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April 11, 2006

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» Meet The Nekkid Girls Of CS from Kotaku
Live nude Counter Strike gaming girls. Wonderland points to a new "online gaming community and nude pinup gallery," called GirlsofCS. Here's directly from nuddy site: We are out to empower female gamers by eliminating the negative online stereotypes t... [Read More]

» Meet The Nekkid Girls Of CS from Kotaku
Live nude Counter Strike gaming girls. Wonderland points to a new "online gaming community and nude pinup gallery," called GirlsofCS. Here's directly from nuddy site: We are out to empower female gamers by eliminating the negative online stereotypes t... [Read More]

» Girls of CS Owner Responds to Exploitation Concerns from Kotaku
Dan Matthews, one of the owners of the Girls of CS, emailed me shortly after we wrote about his clan dedicated to tearing down sterotypes through gaming and nude pinups. Matthew asked is he could respond to the post... [Read More]

Comments

Matt Brett

Oh wow, that's just... wow. I'm assuming there's some money hungry corporation or at least a douchebag in a suit behind this?

On a different note - where are these female gamers? Are they all playing WoW and The Sims Online? I'm yet to come across any - at least, I haven't heard a female voice in a single voice chat supported game.

Magnakai

Go female empowerment!!!111!!!!1

Jez

That's a different issue, Matt. What are you playing?

I play a lot of Halo 2 and several 360 titles on Live; I'm also on teamspeak for the PC games I play. However, I rarely speak in random matches on Live. From experience I know it just leads to trouble. First the "are you a girl?" comments, then the insults, then the propositions. It's just not worth the hassle when it's easily avoided by keeping your mouth shut...

dnagrim

A lot of them are playing DDO and by a lot I mean more than anywhere else I have played. There are four women in our guild and they are active high level players. Not certain I want to see all of them nude though....I guess I will have to see them nude first and base my opinion on the objective facts.

D

Does anyone really subscribe to the "all girls who play games are nude pinup girls"?

vash

I have been playing Medal of Honor Allied Assault: Spearhead for over 5 years. In my clan we have 6 active female members, and we are currently only recruiting females. It came as a suprise that women even game, let alone would want to pose nude.....

btw, the chicks in my clan pwn.

Stickman

Does anyone else remember Killcreek (AKA Stevie Case)? She had her 15 minutes of fame by being quite good at Quake, dating John Romero, and oh yeah, getting a boob job and dropping her panties for Playboy. Female empowerment...heh.

WandringSoul

Oh yeah - this'll help creat the 'no bull' gaming community everybody dreams of. OR just set them up for way more drooling and slavering than they already get.

I am obviously missing something - aside from the obvious entertainment factor (better than watching a night elf pole dance) how is this making ANY point other than 'we're shallow and proud'? If you're a slightly less attractive gamer are you not allowed in their little 'tits and tan' club?

Trojan

Laugh my asian ass off

WWusi

Haha im loving in!!

web design london

Fantastic news :P

Beckie

Actually, if it were pictures of real girl gamers that would be ground breaking. But somehow I am thinking most of the girls have probably, maybe, looked at an xbox once so that makes them a gamer.

LeoPetr

Insipid. Preposterously so.

Dave Woodwater

I went to have a look at the page source and noticed that the Input field for the beta code doesn't actually DO anything. It's just an empty text field.

RoninPredator

That bird at the site splash needs to iron her shirt. Bloody women 'eh?

tom armitage

Oh dear. More to the point, as ever, does anyone believe the old "by getting naked and fawning to the male gaze we are actually empowering ourselves" line? I mean, really. There's a difference between "naked" and "pin-up", and whilst you might argue that the former could work (because we are presenting a nude form), the latter is never going to be a tool for empowerment because, you know, it's subject to a male gaze, a particular idealised view of women that must be lived up to.

Grr, just thinking about this makes my brain crash.

Shard

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/4898484.stm

World - Hell - Hand Basket..

k

>Does anyone really subscribe to the "all girls who play games are fat and ugly" belief any more?

Proudly upholding that there stereotype since 1981, thank you very much.

