International Women’s Day yesterday was a great way to commemorate women’s rights. Yet in the world of e-sports, female representation is very low. Playing video games depends very little on physical performance, nonetheless female professional gamers have seen little to no growth.
However, this may be due to how gaming as a whole has been marketed. Playing video games is commonly associated as a male hobby and due to this, marketers and advertisers have targeted the demographic of young males. According to a study done by newzoo.com, women make up only about 29% of e-sports enthusiasts. Occasional viewers of e-sports is much higher at 41%. Male e-sports enthusiasts dominate at over 71%.
That still does not explain the significantly smaller earnings of female professional gamers. Gaming tournaments offer significantly less for the women’s divisions. Furthermore, the highest earning male e-sports player has accumulated over $2.7 million according to esportsearnings.com. The highest earning female player is at $170,255.83.
Whether the smaller pay for female pro-gamers is due to a smaller talent pool, skewed advertising, or coincidental exclusion, the real reason remains to be seen. It is no doubt that the industry is still growing, and several companies are working to get more women in e-sports. Hopefully in the near future, more women will have their own crack at gaming stardom.