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Programming Python Social Networks

Will Donglegate Affect Your Decision To Attend PyCon? 759

Posted by timothy
from the channel-the-monkey-with-the-covered-mouth dept.
theodp writes "Its Code of Conduct describes PyCon as 'a welcoming, friendly event for all.' But will the post-conference fallout from this year's 'Donglegate' debacle and proposed remedies affect your decision — one way or the other — to attend next year's PyCon in ironically naughty Montreal? And even if not, could 'Donglegate' influence the-powers-that-be whose approval you'll need to attend? How about conference sponsors?"
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Will Donglegate Affect Your Decision To Attend PyCon?

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  • What the hell (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:30AM (#43256583)

    is Donglegate?

  • by Pikoro (844299) <init AT init DOT sh> on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:31AM (#43256587) Homepage Journal

    Will you idiots stop with this "topic-gate" crap already? A feminist didn't like the jokes that a couple of guys were making. They got fired. Then she got fired for rocking the boar. Case closed.

  • Put simply; yes (Score:4, Insightful)

    by bazmail (764941) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:35AM (#43256609)
    It will also put me off talking freely and in an unguarded manner in front of female attendees at any conference. Who knows which one will want to be the next twitterverse celeb getting notoriety by making a big thing out of nothing. That victimhood addict who reported those 2 guys for "inappropriate" comments went on to make very inappropriate comments herself about those guys (search for her TSA socks stuffing comments).

    She is a hypocrite troublemaker who is creating divisions in the dev community along gender lines for no good reason only her own need to validate herself out of victimhood. Next time a woman mentions at work how far along she in in her pregnancy, can she be reported for inappropriate comments?Because this is where this is all going.
  • by Baron_Yam (643147) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:37AM (#43256627)

    Pycon put out a statement that it was regrettable somebody was oversensitive and overreacted to something mildly offensive.

    That under these particular circumstances it might have been best if the offended party had expressed the fact that she was offended directly to those offending her (as they were not the least bit threatening) or perhaps escalated it to Pycon security.

    That Adria Richards was banned from all future events for violating Pycon privacy policies and making a hostile environment for all attendees, and the developers banned for a year for their part.

    Imagine a world where Pycon did that, and stated that there would be no changes in policy as a result of the 'donglegate' effect, because no Pycon policy was an issue in the events as they unfolded.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:40AM (#43256651)

    "Rocking the boar" sounds more interesting than any other part of this story.

  • by Improv (2467) <pgunn@dachte.org> on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:43AM (#43256669) Homepage Journal

    Calling someone something they don't like, to their face and particularly with malicious intent, might be inappropriate but it is not harassment per se. Doing so after being asked to stop (refusing to stop if there is no malicious intent does not constitute malice) probably is harassment.

    A joke that somebody doesn't like, particularly if it's not told *to* them, shouldn't be considered harassment and we should be wary of attempts to ban salty jokes.

  • Re:Put simply; yes (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Baron_Yam (643147) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:43AM (#43256673)

    If you try to strike this woman down, every woman with a militant feminist agenda will stand up and scream 'patriarchy!'.

    The best you can hope for is that ignoring her leads to the problem going away - because keeping her in the limelight is almost certainly going to result in people creating policies to 'protect' everyone, and the reasonable voices will be drowned out, partially because they don't make as good news copy and partially because the reasonable people generally have something other than 'advocacy' to engage in, and are busy with it.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Cenan (1892902) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:44AM (#43256681)

    My thoughts too. What the fuck is submitter talking about? And more importantly, why should I care? This sounds like the local news, blowing some turned over trafic sign way out of proportion cause they have 30 mins on prime time to fill and 1 story to run. And like posted below, stop the goddamn *gate shit already, it was appropriate exactly once in history.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:47AM (#43256695)

    No. She got fired because of employee misconduct. She tried to make this poor family man feel ashamed about having a penis. She literally took food off the table of 3 children. All because she faux outraged that "dongle" sounds like "dong" and "fork" sounds like "fuck".

    I'm so fucking glad she got fired. I hope she gets fired from life. People and their fake outrage can die in a fire, or a Walmart trampling.

  • by Zapotek (1032314) <tasos.laskos@nosPAm.gmail.com> on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:48AM (#43256711) Homepage
    I don't know, I found the title funny -- which was probably the editor's intention in the first place. And she wasn't a feminist, that word has a real meaning that I'd rather we didn't dilute; she was a prissy, attention whoring, holier-than-thou, PC bitch.

    And to answer the article's question: If I were a Python dev, I wouldn't attend. That would send a more clear message to everyone involved that those situations are ridiculous than a bunch of posts on random message boards.
  • by erroneus (253617) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:52AM (#43256753) Homepage

    It's a significant and relevant story.

    We know about race hustlers... people who like to twist any situation into a racist (against blacks) for their fame and profit. It's old news.

    But we don't hear much about the more quiet problem... especially in the work place. The one quite a few of us in this demographic have suffered.

    There are women out there who are equally prepared to play the sexism-card when it serves their interests. In this case, this woman is a pretty good example. People have been digging up her internet content everywhere exposing what she is and does. On one hand she has a clear history of sex related things. If she was so offended by sex related things, she has a weird way of showing it. So it wasn't the sex related things that bothered her. I have little doubt that she was harmed or offended by what she thought she heard.