Cormac Russell

Sigh. So, anybody check out the referenced website? Is it a commercial endeavour? Are the myspace pages shams, or are they real people? The mypsace pages look real, but faking that sort of stuff is something advertisers are doing these days so who can tell...

Yeah, I'm not seeing how it eliminates negative stereotypes. I'm pretty sure nobody actually believes the all gamer girls are unattractive thing anymore.

Abalieno

Jez and Alice in the nuddy!

Woohoo!

bob

Great, we get to replace the current view of "girl" gamers with the notion that they're sex objects that exist for the gratification of male gamers. Oh wait, that IS the current view...

Cris

If i put up photos of myself in the nude and associated it with my gaming choices, how do you think that would come across seeing as i'm a guy?

I don't feel this is a positive thing, because AFAIK there is already way too much sexual harrisment towards girls in online gaming when guys find out ("send pic" "prove you're a girl" etc...) and this would only fuel that...

I'm not blogging about this on my own site because i don't want to give it any publicity as i don't think it's a positive move towards gaming equality.

No, i'm not gay :P

cibby

Sounds like the 'female empowerment' thing is just a lure to get us to enter their porn site...

Dom

I dunno. The fact they have 1532 friends or so on their myspace page, and at least the first page all seem to be relatively attractive girls, it COULD actually have some sort of impact. If a decent portion of those 1532 friends are attractive girls who play games, then the main website would have plenty of different 'models' to show, possibly persuading some closeminded people that there are more girl gamers than they previously thought.

Even so, though, they're only replacing the stereotype that no girls play games, with the stereotype that girls DO play games but they're shallow camwhores. Hooray for progress!

Kim

(Caution - amateur detective at work)

Seems suspicious. Very much like it's just some sleazy guy trying to prime the pump for another "watchusgame" type of site.

A whois of the domain shows that it's registered to Lanfusion LLC, a company out of NJ that has an online gaming community (some forum software on a server? Not sure how much more there is to it. Anyone know?)

A look at the address provided for the consulting business

http://www.lanfusion.com/version21.business/mainmenu.html

when looked at with google maps looks like it's a residential address - not that this means anything in this web 2.0 age.

Still, you'd think there'd be more of an official press release, names (i.e. surnames) of those proud to stand for such a thing.

IT all seems a little fishy!

Funky J

I don't see any difference between this and The Suicide Girls (www.suicidegirls.com).

Many people see the Suicide Girls as deconstructing the myths and stereotypes of beauty, and I dare say none of you people would criticise them because it's hip to like the Suicide Girls, but to me they're no better, nor worse, then any other woman who takes their clothes off for money or fame.

It's not like these chicks (either in SG or GoC) have been led into getting into this position through drugs and bad lives, being exploited by directors and producers who make smutty film and the like, they're consenting adults doing something to brighten their own lives and the lives of others, and maybe get a buck or two out of it.

This psuedo-leftist-feminist bullshit of the typical average American college student / graduate, embodied in this website and others like it, pisses me off more than women getting their kit off.

bigwig

i don't think the problem rests with "pseudo feminist bullshit" that this site, as you say, embodies. I think the site, using common sense, points out that nobody really thinks that girl gamers don't exist, or that all girl gamers are ugly any more.

The only purpose of a site like this would be to exploit the female body for male fantasies. Certainly not "eliminate negative stereotypes". Now thats bullshit.

oh and i hate college grads too! gosh i hate them so much!

Tom

"This psuedo-leftist-feminist bullshit of the typical average American college student / graduate, embodied in this website and others like it"

You're not from round these parts are you?

Jez

Kim - it is fishy, you're right. I'm basically quite confused over the whole thing. My clan does pretty well for itself without taking any clothing off, although I know from experience that sponsors like to see a bit of girl flesh here and there. Perhaps these girls noticed that, and have taken it to its logical conclusion? Perhaps they wanted an in into nude modelling and porn, and decided the gamer niche was the way to go? Perhaps they all love CS and stripping, and decided to combine the two? Or, as you say, perhaps some sleazeball is behind it all.

