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People of color in the games industry

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A 2014-2015 report published in 2016 by the International Game Developers Association found that people of color were both underrepresented in senior management roles as well as underpaid in comparison to white developers. Gaming convention organizer Avinelle Wing told Newsweek, "The industry has an even bigger problem with race than it does with gender.”

Many have pointed out that this lack of diversity within the industry has contributed to a lack of representation within video games themselves. Dennis Mathews, a game designer at Revelation Interaction Studios, suggests that the exclusion of non-white game developers leads to stereotyping within video game development and marketing. Developer prejudices impact who counts as a game's target audience, leading many developers to pigeonhole or ignore non-white gamers. As Mathews puts it, "Those stereotypes tie into publisher decisions of what games get picked up and what should be put into games."

The Game Developers Conference, a popular annual video game conference frequented by both industry and players, runs an "Advocacy Track" to "address new and existing issues within the realm of social advocacy. Topics covered range from diversity to censorship to quality of life." While initially started in 2013 to address issues around gender and gaming, the "Advocacy Track" features panels explicitly interested in improving diversity in gaming more broadly, including concerns around race.

One of the earliest pioneers in the gaming industry was African-American engineer Jerry Lawson, who helped develop the first cartridge-based home video game console. Other people of African descent in gaming include industry executive Gordon Bellamy.

Notable Hispanics in the gaming industry include John Romero, co-creator of Doom, often called the first true "first-person shooter."

wikipedia.org

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