    She may have been annoyed by the cut-ups going on behind her. That's understandable. But instead of addressing the real problem, she made up a worse one. She created this drama. She got what she expected... at first. But then the community unexpectedly returned fire. Her employer couldn't afford to have her any longer. B'Bye bitch.

    This is the unspoken reason there may be reservations about women in the workplace and especially in the tech fields. We're a BUNCH of immature geeks who care less about social crap and more about technical crap. When women enter the room, we're immediately terrified that our haven is being changed leaving us nowhere to go. The unspoken fear is that we know what women can and will bring. She is a perfect example of it. Once again, her self-documented history of sexy-flirty crap spins around in an instant to "I'm offended by this double entendre!!" And of course, everyone who seeks not to be branded "a part of the problem" is forced into doing whatever pleases her.

    Nice play. For once it didn't work out quite as she expected. I wonder what she will advocate next? This geek crowd she offended? They are anonymous. They don't forget. They don't forgive. And she represents every woman in the workplace who has ever played that game. And I sincerely hope her hell will give other women cause to give a second thought about playing the sexism card like this.

  • Re:Put simply; yes (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bazmail (764941) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:54AM (#43256761)
    I'm not trying to "strike her down" and make her into some feminist Obi Wan. I'm simply learning how the game works nowadays. If I'm hanging out with some of my colleagues during conference breaks and chatting, and a female attendee walks in, my job and my 2 kids college fund/food supply/roof depends on me immediately maintaining a silence and uttering "Yes m'am" or "No ma'm" if and when appropriate, and that is all. There will be no conversation, exchanging views on squat, smiling etc. Its just gotten too dangerous to talk freely now.
  • by beanyk (230597) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:56AM (#43256783)

    She literally took food off the table of 3 children.

    Le sigh.

  • Re:Put simply; yes (Score:4, Insightful)

    by BLKMGK (34057) <morejunk4me&hotmail,com> on Saturday March 23, 2013 @09:59AM (#43256799) Homepage Journal

    THIS. I don't attend this conference but if I did I certainly wouldn't next year for fear that it would be invaded by others looking to make a splash just as she did. In fact the conferences that I DO attend are going to feel more hostile and I'm not sure I like that either. I'm not in the habit of making off color jokes generally but worrying that someone for whatever reason is going to decide to make an issue out of something and post pictures all over the place for their moment in the sun just sux. This woman was a drama queen but her erratic behavior is going to now have to be taken into account at other conferences too. If this woman thought she was advancing things she was sorely mistaken - she's done just the opposite. I wonder - would this have gotten nearly the attention had the gender roles been reversed? Had she commented on their small penis size, lack of stature, looks, affinity for anal sex with other men, whatever, would this have made so much as a blip? Would they have simply laughed it off or ignored her? How about had she been saying this quietly to another woman next to her? No one would be supportive of them taking such actions against her, no one would be screaming for ribbons.... Actually I think that guy's idea for ribbons is awesome and that every conference should do it. That way I'll know who to stay away from and just maybe by lack of uptake they would get a clue as to what folks thought of this commotion.

    I hope like hell that anyone Googling for her former company or her name name comes across this incident and takes it into account before making any decisions. I hope that anyone considering going to work for the company that fired the conference attendee comes across this as well!

  • by Ironhandx (1762146) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:01AM (#43256821)

    "One of these men lost his job as a result of this incident, and we are seeing numerous people blame Adria for that. This is a clear example of a culture we live in, where it is more appropriate to blame the victim than to blame any other offenders."

    What the everliving fuck?

    She wasn't a "victim" of anything. These guys didn't rape her. They didn't assault her. They didn't slander her, they didn't harass her they didn't DO anything to her. They told a joke meant for each other and happened to be within earshot of her. That was the reason she got fired. She's claiming to be some sort of victim and framing all women as victims of "this sort of behavior" and its just bullshit. You do not have a right to not be offended. As long as that person isn't directly talking about you, thats where your rights end.

    Now if they had said "I bet this chick in front of us here would love it if the presenters had bigger dongles" or something of that nature, she'd have a bit of a case here as that could very easily be considered harassment.

  • by FuzzNugget (2840687) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:03AM (#43256837)

    And she wasn't a feminist

    The term you're looking for is "feminazi"

  • Re:Put simply; yes (Score:1, Insightful)

    by bobbutts (927504) <bobbutts@gmail.com> on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:04AM (#43256847)
    How about just make your "free" conversation in public devoid of constant dick jokes? You can't expect to bring the same humor you use when chatting with your [2013 Everquest equivalent] clan from Mom's basement to the public without some kind of debacle.
  • Chilling effect (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ilsaloving (1534307) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:07AM (#43256863)

    is put a chilling effect on developer conferences in general, and put pressure on conference staff to create policies that shouldn't even be necessary.

    Talk freely and openly? Not anymore. Oh no! Someone said compile and link in the same sentence! I'm offended! As a female myself, now I have to worry that if I walk up to another developer, their first thought will be, "Oh shit, it's a woman. Gotta scoot!"

    Do you have a smart phone? Sorry, you're not allowed to use it anymore because you might be taking photos of other people to post on your twitfaceplus feed in order to disrupt their lives.

