Women in Games, a UK-based not-for-profit organisation with a worldwide influence, today launches the Women in Games Manifesto.
This Manifesto, deeply rooted in the spirit of the suffragist movement, embodies the collective resolve of Women in Games to promote fairness and gender equality in the games and esports sectors.
Women in Games CEO Marie-Claire Isaaman explains the importance of the Manifesto’s launch: “50% of the world’s population is women, 50% of players of video games across the world are women and girls, yet only approximately 23% of those who work in the games industry are women.
“Women working in the industry are less likely to be in game development and programming roles and less likely to be in senior positions. And only a few studios are owned and run by women.
“There are serious challenges in the games sector, with toxicity against girls and women players online and sexual harassment at major corporate events, along with discrimination in the workplace.
“72% of female players experience toxicity online with girls and women encountering dark and threatening behaviours – often being aggressively quizzed about their gaming skills, which often leads to more violent verbal abuse and threats of rape
“Women and girls are detrimentally affected by these harmful actions and environments. And, along with the negative press that follows, this affects their mental wellbeing and discourages girls and women from pursuing an education or career in games.
“This picture needs urgently repainting. The time for change is now.”
THE WOMEN IN GAMES MANIFESTO
The Manifesto presents ‘Fourteen Reasons for Supporting Women in Games’. It calls on the global gaming community to collaboratively work towards dismantling discrimination and fostering inclusivity.
110 years ago, women suffragists in the UK published their manifesto: ‘Fourteen Reasons for Supporting Women’s Suffrage’. More than a century later, women may have the vote, but there is still so much to be done to bring about fairness for women. Women in Games follows in their footsteps, in this manifesto:
Fourteen Reasons for supporting Women in Games
1 Because women have long been marginalised in the games industry, and it is past time to take action to create a fair playing field.
2. Because ‘women’s economic equality is good for business’ (UN, 2023).
3. Because advocating through collaboration and communication are fundamental tools in the struggle to eliminate discrimination.
4. Because all women working in the industry deserve to be fairly treated at all levels, from content creation to leading development teams, and from junior to senior management.
5. Because equal pay for all means equal pay for women.
6. Because in order to make the games industry a place of fair play, we must foster an environment in which everyone belongs.
7. Because to aspire to be a fair reflection of the whole world, games must fairly reflect the world’s whole population.
8. Because sexism and harassment are a scourge on the face of the games industry, and it falls to everyone, particularly leaders, to ensure the health, safety and well-being of women.
9. Because toxic play environments prevent women from participating in civilised communities of play.
10. Because women’s life experiences and professional expertise are wildly diverse, bringing more innovative ideas, developing better games and a richer, more vibrant creative culture for everyone.
11. Because in order to achieve fairness, the tangible barriers that prevent women from entering the games industry must be removed.
12. Because embracing gender equality and diversity in games and the games industry will bring about a sustainable future.
13. Because education, training and professional development for girls and women are essential to bringing about a fair playing field.
14. Because – to summarise all of these reasons – a fair playing field benefits all.
WHY THE WIREFRAME IN GAMES IS SO FLAWED
Women and girls in the games community are the targets of gender-based toxicity in person and when playing online.
According to the long-running Female Gamers Survey (Bryter), such toxicity is on the rise, and as a result, women gamers are often discouraged from playing the games they love. 72% of female gamers experience toxicity in gaming, often of a dark and threatening kind; even more disturbingly, the abuse doesn’t always stop once players leave the game – some instances manifest into serious consequences outside of gaming. In the 2022 Bryter survey, 1 in 4 women stated they are reluctant to identify as a real gamer, and just 38% of female gamers feel that there are adequate processes in place to deal with toxicity in gaming.
Allegations of discrimination against women working in games and esports have continued to emerge this year – globally, and within small studios and large multinational businesses. Beyond single companies, or individual events such as at the most recent in-person Game Developers Conference, there is a prevalent culture that enables unacceptable behaviour towards women, which at its worst, includes physical threats and harassment.
Women’s representation in the game development community remains extremely low in comparison to their employment across the wider world of work – GDC’s 2022 report revealed it has declined to 20%. Other research, such as that conducted by Ukie, would suggest that in the UK it is as high as 30%, although a lack of granular understanding of the specific roles that women play across disciplines and levels makes it impossible to understand their true involvement.
Further, detailed research into women’s representation is urgently needed in order to make women’s work in the games sector visible. It is crucial to reveal gender-based disparities in the game-making process, and how women are being affected in achieving leadership roles by the ‘broken rung’ at the first step up to management.
HOW WOMEN IN GAMES PLANS TO BRING ABOUT CHANGE
Women in Games advocates for all women, girls and people of diverse gender identities, as well as transgender, gender diverse and intersex women, in order to positively influence public discourse and bring a culture of fairness and belonging to work and play spaces.
