© Raise Your Game Esports 2018

    A Conversation With Marie-Claire Isaaman CEO of Women In Games



    Leon Dale


    Marie-Claire and I found a moment to speak about the recent Women In Games conference and the esports awards.


    Can you help our readers truly understand the mission of Women In Games (WIGJ) -

    "The mission at Women in Games (WIGJ) is to achieve full equality of opportunity and treatment for all women working, or wanting to work, in the games and esports industries."


    Would you agree that in order to create an effective, meaningful and lasting change in the games and esports industries, individuals and groups have to champion equality?


    "Absolutely, those that champion equality are always great allies."



    The Women In Games (WIGJ) Esports Awards


    Could you tell us more about what the (WIGJ) Esports Awards?


    "The Women In Games (WIGJ) esports awards was created to recognise prominent and talented women in esports and also allies who understand the diversity challenges the games and esports sector faces and who are proactively engaged in supporting the development of a more equal and inclusive esports environment."


    There is a several publications showing the UK's current position in gaming and esports,

    Do you see these awards help the UK's position?


    "Globally the UK is “coming from behind” and these awards seek to celebrate the talent that is from or based in the UK, in order to inspire more talent to rise up and take their place on the world stage. Women In Games (WIGJ) also seek to recognise all individuals who want to support equality, inclusion, diversity in a challenging environment."


    How were these awards selected and what impact do they have on those involved?


    "The first ever awards were selected from European Women in Games Conference speakers by Women In Games (WIGJ) esports leads and were approved by the Women In Games (WIGJ) Board prior to the conference.

    They reflect Women In Games (WIGJ) commitment to work proactively with all stakeholders in the sector to champion esports as a welcoming place for women and to drive important initiatives and changes to create a truly equal sector."


    Awards


    Streamer Award Lisa Brightman,

    Also better known by her Streaming Tag LieseinWonderland!

    (read more)

    Presenter Award James Banks,

    A journalist, commentator, manager, and most recently a host.

    (read more)

    Team Award Riot Gaming UK,

    An org which strives to be “the world’s leading organisation in female eSports across numerous titles and platforms"

    (read more)


    Player Award Cordelia “Scarakye” Chui.

    (read more)


    Can you share more about Women in Games and the work you have done?


    "Women in Games (WIGJ) is a not for profit organisation run largely by volunteers, who have worked tirelessly for almost 10 years to raise awareness and change attitudes, deliver impact and create the right conditions for women in the games and esports sector to achieve their full potential."



    The Conference


    Sadly, I could not personally attend this year's conference, but I have heard it was a great success, what was some of the high points this year?


    "Our 2018 European Women in Games Conference was the best ever. There were so many high points celebrating the amazing creativity, ability, ambition, leadership and talent of all the women in our wonderful industry, I couldn’t possibly list them all here. All I know is that I left the conference inspired and uplifted, as did many, many others. And that’s a consequence of all the hard work put in by so many people and the support of our wonderful sponsors. We need to build on this success and remain focused and united in achieving the goal of lasting equality and freedom from discrimination for all women working in our industry, together ensuring it becomes a better place."



    BBC Article


    The BBC article has been discussed at length, However I would like to share my thoughts and opinions on this.


    "Please do Leon, as many individuals have commented on this"


    Firstly the title of the award was not "Best Presenter" and those words were never associated with the award during the ceremony, this is factually wrong.


    Secondly the "Presenter Award" was presented to James Banks for his work and passion at several events such as the Intel Challenge for CS Go Katowice – 2018, this year’s women's tournament at the Copenhagen Games 2018 and the WESG Women’s’ Finals in 2017 combined with his desire and drive to challenge inequality in esports.

    The effort made to find anything possible to challenge the character of James Banks and the decision of Women In Games (WIGJ) resembled a school classroom, teacher! teacher! James just said!


    I find the entire article misleading, factually wrong, uninformative and negative.


    "Before I go I would like to say Women In Games (WIGJ) believes strongly that women and men should ultimately compete together in open tournaments, but that the esports sector as a whole need to do more to break down the barriers that exist to prevent many women reaching the highest levels of competition. To do this, it is important for both women and men to work together to tackle the under-representation of women that exists in all areas of esports. Our esports awards exist to celebrate the achievements of both women and men campaigning to make esports more welcoming and inclusive."


    Thank you for taking the time to speak with us Marie-Claire.


    "My pleasure, Thank you Leon."



    Support Women In Games (WIG)J by standing up and saying yes to equality

    http://www.womeningames.org/

    https://twitter.com/wigj

    http://patreon.com/wigj




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