September 14, 2011 1:00 AM | Matthew Hawkins
The following is an older story, yet one still very much worth exploring (especially since most are unaware of it). Above is Kim Shee-Yoon, a South Korean 21 year old who calls herself Eve in StarCraft 2, which is how most folks know her. As The Mary Sue explains, she's a trailblazer of sorts, and like so many in her position, Kim/Eve has both supporters and detractors.
Eve was handpicked by SlayerS, one of the biggest SC2 dedicated teams in Korea, who basically wanted to have the first professional female player ever. The controversy stems from her questionable track record; others with far better credentials were passed in her favor. But the intention was to train her, because Eve is a project of sorts, and was ultimately chosen for both her skills and her looks.
The author of the piece does her best to rationalize the move, despite an initial negative reaction, in part by explaining the Korean pro gamer scene. Players are far more celebrated their than American counterparts, but it's still a boy's club. She cites it as an example of (and justification for) affirmative action, without actually using the term directly.
She also touches upon the intense debate that was sparked, and the legal actions that were pursued by the team manager (a woman as well by the way, just not a player). Along with how another less than worthy player was also brought on board, due to a perceived potential, and how this other person was a male.
All in all, a fascinating read. Many who wish that professional gaming was as prominent in America would perhaps not mind such problems on our end.