The initial article found that the Healer/White Mage role was most preferred by women & least preferred by men, whereas the Warrior/Tank role was the most preferred by men & least preferred by women. Those results have been replicated with new data.

Updated Findings

Women indicated a preference to play a as healer (38%) over warriors/tanks (close — physical), hunter/ranger (distance — physical), & red, blue, & black mage (distance — attack magic) roles, whereas a healer was the role least preferred by men (18.4%), χ2(3, N = 397) = 24.81, p < .001.

In an analysis comparing preferences to play as a healer or any other role, a chi-square test of independence found that women were significantly more likely to indicate playing as healers (39.7%) than men (19.5%), χ2(1, N = 401) = 17.8, p< .001.

Finally, men were significantly more likely to identify as gamers (74.4%) than women (44.8%), χ2(1, N = 669) = 49.63, p < .001.

Personality & MMORPG Role

Healers are the most social role in MMORPG. Healers gain experience points & advance in MMORPG by healing others, making it an inherently social role. As such, extraverts should be more likely to be healers than introverts.

A chi-square test of independence found that extroverts are more likely to indicate playing as healers (46.2%) than introverts (31.3%) or ambiverts (27.4%), χ2(2, N = 435) = 6.79, p = .034.


Profile pics facilitate social interaction in the virtual public sphere (Lin & Faste, 2012).

“The selfie is by far the most popular kind of image on Instagram. Photos of faces receive 38% more engagement than other kinds of content. There is no point in putting anything on Instragram that is not, in some sense, for sale — even if what is for sale is an abstract possibility unlocked through class belonging” (Daniel Penny, 2017).

Eye Color Preference

Brown is the most common eye color (~70–80%) & green is the least common.

“Men were 1.4x more likely than women to wish their partner had a different eye color” (Austin Brewer, 2020)

Karolina Koc-Michalska et al. (2021): Twitter & Facebook

— “Men are more likely to guess when they have incomplete knowledge of a topic and they are less likely to select a “don’t know” option when it is offered (Baldiga, 2014; Miller, 2019).

🎮❤ Tracy McVeigh (2016)

“Recent research by the Japanese government showed that

about 30% of single women and 15% of single men aged between 20 and 29 admitted to having fallen in love with a meme or character in a game

— higher than the 24% of those women and 11% of men who admitted to falling in love with a pop star or actor.

The development of the multimillion-pound virtual romance industry in Japan reflects the existence of a growing number of people who don’t have a real-life partner, said Yamada. There is even a slang term, “moe”, for those who fall in love with fictional computer characters, while dating sims allow users to adjust the mood and character of online partners and are aimed at women as much as men. A whole subculture, including hotel rooms where a guest can take their console partner for a romantic break, has been springing up in Japan over the past six or seven years.”

🎮 & Gender Stereotypes — Yi, 2019

Gameplay affects players’ racial stereotypes (Behm-Morawitz & Ta, 2014), sexist attitudes (Breuer, et al., 2015), gender stereotypes (Kondrat, 2015).

From a traditional gender attitudes perspective, women always yield to others, while men are supposed to play a dominant role in sexual relationships (Kiefer & Sanchez, 2007).

Videogames’ “interactivity and immersive experience will intensify the effects (Mierlo & Bulck, 2004)

Instagram — Sokolova et al., 2022

“Women have self-representation concerns regarding photos they post (Haferkamp et al., 2011) and feel pressurized to conform to gender and beauty standards, and to post idealized photos of their bodies (Chua and Chang, 2016, Manago et al., 2008).

According to Abidin (2016), many practices in social media, such as lighting, postures, photo editing and enhancement, can be used to achieve a certain level of conformity to an idealized body, in order to attract attention and maximize the number of “likes” of a [post/story].

Sexual and objectifying idealized body-related content is used to attract, maintain, and grow one’s Instagram audience, making such accounts attractive for brands (Drenten et al., 2020; Hogan, 2001).

Ideal and slim models presented in the mass media are objectified and overweight women seem to be less objectified (Holland & Haslam, 2013). Heavily made up women were attributed less mental capacity and moral status, but stronger attractiveness and sex appeal (Bernard et al., 2020, Kellie et al., 2021).

Zimmerman and Dahlberg (2008) found that young women in 2008 were less offended by sexually objectifying advertisements than young women in the previous generation (Ford et al., 1991).”

