Gen Con CEO and owner Adrian Swartout wrote an open letter to the community yesterday expressing his disappointment in Indiana Governor Mike Pence's decision to sign State Senate Bill 101, the "Religious Freedom Act." Under the new law business owners can refuse to provide service to individuals based on their religious beliefs. For example, a baker could tell a gay or lesbian couple that they refuse to bake them a wedding cake, because they oppose same-sex marriage. Under this new law state and local government agencies cannot do anything to intervene.
The organizers of Gen Con have sent a letter to Indiana Governor Mike Pence asking him to rescind his support of SB 101, a state bill that limits the state and local government from interfering in a business or individuals "exercise of religion unless the government can prove it has a compelling interest and is doing so in the least restrictive means." In other words, people can refuse service to individuals who
Yesterday we reported that Garena Philippines eSports, a Manila, Philippines-based gaming tournament organizer, was taking heat for its policies about including gay, lesbian, and transgendered players for an "all-feminine" series of League of Legends tournaments (Iron Solari League) aimed at female players.
GX3: Everyone Games has raised over $42,000 of its $80,000 goal on Kickstarter in its first three days, with 22 more days to go. GX3 is the new name for the GaymerX convention - tentatively set for sometime in November or December of 2015 in the Bay Area. The event is an all-inclusive two-day fan gathering offering a safe space for gamers of all creeds and sexual orientations and generally celebrates the culture of gaming.
The limited edition PlayStation 4 auctioned off (by retailer Tradera) as part of Stockholm, Sweden's recent week-long Stockholm Pride Festival kicks ended, generating thousands for the Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights.
NIS America and GaymerX have amicably settled their differences, after a tumultuous day of bad press that reflected poorly on all parties involved. Sadly most of the bad press stemmed from a simple miscommunication between GaymerX co-founder Matt Conn and two principles from NIS America's PR & Marketing department. The dispute, over a $3,000 sponsorship deal at the recent GaymerX 2 LGBTQ event in San Francisco, has been resolved and the parties involved have apologized to each other for the miscommunication.
Organizers of last year's first gay gaming and geek culture convention launched a Kickstarter crowd-funding campaign in mid-February for GaymerX2. Now with less than 12 hours to go before the crowd-funding campaigns, organizers are trying to hit a final stretch goal of $30,000. Hitting that milestone will allow them to bring on The Super Soul Bros! to play live music during the event. Previous stretch goals included adding an additional $1,500 cash prize to the cosplay contest being held at the event, color programs, and pronoun sticker add-ons for badges.
Yesterday Mid Boss Games launched the crowd-funding campaign for GaymerX2, seeking $10,000 to put down a deposit on the venue for this year's LGBTQ-friendly gaming event. After 24 hours online the event has surpassed its funding goal, bringing in $11,169 (as of this writing). With the deposit secured Mid Boss Games has an entire month to raise extra funds for various stretch goals, which can be found here.
The creator of the game Ultimate Gay Fighter says that his fighting game featuring gay and lesbian characters is not meant to be hateful. Michael Patrick, who identifies himself as gay, says that the "world's first ever gay video game...ever" is not meant to be mean-spirited or derogatory against gay people..
MidBoss Games has managed to get its point-and-click adventure game Read Only Memories fully funded via Kickstarter. The crowdfunding campaign ended yesterday, raising $64,378 from 1,790 by the time it closed. The developers were originally seeking $62,064. Details on how you can still pledge (via PayPal - until the end of this year) can be found on the game's Kickstarter page.
While EA generates a fair share of bad press on a variety of fronts from time to time, it's hard to deny that the company has a pretty good track record when it comes to workforce diversity and inclusiveness in its various studios. In this year's Corporate Equality Index from the Human Rights Campaign, the company scored a 100 percent rating. Corporate Equality Index is part of the group's 2014 Best Places To Work report.
With only three more days to go, MidBoss Games' Read Only Memories is $10,000 from reaching its funding goal. As of this writing, the cyberpunk-themed point-and-click adventure game has managed to raise $52,074 of its $62,064 goal from 1,139 backers with just three more days to go before its funding goal deadline on Kickstarter comes to a close.
Read Only Memories has raised a little under half of its Kickstarter crowd-funding campaign goal. The sci-fi themed, old-school stylized adventure game from MidBoss Games has raised $29,395 of its $62,064 goal from 627 backers with 17 more days to go.
