Last month Twitch’s most popular streamer Tyler “Ninja” Blevins revealed why he doesn’t stream with female gamers. Speaking to Polygon he stated he wanted to avoid any kind of gossip.
“If I have one conversation with one female streamer where we’re playing with one another, and even if there’s a hint of flirting, that is going to be taken and going to be put on every single video and be clickbait forever.”
“The only way to avoid that [gossip] is to not play with them at all.”
Ninja does play with his wife, Jessica “Jghosty” Blevins.
This week it was announced that he will be featured in ESPN magazine.
So excited to the first professional gamer to be featured on @espn the Magazine. Cover and profile will be shown on Sports Center tomorrow in the 7 AM EST hour. pic.twitter.com/gzlSJihroM
— Ninja (@Ninja) September 18, 2018
This is an amazing accomplishment and a step forward into the mainstream for E-Sports. Tyler will be covered and profiled on Sports Center, another sign that shows E-Sports is becoming more accepted as a legitimate form of competition.
But as with all things online, it wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows. Ninja’s explanation on why he doesn’t play with female gamers outside his wife, didn’t sit well with Anita Sarkeesian. She decided to label Ninja a misogynist and described his reasoning as bonkers.
wait wait wait isn’t this the guy who said he won’t play with women? cool cool cool way to go @espn elevating the status of a misogynist. https://t.co/yG6izQIgJC
— Anita Sarkeesian (@anitasarkeesian) September 19, 2018
REFUSING TO PLAY GAMES WITH WOMEN BECAUSE YOU ARE MARRIED AND DONT WANT HYPOTHETICAL RUMOURS TO START IS THE MOST BONKERS LOGIC IVE EVER HEARD WHAT IS WRONG WITH ALL OF YOU??
— Anita Sarkeesian (@anitasarkeesian) September 20, 2018
While Anita was into labeling Tyler Blevins for a fantastic accomplishment, Blevins had previously revealed other women haven’t had an issue with his policy.
“There hasn’t been a single female gamer or streamer on Twitch or anything like that who’s been upset about that. … I honestly think that […] it’s just kinda like a respect thing.”
To Anita Sarkeesian’s first point, it’s not that he won’t stream with women, it’s that he won’t stream with women who aren’t his wife. It’s not a total embargo on the opposite sex. It just means that he’s choosing who he streams with and keeping it extremely exclusive.
The idea and logic behind a married man to not give the wrong impression with other women isn’t “bonkers logic.” It’s a common tactic that some men use because of concerns that their friendliness could be misinterpreted by onlookers. And as a show of respect for their spouse. Tyler explained his decision when he said:
“That was not even her. She had nothing to do with it. That was me being, ‘I love our relationship,’ and, ‘No — I’m not even gonna put you through that.’”
But it doesn’t end there, other notable Twitter users such as Tim Pool brought up a great point. Tyler might be concerned about his family being harassed. He noted that there were possibly thousands of videos attacking his wife. That’s good enough reason to show more care in how you behave.
Didnt he say he didnt want his family to get harassed tho?
I think he said something like there will be thousands of videos attacking his wife
— Tim Pool (@Timcast) September 20, 2018
Because Tyler is concerned about misconceptions people might have if he streams with females other than his wife, Anita Sarkeesian has labeled him a misogynist.
Tim wasn’t the only person who questioned Anita’s attack on Ninja. Many users felt that for him to have consideration for his wife wasn’t radical and even mocked Antia for her view on the issue.
— Allan Upton (@BigGameJames55) September 20, 2018
— Hector (@Luperciobxr) September 20, 2018
I sense a crazy libtard feminist
— Lego™ Alex Jones (@LegoAlexJones1) September 20, 2018
Give it a rest. You’re jealous because you’re not the one on the cover. It’s not misogynistic to refuse to play games with other women when it may cause problems in his marriage, it’s pretty reasonable tbh.
— CG (@ChaniahGordon) September 20, 2018
Is this even remotely misogynistic? The word is defined as “dislike of, contempt for, or ingrained prejudice against women.”
Personally, I cannot see how Ninja’s stance on not streaming with females who aren’t his wife would be a dislike, contempt, or a form of prejudice. He’s taking the feelings of a female into full account on the issue.
Does Anita Sarkeesian have a point? Could Tyler’s unwillingness to stream with women who aren’t his wife hurt other females in the industry? Or does Tyler have a point with his concern for his wife’s feelings?