Ms. Monopoly Aims to Bring Female Empowerment to Game Night But Some People Aren't Amused

Hasbro is focusing on female empowerment with its new spin on the classic board game Monopoly. The toymaker announced Ms. Monopoly on Tuesday, introducing the world to the new Monopoly mascot, Mr. Monopoly's "self-made investment guru" niece.

Not Everyone is Amused With Ms. Monopoly
Hasbro launches Ms. Monopoly boardgame on September 10, 2019. The game is aimed at highlighting female trailblazers and sparking women empowerment, however, not everyone is thrilled with the ideology behind the game. Courtesy of Hasbro

The new version of the game aims to highlight female trailblazers with properties and invention investments inspired by women like bulletproof vests, chocolate chips cookies and women's shapewear. Ms. Monopoly is also geared at unmasking gender pay disparities by allowing "women to make more than men," said a company statement, according to USA Today.

Now female players will receive $1,900 in Monopoly money at the very start of the game while male players only receive $1,500. The gender-based increases continue as players pass "Go." Whereas everyone collects $200 in Monopoly money in the classic board game, with Ms. Monopoly, women players receive $240 every time they pass "Go" while men get $200.

Considering all the attention surrounding female empowerment, Jen Boswinkel, senior director of global brand strategy and marketing for Hasbro Gaming, told USA Today Monopoly updates were merely a means to bring a fresh take to the debate surrounding pay inequality and give women the chance to "get an advantage at the start" during a night of board game fun.

Not everyone was amused by Hasbro's newest debut, though.

A number of people thought the game's attempts to address unequal pay fell flat, especially since the new rules disproportionately put women ahead of men instead of having players start the game on the same level field.

Others said the game still failed to recognize its capitalistic history in regards Elizabeth Magie, the progressive woman of the early 1900s who invented the game.

"Parker Bros: Rejects Elizabeth Magie's pitch for The Landlords Game in 1909. Buys her patent decades later for $500 so they can bury it in favor of a similar game 'invented' by a man, which praised capitalism instead of critiquing it. What a woman-friendly legacy, Ms. Monoply!" one user wrote on Twitter on Tuesday.

Magie created the Landlord Game in 1903 in effort to bring awareness to the greed of major monopolists like John D. Rockefeller and Andrew Carnegie. The game functioned under two sets of rules: The first allowed all players to be rewarded when wealth was generated, while the second set of rules let players build up their own monopolies with the sole intention to beat opponents. The game as a whole was not only aimed at teaching the importance of economic growth as a whole but also to show players wealth was worth more when it was spread across the community rather than only one individual claiming the bulk of it.

Magie filed a legal claim for the Landlord's Game, but more than 30 years later a man Charles Darrow sold his rendition of her game—which he dubbed Monopoly—to Parker Brothers, a New England board game maker who handed it over to Hasbro in 1991. While Darrow and Parker Brothers made millions for the game, Magie reportedly only gained $500 for the game which Monopoly was appropriated.

See a few more reactions to Ms. Monopoly below.

Ms. Monopoly Aims to Bring Female Empowerment to Game Night But Some People Aren't Amused | Culture