The new trend in video games: Virtual rape
Besides robbing, looting and murdering, a new feature has been added to the list of crimes players get away with in ‘Grand Theft Auto V’: Virtual rape.
In what The Huffington Post calls “a disturbing new trend”, gamers are virtually raping avatars controlled by other people playing online, then posting the videos of their attacks on YouTube (although most of them have been removed since the publication of the story).
The recent online sexual assaults have brought attention to an incident in March, when video-game writer Kim Correa wrote in onthemedia.org how she was virtually raped in the multiplayer zombie game DayZ.
“[O]ne of them made a comment about how I was a girl. He was pointing a gun at my face. I made a disgusted noise over my mic and started to back up and said his friend wasn’t sure if they should kill me or not. I called him a sick puppy. He said that unfortunately for me, he was into necrophilia, and that he wanted to rape my dead body, and then he shot me.”
"I definitely don't want to say what happened to me verbally is as important as if it had happened in real life," she later told WNYC. "But it means something. And I'm not sure what it means."
As Kat Stoeffel, from NYMag.com, wrote “games offer scrawny male nerds an alternate reality in which they can be axe-wielding, zombie-killing, car-stealing renegades. Women can be all that, too, but they’ll also still be women: extra vulnerable and needlessly sexualized, with the deck stacked against them. That feels too much like real life.”
Don’t miss this weeks AL DÍA News cover story, in print and on line on Aug. 21, where Latina gamers speak out on this issue.