Japanese all-girls e-sports teams apologizes to fans after learning one of its members is a man
Team enjoys a variety of games, but is strictly a single-sex organization.
Back in October, Japanese Call of Duty clan Whip decided to branch out. Dropping its exclusive focus on Activision’s first-person shooter franchise, Whip reinvented itself as a “multi-gaming team,” playing and uploading videos of series including Fortnite,, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, and Overwatch. On the Japanese side of things, they also play titles from Final Fantasy and Monster Hunter.
However, while Whip adopted a more relaxed policy regarding what it plays, it’s stuck by its guns regarding who can play for the team, as membership is open to girls only. At least, that was the intention, but just like a well-crafted raid plan or deathmatch strategy can come apart at the seams, Whip’s screening process proved to be less than perfect.
Last Tuesday, Whip’s leader, who goes by the handle Peroru, issued a statement through the organization’s official Twitter account, saying:
“We recently made the discovery that one of our members was a man. This person is no longer a member, but even though all of our current members were unaware of his being a man, we feel deeply apologetic towards everyone who has been cheering for us.
Moving forward, we aim to provide even more of the excitement you all expect from us as a girls gaming team.
We sincerely hope that we can continue to have your support.”
▼ The apology tweet
It’s not clear how the man managed to conceal his gender from the 14 current members listed on Whip’s website, nor how his ruse was eventually seen through. With the team’s focus on online games, the members don’t necessarily have to meet face-to-face in order to collaborate, and few of their videos feature the members on-camera. However, most of the videos do include voice-overs by at least one member, and sometimes two, which has led some fans to speculate that the man somehow used a voice altering program to better pass himself off as a woman.
▼ A PUBG video from Whip’s YouTube channel
On its official site, Whip lists its team motto as “Enjoy games.” Whether they feel allowing male members negatively affects their ability to do so, or simply find it easier to market themselves by being made up of only women, is something the site doesn’t explain, but the incident is yet more proof that sometimes people’s true identities don’t match up with the persona they’re projecting online.
Follow Casey on Twitter, where he can’t help but wonder if the problem was caused by the misplaced apostrophe in Whip’s description of itself as a ‘girl’s gaming team’ leading the man to think that as long as there was one woman present, it was OK for him to join.