Algorithmic Body Culture on Instagram — Nikolai Holder, 2020

“In terms of gender, the explore page algorithm proposed more images that depict women (64.32%) than men (26.49%). In some cases, both women and men were displayed together (9.19%). This tendency towards a stronger representation of women was somewhat expected since it corresponds with contemporary literature that claims a higher rate of women internalizing body ideals (Diedrichs & Lee, 2011). Nevertheless, considering the 26.49% of images depicting men, the increasing male preoccupation with the body is represented in the sample (Fatt et al., 2019).

Not only women are strongly represented within this sample of images, people with white skin account for the largest share (85.16%) while all non-white people constitute the minority (12.09%) — even though the coding rule only distinguishes between white and non-white people which, in theory, should give more statistical weight to the non-white population. The smallest set of images displays white people together with non-white people (3.85%).

Combining the components race and gender shows that minority men (20.41%) outnumber minority women (7.56%).

When comparing those components to the whole sample, minority women (4.95%) and minority men (5.49%) nearly account for the same amount. As a result, the White woman is visible the strongest (58.79%), followed by the White men (19.23%), the minority men (5.49%) and the minority women (4.95%).

The missing percentages are attributed to images displaying White men & minority women (7.14%) and minority men and minority women together respectively (1.65%).

[Overall], a tendency of destabilizing anti-mainstream body ideologies was found which supports the claim that Instagram’s algorithm is reproducing societal bias.”

Avatars & Selves — Nicola Liberati, 2018

Gamers immerse themselves into distant worlds using their avatars as their bodies (Liberati, 2013).

“The avatars are not the original bodies of the subjects, but they stand for them as interactive representations of the “original” subjects just like the picture archived in the social networks. [We perceive a collection of pictures strategically chosen by the other as representations of them (Lopato, 2016). Thus, we have a perception of them that is wholly defined by them & which we are unable to change.]

Since the pictures are not the person, but they merely stand for that person (Husserl, 1980; Lotz, 2007), the perception of the other is excluded.

Digital anthropologists begin to frame the digital as existing in its own right,”[and many] commune in the Internet for a type of sociality that is unavailable in non-digital spaces.

Through the avatar and the freedom in its customization, the avatars embed in themselves the desires of the users in how they want to be perceived in the virtual space (Mancini and Sibilla, 2017). To build an avatar is a way to be perceived by others, [similar to the way people choose] clothes to wear for a special occasion in order to present themselves in a particular way (Liberati, 2017; Twigg, 2009).”



Federica Selvini, 2022 (December 18)

“Eric Schmidt, the former CEO of Google, tells us that 5 Exabytes of information were created between the dawn of civilization and 2003, while now that same amount is created every 2 days. To me, these figures seem crazy. But what is even crazier is that, due to our own perfectionism and fear of failure, we now expect ourselves to retain that humongous volume of data.

“Compared to the 15th century, we now consume as much data in a single day as an average person from the 1400s would have absorbed in an entire lifetime.” (Kwik, 2020)

Thanks to technology, and especially our phones, we now have this incredible opportunity of outsourcing a lot of the work that would otherwise take energy from our brains. The problem here is that if we always resort to that so accessible external help we are never really giving our brain a chance to practice and improve.”

Rick Busselle & Helena Bilandzic, 2008

“Thus, the representation of fictionality can be compared to tacit knowledge —

knowledge that exists and is usually not used in a conscious way or verbalized but when retrieved can influence actions and thoughts (Polanyi, 1958). Rather than being a problem for the audience, fictionality as an element of the mental model is functional for narrative experience in that it alerts the audience that the story world logic may not conform to the actual world and that extensions may be necessary. Extending the story world rules in deviation from the actual world is a normal activity in processing fiction, and moreover it leaves intact the other, unspecified rules of the real world. As Segal (1995a) points out, if external cues associated with the narrative, such as the book jacket, identify the text as fictional, readers are prompted to create a unique story world for this fictional narrative that is based on, but not necessarily identical to, the actual world. In opening up possibilities to accept premises different from the real world, information on fictionality in the mental model relieves us of too hastily dismissing the fictional world as faulty.” (p. 266)

Fictionality and Perceived Realism in Experiencing Stories: A Model of Narrative Comprehension and Engagement

3rd-Wave Feminists & Sexually Objectifying Media — Amanda Z. & Dahlberg, 2008

As the portrayal of women as sex objects in advertisements became more common, young, educated women were less offended by these portrayals. This is a product of the culture in which these women were raised. Today’s college females were raised in a very sexualized world. Sexual content dominates the media, and 3rd-wave feminists see female sexuality as power.