    This whole thing is a big pile of idiocy, and mindbogglingly poorly handled on ALL sides.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:07AM (#43256865)

    kill yourself

  • Re:Donglegate? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nametaken (610866) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:10AM (#43256897)

    Someone is trying desperately to make this into something bigger than it is.

    Absolutely this. Those guys told a tame (even boring) joke in the wrong place, she immediately went nutso-nuclear. One of the guys lost his job and so did she.

    Case closed.

    Aside from those two, there's no good reason anyone should avoid PyCon, and we all know it. If you can act like a normal adult, it's unlikely you'll have any problems with anyone.

  • Re:Put simply; yes (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Concerned Onlooker (473481) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:10AM (#43256905) Homepage Journal

    "It will also put me off talking freely and in an unguarded manner in front of female attendees at any conference."

    Oh, please. There is nothing quite so pathetic as the lament of someone in the privileged class. This particular story may involve a woman who gamed the system, but if you think women aren't generally discriminated against and made to feel uncomfortable with sexual innuendo then you are not paying attention.

  • by broward (416376) <browardhorne&gmail,com> on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:13AM (#43256925) Homepage

    I predict a resurgence in traditional men's clubs.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by kd4zqe (587495) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:13AM (#43256929)
    Basically, this feminist can't take a joke... Her tweet [arstechnica.net]

    She gets the guy fired, and gets fired herself for her troubles.

    Nobody wins, because feminism is in of itself, sexism at it's finest. Poor pitiful females that can't defend themselves. Bullshit. They have carved themselves a niche in popular culture that they are untouchable, and because of that they have adopted and invincible attitude, until they feel they have been somehow wronged, and then they turn on the tear-jerking water works about how defenseless they are. Comedian Bill Burr has it right... [youtube.com]

    People need to learn how to take a joke. HR departments need to be wiped out, because in this age, they have long since outlived their usefulness. They had their time, but it has since passed.

    If women want equal rights, then there should be no feminists.

  • Mod Parent Up. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:14AM (#43256935)

    His post is significant and should be read through twice, as it is heartfelt (not a troll) and seems to represent a lot of thinking here.

    Although it is really sad:

    This is the unspoken reason there may be reservations about women in the workplace and especially in the tech fields. We're a BUNCH of immature geeks who care less about social crap and more about technical crap. When women enter the room, we're immediately terrified that our haven is being changed leaving us nowhere to go. The unspoken fear is that we know what women can and will bring.

    Dude, you're saying is that you are a loser with no social skills. But that that's OK because there are plenty of others just like you and you'll all engage in this bullying of women who venture into a tech field without knowing their proper place, which is to be quiet and submissive, ignore the bad behavior and don't try to advance in your career.

    This geek crowd she offended? They are anonymous. They don't forget. They don't forgive. And she represents every woman in the workplace who has ever played that game.

    That's exactly what black people had to deal with during the Jim Crow era of this country, and are still dealing with in some parts of the rural South. Be happy you haven't been chased out of here and shut up. Congratulations, you just revealed that in another place and time you would have been part of the oppressive majority.

  • Human Beings (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mlwmohawk (801821) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:14AM (#43256945)

    We are all at risk here. Even though we have freedom of speech, we run the risk of losing our livelihoods if we say something that might offend someone somewhere. Richards was being a real "bitch." I say "bitch" because it is a disparaging name for a female. Not because I wish to be sexist. If the perpetrator of this nonsense was a guy, I'd call him a real "bastard." Calling a woman a "bastard" doesn't seem to be the correct usage in the English language. If someone can come up with a disparaging name to call a female that is not sexist, please suggest one, but if it is not sexists to call a guy a bastard, I refuse to accept that there is no non-sexist name we can call a woman when we are condemning her and her actions, but I digress.

    Seriously, I've been in the situation where I have been pulled aside by management for saying something offensive, but they won't say what, to someone, but they won't say who, and that I should stop it, but they don't say how. The whole harassment mentality is very kafka-esque. The REAL hostile work environment is created by zero-tolerance crap, which, by definition, means "intolerant."

    Human beings are imperfect. "Appropriate" behavior is a myth of the modern workplace police. Human beings build relationships and we communicate. We are not robots. Humor is part of humanity, and sometimes humor is off color. There is a difference between saying, "Hey, my dongle is bigger than yours" and "Have sex with me or your fired."

    Also, lets be honest here, if ms Richard heard these jokes from her friends at that conference, she would not have complained. She should try to understand and take to heart Voltaire's quote: "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." An evangelist should stand for something besides her own notoriety. Gatherings of human beings are generally improved when we all try to be tolerant of one another.

  • Re:Put simply; yes (Score:4, Insightful)

    by K. S. Kyosuke (729550) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:18AM (#43256981)

    How about just make your "free" conversation in public devoid of constant dick jokes?

    The people in question weren't making "constant dick jokes", they made only one, and indirect at that.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Elbereth (58257) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:22AM (#43257011) Journal

    We shouldn't have to click on the links, just to understand what the summary is about.

    "Will donglegate affect your decision to attend pycon?"
    vs
    "Will the controversy over alleged sexism affect your decision to attend pycon?"

  • by Gordonjcp (186804) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:23AM (#43257023) Homepage

    Certainly not if my job can be put at risk because some attention-seeker decides to be offended by an innocent remark I make in a private conversation that they happen to overhear.

