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New Anita Sarkeesian Video Calls Out Gaming's 'Women in Refrigerators'

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Feminist Frequency blogger/video host Anita Sarkeesian is back with the second in her "Tropes vs. Women in Games" series, in which she analyzes sexist tropes in video games. The first video in the series looked back at the origins of the "Damsel in Distress" trope, focusing mostly on Nintendo games. The new video puts more recent games under the damsel-scope.

Heads-up: The video contains spoilers for a lot of games. Sarkeesian has posted a list of games mentioned in an annotation at the beginning of the video.


Sarkeesian first gained national attention when she launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise money for the series and was subsequently subjected to a prolonged, intense online harassment campaign. That harassment inadvertently contributed to her massive Kickstarter success—her goal had been to raise $6,000 and she wound up with almost $160,000. Sarkeesian later explained to Kotaku how the extra money helped her increase the project's scope; that initially resulted in some delays, but she now appears to be full-steam ahead.


Give it a watch.

Update: It appears that the video has been pulled from YouTube. We're looking into what's going on and will update when we know more, or when there's a new version of the video online.

Update 2: Sarkeesian has addressed the issue on Twitter:

Looks like my harassers abused YouTube's flag function to get my new Tropes vs Women video removed. Not the first time it's happened. We are looking into the issue and will update you all as soon as we know the full story and can get the video restored.


Update 3: The video has been restored. Sarkeesian says that she appealed YouTube's Terms of Service takedown action, apparently successfully.

Update 4: YouTube has attributed the brief takedown to human error, sending Kotaku the following statement:

"With the volume of videos on our site, sometimes we make the wrong call. We have an appeals process in place for users, and when it's brought to our attention that a video has been removed mistakenly, we act quickly to reinstate it."


On a phone call, a YouTube spokesperson explained that all YouTube content is screened by their staff, though not always immediately after the videos are posted, and that while a high number of flags can cause a video to move up the list for review, flags alone can't get a video pulled.