a scam or vitamins are good for you.

Adam decided to investigate whether or not girls really don't like video games as much as boys do.

He and I disagree about a few things, so a lively debate ensues!

PS: Even if you aren't into gaming, this is a revealing examination of just how all those ideas that "everyone knows" somehow make their way into our culture, whether or not they're based on fact.

You can watch Adam's initial video here

You can watch Lauren's response here


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commented 2016-03-23 02:51:53 -0400
Yeah, I’m with Peter! It’s been a solid 2 weeks lady… this better be some extra fancy show with backup dancers or something.
commented 2016-03-18 14:58:20 -0400
Lauren, this waiting for a whole 1/2 month for your next show is agonizing! ;o)
commented 2016-03-17 09:32:39 -0400
“I am (dare I even admit this?) a 45 year old woman who loves gaming. And yeah, that gets some strange looks from my peers”
Karen Smith you are not alone. I am older than you and my fav games are Dragon Age Inquisition and Skyrim. I got a kick out of the look I received from the young pup from the cable company who came out to fix the line when he found out I am a gamer. Still gives me a chuckle when I think of the look of amazement on his face.

“I’m playing Dragon Age Inquisition”.
Did you play Dragon Age and Dragon Age 2 prior to Inquisition? I think its a good story line that is followed through each game. Did you play Oblivion before Skyrim?

“I LOVE console games, but do wish they were more orientated to women.”
Check out Nexus for community made mods you can add to your games to modify it to your taste, these mods are for the PC version of the games only:

“I think that many women have never tried a console game because they walk behind their male friend/boyfriend/husband and see him glued to the screen shooting things and say “That is NOT for me.””

I was the first in my circle of acquaintances to start gaming. The packaging is what caught my eye (it was a Baulder’s Gate game for the PC) when I went to the local computer store years ago. Bought it, tried it, been gaming since. I think packaging is the key. If a product is over-hyped through advertising I tend to ignore it but the actual packaging itself is another matter.
commented 2016-03-15 23:14:07 -0400
Lauren, generally I agree with you. I gotta say on this one I’m not totally agreed. I am (dare I even admit this?) a 45 year old woman who loves gaming. And yeah, that gets some strange looks from my peers, most of whom have never even seen Animal Crossing, though they probably have an idea of what The Sims are. I do agree that 1st person shooters are not going to appeal to women as much, I’ll never play Call of Duty and GTA is right out. But I do love the Elder Scrolls, right now I’m playing Dragon Age Inquisition, I’ve played a Laura Croft game, I LOVED Portal, as well as Sims and Animal Crossing. I have indeed noticed that Xbox One is marketing a lot more of the kind of games I like, puzzle games and etc. I am so glad. I think that many women have never tried a console game because they walk behind their male friend/boyfriend/husband and see him glued to the screen shooting things and say “That is NOT for me.” I do think that many more women would enjoy console games if they felt more like it was something women ‘did’ and saw more of the kinds of games women like. Also, as a woman, I’d like to see more co-op games, and not co-op online battle games. I did play through Halo with my husband, it was co-op and I just wanted us to play something together. But I’d prefer a co-op that wasn’t 1st person shooter, though Halo was pretty good. I do think women are more socially orientated and thus want more personal interaction, instead of just me and the Xbox spending quality time, something that bugs them about the men they love. In other words, I LOVE console games, but do wish they were more orientated to women. So I half agree with you, and half with your guest.
commented 2016-03-12 21:52:34 -0500
Absolutely awesome show. All the best.
commented 2016-03-08 19:06:38 -0500
I am a loyal follower of yours ,your presentation was great , the set looks fox professional, I listened,but not my cup of tea on this one .
In most of my day’s,gaming was mentioned in a sentence with the gangsters from New York , Chicago and Vegas.
I will watch for your next show.
I really do hope you lay a charge of assault on that thug.
commented 2016-03-08 18:53:40 -0500
It was " gender day " to day at WALLMART—free flowers and muffins for wemen, was shoed away from helping myself to a muffin—bad p r for the Venus—-mars relationship.
commented 2016-03-08 02:36:22 -0500
Lauren, Do we ever need more people like you in the world to go head to head with idiotic protesters and cowards behind masks! Lauren, you`ve got “cajones” {HaHa} Charge that person who poured urine on you with assault!!
commented 2016-03-07 15:25:27 -0500
I am not in the least bit interested in gaming, but I found the discussion to be somewhat interesting. I had to tune out about half way through, because your guests constant and inane use of the words “like” and “you know” were giving me a headache.
commented 2016-03-04 12:57:58 -0500
Well done, Lauren.