    I don't care if you're offended. There's a bunch of stuff that offends me but you don't hear me whining on about it, because I'm a grown-up and I have learned that other people think differently from me.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:23AM (#43257029)

    a nosy bitch

    lol, sexism. I thought information wanted to be free?

    Not sexism at all. She was listening to a conversation that had nothing to do with her, hence "nosy". And her reaction to it clearly proves her to indeed be a "bitch".

  • Re:Mod Parent Up. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:38AM (#43257111)

    >This is the unspoken reason there may be reservations about women in the workplace and especially in the tech fields.
    >We're a BUNCH of immature geeks who care less about social crap and more
    >about technical crap. When women enter the room, we're immediately terrified
    >that our haven is being changed leaving us nowhere to go. The unspoken fear
    >is that we know what women can and will bring.

    Dude, you're saying is that you are a loser with no social skills. But that that's OK because there are plenty of others just like you and you'll all engage in this bullying of women who venture into a tech field without knowing their proper place, which is to be quiet and submissive, ignore the bad behavior and don't try to advance in your career.

    "Loser with no social skills"? Insulting, but true.

    "But that that's OK because there are plenty of others just like you " Yup. Everyone has their niche.

    "and you'll all engage in this bullying of women" How the hell do you get from "We're a BUNCH of immature geeks who care less about social crap and more about technical crap" to "we like to bully women"???? Talk about a strawman.

    "women who venture into a tech field without knowing their proper place, which is to be quiet and submissive, ignore the bad behavior and don't try to advance in your career" No one said any of that. Strawman again.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:1, Insightful)

    by dave420 (699308) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:43AM (#43257155)
    Feminism is not sexism at its finest - it's the logical and expected reaction of rational people who despise sexism against anyone. You making massive sweeping statements about women speaks volumes about how you perceive women. You have some serious issues to deal with, and with them I wish you luck.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:44AM (#43257167)

    No. The problem is that people like you cannot distinguish between sexism and dirtbaggery. The developers were crude, not sexist. Adria was a dirtbag, not a sexist. Sexism is wrong. Being crude in a professional setting is wrong. Being a dirtbag is wrong. Killing is wrong. Stealling is wrong. Just don't pretend that these are the same thing. The backlash simply proves that you have dirtbags wherever you have people. Not new news. Sexism may exist in tech conferences, but the backlash was not an example of it. Trying to say that it is, is a perfect example of why people are so outraged: because the pendulum has swung too far, and the term "sexism" is starting to look like an absurd and meaningless term. Nice try.

  • by cmdr_tofu (826352) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:45AM (#43257173) Homepage

    To be fair the Joker may have been belligerent and annoying. I don't like it when people talk during lectures either. It makes it hard to pay attention. To make it worse they were telling off-color, extra-annoying jokes. There's nothing necessarily sexist or anti-woman about making a dongle joke, but it certainly can make women (or men) feel uncomfortable. It very well may create less friendly environment to some women. That being said, the photograph/tweet response was not terribly appropriate. Neither is she to blame for the consequent firing of photographed employees (except maybe getting herself fired)

    Her response could have been to turn around and nicely (or angrily) ask them to be quiet or leave. I don't agree with her approach to solving the problem, but I do not think it is her fault that one of the guys got fired. Perhaps he was otherwise incompetent or was always making stupid jokes that pissed everyone off? Perhaps the guys employer overreacted badly to this incident and then that is really unfortunate. In which case I guess she would share some of the blame with the employer.

    So hopefully a good python dev can get a new job. I'm not sure what a technology evangelist does, but I hope she uses better judgement at dealing with similar situations in the future. This sucks. Whenever I go to a tech conference, I get very excited and inpsired by all the good work being done by other people. I will continue to attend conferences for sure and hope they can be a welcoming place for everyone.... even n00bs.

  • Re:Human Beings (Score:4, Insightful)

    by DNS-and-BIND (461968) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:50AM (#43257193) Homepage
    Whenever feminists talk about tolerance, they are never talking about themselves.
  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by hedwards (940851) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:53AM (#43257205)

    The problem is that she handled it in an extremely immature fashion. I'm not necessarily saying that she should have let it go, but posting the pictures online without giving them a chance to explain, is rather poor form for an evangelist. And if she couldn't handle it with more grace, she should have left it alone, this kind of immature and self righteous behavior is not going to further women's rights, all it does is send the message that if you offend somebody, for any reason, you can lose your job. Not helpful. What's more, it sounds like it was just one joke about dongles and she was doing it for reasons other than being offended.

    Or at least that's how I read her blog, it's pretty clear she was trying to advocate for people that weren't in the room at the time and without being asked to do so. What's more, she could very easily have caused her employer to receive a nasty libel suit as a result of this.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by hedwards (940851) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:56AM (#43257221)

    She was fired over the way in which she handled it. As an evangelist, she is probably being held to a higher standard than other folks, but she should have known that. She could have handled it in a way that at least allowed the individuals to apologize and or explain, tweeting it without even having her facts straight, is hardly conducive to building an inclusive community.