Whatever the reasons, other girl gamers are affected by this. The reactions to the story here and elsewhere are enough to show that, really. It's not limited to consenting adults in private if it means that other people's gaming experiences will change as a result. Thanks to teams like the Frag Dolls, mediocre-looking girl gamers (ie normal gamers who happen to be women) are overlooked in favour of shiny pretty young things as it is. I don't want an additional hurdle to jump over.

bigwig - presumably the main purpose of this site is to make money, rather than exploitation per se. It's exploiting male fantasies rather than the female form, if anything. Oh, and thanks for the hate.

Dark_Jedi

Is It possible to learn this power?

Hunty

I'd frag that. :PX

Seb Potter

Just what the gaming world needs on top of the various political controversies surrounding it - a debate on female nudity and the potential exploitation of sexuality for publicity and financial gain.

Look, human beings use nudity and sexuality for all sorts of reasons. The fact that these women play games doesn't change that. If you don't like it, ignore it, but please don't pretend you have a right to enforce your moral code on the rest of the world. Likewise if it's your thing then be happy that you've got more choice, but there's no reason to expect others to accept it.

Now please, can we get back to talking about issues that actually matter, like why the industry is almost entirely incapable of producing games outside of the adolescent male demographic?

RoninPredator

Because it can't afford to. Next!

:P

Steve Arnold

My wife happens to be a damned good gamer, preferring FPS, racing, and puzzle games. When we were first dating, I played UT(99) with all the guys on her dorm floor (co-ed dorms rock). I introduced her to the game, and within a week or two, she was beating me easily and vying for top honors against my best friend (who HATED that she was so good). Later, MoH:AA came along, and she was the best sniper in our squad. In Halo, she was the only person I've ever known who can consistently snipe people out of moving Ghosts. Now she plays NFS:MW and Burnout: Revenge on the 360, and is awesome at them. She actualyl plays my 360 more than I do.

bob

The "exploitation of sexuality" and the "adolescent male demographic" that games target are related issues. The problem is that the game industry is dominated by an "adolescent male" mindset that includes plenty of "exploitation" of women (in that women are consistently represented as sex objects) to sell games. This has made the gaming community an even more hostile/unpleasant place for girls/women than it would be otherwise. This "GirlsofCS" thing does nothing to improve that situation. I have no problem with people taking their clothes off (in fact, I think the U.S. would be a healthier place if everyone did it a lot more), but let's not pretend this is about "empowerment" when it isn't.

Dan Matthews (#LANFusion | Resonant)

To anyone interested,

I am one of the owners and founders of both LANFusion and GirlsofCS. I have read some very interesting observations on both this blog, and the other blog listed above. I’m going to take this opportunity to try to give you all insight into why we’re doing this and what we hope to accomplish. I probably won’t respond again because my time is completely absorbed by running my businesses.

For starters, this website is owned and operated by three of us. We’re all guys and our ages are 21, 24 and 25. We don’t have a lot of money and there are no corporate backers. Everything we do is done by and paid for by the three of us. We run all of our businesses out of our home.

We started LANFusion in January of 2005 because we were unhappy with the communities and servers that already existed in CS:S. Our servers quickly grew and are some of the most popular CS:S servers in the country. We set out to build a more mature and friendly environment for fellow gamers, a task which has been a constant struggle. One of the things we noticed as our servers grew was that every time a girl came to play, people would give them all sorts of shit. Stereotypes, such as “girls don’t play video games unless they’re fat ugly losers” and “Girls don’t play, it must be a 12 year old boy!!!11!11!” appeared very quickly. We came up with a way that we might be able to reverse the trend.

We figured that community would be the key to reversing the stereotypes. Female gamers aren't real to the people making these statements. I’ve seen some of these sentiments echoed in the comments on both blogs. We believe that we can alter these stereotypes by showing everyone the reality. They will come to the site, most likely, to for naked girls. That is actually part of the plan. Our goal at that point is to get them to stay because they see that the models are real people. Upon talking to the models, they actually self-alter their perception. All of a sudden it's reality that real girls do play video games. Furthermore, a good number of girls who play these games are hot and aren't idiots. They're people that the member can see themselves being with and being friends with. Reach enough people like this and all of a sudden the perception has been changed.

