Inclusive Gaming and Streaming

In October 2016 I approached one of my advisors, Dr.  Aaron Trammell, about how live streaming was making visible a lack of respect for women working as professionals in esports and competitive gaming. I shared with him a related concern that the newly launched esports program here at UCI would fall into the trap of repeating similar bad behavior. This brief conversation triggered a series of events that led to the creation of the “Women in Gaming” panel, hosted at UCI in February 2017 and moderated by yours truly. The event was attended by other 200 undergraduates who were very eager to learn from the experiences of the amazing panelists who represented multiple areas in the games industry like research, development, professional streaming, and tournament organizing.

Since 2017 I have continued to advocate for a variety of issues I see affecting inclusion in games. I have frequently collaborated with UCI Esports Arena staff on programs like creating the curriculum for the Girls in Gaming summer camp, designing new modules for esports arena and player training, and serving on a committee to rewrite the code of conduct used in the arena and by the program. While my service work has primarily been in the area of esports, due to its increasing presence on the UCI campus, my research focuses on the related context of live streaming.

In 2019 I formed a research group with fellow PhD students Spencer Ruelos and Kat Brewster, and our advisor Dr. Bo Ruberg. Together we launched the Inclusive Streaming Initiative on the UCI campus. The Initiative was established to investigate and address issues related to diversity and discrimination in and around live streaming. Although our focus is mainly on video game live streaming, we hope our work and our reach impacts all parts of live streaming.

For more information about the Inclusive Streaming Initiative, its projects, and its members please visit the ISI website.

Inclusive Streaming Iniative Logo

In September 2019 the members of the Inclusive Streaming Initiative hosted a symposium on live streaming research for a select group of streamers and scholars. While the symposium wasn’t open to the public, we did organize a public panel where many of the workshop themes were discussed. The panel was recorded and is linked below.