We address critical spheres of action, defined by our priority areas of focus, giving voice to a global community who support our cause and one another.
We promote the interests of our community through a vibrant ecosystem of Women in Games Corporate, Individual and Education Ambassadors.
We currently have over 1,450 Individual Ambassadors across 70+ countries worldwide, and over 40 Corporate Ambassadors and Education Ambassadors in our community of active supporters.
We hold global events designed to provide safe, encouraging and supportive networking and career development opportunities.
We produce significant publications that provide important insights into how to achieve gender fairness in the games and esports sectors.
We hold annual Women in Games Global Awards, in order to promote the achievements and accomplishments of women across the sector, and we collaborate with other organisations that share our vision, in research and development projects.
CEO Marie-Claire Isaaman added: “All of our work, which continues to gain widespread recognition, is undertaken in order to achieve real change, both in public discourse about fairness to women and in the lived reality for women in the games and esports sectors. Please join us in making change for women and girls around the world.”
JOIN THE MOVEMENT
Women in Games invites participation from all industry stakeholders, including game studios, associated companies, and esports organisations. From becoming a Corporate Ambassador to making individual donations, everyone can contribute to driving Women in Games’ mission forward.
To find out more about becoming a Women in Games Individual Ambassador, or a Corporate or Education Ambassador, visit https://www.womeningames .org/ambassadors/
For details on how to support Women in Games, visit https://www.womeningames .org/about-us/donate-2/
ComeOn Group renews sponsorship deal with Sliema Aquatic Sports Club and Sliema Wanderers FC
Award winning iGaming operator ComeOn Group announced renewing their sponsor partnership with Malta based sports clubs Sliema Aquatic Sports Club (ASC) and Sliema Wanderers FC. The sponsorship is a way for the Group to continue supporting the localities close to their headquarters in Malta. ComeOn Group and the two clubs are now embarking on another year of success and exciting projects in order to further anchor the partnership for the benefit of their local community.
Last year the sponsorship was kicked off by a launch video, which was a way for ComeOn and the two clubs to show the mutual cultural fit and foster a sense of community through sports.
Daniela Vella, Chief Operating Officer at ComeOn Group, said: “Sliema is very close to us being the first location of our offices, and even though we have moved some metres up the waterfront, we have found synergies with both teams and their path to success. Both teams tie in well with our values, especially the Run Together The Group is also focused on giving back to the communities with its CSR strategy being a key, strategic pillar and sports plays a vital role in nurturing teamwork, and leadership skills.”
ComeOn Group, highly ranked by EGR Power 50, is a tier one operator on the island with their headquarters based in the modern office facilities of Spinola Park. ComeOn Group has more than 560 employees spanning over 53 nationalities globally, with Maltese being the biggest nationality represented in the headquarters. ComeOn Group has been present for over 13 years on the island, employing over 250 people with 50% of its workforce being female, further anchoring their presence and commitment to Malta.
ComeOn Group works hard to preserve their award winning culture and the company continuously develops their people strategies to retain what is most important to them: their people. An important way to do so for ComeOn is through their extensive Employee Assistance Program (EAP) that serves to offer help to employees when they are experiencing a tough time. The program is a part of ComeOn’s overarching CSR strategy where the focal point is mental health and wellbeing. Another important part of ComeOn’s EAP is the wellbeing allowance employees get each year to spend on activities aimed to boost overall physical and mental health.
For ComeOn and the two teams, sports and active lifestyle is something that goes hand in hand with boosting mental health and wellbeing, hence the importance of the continuing partnership.
Frank Testa, Club President of Sliema ASC, added: “It is with immense pleasure and gratitude that we renew our collaboration with ComeOn Group. Without the involvement of such organisations it would not be possible for clubs like ours to continue to work towards achieving our targets. As we move into a new era with our excellent prospects, we are delighted to continue the journey with ComeOn.”
Rupert Perry, Club President of Sliema Wanderers FC said: “We are immensely grateful for the unwavering support of our valued sponsor. ComeOn’s commitment to our mission has been instrumental in our success. As we look ahead to the future, we are excited to continue this journey together, creating lasting impact and achieving new heights of excellence.”
John Wright Joins Kwalee As VP of Mobile Publishing: Trades Unity For The Billion Download Studio
Wright’s leadership will reinforce Kwalee as the publisher of choice for top mobile game developers, drawing from his legacy at Luna Labs and ironSource.
Kwalee, a UK and global mobile, PC and console games developer and publisher, is thrilled to announce the appointment of John Wright as the new VP of Mobile Publishing. John joins the Kwalee team on the 2nd of October and will revamp the studio’s strategy to sign, launch and scale the games of external studios.