Along the way, I expect that there will be flaming and disagreement. Those are the people who don't have to participate, and probably won't. I can't change people's views, but I can put a situation in front of them that forces them to unconsciously reconsider those views.

The obvious next conclusion, as many of you have pointed out, is that we will create another stereotype. It will take the form of “all girls who play games are cam whores”. There are a number of problems that come along with this statement. The perception that women who post nude are whores is outdated and hypocritical. Men can get nude without any sort of public reaction, but when a woman does it, she’s a whore. This is a perception that comes out of a number of different things. We’ve all been taught our whole lives that our bodies are something to be ashamed of. Women get the worst of this idiocy.

The USA is very primitive when it comes to things like this. In a lot of other countries around the world, nudity is not automatically shunned. We happen to be way behind the curve here in the US. Nudity is only negative when it objectifies the subject, in my opinion. What constitutes objectification is something that is defined on both a societal and personal level. The actual definition of objectify is below (found at http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=objectification):

ob•jec•ti•fy – 1. • To present or regard as an object: “Because we have objectified animals, we are able to treat them impersonally” (Barry Lopez).

Everyone involved with this project, from the three of us who own the business to the models who are posing, agree that this website is not objectifying the models. We encourage and insist in the contract they sign that the models be an active part of the community. We also screen each model until we are comfortable both that they are part of this because of the idea, not the money they receive, and that they have no problems with having nude images of themselves posted on a website. If the potential model likes the idea, but does not want to be naked for the site, we invite them to be part of the community anyway. If this is objectification, then it is objectification by the user, not the website. As I said above, I cannot force someone to change their opinion, only present them with a situation that forces them to reconsider it.

I invite you all to check out the website once it launches and see what we’re about before deciding that what we’re doing is a bad thing. We’re currently in beta while we upgrade features of the site and get more models. The myspace page is run by one of our main models, Hillary, and is designed to spread the word and find women who are interested in being a part of the site. Once we feel that we’ve built the community we’re trying to create, the site will launch fully.

I hope this has helped clarify what we’re doing to all of you. I completely respect your right to disagree with anything that I’ve written. Only conversation can change the reality of our individual societies and world.

Kahabut

As someone that played alot of CS back in the day, I can safely say that I know many a woman gamer. And I feel no shame in admiting getting my ass handed to me more than once by an all girl clan we (my clan) skrimed against alot.

Lots of girls game, but they generally try and hide this fact from the rest of us because, well frankly, the average CS player is 15-20, male and probably hasn't been laid in a while (if at all). So while there has no doubt been at least 1 female in a recent match of CS you've played, the chances are you didn't know. Because if you had known, the chances are you'd make an ass of yourself. And no one wants to see that.

And can the "empowering" women please pull something together that isn't embarresing to yourselfs and the rest of the gaming world? Soon.

Cris

My what a lot of comments.

Anyone want to see me rolling Katamari in the nude?

PaperPlane

I am a female gamer, but I am not defined by my looks, just as male gamers are not defined by their looks. Stereotypes mean nothing to me- and those that would take advantage of a perceived stereotype for financial gain are not deserving of attention. Female gamers are just like male gamers just average people, no better looking or worse looking than anyone else. Do people really think what someones looks like influences whether they like video games or not? What kind of insanity is this?

Funky J

Bob, I would argue that in games there's even greater commodification and exploitation of the male form as well.

ALL males in games are stereotypes. Not once have I played a game as a male and they've done something totally against "type".

I don't conform to this type at all, and yet I can still enjoy a game.

As for exploiting women to sell a game, the exploitation of sex happens across all media, and isn't going to stop because gaming suddenly appreciates the woman for her contribution to the world.

