jm + feminism   18

The power of role models
At dinner I asked some of the women to speak to me about this, how astronomy became so (relatively) egalitarian. And one topic became clear: role models. Astronomy has a long history of women active in the field, going all the way back to Caroline Herschel in the early 19th century. Women have made huge contributions to the field. Dava Sobel just wrote a book about the women who laid the foundations for the discovery of the expansion of the universe. Just a couple of weeks ago, papers ran obituaries of Vera Rubin, the remarkable observational astronomer who discovered the evidence for dark matter. I could mention Jocelyn Bell, whose discovery of pulsars got her advisor a Nobel (sic). The most famous astronomer I met growing up was Helen Hogg, the (adopted) Canadian astronomer at David Dunlap Observatory outside Toronto, who also did a fair bit of what we now call outreach.

The women at the meeting spoke of this, a history of women contributing, of role models to look up to, of proof that women can make major contributions to the field.

What can computing learn from this? It seems we're doing it wrong. The best way to improve the representation of women in the field is not to recruit them, important though that is, but to promote them. To create role models. To push them into positions of influence.
software  women  feminism  role-models  gender-balance  egalitarianism  astronomy  computing  rob-pike 
february 2017 by jm
Video Games Are Boring
I'm not remotely interested in shockingly good graphics, in murder simulators, in guns and knives and swords. I'm not that interested in adrenaline. My own life is thrilling enough. There is enough fear and hatred in the world to get my heart pounding. My Facebook feed and Twitter feed are enough for that. Walking outside in summer clothing is enough for that. I'm interested in care, in characters, in creation, in finding a path forward inside games that helps me find my path forward in life. I am interested in compassion and understanding. I'm interested in connecting. As Miranda July said, "all I ever wanted to know is how other people are making it through life." I want to make games that help other people understand life.

We are all overwhelmed with shock, with information, with change. The degree of interactivity in our lives is amazing and wonderful and I wouldn't exchange it for anything, but it is also shocking and overwhelming and it's causing us to dig in and try to find some peace by shutting each other out. On all sides of the political spectrum we've stopped listening to each other and I fear we are all leaning toward fascist thinking. We should be using this medium to help us adapt to our new, interactive lives. This is how we become relevant.
essay  feminism  society  culture  games  gaming  life  art 
november 2016 by jm
Bodyhackers are all around you, they’re called women
I have two cyborg implants. One is in my hand, and it lets my unlock phones and doors by waving at them. The other is in my uterus, and it lets me control my own fertility.
bodyhacking  iuds  implants  cyborg  feminism  birth-control 
april 2016 by jm
I am Alex St. John’s Daughter, and He is Wrong About Women in Tech — Medium
Great, great post from Amilia St. John, responding to the offensive sexist crap spewed by her father, Alex St. John
sexism  career  tech  amilia-st-john  alex-st-john  jobs  work  feminism 
april 2016 by jm
Kate Heddleston: How Our Engineering Environments Are Killing Diversity
'[There are] several problem areas for [diversity in] engineering environments and ways to start fixing them. The problems we face aren't devoid of solutions; there are a lot of things that companies, teams, and individuals can do to fix problems in their work environment. For the month of March, I will be posting detailed articles about the problem areas I will cover in my talk: argument cultures, feedback, promotions, employee on-boarding, benefits, safety, engineering process, and environment adaptation.'

via Baron Schwartz.
via:xaprb  culture  tech  diversity  sexism  feminism  engineering  work  workplaces  feedback 
september 2015 by jm
That time the Internet sent a SWAT team to my mom's house - Boing Boing
The solution is for social media sites and the police to take threats or jokes about swatting, doxxing, and organized crime seriously. Tweeting about buying a gun and shooting up a school would be taken seriously, and so should the threat of raping, doxxing, swatting or killing someone. Privacy issues and online harassment are directly linked, and online harassment isn’t going anywhere. My fear is that, in reaction to online harassment, laws will be passed that will break down our civil freedoms and rights online, and that more surveillance will be sold to users under the guise of safety. More surveillance, however, would not have helped me or my mother. A platform that takes harassment and threats seriously instead of treating them like jokes would have.
twitter  gamergate  4chan  8chan  privacy  doxxing  swatting  harrassment  threats  social-media  facebook  law  feminism 
july 2015 by jm
Shanley Kane of Model View Culture Challenges a “Corrupt” Silicon Valley | MIT Technology Review
If their interests were better serving the world, using technology as a force for social justice, and equitably distributing technology wealth to enrich society … sure, they’d be acting against their interests. But the reality is that tech companies centralize power and wealth in a small group of privileged white men. When that’s the goal, then exploiting the labor of marginalized people and denying them access to power and wealth is 100 percent in line with the endgame. A more diverse tech industry would be better for its workers and everyone else, but it would be worse for the privileged white men at the top of it, because it would mean they would have to give up their monopoly on money and power. And they will fight that with everything they’ve got, which is why we see barriers to equality at every level of the industry.
culture  feminism  tech  mit-tech-review  shanley-kane  privilege  vcs  silicon-valley 
december 2014 by jm
How “Computer Geeks” replaced “Computer Girls"
As historian Nathan Ensmenger explained to a Stanford audience, as late as the 1960s many people perceived computer programming as a natural career choice for savvy young women. Even the trend-spotters at Cosmopolitan Magazine urged their fashionable female readership to consider careers in programming. In an article titled “The Computer Girls,” the magazine described the field as offering better job opportunities for women than many other professional careers. As computer scientist Dr. Grace Hopper told a reporter, programming was “just like planning a dinner. You have to plan ahead and schedule everything so that it’s ready when you need it…. Women are ‘naturals’ at computer programming.” James Adams, the director of education for the Association for Computing Machinery, agreed: “I don’t know of any other field, outside of teaching, where there’s as much opportunity for a woman.”
history  programming  sexism  technology  women  feminism  coding 
november 2014 by jm
A Teenager Gets Grilled By Her Dad About Why She’s Not That Into Coding
Jay Rosen interviews his 17-year-old daughter. it's pretty eye-opening. Got to start them early!
culture  tech  coding  girls  women  feminism  teenagers  school  jay-rosen  stem 
october 2014 by jm
GamerGate Death Threats - Business Insider
"It's completely insane. It's insane that you even have to say out loud that sending death threats to people who disagree with your opinion of video games is wrong. Yet here we are: Apparently, it needs to be said."
death-threats  gamergame  gaming  twitter  feminism  misogyny 
october 2014 by jm
Trouble at the Koolaid Point — Serious Pony
This is a harrowing post from Kathy Sierra, full of valid observations:
You’re probably more likely to win the lottery than to get any law enforcement agency in the United States to take action when you are harassed online, no matter how visciously and explicitly. Local agencies lack the resources, federal agencies won’t bother.


