Monday, March 28, 2016

Women say virtual reality industry needs to start with awareness of diversity - VENTURE BEAT

by Dean Takahashi
Originally published: March 26, 2016

Virtual reality is about to take off in a big way. Tech advisor Digi-Capital estimates that it could be a $30 billion industry by 2020. But if follows in the footsteps of the video game industry when it comes to the issue of diversity, that could be a disaster.

That’s the view of a panel of four women that I moderated in a session during the Game Developers Conference last week at the Open Gaming Alliance lounge. Our charter was to talk about the need to diversity the people, apps, and audience for the emerging platform of virtual reality. What better

As for the game industry, it could use some help. About 22 percent of the industry’s game developers are women. Some of them suffered a lot of hostility during the GamerGate controversy. But there’s been a lot of positive reaction that came from that open hostility, including efforts by Intel to double the number of women in games over the next decade, as well as an effort to combat online harassment. There’s more discussion about diversity in games than ever, including our discussion about the challenge of VR and diversity.

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