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A Deeper Look At Income Differences Between Men And Woman In Game Audio

Interesting results from this year’s Game Audio Survey!

The 2016 Game Audio Survey (the annual survey that tracks compensation for the video game music and sound industry), has shown a significant discrepancy in salaries between male and female game composers and sound designers. The average male income was reported as being consistently higher than the average female income. This year, a greater percentage of women reported income from game audio: 10.4% of all respondents are female, compared to the 7% in 2015, and 3.5% in 2014. The results however suggested a gender based discrepancy in incomes and salary, with women earning less than men in game audio.

“We believe the results of the analysis of compensation rates of men and women in game audio warranted a deeper analysis and discussion. The longer you work in the gaming industry the more likely your income will also increase.”  – Brian Schmidt, Executive Director of GameSoundCon.

Schmidt wanted to see if the difference was a factor of gender, or was a byproduct of another factor such as years experience in the game industry, which can have a significant correlation with salary and income. Dr. Mary Siegrist PhD was hired to analyse what amount of the difference in income, if any, was attributable to gender and what might be due to other issues such as education or number of years experience in game audio. But even after accounting for the lower average number of years of experience in the game audio industry, the analysis showed that women reported less total income than men.

“There is sufficient evidence to determine that gender has a correlation with total income earned. Females earn less than males regardless of the length of time working in the games industry. The cost of being female is 2.15 years of experience, i.e. women need that many more years in the industry to make up the difference in pay. However, females never do catch up to males.” – Dr. Mary Siegrist PhD

These findings will likely be a hot topic of discussions at this years GameSoundCon, which takes place on September 27-28 in Los Angeles, California.

To register for the conference, visit gamesoundcon.com

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Callum Tennick
Callum is the co-founder of the sound effects collection company, noisecreations. Lover of film and games. Edits The Sound Architect podcast.

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