Read Only Memories has raised a little over a third of what it is seeking in its Kickstarter campaign. Launched last week, the crowd funding campaign for the sci-fi themed adventure game from MidBoss Games has raised $21,840 of its $62,064 goal from 489 backers with 24 more days to go.
The very first Games [4Diversity] Jam will take place from March 21 - 23 (2014) in San Francisco, organizers announced today. The goal of this unique game jam is for developers or teams of developers to incorporate feminine and LGBT aspects into games in a constructive way. Organizers believe that the game jam will show that "female, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender issues can enrich games in an innovative and positive manner."
Here's more from the organizers of the event:
Today is the last day to get early bird pricing on GaymerX2, the second annual 18+ gaming and cultural event that welcomes gay, lesbian, transgendered, and gamers of all stripes for several days of gaming and geek culture-related fun. The event, taking place from July 11 - 13, 2014 at the InterContinental San Francisco Hotel in San Francisco has already lined up a number of special guests including David Gaider, Mattie Brice, Alexis Ohanian, Gordon Bellamy, Jaime Woo, and John Scalzi, as well as returning faces like Ellen McLain, John Patrick Lowrie and Zach Weinersmith.
We mentioned this in passing when we reported on EA and other game companies signing onto an amicus brief supporting the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act, but the event deserves a little more attention: On March 7 Electronic Arts and the Human Rights Campaign will host an event to address the full spectrum of LGBT issues in gaming in New York City.
Electronic Arts announced that it has joined a coalition of businesses forming a Human Rights Campaign (HRC) to end federal discrimination against legally married gay and lesbian couples via the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The company is taking part in the "The Business Coalition for DOMA Repeal" effort, which includes a number of Fortune 500 companies that seek marriage equality for everyone through what it calls "Respect for Marriage Act."
In an update this week to the official blog for Star Wars: The Old Republic, Executive Producer Jeff Hickman detailed some of the changes that the next big update to the Star Wars themed free-to-play MMO will bring. Besides delivering changes to a special PvP area, the 1.7 update also sees the return of the Gree Enclave area, and details on why the inclusion of same-sex relationships has been pushed back slightly.
Electronic Arts has been given a 100 percent rating by the Human Rights Campaign earning it the distinction of being named the "Best Places to Work for LGBT Equality" for 2013. To receive such an honor and distinction a businesses must demonstrate policies, benefits and practices that are fair and equitable to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees.
GaymerCon, the gaming and tech convention focusing on LGBTQ culture (set to take place early next year in San Francisco), announced that the convention has gained the support of Electronic Arts. EA is the first game publisher to announce participation in the event.
"EA believes that to be truly innovative, you must be inclusive. We are proud to be a part of this event," said Ginger Maseda, Global Diversity and Inclusion for EA.
Last night the organizers of GaymerCon hosted a Google + Hangout to discuss the fight between Reddit's r/Gaymers sub-reddit and Gaymer.org owner Chris Vizzini (details on that here). At dispute is use of the term "gaymer," which Vizzini secured a trademark for in 2007. Concerned with the action, the group discussed the issue and answered the community's questions in the live video chat last night.
Gay Gamer chronicles a legal fight that is brewing between the sub-Reddit r/gaymers and Gaymer.org. Gaymer.org sent a cease and desist to Reddit asking that the sub-Reddit be removed because it violates a copyright it holds for "gaymer."
Here's the trademark Gaymer.org owns - filed by site owner Chris Vizzini in 2007:
The Kickstarter for GaymerCon closed, raising $91,389 from 1,531 backers. When organizers launched the crowd funding appeal they were looking to raise right around $25,000. Thanks to the generous support of the gaming community, North America will see its first GLBT gaming event ever August 3 - 4, 2013 in San Francisco. Details on the venue will be revealed at a later date.
A new video from members of Microsoft's Xbox Live team throws its support behind GaymerCon, the first GLBT friendly gaming event to take place in early 2013 in San Francisco, California. Obviously organizers of the event are glad to have the support of Xbox Live.
You can watch the video to your left. At the time of this writing the GaymerCon Kickstarter has managed to raise $75,000. The Kickstarter campaign ends Friday, August 31 at 11:43 pm EDT.
When we last checked in, the GaymerCon Kickstarter had managed to raise $28,471. Nine days later the crowd funding drive has managed to raise $48,102 from 921 backers with just 16 more days to go. GaymerCon promises to be the first "all-inclusive" fan-focused gaming event to provide a friendly, fun, and safe atmosphere for gamers and geeks to get together for two days in San Francisco (August of 2013).