Thus, [sexually objectifying advertisements] apparently do not offend young, educated women because of this culture. They were and are constantly surrounded by sexual images of females, and many have adopted the views of 3rd-wave feminists, which interpret these formerly negative and sometimes harmful images as acceptable ones.

[3rd-Wave feminism] embodies a kind of “girlish offensive” (Labi, 1998, p. 61), a “sassy, don’t-mess-with-me adolescent spirit” (Bellafante, 1998, p. 58), that tells females they can be strong and powerful, they can be anything they want to be, and they can look hot doing it.

Even 2nd-Wave feminists from academic circles, such as Naomi Wolf, have embraced the girl power trend, and favor women using their bodies as works of art. She has adopted third-wave feminism, claiming that it is okay for women to use their glamour, as long as they are doing it of their own free will (Hill, 1993).

Play Like A Feminist (Shira Chess, 2020)

“Shira Chess urges us to play video games like feminists. Playing like a feminist is empowering and disruptive; it exceeds the boundaries of gender yet still advocates for gender equality. Playing like a feminist offers a new way to think about how humans play — and also a new way to think about how feminists do their feministing.

Video games, Chess tells us, are primed for change. Roughly half of all players identify as female, and Gamergate galvanized many of gaming’s disenfranchised voices. Chess reflects on the importance of play, and playful protest, how feminist video games can help us rethink the ways that we tell stories… [and suggests that we should] spend more time playing [videogames] as a tool of radical disruption.”

Femininity & Healing

“In practically all realms of foreign & domestic policy, women are less belligerent than men” (Page & Shapiro 1992, p. 295).

It is increasingly acknowledged that the inclusion of women in peace negotiations make them more likely to become agreements & more durable over time (Addams, 2021; Buranajaroenkij, 2020; Chrystia Freeland, 2017; Desirée Nilsson, 2012; Julianne Windham, 2019 ; Krause et al., 2018; Nazary et al., 2020; O’Reilly et al., 2015; Pelham et al., 2021; Thania Paffenholz et al., 2016).

An unpublished study by Laurel Stone (2015) found that, of 182 peace agreements signed between 1989 & 2011, the one’s that included women enjoyed greater success (Stone, 2015). When women are part of peace negotiations, agreements are 20% more likely to last at least 2 years & 35% more likely to last 15 years (Laurel Stone, 2015).

An archival study by Paffenholz (2015) successfully replicated Stone’s (2015) finding by demonstrating that 40 political and peace negotiations from 1989 to 2014 had more success when women were involved.

Of 24 women leaders from 1960–1994, only 4 of them (16.67%) were involved in international crises at any point during their reign & “as the percent of women in a legislature increases by 5%, a state is nearly 5x (4.86) less likely to use violence” (Caprioli & Boyer, 2001, p. 514).

SoCal Lab UCSD → → In an ongoing reanalysis & partial replication of Caprioli & Boyer’s (2001) study, we found that female leaders from 1960-the 2010s were less likely to be involved in international crises during their reigns.

Gymnastics & Gender Roles by Faith Karimi, CNN (7.31.2021)

The Sex of Scoring (Jason Woodnick, VP of the men’s program for USA Gymnastics)
— Women are awarded points for artistry, musicality and choreography. Because scoring is tied to choreography, women can get points deducted if they finish their routine before or after the music ends.
— Men are scored mostly on their acrobatic skills — giving them no incentive to add artistic elements to their routines.

Inter-Political Dyads — Wilson et al., 2020

People are increasingly rejecting relationships with spouses and friends who are politically opposed, stating that the “widening divide… is not driven by increasing warmth toward own party, but rather due to rising animosity toward opponents, a phenomenon known as negative partisanship“ (Wilson et al., 2020).



Dr. Jarryd Willis PhD

I'm passionate about making a tangible difference in the lives of others, & that's something I have the opportunity to do a professor & researcher.