Mad Catz community Manager reflects the fighting community
In glancing through my Facebook on Saturday I ran across Mark Julio’s post. I couldn’t share it for some reason to keep the discussion on our Facebook, so instead I thought I would talk about it here.
Mark Julio is the Community and Sponsorship Manager for MadCatz. MadCatz is the company responsible for making the most amazing fighting sticks out there (in my opinion).
On first glance, the image is just a marketing picture of pretty girls posing with the arcade sticks. Something, I personally have nothing against. What I can’t understand is how a Community and Sponsorship Manager for a company involved with the Fighting community would put out the following message with the picture:
Mark Julio: Before anyone says this is offensive/degrading, just remember. We all can’t have the same likes and dislikes. Think about that before you leave your opinion here.
I followed up with this response:
I’ll just say this…it’s interesting given that the fighting community has current issues that it’s dealing with around sexism. In the end it’s just pictures of pretty girls with an arcade stick and that I have no problem with. Just if you are trying to change the community, or what people think of the community, might want to try a different route
I am left trying to understand why someone that is representing a company AND the fighting community (since he sponsors teams) would put out such a dividing response to say basically if you find this offensive then go away. Someone that is representing the fighting community that has had very public gender discrimination issues just this year alone.
- The Cross Assault tournament being the most talked about event that reflects this. The team’s coach even justified the sexual harassment:
“Sexual harassment is part of a culture,” Bakhtanians said in another video. “If you remove that from the fighting game community, it’s not the fighting game community.” – quote from Columbia Chronicle
Discussions where Kraus sums up his feelings on his blog: “Bakhtanians later apologized for his words, but I think one sliver of truth found in his words is that in the fighting game community, no one likes you. I think this applies to a lot of gamers in our community, and it makes it very hard for anyone to admit their interest into joining our culture. ”
Add to that the Twitter conversation explosion, the attack on Anita Sarkeesian, and discussion about E3 booth models, it all boils down to the idea that the Gaming Community still has to grow up.
One guy on the facebook thread summed it all up with, “Looks > Skill when it comes to females in gaming”.
Is this really something the head of Community Management and Sponsorship should be endorsing on his Facebook page? Given the amount of posts about MadCatz either events or coverage, this isn’t a post on his personal page that separates his thoughts from the company. In checking out Mark’s twitter, he’s very engaged with the community. But as a Community and Sponsorship Manager, shouldn’t Mark be trying to put out the message of a more accepting community? Try to move the Fighting Game Community forward, past the issues from the past year? I believe as someone that directly represents Mad Catz as well as teams they sponsor, Mark has an obligation to do this.
Mark Julio’s Facebook post just shows me that the Gaming Community has learned nothing over the past year. I won’t be buying a Mad Catz fighting stick, as long as the company continues to endorse a community that just can’t grow up.