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Is Minecraft Steve the single most frequently whitewashed character in gaming?

Do you percieve Minecraft Steve as being whitewashed in certain promotional material and merchandise

  • Yes, and Mojang should fix this

    Votes: 156 37.4%
  • No

    Votes: 261 62.6%

  • Total voters
    417

sunnpeace

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
801
Seems like a pretty obvious instance of colorism to me. It's odd how much the official toys and merchandise differ from his in-game appearance.

 
Oct 25, 2017
2,452
I'm really not sure what posts like these are trying to do. I have never played any minecraft game and yet just by actually reading the topic I can plainly see that the character had a brown tone that was made lighter in merchandise. So what if you never saw him as a PoC? Unless you're blind, you should be able to see that the merchandise made of him has had lighter skin compared to his official darker skin coloring. Just admit that, it's not that hard.
I wasn't commenting on the whitewashing of Steve, which does exist..but the auxiliary conversation on people claiming Steve to be POC, but it's not a big deal to me either way. Steve was most likely meant to be racially ambiguous anyway.
 

CapNBritain

Member
Oct 26, 2017
89
California
I wasn't commenting on the whitewashing of Steve, which does exist..but the auxiliary conversation on people claiming Steve to be POC, but it's not a big deal to me either way. Steve was most likely meant to be racially ambiguous anyway.
Maybe that is what you, and several posters are doing. But let's be real, by only chiming in saying you don't think he's a PoC and not even mentioning the whitewashing you are obscuring the real reason this whole situation sucks. Maybe it's because none of you are PoC and don't see it or care. Maybe it's because you don't understand why this is important and so you didn't think to comment on the actual meat of the discussion. or maybe you're bigots who are trying to subtly steer the conversation a certain way. i don't know. I don't even comment on Era very much. I'm a lurker. But come on guys, this is some BS. The poll is actually making me very upset.
 
OP
OP
Gundam

Gundam

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,733
The fact is that Steve's getting whitewashed, and no one cares to notice or talk about it. The outcome of the poll is what I expected and highlights what I wanted to. I hope this thread acts as a signal boost for this issue and more people become aware of the idea and spread it.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,452
Maybe that is what you, and several posters are doing. But let's be real, by only chiming in saying you don't think he's a PoC and not even mentioning the whitewashing you are obscuring the real reason this whole situation sucks. Maybe it's because none of you are PoC and don't see it or care. Maybe it's because you don't understand why this is important and so you didn't think to comment on the actual meat of the discussion. or maybe you're bigots who are trying to subtly steer the conversation a certain way. i don't know. I don't even comment on Era very much. I'm a lurker. But come on guys, this is some BS. The poll is actually making me very upset.
I'm black so i do care about black representation in video games. Just not in Minecraft personally. I changed my skin from default the very second I could.
But I think the poll results are the result of people misunderstanding what whitewashing even is. A lot of folks just assume it means they're changing the race of a character from black to white.
 

CapNBritain

Member
Oct 26, 2017
89
California
I'm black so i do care about black representation in video games. Just not in Minecraft personally. I changed my skin from default the very second I could.
But I think the poll results are the result of people misunderstanding what whitewashing even is. A lot of folks just assume it means they're changing the race of a character from black to white.
Yeah I definitely agree on the whitewashing, and I'm glad you followed up. Whitewashing isn't just changing a PoC to a white person, it is lightening the skin due to some weird standard of beauty. It's messed up and, in this example, blatant. I can see now that we do have the same thoughts on the subject, I just wish I had known that from your earlier post. I'm sorry if I came in a little hard. This is just really bothering me right now.
 

ned_ballad

Member
Oct 25, 2017
23,503
Rochester, New York
This is something I actually noticed a while ago looking at Lego

It's sad that such a huge potential POC gaming icon so frequently gets whitewashed or his skin color hand waved away (by calling it a tan or whatever)
 

Seganomics

Member
Oct 29, 2017
989
If the Steve avatar with the darker skin tone is the default in Minecraft then I don't see how anyone can deny he has been whitewashed.
He doesn't appear like that in almost any other form of merchandising or even in the 'story mode' game.
 
