Does Games Workshop break equality laws?

(79 Posts)
belledechocolatefluffybunny Fri 03-Sep-10 23:43:40

considering 99% of it's staff are male and 99% of it's stock are plastic figures of men? The only female figures they have are half naked women with a push up bra. Ds is going to an event at the local store tomorrow and the mothers were asked to supply a cake!

juneybean Fri 03-Sep-10 23:45:10

are females actually applying for the job?

belledechocolatefluffybunny Fri 03-Sep-10 23:46:40

Yes according to the manager here. Not many to be honest. 25% of the people going into the shop here are female yet only a very small percentage of the stock is aimed at them.

juneybean Fri 03-Sep-10 23:53:54

Apologies I'm not really into feminism so ignore me if I'm not making any sense.

Games workshop and figurines obviously has its target market of say teenage boys to young adult boys, but of course you're going to get the odd girls that are interested in that sort of thing.

It's like World of Warcraft, it's not necessarily aimed at men but it's men that tend to like playing that sort of game.

Perhaps the reason the staff are 99% male is because the men that apply at the same time as women have more indepth knowledge about the product.

But I'm waffling lol so feel free to ignore me grin

belledechocolatefluffybunny Fri 03-Sep-10 23:57:32
juneybean Sat 04-Sep-10 00:10:36

No I guess not, but when I think of how I remember my brother playing, it's probably because us women are far too superior to play such a boring game LOL

I really can't understand the enjoyment they get from it

belledechocolatefluffybunny Sat 04-Sep-10 00:12:13

No, I can't either. It's a great place for missfits though, it's just not female friendly.

Treetrunkthighs Sat 04-Sep-10 00:26:47

I worked for them, admittedly in the head office, and I was one of 4 women in the entire place. I was young and I loved it!

They pay pitiful wages so the vast majority of employees are working there because they love the whole thing and it is more of an extension of their hobby than 'work'.

I have no point, oh well smile

belledechocolatefluffybunny Sat 04-Sep-10 00:30:14

Can you email them and suggest that they include women alot more? smile

fuschiagroan Sat 04-Sep-10 00:32:45

Just going on my personal acquaintance (not at all scientific) I don't know any women who are/were into Games Workshop-type stuff, but quite a few boys were. Maybe it is just that the guys they hired were the absolute nerdiest (in a nice way) whereas maybe most girls had applied because it's an alright job in a shop not because they love it.

belledechocolatefluffybunny Sat 04-Sep-10 00:34:46

Maybe. I do know that a fair few girls go into the shop here though, the boys get figures to build that are big and strong, the girls get half dressed women with big tits hmm

Goblinchild Sat 04-Sep-10 07:39:33

I would agree that any establishment should employ on an equal basis, but I also expect staff to have a level of understanding and knowledge about the products they are selling and the games. So If I went in and found 50% of the staff female, hurrah. If they consistently knew less about the stock, wre less enthusiastic and patient and constantly had to refer to male staff for information, I would be less so.
DS spends a lot of time in GW, he tends to concentrate on whether the figures are LOTR, vampires or trolls and the like.
They offer a level of acceptance, patience, advice and enthusiasm that exists rarely for my DS in the NT world.
All of the young men in the shop are passionate about painting and playing and have obviously chosen a job linked with a main leisure interest of their own. If the women applying for jobs were equally keen, and informed, then I think you'd have a case, but I'd need evidence which I'm not seeing in the customer base.
The wages are indeed crap.

BoneyBackJefferson Sat 04-Sep-10 10:23:22

definatly half naked

link battle sisters

not

When you see most of the people that play this game there are not many of them that would even think "large breasted, scantily clad"

ISNT Sat 04-Sep-10 11:13:45

I would imagine that there aren't hordes of females applying for jobs in games workshop TBH, rather than it being a sexist conspiracy.

I happen to know that the Games Worshop inhouse professional painters (ie very important and always featured in the montly magazine) we until recently 2 women out of a team of 6, now there is one. I have been to a convention about this sort of thing (don't ask) and while walking around commented to DH that I couldn't think of another situation where I could be in a situation so predominantly male and feel so totally relaxed. And there was a dalek!

From personal experience I also think that men and boys who are into this sort of thing (fantasy/sci-fi and sciencey types) are in general the least sexist men I have met.

So while I can see the point about yes it's all male figures, and the men in the shops are, well, men, and the customers are all male.... i don't personally think it's a cause for concern. I have never felt unwelcome in a games workshop shop, which I have done very much in some otehr "male" environments over the years.

The women figures being scantily clad... Well yes OK I'l give you that. I can't see much wrong with the attire of the woman in the first pic you linked to though... And again, in fantasy worlds female charaters are just as hard as the male ones.

