Several days ago, Matt Albrecht delivered a presentation at Indiecade entitled “Subverting Toxic Let’s Play Culture: Inclusivity, safe spaces, and FourPlay show. Although I was not present for the presentation, Albrecht made the PDF slides from the presentation available. In the slides, Albrecht outlines the ways in which Let’s Play operate an non-inclusive spaces for many non-cis white male players. In other words, if you aren’t a hetero-normative white guy, Let’s Plays can be toxic places. Gender, abelist, and racial slurs are commonly used by players over the audio broadcasts.That said, there are channels and Let’s Play groups emerging that are more inclusive and conscientious spaces, including his own Let’s Play channel, FourPlay. Albrecht then goes on to discuss how FourPlay came to be and it’s founding principles: inclusivity, accessibility, and camaraderie.
Though I saved Albrecht’s presentation several days ago, it became even more relevant today, as the Let’s Play curation post on Critical-Distance had to be edited to provide warnings for abelist language that was used in several of the videos. This has prompted me to re-think how I approach the curation. In the first month,I underestimated the time commitment, and as a result allocated my focus incorrectly. I need to allow myself more time to sit with each of the Let’s Play videos and listen more carefully not just for what the intended message of the content is, but how it is delivered This is not only in line with the mission of Critical-Distance, but with my intent to curate high-quality Let’s Plays that illustrate the potential of the medium, rather than it’s drawbacks.