Note: This is a response to Joe the Peacock’s blog on blogs.CNN.com, and is NOT in response to the clarification and apology he has published. My opinion is based solely on my reading of Joe’s blog on the CNN website, and my interpretation of what he is trying to say. If you disagree with this POV, or feel that I missed something. feel free to speak up and talk to me all about it.
As of the time of this blog posting, Joe has since posted a clarification and an apology. You can read the apology here: http://joethepeacock.blogspot.com/2012/07/the-response-to-response-to-my-booth.html
I have recently come across this article by Joe the Peacock about “Booth Babes” over at the blogs.cnn.com website:
And it has really pissed of a Ton of People, Women and Men alike, myself included
From the initial read, Mr. Peacock is mainly playing Judge and Jury as to who is and isn’t a geek and who does and does not belong in the geek universe. The Article was highly inaccurate – Generalizing all the women into several Negitave group dynamics: “Attention seeking whores”, “Posers” and “Fakes”, and to top it off, slapping the phrase “Booth Babe” in a Derogatory manner across it – hence, and I’m paraphrasing here:
“If you are a woman in a ‘hot’ costume, there is a strong chance you don’t know shit about video games, you’re a poser, a fake and you don’t deserve to be here. Goodbye.”
Since Joe’s Blog was posted, he has gotten a ton of heat for it. Last Night He did quite a lot of backtracking on the article in question over on @MrsViolence’s Twitch.TV Channel (I was listening in).
IMHO, Mr. Peacock tried to do succeed in something that NEVER works: Push everyone under that big giant umbrella, and classify it as one whole thing.
In a nutshell – Joe the Peacock fucked up Royal.
Here’s my view on this:
From what I could put together, I believe Joe is actually referring to people who pretend to be geeks and/or gamers, and feels that these pretenders have no business being at any convention tailored to the geek lifestyle.
This point, is useless, and severely damaging on so many levels.
It doesn’t matter what you blog about: what matters is that you KNOW what you are blogging about. You have to do research and fact-checking. You have to be accurate to a fine point. It’s not going to be 100% perfect, be it never hurts to stride to do so – Joe didn’t do that one bit. He generalized, and that’s what I mean when I say “Push everyone under that big giant umbrella, and classify it as one whole thing.”
Yes, there are people who pretend to be something they are not – but the thing is this: NOT EVERYBODY is pretending. You can’t be pissed off at a certain type of people for doing something you don’t like of approve of, and vaguely say everyone is doing it. You also can’t throw around any term you want. Not every term is a bad or negative. “Booth Babes” is NOT a Negative term, and Joe the Peacock did not do any research on the Definition of what “Booth Babe” is. As a result, he created a stigma that bashed women, and he came off as sounding extremely sexist.
Let me tell you what a Booth Babe is and isn’t.
A booth babe IS:
- A “Brand Ambassador” – their job is to draw your attention to the product they represent, and they do a good job at it too.
- A Geek who LOVES being a Geek
A booth babe is NOT:
- An attention seeking whore
- A fake
- A poser
There is nothing wrong with being a booth babe – personally, I love them. I think they rock, and let’s face it: you gotta LOVE the creativity the ladies put into their costumes. Cosplay women especially (I don’t like to say “Cosplay girls” – it sounds demeaning to me).
Speaking of cosplay women, they don’t fall into Joe’s silly dynamic either – no one really does.
Now, I have never really been to a Gaming/Comic convention, but I have watched TV coverage of these events on G4 and Spike TV, and I really don’t understand what Joe the Peacock’s issue really is.
Wait, I get it now – This isn’t an issue at all. In my opinion, Mr. Peacock is being impossibly ANAL.
If you are a geek/gamer/nerd, and you like or want to attend these type of events, go ahead. If you don’t know what the culture is all about, go and find out. The Geek Culture is open to everybody, geek and non-geek alike. I really don’t think that you should be shunned from any culture because you don’t understand it.
The whole point is to have the chance to embrace the culture, should you take interest in it. Don’t phone it in or feign interest. If you like it, get involved. Enjoy yourself. And if it’s not your cup of tea, that’s cool too – you can come and go as you like. There is no gun being pointed to your head.
Joe the Peacock made the huge mistake of generalizing people, mainly women, who work and attend these conventions. He put them in a bad light, and made a stereotype out of a innocent phrase that has a valid, significant meaning.
Being a Booth Babe is a job, and from what I hear, a very hard one – let ‘em be. Being an Attendee at one of these events, as a gamer, or cosplay character is fun and creative.
If Joe’s blog had any merit, or a valid point – It was heavily overshadowed with sexism and lack of focus. Thankfully, as I was watching the Twitch.TV channel, he did admit that he fucked up, and I do hope he issues a retraction or an edit to the blog in the near future.
Sexism and misogyny have zero place in the Geek Community, or anywhere for that matter. Sexism and misogyny is what REALLY should be banned from these conventions.
This Concludes my response.
If you want to Follow/checkout MrsViolence, Here are all the links:
You can also Follow Joe the Peacock here: http://twitter.com//joethepeacock
UPDATE: AS OF THE TIME OF THIS BLOG POSTING, JOE THE PEACOCK AS PUBLISHED A APLOLGY AND CORRECTION TO THE ARTICLE IN QUESTION. YOU CAN AND SHOULD READ IT HERE: http://joethepeacock.blogspot.com/2012/07/the-response-to-response-to-my-booth.html
I’M TRYING IN CAPTIAL LETTERS TO MAKE SURE YOU READ THIS. IT’S JUST AS IMPORTANT, AND NO – I’M NOT YELLING AT YOU.