    She also had the opportunity to just ignore it, which is what she should have done if she couldn't handle it in a mature way. Yes, it would have been less good than dealing with it, but as it stands, she's just another data point on the "why we shouldn't trust women" board.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:56AM (#43257233)

    If you speak in public, expect to be heard by others. If someone hears what you say, you have no right to force them to pretend they didn't hear it.

    Yes, I hear many things in course of the day. I don't usually tweet about them. And not once did I feel an impulse to backstab by silently taking someone's pic and then tweeting "OMG, look at this jerk!" instead of discussing why is this a jerkish behaviour with said someone.

    "Bitch" is not sexist in the same way that "nigger" is not racist.

    Stop bitching about semantics, you pedantic prick. <-- see here, both "bitch" and "prick" have sex-related etymology, but neither "bitch" nor "prick" refer to your gender in this case. Do tell me more about inherent sexism.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sosume (680416) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @10:58AM (#43257249) Journal

    If you eavesdrop on someone having a private conversation in a public setting, don't expect to hear a politically correct message. It amazes me that a "strong, independent woman" crumbles into this powerless victim once someone random makes a random comment. To name this event 'donglegate' is quite funny OTOH.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @11:03AM (#43257295)

    It is the best thing to happen to any conference. A clear message that this mysognistic brogrammer crap is unacceptable.

    Professionalism and free speech are different things, get over it.

  • by hsmith (818216) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @11:07AM (#43257329)
    In reality - she wanted it both ways. She leveraged the Internet mob (her twitter followers) on the two guys that "offended" her.

    Yet, we know the Internet mob is a fickle beast. She got the reaction she wanted - but - it also lashed back at her. They brutally attacked her.

    Which, who knows, that could have been part of the scheme all along. She knew the Internet kids would strike back with real sexism and real attacks - validating the "hatred against women" she wants to perpetuate.

    Live by the mob, die by the mob.
  • Re:Put simply; yes (Score:2, Insightful)

    by drinkypoo (153816) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Saturday March 23, 2013 @11:14AM (#43257387) Homepage Journal

    This is just some random internet drama queen trying to get attention. Ignore it and it will go away.

    This is a real problem, and it's perennial. Ignore it and two more will pop up behind it.

  • Re:DUDE! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Vanderhoth (1582661) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @11:20AM (#43257421)
    If she gave up so easily, she probably shouldn't be a programmer, we all take a lot of torment. If I gave up on programming because of every time I was called a geek or nerd when I was 8, I'd be flipping burgers.

    This situation has nothing to do with the women in the IT industry are treated. It has everything to do with one person involving themselves in a conversation they weren't part of and publicly shaming people who weren't talking to her and she couldn't even clearly hear. This could have happened in any busy public place and you might as well say that 8 year old gave up on her dream of being a stripper.
  • Re:Put simply; yes (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Richard_at_work (517087) <richardprice.gmail@com> on Saturday March 23, 2013 @11:21AM (#43257431)

    How do you know what someone will be offended by? Can you really moderate your conversation so that any third party that happens to overhear you (she wasn't involved in the conversation) gets to exercise their apparently god given right for no one else to ever say anything offensive at all...?

  • Re:Chilling effect (Score:4, Insightful)

    by bzipitidoo (647217) <bzipitidoo@yahoo.com> on Saturday March 23, 2013 @11:21AM (#43257435) Journal

    It's the employers who made this so chilling by reaching for the pink slips. People ought to give that aspect more consideration. Send a message to the employers that termination over something like that is too extreme.

    If not for the firings, this incident would be no big deal. Reprimand a few people, make sure they understand they acted inappropriately, and move on. Without the firings, the Twitter shaming would be the worst of it, for both sides, since it's nigh impossible to have things forgotten once they're online.

  • by tylikcat (1578365) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @11:35AM (#43257521)

    There's a difference be having a lot of support among women (what I said) and having at least some support from women (what you said).

    Andrea Dworkin made her comments about sex in marriage being rape in the eighties, I'm pretty sure. It was highly controversial in the feminist community at the time, though, yeah, it had a few supporters. But it got airtime there because so many people didn't agree with her. (And, of course, what she was saying was much more nuanced than the short quote that is generally cited.) And you still have men now pulling it out as being representative of feminists all this time later. These days I only hear her brought up in feminist contexts in a historical context. She's just not that relevant. (I mean, really. Andrea Dworking for crying out loud.)

    She's being brought up not because she has support from feminists, but because men like to bring her up to make feminists look bad. And in my experience, that's a fairly common tactic - look at all the invocations of feminazis and the like here, and all the "that's just what feminists are like!" comments. (And, for that matter, the nasty comments about women generally. And how people who have made civil and reasonable comments in support of women have been modded down as flamebait.)

  • by erroneus (253617) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @11:37AM (#43257531) Homepage

    Perfect answer. She is the poison for events and employers and other women who actually want to make an honest living in the world.

    Women have had this amazing free pass on their behavior for so long. I know women who are absolutely ashamed on behalf of these other women. We're afraid to complain about "these people." //What do you mean "these people"?!// You know what I mean and quit pretending to be semi-offended asking me to say something you can use against me.

  • by erroneus (253617) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @11:42AM (#43257573) Homepage

    "Sexism" means women are involved. Racism means black people are involved.

    Sexist behavior means someone offended someone else and that it was a woman. Women can't be sexist. Black people can't be racist. It's a power struggle.