Video consoles took off with Nintendo, but not because of marketing. It was because they made the first controller that could take the abuse. Before this, the Atari joystick, Colecovision hybrid joystick/pad and the Intellivision pad all had copper contacts on plastic wafers. These would wear out and become unreliable. Nintendo was revolutionary.

Before home games boys went to the arcade to plays pinball, video games, and pool and most girls went there because that is where the guys were. Most girls had very little interest in playing then, because to them, it was a waste of money that they would rather spend elsewhere. They still have little interest in game consoles.

The type of games boys are drawn to are cumbersome on phones, but the ones girls like are perfect for them. Suddenly there is a large demand for ’girl ’ type games and it looks like girls have been ignored.
commented 2016-03-03 11:30:37 -0500
Great Show Lauren, I look forward to future installments.

If i may Canadian Mongrel, whilst the older generation may not play video games as much as the 40 and under crowd might, it’s a very socially relevant medium because it now surpasses the movie industry with it’s reach and the platforms are much more complex in terms of story telling and narratives. We’ve already seen what happens in Hollywood when the left-wing gets a hold of the creative reigns; suddenly left-wing subtext is in everything you watch. Hollywood and television have far more influence on how people think than the government, and I’m sure the government utilizes that as best they can. Whilst video games are now a huge success, they have yet to peak in terms of their audience; many games now have epic storylines, moreso than any movie and comparable to a television series story arc. It’s a relatively young industry, thus vigilance must be observed so the barbs of progressive thought don’t start poisoning the well.
commented 2016-03-03 01:06:47 -0500
Great first show, although I don’t play video games at all, I found it interesting none the less. It looks like you will be focusing on issues that interest the under 35 crowd. That absolutely perfect! I hope your show takes off and is a great success.
commented 2016-03-02 20:03:17 -0500
I like Ms Southern’s work for the most part. However, maybe because I’m an old guy, I don’t see gaming as one of today’s pressing issues. I look forward to the format if it does address the important issues, like free speech.

I do say that the professionalism of this video shows Ms Southern is on the way to the top, without a Carlton degree and without Ms Notley OK’ing Ms Southern
commented 2016-03-02 19:52:32 -0500
Starcraft is one of the greatest video games ever made and features multiple protagonists … Including a smart, funny (sexy?) lead that drops nuclear bombs on people… Isn’t that empowering in some way? That being said, games like God of war actually come off as insulting when there are whole mini games where copulating with multiple ladies provides the protagonist with points … Distracting and crude … But if you don’t like it turn it off.
commented 2016-03-02 19:11:04 -0500
Great first show Lauren.
One never knows where things will lead in this type of one-on-one. Your point was a good one about “nature vs nurture” and of course this is a controversial topic in society (though it shouldn’t be). As a teacher that has worked with kids from all over the world for more than 30 years, there is no doubt in my mind that there is a natural difference between girls and boys.

The message that girls are discriminated against in the game industry is simply false. Sure they will play games, but as you pointed out, they prefer social and puzzle type games. All I have to do to prove this is to allow my students to pick a game during free time in the computer lab at our school. Depending on the age, the games will vary, but the type does not. There are clear gender preferences.