Oct 25, 2017
2,452
Yeah I definitely agree on the whitewashing, and I'm glad you followed up. Whitewashing isn't just changing a PoC to a white person, it is lightening the skin due to some weird standard of beauty. It's messed up and, in this example, blatant. I can see now that we do have the same thoughts on the subject, I just wish I had known that from your earlier post. I'm sorry if I came in a little hard. This is just really bothering me right now.
No harm no foul. I realize my original post wasn't the best or most thought out for this topic anyway.
 
Oct 27, 2017
822
Oh definitely. I couldn’t tell you the last time I saw a piece of Minecraft merch (toys, shirts, etc) where it had anything but a Caucasian Steve or Alex

That’s why I was always shocked that the characters from MC Story Mode never got any merch. You had all walks of life represented IIRC. Hell, even the main character Jesse/Jessie could have different variants based on race and gender.
 

May

The Fallen
Verified
Oct 25, 2017
566
Would Notch the piece of shit actually put a black character in his games?

Food for thought. Probably just a really tan white dude
 

Boy Wander

Member
Oct 29, 2017
2,113
UK
I honestly thought he was white. My son has a few lego sets and he's definitely got a pink rather than tan face in those.
 
OP
OP
Gundam

Gundam

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,733
Would Notch the piece of shit actually put a black character in his games?

Food for thought. Probably just a really tan white dude
Again, there was a time early on in Minecraft's development where it seemed that Notch was pretty progressive. But you're ignoring the factual point. He's white-washed in all of his merch.
 

KamenSenshi

Member
Nov 27, 2017
145
As much that's why I wish they would have kept Vanessa with her original skin tone, the Minecraft thing feels even worse in some ways since what's the point in changing Steve from what he was if what people are saying is true users generally just uploaded skin anyway. Why even bother changing his tone, it doesn't matter right, so leave him brown.
 

Manny Toons

Member
Oct 26, 2017
357
I feel that too many posts are overlooking or ignoring what whitewashing actually is.

It's not only about changing the race of a character, but changing their skin tone to something lighter to appeal to a shitty (and racist) beauty standard.

Stop with these "he's just tanned" and "he doesn't have a race" comments. Damn.
 

Daffy Duck

Banned
Oct 25, 2017
7,306
I'm really not sure what posts like these are trying to do. I have never played any minecraft game and yet just by actually reading the topic I can plainly see that the character had a brown tone that was made lighter in merchandise. So what if you never saw him as a PoC? Unless you're blind, you should be able to see that the merchandise made of him has had lighter skin compared to his official darker skin coloring. Just admit that, it's not that hard.
Lol, what I’m trying to do is say that I have never seen him as a poc, I’ve always seen him as white...is it that hard to understand?
 

CapNBritain

Member
Oct 26, 2017
89
California
Lol, what I’m trying to do is say that I have never seen him as a poc, I’ve always seen him as white...is it that hard to understand?
Sure, but what about the whitewashing of the character? You know, the actual meat of this topic? And remember, whitewashing here means deliberately lightening his skin, which is clearly shown. Not mentioning this at all in such a sensitive topic is offputting.
 

electricblue

Member
Oct 27, 2017
522
I feel that too many posts are overlooking or ignoring what whitewashing actually is.

It's not only about changing the race of a character, but changing their skin tone to something lighter to appeal to a shitty (and racist) beauty standard.

Stop with these "he's just tanned" and "he doesn't have a race" comments. Damn.
I'll buy that Lego changed Steve's color to make him more appealing to white suburbanites i'll not defend them, but that feels like a totally different ballgame than the Vanessa in Virtua Fighter thing.
 

FloBoJo

Member
Nov 5, 2017
12
Maybe the No's are going off the thread title and not the poll question? Voted Yes myself.

