Why to Stop Using the Fake Geek Girl Meme


by Haylee Fisher (@haylee_fisher)

I went to see a movie with a friend a couple of weeks ago (Warm Bodies – I recommend it!) and in the car, she brought up the “Fake Geek Girl” meme. She had only recently heard of it and was furious about it. To give you a little background, she and I both consider ourselves nerds. She is more of a gamer and comic nerd and I’m more of a TV and movie nerd. Together, we would make one heck of a trivia team. And you know what? It’s OKAY to be a nerd about different things and to have passions different than what the general population thinks you should.

This is why the “Fake Geek Girl” meme continues to be a thing – because people think that just because you’re a girl, that you don’t know anything about the subject you are talking about. And it’s not just trolls on the Internet. Comic book writers like Dirk Manning and Tony Harris have posted controversial statements online, both essentially saying girls can’t be geeks and any who say they are just do it for male attention.


News flash! Not everything a woman does is for male attention. Women can genuinely enjoy geeky things. There is no need to get territorial about said geeky things. Instead of pre-judging her, strike up a conversation with her. I bet you’ll be surprised how much she legitimately knows about a particular geeky topic.

Even if she’s not an expert in the field, maybe she’s new to the fandom and just learning the ins and outs. Don’t quiz her as if her life depended on it; instead, welcome her to the fandom and help her to learn more. Recommend other things you think she might like as well.

Because who are you to say if someone really is a fan of something or not? That’s what’s great about The Nerd Machine community – everyone seems to accept a person for who they are and for what they are passionate about. In fact, site co-founder Zachary Levi tweeted his definition of a nerd as being, “One whose unbridled passion for something, or things defines who they are as a person, without fear of other people’s judgment.” Let’s follow his lead and help the “Fake Geek Girl” meme die once and for all.


  1. EricaFebruary 27th, 2013 at 11:42 am

    I find it both humorous and sad that, as women, while fighting for equal pay, equal health care, justice for domestic violence, and innumerable other issues of gender equality, we ALSO have to fight to deserve the label of “Nerd”. Gender bias in nerdiness is going to be on my mind from now on, thankyouverymuch. As if I didn’t have enough to worry about . . .

  2. RixieFebruary 27th, 2013 at 11:49 am

    Well said. It is funny to me that no one would question my husband about his geek cred, but they expect me to prove myself. I’m the one who won him over to the dork side! It makes me flashback to high school when guys would challenge my math skills based nothing but my gender. Ridiculous and a waste of time.

  3. MichelleFebruary 27th, 2013 at 12:19 pm

    Yeah, everyone is a NERD. Whether it be a book, hunting, sports, comic, voice over, etc, etc. Again, everyone is a NERD! 🙂

    The only problems I have with guys is when I’m playing Call of Duty. Though I did meet my husband through that game, I do get shocked responses and sometimes get harassed because I’m a girl. I can usually ignore it, but sometimes it gets a wee bit annoying. I just wanna get some head shots and call in my air strike. Is that too much to ask for? 😛 🙂

  4. Lucas CorbinFebruary 27th, 2013 at 1:02 pm

    Its not only fake girls, its guys too and that is what a lot of these Hipsters are kinda like. They find old 80’s stuff like Transformers and wear it’s Tshirt…. Trying to be nerdy or geeky to be cool. I HATE THAT! I blame the popularity of “The Big Bang Theory”!

  5. Mattie KornetaFebruary 27th, 2013 at 4:18 pm

    This a thousand times! I cannot stand when people doubt me and my nerdiness because I’m a girl. The line from Chuck, “I’m a much bigger nerd than you thought i was,” is very poignant here. And I have to agree that everyone is a nerd in some way, whether they admit it or not. Gender bias in general is just so annoying, and constantly having to prove that you’re a geek or a nerd because that doesn’t fit someone else’s idea of what a geek or a nerd is, is ridiculous.

  6. KiaraphoenixFebruary 27th, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    As a fellow Nerd/Geek Girl I Approve this message!!!!!!!!!! Thank you!

