New Game Lets Men Buy "Geishas?"
[GameCrush is] an entirely new interactive social gaming experience allowing gamers to meet, match and pay to play online games with other users (PlayDates). GameCrush is the only online service that allows gamers to choose a companion to spice up their favorite online games. Both Players and PlayDates define the experience they want- either “flirty” or “dirty”, choosing from some of the most popular console titles and casual web-based games.
On GameCrush, players can find their perfect PlayDate through browsing their profiles and chatting live with them. Players can then purchase a live one-on-one private gaming session, complete with two-way video and text chat.
OK, skipping over the "flirty or dirty" part -- I mean, how many of us ignore red flags at the outset? -- it seems kind of genius: meet and get specifically match-made, with someone with similar interests, while doing exactly the thing that in some cases, um, keeps you from getting matchmade! But, as Postbourgie.com notes, it's not quite that innocent: "On GameCrush the Players are male and the PlayDates are female. There are about 1200 profiles registered thus far of women recruited using (you guessed it!) a Craigslist ad. They’re also paid. Each PlayDate keeps 60% of the cash she earns. Players can also rate their PlayDates:
After a session you can rate your PlayDate on her hotness, gaming skill, and flirtiness. The highest-rated girls will receive preferred placement on the site. GameCrush is assembling a team of its most highly regarded PlayDates called JaneCrush, which would be positioned similar to Ubisoft’s Fragdolls in that members of JaneCrush will generate content for the site like blogs and editorials.
Hooookay. now it's starting to sound a bit more like GameGeisha. Postbourgie continues: "It seems like it has the potential to walk the line between being a relatively innocuous social service to something a bit more…distasteful...For the most part the PlayDates are just girls who want to play and get paid and guys who want to flirt with an attractive girl while enjoying a game. And as my blogmate R.A.B pointed out, if this had existed 10 years ago he would have been a much more happy and well-adjusted adolescent, so the benefits may outweigh the possible pitfalls. Even so, I can’t help but wonder when Rule 31 and Rule 34 are going to kick in and it all devolves into 'Show me ur b00bs! </fap fap fap>'. Is everything all good or am I just being hypervigilant and seeing possibilities for sexism and general ickyness where there are none?"
Echoing one of Postbourgie's commenters, I'd say, option C: Seeing possibilities for sexism and general ickyness...right where they are.