We love geek girls
BoingBoing shared this fab music video, Nothing to Prove by Geek Girls & the Doubleclicks about a subject close to our collective heart – geek culture and more specifically girls in geek culture. I like to think of our geek culture as a wide church and one which is mostly open minded and progressive – faculties that are exercised by the amount of reading and talking and watching of different movies and series from all over the world we tend to do. But there’s that nasty minority element there that like to nitpick, to start pointless little flame wars with anyone and everyone for goodness knows what reason. And some of that minority seem to take a perverse delight in slinging muck and frankly being downright nasty and abusive to our geek girl sisters in particular. We’ve all heard about it, some have had personal experience of it – you only dress up in cosplay costumes to look good, you’re not a real fan who knows the birthday of the author’s favourite dog and which lamppost it prefers to pee on, you only play video games to keep your boyfriend happy (the fact your high score might be better than his is no proof, he probably let you win of course)… And then some of it goes from insulting to downright nasty and threatening.
I really don’t get it – we love geeks, we love our boy geeks, our girl geeks, our transgender geeks, even our small furry creature from Alpha Centauri geeks. And our geek culture has been on the rise in recent years – science fiction, fantasy and horror books regularly top the bestsellers and are snapped up for major, hugely popular shows and films, our beloved comics medium struts its stuff at major literary festivals these days, video games are bigger business than movies in some places now – we’re everywhere (and then there’s our fellows in book geekdom, music geeks, movie geeks, tech geeks, science geeks…). And I’m loving how widespread our geek culture is, so why the heck do we keep getting this gender problem? My science fiction book group turns ten this autumn and it’s been pretty much fifty-fifty in the gender stakes over the years, I know a pile of gifted female writers and artists in comics and SF&F, not to mention women who work behind the scenes in publishing, in book and comic festivals, helping make it all happen. Who runs our popular Edinburgh store of geekdom – yes, it’s a woman. Women not only can be great geeks, they are great geeks; to those who have problems with that I suggest the problem is in your mind and your real trouble is with your own warped personality. Perhaps you need to interact more with fellows geeks of all genders and persuasions to help you open up a bit more.
Anyway, mini-rant over (apologies, the high horse beckoned and this is an ongoing subject that irritates the smeg out of me, as you can tell), enjoy this video which is clever and funny and very, very geeky, not to mention rather touching in spots (I love the Trek fan mother with her adorable wee girl and a card reading “I’m raising the Next Generation of Geek Girls!”) and also boasts some help from Major League Geekdom, including Whil Wheaton, Kelly Sue deConnick and Adam Savage. The tone is mostly good humoured but it makes a serious point. Loving this, spread it around – real geeks can be boys, they can be girls, but to my mind they can’t be haters, that’s just not the way of the true Geek, so those who bash women geeks, take a look at yourselves, because it’s you who are not real fans and not real geeks. Learn some manners and consideration and the geek community will still be there for you when you mature.