/honest question and not "bothsides"-ing here
 

Daffy Duck

Banned
Oct 25, 2017
7,306
Sure, but what about the whitewashing of the character? You know, the actual meat of this topic? And remember, whitewashing here means deliberately lightening his skin, which is clearly shown. Not mentioning this at all in such a sensitive topic is offputting.
Well I guess you can’t argue with the fact he’s been made whiter, but can you whitewash a white person?
 

OmegaSmash

The Fallen
Oct 28, 2017
1,091
User Banned (3 Days): Dismissive Drive-By Posting
go outside for once PLEASE i'm BEGGING YOU to breath fresh air
 

CapNBritain

Member
Oct 26, 2017
89
California
Well I guess you can’t argue with the fact he’s been made whiter, but can you whitewash a white person?
Definitely. Plus, it's not like he's for sure a tanned/dirty white guy. That's just what you always thought. I'm not sure how given the images in this topic, but you a lot of people feel the same way. I wonder if this is the default white effect in practice.

But yes, lightening someone's skin is pretty much whitewashing. It's basically saying that lighter skin is more marketable, or desirable, or beautiful, and thus, darker skin is not. And it sucks. But something is clearly going here given the evidence provided. And that Vanessa image is just infuriating.

Also, yes, that Catboy pic is clearly someone with darker skin. It doesn't matter if he's white or not. He has browner skin, and I'm sure Gravy Boat does as well. Intentionally lightening that skin up is fucked up.

Stop coming into this topic to argue the semantics of whether a fictional character is actually a PoC. Address the actual problem with lightening of skin directly, because anything else is just distracting, unhelpful noise.
 

Torpedo Vegas

Member
Oct 27, 2017
7,929
Lexington, KY
I don't know if it was done purposefully or not, but Steve has always to me been in an area where he's a shade that could be read as multiple ethnicities. He could be light skinned black, or hispanic, or tanned white and his lack of detail and facial features make it hard to determine where he falls in at. That being said they are definitely making him whiter in all their products and should stop.
 

jorgejjvr

Member
Oct 31, 2017
4,224
I don't play minecraft

And as an outsider, I thought Steve was the lighter version all along, while the darker was an alternate skin
 
OP
OP
Gundam

Gundam

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,733
Was Notch quite liberal progressive before he became a billionaire, did money change him?
Outside of the whole being rich thing, I seem to recall he had a rough period right around when Minecraft 1.0 officially launched. I think a family member died, and he became divorced. A cynical techbro with a large twitter presence usually ends up poorly.
 

sunnpeace

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
801
Well I guess you can’t argue with the fact he’s been made whiter, but can you whitewash a white person?
Whitewashing happens to any race. 'Fairness' creams are frequently sold in South/east Asian countries as a skin lightener.



Colorism is a pretty common occurrence and isn't always related to race, though racism reinforces it.
 

Komo

Member
Jan 3, 2019
2,922
Outside of the whole being rich thing, I seem to recall he had a rough period right around when Minecraft 1.0 officially launched. I think a family member died, and he became divorced. A cynical techbro with a large twitter presence usually ends up poorly.
Not to mention he legitimately doesn't have friends and after the buyout it made him insanely depressed and all he had was social media. Which really fucked him up for the worst.
 

plagiarize

To its ports I have been
Moderator
Oct 25, 2017
8,224
Cape Cod, MA
Definitely. Plus, it's not like he's for sure a tanned/dirty white guy. That's just what you always thought. I'm not sure how given the images in this topic, but you a lot of people feel the same way. I wonder if this is the default white effect in practice.

But yes, lightening someone's skin is pretty much whitewashing. It's basically saying that lighter skin is more marketable, or desirable, or beautiful, and thus, darker skin is not. And it sucks. But something is clearly going here given the evidence provided. And that Vanessa image is just infuriating.

Also, yes, that Catboy pic is clearly someone with darker skin. It doesn't matter if he's white or not. He has browner skin, and I'm sure Gravy Boat does as well. Intentionally lightening that skin up is fucked up.

Stop coming into this topic to argue the semantics of whether a fictional character is actually a PoC. Address the actual problem with lightening of skin directly, because anything else is just distracting, unhelpful noise.
^ All of this.