That to the power of ten in Ireland, too, I'd suspect. Fuck this. Troll culture is way out of control....
twitter  harassment  feminism  weev  abuse  trolls  4chan  kathy-sierra 
october 2014 by jm
The Womansplainer
Brilliant. Nice use of an anime avatar, to boot....

'Consulting for men who have better things to do than educate themselves about feminism. Got a question for a feminist? I would be happy to educate you! Below are my rates.'
feminism  gamergate  funny  mansplaining  misandry  misogyny  twitter  lmgtfy 
october 2014 by jm
YOU AND YOUR DAMNED GAMES, JON STONE — Why bother with #gamergate?
So what is #gamergate? #gamergate is a mob with torches aloft, hunting for any combustible dwelling and calling it a monster’s lair. #gamergate is a rage train, and everyone with an axe to grind wants a ride. Its fuel is a sour mash of entitlement, insecurity, arrogance and alienation. #gamergate is a vindication quest for political intolerance. #gamergate is revenge for every imagined slight. #gamergate is Viz’s Meddlesome Ratbag.
gamergate  culture  gaming  4chan  mobs  feminism 
october 2014 by jm
How did Twitter become the hate speech wing of the free speech party?
Kevin Marks has a pretty good point here:
Your tweet could win the fame lottery, and everyone on the Internet who thinks you are wrong could tell you about it. Or one of the "verified" could call you out to be the tribute for your community and fight in their Hunger Games.

Say something about feminism, or race, or sea lions and you'd find yourself inundated by the same trite responses from multitudes. Complain about it, and they turn nasty, abusing you, calling in their friends to join in. Your phone becomes useless under the weight of notifications; you can't see your friends support amongst the flood.

The limited tools available - blocking, muting, going private - do not match well with these floods. Twitter's abuse reporting form takes far longer than a tweet, and is explicitly ignored if friends try to help.
harassment  twitter  4chan  abuse  feminism  hate-speech  gamergate  sea-lions  filtering  social-media  kevin-marks 
october 2014 by jm
New Statesman: Let's call the Isla Vista killings what they were: misogynist extremism
We have been told for a long time that the best way to deal with this sort of harrassment and violence is to laugh it off. Women and girls and queer people have been told that online misogynists pose no real threat, even when they’re sharing intimate guides to how to destroy a woman’s self-esteem and force her into sexual submission. Well, now we have seen what the new ideology of misogyny looks like at its most extreme. We have seen incontrovertible evidence of real people being shot and killed in the name of that ideology, by a young man barely out of childhood himself who had been seduced into a disturbing cult of woman-hatred. Elliot Rodger was a victim - but not for the reasons he believed.
elliot-rodger  extremism  feminism  isla-vista  mass-killings  pua  mens-rights  harrassment  misogyny  penny-red 
may 2014 by jm
Girls and Software
a pretty thought-provoking article from Linux Journal on women in computing, and how we're doing it all wrong
feminism  community  programming  coding  women  computing  software  society  work  linux-journal  children  teaching 
february 2014 by jm
BBC News - Pair jailed over abusive tweets to feminist campaigner
When a producer from BBC Two's Newsnight programme tracked Nimmo down after he had sent the abuse, the former call centre worker told him: "The police will do nothing, it's only Twitter."
bbc  bullying  social-media  twitter  society  uk  trolls  trolling  abuse  feminism  cyberbullying 
january 2014 by jm

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