And furthermore, just how should women be represented in games? Like they are in Women's Magazines? Or how about on a TV show like Desperate Housewives? Aren't these also stereotypes?

hillary

Hey guys, this is Hillary from girlsofcs.com!
If you ever want proof that I play CSS come to the servers and I will play with you. Just come post on lanfusion.com forums and I am there! I will even get on voice chat. I have met many members of the Lanfusion community in person and have played CSS with them. Take it easy guys!

hillary

Oh yeah! Just to clarify, the girls don't play CSS nude, they only pose in pictures...Didn't know if that's what you meant by "live nude.." at the beginning of your article.
-Hill

GreenBananas

GreenBananas ftw!

megaTRON

OK, I play on the LANFusion servers all the time, it's become the only place I can stand to play. Sure, we have our share of immature 10 year olds and the occasional hacker. These little annoyances are taken care of quickly, the admin team literally reacts in seconds. Yes, the girls actually play the game, yes I've played with them, yes some of them aren't "L33T!1one!" and neither is 90% of the people who play games. Just because there are more guys playing doesn't mean they are automatically better. And yes the girls are hot, which is weird because they don't have the stereotypical "hot-chick" mentality most gamers/geeks/socially-demented people have become accustomed to. So, what do people do when they encounter something they don't understand or 'believe'? They shun it. Give it a chance, and if you have CS:S, come play.

#LANFusion | j00d

I am an involved member of the #LANFusion and GoCS communities and fully support everything the owners of LANFusion have accomplished. I also invite anyone interested or doubting the motives behind our community to come join us and play in our servers. visit www.lanfusion.com and drop us a line.

#LANFusion | Frice

I am also a member of the community and have more posts than a message board has asshats. Seriously though I strongly beleive in what the owners of LF and GOCS are doing and im freaking Canadian. Usually we poo-poo the states in all they're actions.

Anyways before you post a negative reply to someone elses negative, see what all the fuss is about...

www.girlsofcs.com/access

Jez

Guys, I appreciate you taking the time to come over and give your side of things. Dan's comments are especially interesting. But you're starting to repeat yourselves now. :)

boris!

CAAB

Brinstar

Men can get nude without any sort of public reaction, but when a woman does it, she’s a whore.

Where are all these gaming communities where men pose in the nude?

Fishy or not, this is real. There are already some half naked pictures of the girls.

The servers are located for CounterStrike Source at Lanfusion.com | Girls of CS on your lists. There are 5 servers and one for clan matches.

And yes, many of the mods are girls.

Visceral_Syn

Let me say one little thing, i've been multiplayer gaming via the internet for the past 10 years or so. Outside of whatever representative actor the game designer put in the game for you to use. You can't see who yer playing against, whether that person is black, white, yellow, brown, male or female. Get over it. Play the game or move on, if the kids in the game u play annoy you, then move on to a title with more adults. I've caught myself moving away from the mainstream games u crowd frequent, and more to simulations. there is waaay less of this society crap to deal with. With the way the media can't tell the difference between a PC-Gamer and console kid. If you stay in that gaming environment, then you'll get whats there. Git a grip, deal with it or move on. Nothing new, nothing to see here.

Megan

How does this in any way 'empower' women? If anything this objectifies them. The fact that a bunch of immature 'twenty something' males thought this up doesn't suprise me.

Sjofn

Posing nude to "prove" to boys that you totally are NOT an ugly hag is the furthest thing possible from empowering. It's just further showing that calling a woman "ugly" to insult and dismiss her still has power, because a woman will go so far as to pose nude for strangers to prove that no, that isn't TRUE!

And frankly, you could be Aphrodite herself, and some shmuck will say you're ugly if he thinks it'll cut you down a peg.

Sadixt

I thought the main stereotype about female gamers was that they use they used their tits to bypass their lack of skills in playing in order to obtain popularity and shiny new gaming objects.
It would make more sense to hold a all female gaming compitition to disprove that stereotype. Then, say, get a bunch of attentionwhoring girls who giggle about who's the bishiest in the Final Fantasy series.
Also, Teeheehee! Attention whores! ^_~

Cris

I see it takes tits to get 55 comments on Wonderland...

Quite sad really, this is such a good blog it should get more than that on every post!

Alice

Aw Cris, you're sweet! But we'd have to be The Guardian to get more than 55 comments on every post :D

Thomas

Where are all these gaming communities where men pose in the nude?