I can't get worked up about this one, sorry smile

PLUS do we really want equal men/women in all shops? I don't want men flogging me knickers in john lewis. Maybe it is nice for boys to have somewhere to go where there are good older male role models for them? People are always saying that boys don't have enough male role models in their lives...

ISNT Sat 04-Sep-10 11:15:06

Hmm my post is a little incomprehensible in places. Sorry about that grin

edam Sat 04-Sep-10 11:39:36

That's the funny thing about women. Often happy to accept inequality. You wouldn't get a load of posters on a gay website saying it's fine that a company has a workforce that is 99% hetero and gay people don't feel that they can apply for jobs.

Dh is into all that stuff and I'm very happy for him to go in there on his own. But if it's true that their workforce is overwhelmingly male, they have a problem and they should be examining it and trying to ensure they are not excluding women, even if unintentionally.

ISNT Sat 04-Sep-10 11:51:13

I don;t think it's been established that women don't feel that they can apply for jobs in games workshop has it? Just that warhammer etc are predominantly played by boys and so the pool of experts ie the people working in the shops is pretty male. Like I say I have never felt uncomfortable in there.

Ditto you don't get many men working in claires accessories, I'm sure that they could if they wanted to, they just don't tend to apply.

This is very low paid work we're talking about. I get more annoyed about things like the skilled trades and anything to do with motor vehicles etc being male dominated - and in a way that women are made very aware that they aren't welcome. (This may have changed since I worked in an FE college, I hope so).

I personally think, from my experience with this stuff, that females are made very welcome if they want to join in. Just that most of the time, they don't.

If you want to change it so that women are really interested in playing Warhammer then that's a different question.

Do qualified women feel they can't apply for jobs at GW?

BellasFormerFriend Sat 04-Sep-10 11:58:14

I am a bit confused that you are making the point that their stock is not aimed at women...

They sell items for fantasy role play...erm..so people who are into fantasy roleplay go in and buy stuff for..fantasy roleplay..

I am sorry but how do you make that not aimed at women? It is like saying the local delicatesan is not aimed at horse riders because it only stocks food, unless I am missing something glaringly obvious you are not making much sense!

Goblinchild Sat 04-Sep-10 12:59:25

I agree that girls should be encouraged to engage in more fantasy role playing games and buy White Dwarf. Then they can also have access to the knowledge and skills acquired by the male staff and compete as equals.
As I said, I don't want to go in there with DS, have him ask some esoteric questions and each time have that member of staff have to refer his query to another. Especially if the ignorant one is female and the oracle is male.
Sends entirely the wrong message, she's employed because of her sex and not her relevant knowledge of the job. Might as well give her a Xenia costume.

ISNT Sat 04-Sep-10 14:17:43

Hahaha not our xenia i guess...

Shoulderpads, filofax, business suit, steely gaze at any pillock who makes the bungle of thinking she is not in charge as she is a female...

serenity Sat 04-Sep-10 14:28:01

What ISNT said.

I used to paint miniatures when I was younger, never felt uncomfortable in Games Workshop at all or felt it was aimed at boys although, yes, it seems to be filled with them! It's seen as geeky, weird and odd - maybe boys care less at being labelled like that as teens than girls do? The problem isn't sexism, it's genre-ism (ok, made up word, but you get what I mean smile)

edam Sat 04-Sep-10 15:01:25

Why do you assume that a woman working in Games Workshop would be incompetent, Goblin?

ISNT Sat 04-Sep-10 15:09:51

I think goblin was referring back to her earlier point that if GW made a policy to hire 50% female staff, and as a result had to hire women who were less knowledgable than the men, then it would be a problem.

TBH I know loads of blokes who have been into fantasy gaming, painting miniatures, RPGs and so on. And only about 1 woman who has had these inclinations. Women I meet tend to be more into sci-fi books/films/DVD and coputer based RPGs.

I just don't think that there is a huge pool of women who are clamouring for jobs at GW and being turned away due to discrimination. I really don't. Like I say, in the magazine, the expert painting team were until recently 2 women out of a team of 6, and they were featured as frequently as their male counterparts, and i never caught even a whiff of "ooh look this is good and a girl did it shock horror".

CarGirl Sat 04-Sep-10 15:17:00

The species that they use as their "races" are mainly based on historical tribes that fought, races out of the "Lord of the rings" and the futuristic stuff. Anything based on the first 2 types are going to be predominately male by default apart from the Amazonians.

None of my dds have shown any interest in either the models or the games whereas I know many boys of similar ages who are keen to come and view dh's collection...........

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