You might have heard about Gamergate. Its been in the news quite a bit lately, getting a lot of coverage from the mainstream media. But, those articles overlook the history of the term, which actually traces back to 1983, and was used in literature in 1984.
The term “gamergate” didn’t begin with Adam Baldwin’s Tweet about Quinnspiracy two months ago. The term didn’t begin two years ago concerning Rhode Island and 38 Studios either. Actually the term is a scientific term having to do with ants. Yes, ants.
In 1983 geneticist William L. Brown coined the term, and first appeared in scientific literature used by entomologists. The term actual means:
mated, egg-laying worker
The term is derived from the Greek words γάμος (gámos) and ἐργάτης (ergátēs) and means “married worker.” Say what?
Yes, gamergate is a term having to do with female worker ants that are reproductively viable. When an ant colony lacks a queen, what’s a colony to do? Well, this. A gamergate is a female ant that helps as a reproducer for their colony.
It’s about specific types of colonies of ants, some of which are actually queenless. Instead one worker, or a group of them, have active ovaries. Yup, for the colony to survive, the ant colony must rely upon the female ants.
This gamergate also has controversy attached to it. Some feel that the term “worker” should be applied to only ants that are part of the non-reproductive caste, while “queen” should be applied to all reproductively viable female ants.
It’s actually pretty fascinating stuff, and you can learn more here or the many scientific papers on the subject.
What does this have to do with this site? Absolutely nothing, I just learned all this last night, and found it a pretty fascinating look at a matriarchal society.