Exactly.

eric

Just like Suicide Girls, GoCS will be controlled by men. Men who say they are just skimping by on their own right now, but we all know that will end when those hot porn dollars start flowing in. Face it, it's the same idea of naked girls in a different context, just like SG is naked girls with piercings and tattoos, we may see after this, "The Girls of Texas Hold'em Poker," "The Girls of NASCAR Pit Crews," "The Girls of [subculture du jour]." None of which will change the status of these women in society at large. How many Suicide Girls have been able to parlay their newfound empowerment and non-objectified status into real world benefits?

History tells us that people will come to the site for naked girls (as is your goal), and introducing any "real people" data will just be noise in the system, if not a downright turnoff. Intere$t will drop off unless you post fewer "taking apart the computer" pictures and more "taking a bath" pictures. Your picture of GoCS's future is exceedingly rosy and does not account for the audience's role ($) in all of this. In fact, making sure that all participants are "into the idea" is a classic method of exploitation. Keep things nebulous and subjective buddy, they can't sue over meaninglessness!

"I cannot force someone to change their opinion, only present them with a situation that forces them to reconsider it."

However, you don't propose any standards for yourselves. The fact is, even if the objectifying user doesn't reconsider their opinion, you still get paid. This is where you find out how low you will go (since you don't mention how low you *won't* go). The dollars follow more skin, remember that.

Oh, and this stereotype of girl gamers posited at the beginning sure sounds like a strawman. Who says things like that? I've been playing Unreal Tournament for years and have never seen anybody say something like that, or even close. Perhaps CounterStrike is less mature on this token, but if so it doesn't bode well for your goals of turning things around for a stereotype held by few people. Isn't it really your own stereotype that you're looking to reinforce, that many girl gamers might be ugly, "But look! We found some hot ones!" You want to empower people, then start by running pictures of any girl gamer who wants to pose (or even better, only of the top 10 gamers by skill) and come up with a hard-coded profit split with the models. Make it a non-profit if you're really committed to your goals.

"Whoa, whoa buddy, let's not get carried away!" Right?

Jez

Gaming communities with men in the nude: Gamertagpics has quite a few topless men pics and that's put me off the site for life ;)

As for the stereotypes, I have heard countless instances of women on Xbox Live being told to "take their fat ugly asses back in the kitchen". Not experienced it myself. Also, Alice, sorry your nice innocent blog degenerated into a discussion about tits. I didn't quite mean for it to happen :)

jccalhoun

www.girlsofcs.com/access

it doesn't look like anything but yet another nudie site to me. Skinny 18 year old white girls... yawn.
I don't see anything within the site itself that even talks about gaming.
If this is empowering, I don't want to see what unempowered looks like...

lol

that says it all

LeoPetr

To chime in again, my objection to the concept is that the nudity seems to be mandatory. Why? Non-nude pics organized the right way would still get the publicity and the hits -- see Maxim or any number of other mainstream magazines. Add testimonials and bios and mission will be actually accomplished.

Nude pics cannot reach -- at least intentionally -- 13-year-old male Americans, who are arguably the greatest idiots. They need to be reached. Nude pics cannot feature 13-year-old female Americans. And a large proportion of gamers who happen to be female are not going to be keen on getting nude pics taken, be they hot or not. Having nudes pics of yourself online is not a blessing in all circumstances.

This leads me to conclude that the public mission is a pretext for some dumb money-grubbing scheme. Bah humbug.

PlayGirl

123

Sweet sex

girls are hot
game on!

Muhammad Eubanks

The first stage of a £150m investment in regional museums is praised for boosting visitor numbers.

Mike Paahana

Whooohooo that is one hot thing to watch, wish my gf would play nekkid too

I was not coming online frequently since a month. You Ask me why? Coz, she was reading a book on India since 2 months and was shooting me with 3 to 4 questions per minute in Portugese which I need to translate them into English and translate my answers back into Portuguese. The interesting fact she told me was that Brazilians love India and a book on India is the hot selling cake.

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