A passionate gamer and 15 year mobile industry veteran, Wright’s mobile journey saw him swiftly climb the ranks at app monetisation and distribution platform ironSource, relocating from London to the HQ in Israel during a pivotal phase in his professional growth. After returning to the UK, Wright re-entered the startup ecosystem by joining mobile app marketing outfit Luna Labs as their VP of Operations. With his leadership, Luna Labs witnessed significant and rapid growth. When ironSource acquired Luna Labs, Wright came full circle back to his former company, this time as the Head of Operations for Luna. Following ironSource’s merger with Unity, Wright transitioned to become the Head of Client Success for the Luna division within the wider Unity organisation.
Kwalee’s mobile publishing team is a proven hitmaker, backed up by a large in-house studio, helping developers scale games successfully with marketing, monetisation and game design expertise. John Wright joins after Kwalee achieved the milestone of 1 billion downloads in 2023 and has won Best Publisher (TIGA and Mobile Game Awards, 2022).
His strategic priorities as he starts the new role are to deepen the support offered by the publisher to developers, improve its efficiency to best serve the global community of mobile gamemakers, as well as emphasise Kwalee as the number one choice for developers close to home in the UK.
During his tenure at ironSource, John was a director in the newly formed and industry renowned “unified team” during the advent of the Hyper Casual boom, collaborating with industry players such as Ketchapp, Rollic and Homa. He helped them achieve exponential growth as an early innovator, seeing the value in combining the strategies of monetisation, mediation and user acquisition activities. John Wright has an enviable record of launching over 100 mobile games globally and managing over $1 billion in client spend.
His vast experience includes joining early-stage startups in pivotal business roles, growing them quickly, and leading large, multi-disciplinary and remote teams. Known for his ability to inject vitality into businesses, John will use his partner-side expertise to drive growth at Kwalee as he moves developer-side.
David Darling, founder and CEO of Kwalee, remarked, “John and I have a strong relationship already, working closely together, having first met a decade ago when we launched TENS!. Seeing his trajectory and achievements since, especially with Luna Labs and ironSource, it’s clear why he’s the best fit for us. We’re eager to tap into his vast experience, enhancing our developer relationships and publishing capabilities.”
John Wright shared his enthusiasm about the new role, stating, “Having worked with Kwalee as a partner and admired their innovation over the years, I’m thrilled to move across the table. We know it’s a challenging landscape post-IDFA, so small to medium-sized studios need a heavyweight publishing ally to help them achieve the highest level of multi-million dollar success. At Kwalee, I will champion developers. Our relationship will be symbiotic, understanding their needs as partners and clients.”
Embracing the rich British mobile developer community while setting sights on global expansion, John is poised to steer Kwalee’s Mobile Publishing into its most profitable and successful era yet.
Aviator to Take Players in Portugal on the Flight of Their Lives
World’s number-one crash game certified for launch in fast-growing online casino market
Players in Portugal, get ready to strap in for the flight of your lives. Spribe, the developer behind the number-one crash game in the world, Aviator, has been cleared for take-off in accordance with the most recent Portuguese regulations.
Aviator is the original crash game and since it took to the skies in 2019 has become one of the most-played games of all time. Today, it has more than ten million monthly active players with 160,000 bets being placed every minute of the day.
Aviator uses the increasing curve format with a plane that takes off and flies into the sky. As it climbs higher, a win multiplier climbs with it. The player must decide when to cash out; go too early and the win is small but wait too long and the plane flies away with their stake and accrued winnings.
Social interaction is at the heart of the game with players able to chat throughout their session. It’s multiplayer, too, with players competing with others on the leaderboard.
Aviator delivers fast-paced action thanks to its seamless user interface that has been designed for mobile play. Engagement is taken to the next level through bonus features including free spins and rain promo where players can make it ‘rain’ free spins in the chat.
Spribe is on a mission to launch Aviator in all regulated markets and the approval in Portugal is a major step forward in this regard. BMM Test Labs carried out the certification shortly after Portugal added ‘crash games’ in the regulations earlier in the year.
Operators in Portugal can now add Aviator to their lobbies and allow them to see what all the fuss is about by playing the most popular crash game on the planet for the first time.
“We are on a mission to launch Aviator in all regulated markets across the world so being given the green light to enter Portugal is a major moment for us,” the Chief Commercial Officer for Spribe, Giorgi Tsutskiridze, said. “Aviator offers an experience like no other; it’s fun, fast-paced and highly social. This has made it a big hit with players but especially those in the lucrative but hard to engage Millennial and Generation Z demographics.
“Operators in Portugal can now provide these experiences to these players by adding Aviator to their game lobbies for the first time, allowing them to join the ten million players that go for the ride of their lives every month.”
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