No matter what you’re seeing up on the screen in this inaugural season of the Overwatch League, chances are really good that the people controlling (and almost all of the casters, it seems) are guys. This is because the League’s teams are completely male, a situation that none of them can really seem to address when asked point-blank about it.
Case in point: Kim “Geguri” Se-yeon is widely seen as one of the best players in the competitive scene… and she has yet to be signed on to any of the competing teams, as Kotaku points out in its long piece this week (though apparently Geguri herself believes it’s not sexism keeping her off teams – thanks Loopy). You probably remember her from back in 2016 when gamers and pro players were harassing her and claiming she wasn’t real/was a cheater until she shut them down with a video of herself kicking ass.
When asked about why she (and other women) hasn’t been snapped up, in spite of her participation in other leagues, several teams hemmed and hawed over the fact. It would be funny to read all of these responses if it wasn’t so disheartening. Our favorite? Having to fuss with co-ed player housing.
“There is absolutely no reason that she couldn’t do it,” said Overwatch League Outlaws general manager Matt Rodriguez. “I think she knows that. I know she’s had a lot of trouble. I’ve read a lot of articles about her having hard times, and that sucks. But that’s the hurdle.”
For all of the noise that Blizzard has made this past year about diversity and inclusiveness and anti-toxicity, the lack of female representation within its premiere e-sports league seems a glaring issue.
Check out the entire article on Kotaku for all the mini-interviews with different organizations.