    (If what I wrote up there sounds pretty ridiculous, I agree. If it still rings true somehow? Well... there you go.)

  • by ATMAvatar (648864) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @11:54AM (#43257637) Journal

    Unfortunately, you're missing a third group: people who look to be offended so they can play a victim and get attention. Adria's in this last group.

    The truly despicable part about this last group is that in the face of a true problem and real victims, this third group makes the problem worse for everyone. It detracts from the real victims' ability to stand up for their rights, reinforces the stereotypes held by the people causing the problem, and paints a larger group as aggressors because the group causing the problem happens to be a subset.

    Luckily, while I'm a guy and risk being demonized, I'm saved by another geek stereotype of which I strongly adhere - I'm too anti-social to find myself in the position of making inappropriate jokes with anyone, and I care more about learning the technologies presented at conferences to be chatting during a talk even if I wasn't..

  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Dr. Evil (3501) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @11:58AM (#43257655)

    I applaud her for saying something about the stupid innuendos going on at these kinds of cons, but she shouldn't couch it in sexism.

    Forking/Fucking is not degrading to women.

    Dongles/Penises are not degrading to women.

    If anyone thinks that sex is inherently degrading to women, or that penises are inherently degrading to women, they should seek counselling.

    That said, the geek community is full of sexually inexperienced and frustrated people who say stupid and immature things. I seriously hope that the organizers simply would have told these guys in a sincere and compassionate way "you're in public, and your behaviour reflects on the community. This is a family-friendly event and a common problem but we need to change the geek culture. Your sexual innuendos are not in keeping with the environment we're trying to foster at this event and they contradict the code of conduct. Please stop yourselves, and stop your friends. Spread the word."

    No need to degrade people who are already socially marginalized and awkward.

  • by Captain Hook (923766) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @12:11PM (#43257767)

    Wait, wait wait, if she doesn't even know what "forking" means, what the hell is she doing at a conference targeted at people who do!?

    Why do pretty girls dress up as comic book characters and go to comic con? Because they are paid to.

    Her job is to make a good impression for her employers with geeks, she doesn't need to be a programmer to do that.

    She was there because that is where she could rub shoulders with exactly the sort of person her job needs her to make contact with... you know, the sort of person she got fired.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @12:15PM (#43257787)

    The bigger problem is that she chose not to confront the people she felt offended by, because she "didn't want to have her experience denied". She was right about that, they would probably have apologized for the dongle joke but told her that the forking joke wasn't sexual at all, which would have been accurate but a denial of her "experience" (= her misinterpretation).
    And then she chose not to wait for the PyCon organizers to handle it. This woman has a history [wordpress.com]. She had a hard childhood but that doesn't excuse her lashing out at innocent strangers. I have a hard time understanding why she even felt offended. These were two men joking among themselves about a male body part. Did she feel excluded? But she wasn't part of the conversation in the first place, she was just eavesdropping on them.

  • Re:Human Beings (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Psyborgue (699890) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @12:15PM (#43257791) Homepage Journal
    Also "dick". You can't call a woman a dick. You can call a man a dick. This is considered acceptable. To call a woman a "cunt" on the other hand, is considered highly offensive. If women wish to be treated with equality, they need to stop with the double standard bullshit.
  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Half-pint HAL (718102) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @12:21PM (#43257841)

    The summary should contain enough information to make me know if I'm interested. Is it more time efficient for one person to write "the sexist tweet scandal infamously dubbed donglegate" or for thousands of /. readers to have to individually follow the link to another (very brief) article summary?

    Simply put: if the average reader doesn't know what the summary is talking about, the summary is no use at all.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Belial6 (794905) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @12:30PM (#43257899)
    She was sexually harassing the men. She was not complaining that why made a penis joke. She was complaining that she did not find hot enough to make a penis joke. The fact hat at the exact same event she made made at least one public penis joke herself shows that beyond a shadow of a doubt, the joke was not the problem.

    Calling here behavior immature is letting her off too easy.
  • by femtobyte (710429) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @12:42PM (#43257969)

    You're deeply concerned about the careers of women, who you like to hire... because you can pay them less for doing more reliable quality work.

    What a moving tribute to China's acceptance of the modern Western Capitalist workplace values.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @12:58PM (#43258081)

    I'm a gay man. Adria's reaction was not "logical and expected". There is occasionally real hostility and real insults directed at minorities at tech conferences; this wasn't it. Adria's reaction to a harmless pun was merely the act of a professional publicity whore (and I'm using that term in a gender-neutral way), and she has hurt the cause of women and other minorities.

  • by Half-pint HAL (718102) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @01:23PM (#43258215)

    It's not diluting feminism.. it's exposing it for what it has always been: bullshit, victimology and letting women use their massive societal privilege to ruin innocent men's lives.

    When feminists were asking for the right to vote, was that "bullshit, victimology and letting women use their massive societal privilege to ruin innocent men's lives"?

    When feminists were asking for the right to medical treatment without requiring spousal consent, was that "bullshit, victimology and letting women use their massive societal privilege to ruin innocent men's lives"?

    When feminists were (and still are) asking for the right to wage parity, was (is) that "bullshit, victimology and letting women use their massive societal privilege to ruin innocent men's lives"?