  7. MarcusFebruary 28th, 2013 at 12:37 am

    I dont think I am sexist, but I am always pleasantly surprised to find nerd girls. I see where they are coming from. I am still pretty new to Doctor Who, and if I had been confronted by a dick fan who quizzed me on all things who I would have failed and probably would have stopped watching. I know there are plenty of women who put my knowledge to shame and is always nice to talk to them. I think some of this stems from seeing some female celebs use geek culture to get ahead and then say abandon it. Either way I have 2 nieces that are going to grow up in geek culture thanks to me, and I have a sister who is pretty good at games thanks to me. So to these guys who are assholes to these women, just remember they are somebodies daughter, sister, and/or niece, and it was a father, brother, mother, sister, aunt or uncle who introduced them to geek culture and you should respect that.

  8. NerditaMarch 2nd, 2013 at 11:53 pm

    What drives me crazy is when you’re talking to a male geek who does acknowledge you as a female geek, and yet he adopts a condescending tone and decides to “educate” you by saying totally banal and obvious things as if they will be a geek revelation to you. Case in point, I had a guy tell me “Superman is an archtype of Jesus and Moses” and I smiled and nodded when I should have gone all Liz Lemon on him and rolled my eyes into the upper atmosphere. But I think the only way to fight this fight and change this trend is to be all-inclusive towards anyone who considers themselves a geek or a nerd, and also to geek out as enthusiastically and irresistably as possible when in the presence of the opposite gender. We geek girls often hide our geek away in mixed company for a mirad of reasons, and it is only through letting that nerd flag fly that male geeks will see the genuiness of our geekdom. It is then that they will stop testing and start a dialogue. And there is hope. I advise a high school Sci Fi and Fantasy club and have for 4 years. I did some specific female recruiting the first year I advised it, and since then not only has our girl population within the club grown to 40%, last year the club had it’s first ever female president. Let geekdom ring.

  9. Erik MoffettJune 27th, 2013 at 12:13 pm

    I don’t know…I mean I feel like a nerd hipster because I have always been a nerd since before the Atari days of my childhood. So I obviously know how it sounds but I was a nerd before it was cool. The thing that does bother me about the new-found popularity of nerddom is that you have those people that jump from fad to fad trying to fit in getting into it, but only at a superficial level. I guess my issue with the trend is that it feels almost like a mockery of the things I have loved my entire life.
    I don’t have any problem including the different types of nerds. That has never been an issue for me. My problem is people changing themselves into nerds because it is the cool thing to do. It will never be cool to act like something you are not.

  10. Erik MoffettJune 27th, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    also, I do want to point out I am against us becoming elitists or isolationists. I love that more people are becoming nerds now more than ever. It does seem like people using this meme to push that elitist point of view though. Just because you don’t play video games doesn’t mean you can’t be a nerd in another aspect of your life. I know plenty of math nerds. They don’t play games, read comics, or watch anime…still very much nerds.

  11. geeks of warJuly 28th, 2013 at 3:07 am

    First of all the title geek is something you earn, its true you can be a geek in anything but you need to know almost everything about that subject.

    I know more girl geeks than i do men, A (fake geek girl) is not aimed at real geek girl’s, It is aimed at girl’s who dress & act like geeks thinking its a style when they are really dont know anything real geeks know.

    Being a geek is not about how you look it is about what you know!

    A.K.A. FAKE GEEK GIRL!!!!.

  12. SimbachandAugust 5th, 2013 at 3:45 pm

    nice articles i have been raging about the that meme since the first time i saw it it’s nice to see that other peaple are determine to destroy that meme once and for all

  13. ChristinaJune 2nd, 2014 at 5:59 pm

    Great article, just what I needed.

  14. AidenDecember 19th, 2015 at 5:39 am

    If this was a picture of a guy you wouldn’t be saying this… Like really, does the picture matter at all? Barely any of the memes actually MENTION the fact that she’s a girl. You could use a picture of a dude and the meme’s meaning would be the same. Damn feminists don’t know what a joke is. What’s next? Good guy Greg turns into Good Person (Insert gender neutral name here). Really, you people need to stop

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