Also most girls would rather actually socialize than play on the computer after a certain point. The boys on the other hand often tell me they spend entire weekends playing video games (and often stay up all night doing it). I think that indicates a natural gender bias as well. It simply is not as important/interesting for girls (granted I have a daughter who like to shoot zombies in Call of Duty – just not for lengthy periods of time). I also remember when I bought a driving game for my kids (2 boys, one girl -Midtown Madness by MS) when they were under 10. Both boys tried to do the races and challenges to beat their scores. My daughter just loved trying to run people over…and watching them dive out of the way of her car (thankfully she is a actually a very good driver now that she has her license).

Again, great first show. I am sure there will be more “antagonistic” guests in the future, but I am not looking for that (maybe some viewers are? – there are enough of those kind of shows in my opinion). Hopefully your future guests will be as willing to dialog on controversial issues as Adam was.
commented 2016-03-02 17:54:38 -0500
This video looks at the significance of nature versus nurture. Modern feminists think that how people behave is totally controlled by nurture, and that all things gender roles are put there as a means of oppressing women and other gender minorities. The gender and video game debate is just a small example of the larger debate.

And for the record, I do believe there are some differences that are based on nature. The big one that many people notice, is that women generally do better than men on Tetris.
commented 2016-03-02 16:32:41 -0500
My thought after watching your show is Who Cares!
If you want to play video games, fine. If not, do something else.
Why is this even a problem?
commented 2016-03-02 10:58:52 -0500
I was hoping for something more controversial and not child’s play.
commented 2016-03-02 10:49:39 -0500
Sorry Lauren…that last comment was meant for a different article.
commented 2016-03-02 10:46:21 -0500
They are doing with the school policies as well. The minister of education has declared the ‘common folk’ are below him, and are not allowed to personally bring their grievances before him. No joke, you must have a mediators, mediators, mediators, mediator to speak to him. This is the process officially set up in district 76. And that mediator (three times removed) is not allowed to ask questions of his betters, and is only allowed to read a speech that is pre-aproved in writing before hand, so as to not offend the ‘elites’ sensibilities.

commented 2016-03-02 09:51:25 -0500
Like your show, Lauren! I look forward to your next show.
commented 2016-03-02 02:48:48 -0500
Great first show, Lauren. I will be tuning into you for every show.

On a side note, next Tuesday is international women’s day. At some non profit organizations that operate under a feminist model, they are taking that day off from work to celebrate the day as if it were a holiday. And no, I am not making this up.
commented 2016-03-01 23:42:04 -0500
Great show Lauren! Who’s in business to lose money? They gear their product to men because men buy what they’re selling. They’ll make the most profit focusing on men. Men and women are very different but I find both enjoy competition. My daughter enjoys gaming and is quite good at it. She tried unsuccessfully to convert me though. Maybe female gamers need to develop the games they wish to play.
commented 2016-03-01 22:01:19 -0500
I like the format and the fact that it is a one on one discussion. Too many shows fall in the categories of one person just explaining what they think and presenting information that backs up their side, or panel shows that tend to devolve into slander, slogans, shouting.
Hope to see you continue along the lines of this episode (with the exception that you need to have ShoeOnHead on occasionally too).
commented 2016-03-01 22:00:40 -0500
Great show. You’re a natural and have a great presence.

I know little of the gaming industry, so I learned a few things there.

I did find it interesting that the answer to the question of “Are you a feminist?” doesn’t give an instant “Yes” answer, since it simply means the equality of natural opportunity of the genders.

There must be a stigma to the term, which I’m guessing stems from the so-called faux-feminists and feminazis using the root term, “feminist” to describe themselves; which blurs its fundamental definition in the mainstream.

commented 2016-03-01 21:30:38 -0500
Adam thinks there are no difference between men and women. That defines his argument and the fallacy of his conclusions. I suspect that Adam does know there is a difference, he hes eyes after all, and is just setting his position for an argument. Sure would be nice if a discussion could be had as to the reason why there is a difference and how we can benefit from this.