@Sweden Uses His Platform to Lambast Sexism in Gaming

"Do you dare to be yourself online unless you are a white, hetreosexual [sic] male?"
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(Photo: Twitter)

The official Twitter account for the country of Sweden has tweeted relatively uneventfully following its Henry Blodget moment back in June, when a Swedish citizen named Sonja dispatched some questionable tweets about Jewish people. But this week’s Swedish tweeter is Naseer Alkhouri, a “homeopathic Swede” who develops games for a living. In addition to tweeting adorable fruit sculptures and a treatise on citizenship, the issue of sexism in gaming appears close to Mr. Alkhouri’s heart. For the past couple of hours, he’s used the platform–which boasts close to 68,000 followers–to broach the sensitive topic.

Mr. Alkhouri’s argument is a reasonable one: “I am not only a game dev, but a gamer as well. That said, I don’t feel particulary welcome in the community. Gamers got issues,” he tweeted. “Gamers tend to be misogynist, rasist and rather unpleasant overall, especiallly online. I am rather saddened by the behaviour of my peers, for me gaming is an inclusive hobby. That’s why I got hooked afterall.”

Upon receiving some unfavorable responses, Mr. Alkhouri tweeted, “I am getting flack for speaking about this, but no threats, no harrasement. What did Anita Sarkeesian get?”

Ms. Sarkeesian gained a modicum of notoriety in gaming circles after she spearheaded a Kickstarter project to make a docuseries about gender tropes in video games and became a target for angry gamer dudes worldwide.

By standing up for her, Mr. Alkhouri probably didn’t do himself any favors in the rabid gaming community, but his actions are pretty commendable. Using a well-read platform to discuss issues that are important to you seems like a better way to use Twitter  than talking about Jewish penises.

Follow Jessica Roy on Twitter or via RSS. jroy@observer.com