Las Vegas has been the center of a recent wave of online gaming, a trend that’s quickly overtaken the West Coast and has spawned its own niche.
It’s also a city in which people who prefer not to interact with the outside world can find a safe haven from a global culture that’s becoming increasingly intolerant of dissenting views.
For a while, this safe haven was online gaming.
But that’s all about to change.
The last few months have seen a sharp uptick in the number of people who report having been harassed online, and even physical threats.
In February, the Los Angeles Times reported that the city had seen a rise in harassment incidents against people on social media.
In June, The Guardian published a story about two men who say they were fired from jobs at Target, the Wal-Mart chain, and Toys R Us because of their political opinions.
And in July, the Associated Press reported that three people were arrested on a Los Angeles freeway for allegedly threatening to burn down a Target store.
This is a country that’s been awash in hate speech, xenophobia, and racism in recent years.
But as the world has become more hostile to minorities, some of its biggest companies have moved their headquarters to the West, where the diversity of ideas is much greater.
There, they can be more open and inclusive to their employees.
Some tech companies have also taken steps to increase diversity in their leadership ranks.
Facebook recently appointed Sheryl Sandberg, the former Facebook CEO, as its chief operating officer.
She will replace Sheryl Flournoy, who has been CEO for six years.
Facebook’s CEO has said that he wants to have a more inclusive culture, one that respects diversity, including those from marginalized groups.
That means hiring more women, people of color, LGBTQ people, and people with disabilities.
This week, Google announced that it is creating an internship program for people of Asian descent to pursue a career in tech.
And Microsoft recently added a gender-neutral hiring policy for engineers.
But these changes aren’t the only ones that have led to increased scrutiny.
In March, the California Legislature passed a law requiring all new state-licensed health-care facilities to have gender-affirming bathrooms.
And on June 28, a bill that would have banned a ban on same-sex marriage passed the California Assembly.
Meanwhile, in the past few months, there have been several high-profile incidents involving the targeting of journalists.
In March, journalists covering the Gamergate controversy faced harassment and threats.
And last month, a New York City man was charged with murder for allegedly firing at a group of protesters who had been chanting anti-Gamergate slogans.
And two weeks ago, a Florida woman was arrested after allegedly trying to drive her car into a crowd of demonstrators, killing one person and injuring more.
The California bill, as well as similar legislation in Oregon and other states, have sparked outrage and calls for greater scrutiny of online harassment.
This is what online gaming is like for the people who play it.
A game that offers up a virtual universe, where a small group of players can play against others for points, and then fight over which of their virtual rivals has the most points.
And while this kind of game has traditionally been confined to young, white, male gamers, there are now a lot of different kinds of players.
For one, there’s a lot more women playing it.
In January, a survey of nearly 700 female gamers in the United States found that, overall, they are more than twice as likely as men to play the game.
And that’s because the vast majority of them are looking to join a group or join a league.
“A lot of these women are not just playing to have fun,” said Laura Schlozman, a professor of communication at Northwestern University who studies the role of online culture in games.
“They’re also just looking to be part of a larger community.”
They want to share stories and interact with each other, but the stakes are much higher.
“This is really important,” said Katherine Smith, a communications professor at Northwestern who has studied online gaming and has written extensively about its role in shaping society.
“These games are very much about empowerment and social capital.
It is a place where you are not a participant, but you are part of the conversation.”
In other words, they want to be able to make their voices heard, and that’s what a community can provide.
This may be a long-overdue step toward making gaming more inclusive.
“If you think about it, it’s about making games about real people instead of making games to make people feel good,” said Schlozer.
“If you can get that across in a way that is not just a ‘gamers are good’ or ‘gamies are bad’ narrative, it can be much more meaningful.”
The goal is to make gaming a more welcoming place for everyone.
But while there are