The 3rd Installment of Talk Series on “Inequity, Stereotypes, and Stigma in Leisure”

The B’AI Global Forum will hold a talk by Hiroko Kanoh entitled “Disparities and Bullying in Online Games: E-sports Players Becoming Gladiators,” which is the 3rd installment of our talk series on “Inequity, Stereotypes, and Stigma in Leisure,” on Tuesday, May 25, 2021.



Disparities and Bullying in Online Games: E-sports Players Becoming Gladiators

Hiroko Kanoh (Associate Professor, Yamagata University)


Some places, such as amusement parks, theme parks, theaters, movie theaters, etc., were crowded with people before the COVID-19 pandemic, but now more and more children and young people are playing online games while staying at home. The online gaming space has a leisure aspect that can be enjoyed by everyone regardless of gender, race, age, or physical disability, making it easier to achieve barrier-free access. In online games, Nekama is allowed, and the players can reflect their ideal appearance on the avatar regardless of their actual appearance and feel free from their complexes such as “fat” and “short.”


On the other hand, instead of no privilege for the wealthy or the elite, authoritarian populism is blatantly expressed and meritocracy takes over. In this sense, the online gaming space can be said to be a microcosm of real society. Since the premise of online games are fiction, the depiction of sex, discrimination, inequality, and bullying are rampant. In such an online space, those who start playing online games to kill time become disillusioned, and those who aspire to become e-sports players become gladiators.


Date & Venue, etc.

・Date: Tuesday, May 25, 2021, 17:00-18:00 (JST)

・Venue: Zoom Meeting(No registration required )

・Language: Japanese

・Organizer:B’AI Global Forum, Institute for AI and Beyond at the University of Tokyo

・Co-organizer:Leisure Studies Kenkyukai, and the Association for Leisure and Tourism Studies



Yuko Itatsu (Professor, Interfaculty Initiative in Information Studies, the University of Tokyo)

itatsu[at] change [at] to @)