    There is a hardcore of militants that are often refered to as "feminazis", but they are not the mainstream of feminism -- far from it. Feminism is about stopping us guys using our massive societal privilege to ruin women's lives. Me, I want a wife that is my equal, not some subjugated slave.

  • by Half-pint HAL (718102) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @01:32PM (#43258267)

    You are revealing that your world view includes a large group of men who make collective decisions and carry them through like an organized men's political interest group - for example influencing or planting reporters to focus on such stories and then use the stories to undermine feminism. Such a group doesn't exist. That your worldview includes such a group anyway shows a clear us-versus-those-pigs mentality that is more likely the true reason that men are disregarding your views. I just followed your lead in psychologizing about people I don't know.

    Strawman. You're ignoring the concept of "emergent behaviour". Several agents acting independently of each other can act the same way, establishing a pattern of behaviour. That behaviour starts to become the engrained norm. People do it without thinking about it. For many people, it is an automatic reaction to make the same oppositions that they see all the time on the news, on the internet or from their friends, and one of the automatic responses to feminism is a strawman. While some extreme feminists do indeed harp on about patriarchal society as though it's a conspiracy, the leading thinkers acknowledge it as a mindset, and they're looking to change that mindset.

    Consider also that there wasn't any great conspiracy to treat black people as lesser human beings -- our ancestors just happened to be very, very racist and actually believed that the colour of your skin dictated your value as a human being. It took conscious and concerted effort to change that mindset, and it has taken and will take more conscious and concerted effort to give women truly equal rights to men.

    Including a conscious and concerted effort not to overcompensate in certain areas given rise to claims of overprivilege.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SplashMyBandit (1543257) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @01:51PM (#43258373)

    That said, the geek community is full of sexually inexperienced and frustrated people who say stupid and immature things.

    That's a steorotype about 'geek culture'. The reality is that the majority of 'geeks' are past their twenties and get plenty of action (with real women, mostly). It's just demographics. From the ages 15-30 is only a third of the time from 30-60, and IT has been around long enough that there are still plenty of greybeards out there. So let's get real - 'geek culture' is a handy stereotype, but a stereotype nonetheless. Decisions based on a stereotype will always carry some degree of inaccuracy.

    As an aside. What is interesting that the biggest promoters of the stereotype are marketing outfits that see the chique of geek and want to cash in. All sorts of outfits used to do this in the past too with science - from detergent ads where 'scientists' only wear white lab coats to 'Christian Science' that is anti-scientific superstition but appends the word 'science' to benefit from the cachet of the triumphs of reason. So, it's ok to accept the 'geek stereotype' as long as you also make a mental note that this is an approximation of reality and really only covers the 1/3 of 'new' geeks (those still excited about 'coming out' to self-identify as a geek comfortable with the label).

  • Re:DUDE! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by hairyfeet (841228) <bassbeast1968@@@gmail...com> on Saturday March 23, 2013 @01:51PM (#43258375) Journal

    If she was like nosy bitch let me say...yay!

    We really need to stand up and say "this shit is NOT gonna cut it" because a guy was FIRED for telling a joke TO HIS FRIEND and was overheard by a member of the politically correct brigade who then blasted their picture all over the interwebs with a "look at the dirty men" kind of deal.

    Now imagine getting fired for telling a joke to your friend because some bitch you never even met took your picture and decided she was offended by something not directed TO her or AT her...that is fucked up folks and we need to tell the PC bitch and her ilk to STFU and get the 2x4 out of their asses. Since they were in CA which is a two party state he really needs to sue the bitch, I'd take every damned cent the woman has just to make a lesson for those that don't know how to act like a fucking civilized human being. All she had to do was tell the guys they were disturbing her and that would have been that, but oh hell no, then she couldn't play the victim...fuck her, I hope she has serious difficulty finding a job and ends up having to take a shit job for reduced pay, because she is a good example of what is wrong with the world right now.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by lightknight (213164) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @02:00PM (#43258443) Homepage

    Perhaps not in its original form, but these days it is. It used to be about tearing down the inequalities between men and women, and teaching women to feel empowered.

    Now it's about women exacting revenge upon men for how women were treated for the last thousand years or so ("This is for our mothers and grandmothers!" -> Yeah, but none of those men were alive when those gender crimes occurred, so why are you punishing their descendents? Madness.), and about leaving men scared to be in the same room as women. It's essentially a religious crusade, in which the enemy is the enemy simply because they were born with a penis and a pair of testicles; their sole goal in life is seems to be to find and convince a man that he is wrong for existing.

    Even a woman who went around picking up other women (who went on to write a book about it) pointed out how blind the female gender is to its own power / actions. At no point have they stopped to think that perhaps men have as many grudges against women as women do against men, but are simply more forgiving of them. But I digress, the die is cast, revenge is sought, history has been occluded, mistakes will no doubt be repeated.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @02:01PM (#43258455)

    Blah blah blah. Water off a duck's back. Instead she made it federal case because her precious feelings were hurt.

    She needs to grow a spine. So fuck off with your touchy-feely bullshit.

  • by rahvin112 (446269) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @02:03PM (#43258477)

    So you hire more women cause you pay them less salary for the same work?

    If a man and women are doing the same job at the same skill level (and by your own admission the woman does it better) and you are paying the women less only because of her genitals then you meet the very definition of sexism.

  • by broward (416376) <browardhorne&gmail,com> on Saturday March 23, 2013 @02:22PM (#43258597) Homepage

    I am close to giving up on Slashdot

    Fair enough since I already gave up on women. :)

    Honestly, they're just too much of a problem now.
    Look at the marriage stats.
    Really, who do you think is making the decision to not marry anymore?

    Women?
    hahahaha.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 23, 2013 @03:40PM (#43259123)

    1. The only pay gap between men and women is the one showing that women get paid MORE per hour... when you take into account things like part time work. It's the worst kind of statistics abuse to claim that women lose out on pay compared to men. Stats abuse is a speciality of feminists - see also domestic violence.

    2. Women have ALWAYS had massive privilege in society - "women and children first" wasn't invented by feminists. It was men...

    3. The pussy pass. Women routinely avoid prison sentences or lower sentences for the exact same crime committed by men - who are jailed for years.

    This bizarre alternate reality invented by feminists in which the world's power was divided into men and women - UNTIL the 60s - has gone unchallenged for too long because men want to get laid.

    Times change. It's time men started fighting back against the massive amounts of lies and slander that have been used against them in the last 50 years.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Krishnoid (984597) * on Saturday March 23, 2013 @03:59PM (#43259223) Journal

    SendGrid simply read Blum's email as past behavior and fired Richards rather than taking Blum's constructive advice.

    They also made a public statement [sendgrid.com] about an employee termination in a way I thought was unusually descriptive [slashdot.org].

    I did appreciate Amanda Blum's take on this -- it was clear, almost wholly fact-oriented, and very informative.

  • by ultranova (717540) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @04:39PM (#43259445)

    Fellow Slashdotters we have to stop cringing for our values ("beta" behaviour) and be proud of what we believe in ("alpha" behaviour).

    Even if human societies behaved like dogpacks (which they don't), simply declaring yourself "alpha" wouldn't make you...

    I believe that there is no substitute for victory, of you start a war you do *everything* in your power to win;

    ...but I guess we can't expect great logic from someone who's proudly declaring his believe in the Sunk Cost Fallacy (also hypocrisy, since *everything* includes genocide which you just condemned "jihadists" for).

    No matter what point of view you take someone will dispute it and may even (childishly) not like you as a result.

    Well, anyone who's ever seen the kind of total war you're promoting or gets caught up in one might dislike you for said promotion, which doesn't really strike me as particularly childish reason. Also, most people will probably not like someone who dismisses their culture, so add Muslims to the list. And I doubt scientists are happy with you trying to elevate their results into capital-T Truth, since that tends to hinder their work.

    Do not vote for a politician of any party anywhere until they sound like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wgxlp2UJI5I [youtube.com]

    Don't vote for any politician unless they sound like they're paraphrasing Atlas Shrugged? Sorry, but no; having hundreds of millions of dollars does not mean you "generated" that wealth, it means that you are good at concentrating economic power into your hands - and even most often, than you were born rich.

    Once upon a time the West felt it could do achieve any goal - at it nearly could. We have lost our mojo because we keep listening to the "beta" message: be nice, make everyoine like you, get along. Well, we can and should still do that - but let's set our horizons a little bigger. Per Ardua Ad Astra.

    What it actually achieved were a number of colonial empires. Those collapsed after two world wars caused by people who tried to be "alpha". Then people like you start twisting history to fit into your (totally non-racist, because you believe racism is wrong, and this all sounds exactly like classic racist spiel purely by accident) superhero fantasy, all because you want a strong leader who doesn't care about being liked to make you feel more like "alpha" - you know, coming to think of it, this is almost starting to sound like the prelude to one of those world wars.

  • Re:DUDE! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by stenvar (2789879) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @05:39PM (#43259739)

    Deluging her with death threats is wrong.

    Deluging her with letters of disapproval (one sender at a time) is not: she is an activist and a media personality, and people have a right to respond to her.

  • Re:What the hell (Score:5, Insightful)

    by meta-monkey (321000) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @06:35PM (#43260117) Journal

    The worst? As an "evangelist" she had the opportunity to use a "teachable moment."

    The goal, I think we all want, is a workplace and community without gender conflicts. She could have led by example, talked to the guys about the need to be cognizant of the people around them, they would have learned something, and Richards could have regaled her audience with the tale of her enlightened diplomatic prowess so women everywhere would have another example of a peaceful resolution to gender communication issues in IT. But no, instead being a peacemaker and a bridge builder and leader she just threw a tattletale tantrum like a 4th grader and made it more difficult for men and women in IT (who are aware of this situation) to communicate in the future.

    Way to be an evangelist, lady...

  • Re:DUDE! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Darinbob (1142669) on Saturday March 23, 2013 @07:17PM (#43260307)

    You are the problem. She did not fire the person, his boss fired him. And she is not a bitch she's a human being. Why are you even using that word like you're still only 12 years old? If you have a job, how do you manage to keep your job when you talk like that and walk around with hate all the time? Grow up, when you get out into the real world you'll realize that you need to be polite to get and keep a job, even in IT. Or if you're in a job, are you one of those who whispers "keep it down, HR is was seen in the next aisle" because you know you'll get fired if you're actually overheard?

    Would you be willing to send those comments you wrote above to your mother?

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