Forking and Dongle Jokes Don’t Belong At Tech Conferences

laptop_vivian_and_dad_girls_tech

Photo credit: “Vivian and Daddy on the Laptop” by Qole Pejorian

Have you ever had a group of men sitting right behind you making joke that caused you to feel uncomfortable? Well, that just happened this week but instead of shrinking down in my seat, I did something about it an here’s my story…

Yesterday, I publicly called out a group of guys at the PyCon conference who were not being respectful to the community.

For those of you visiting from Hacker News from the tweet and from this post, thanks for stopping by. Enjoy the context.

I tweeted a photo of the guys behind me:

I publicly asked for help with addressing the problem:

I tweeted the PyCon Code of Conduct page and began to contacting the PyCon staff via text message:

and I’m happy to say that PyCon responded quickly not just with words but with action and a public response:

What I will share with you here is the backstory that led to this —

The guy behind me to the far left was saying he didn’t find much value from the logging session that day. I agreed with him so I turned around and said so.  He then went onto say that an earlier session he’d been to where the speaker was talking about images and visualization with Python was really good, even if it seemed to him the speaker wasn’t really an expert on images. He said he would be interested in forking the repo and continuing development.

That would have been fine until the guy next to him…

began making sexual forking jokes

I was going to let it go. It had been a long week. A long month. I’d been on the road since mid February attending and speaking at conferences.  PyCon was my 5th and final conference before heading home.

I know it’s important to pick my battles.

I know I don’t have to be a hero in every situation.

Sometimes I just want to go to a conference and be a geek.

But…

like Popeye, I couldn’t “stands it no more” because of what happened —

Jesse Noller was up on stage thanking the sponsors. The guys behind me (one off to the right) said, “You can thank me, you can thank me”. That told me they were a sponsoring company of Pycon and from the photos I took, his badge had an add-on that said, “Sponsor”.

My company was a Gold sponsor as well.

They started talking about “big” dongles. I could feel my face getting flustered.

Was this really happening?
How many times do I have to deal with this?
Can they not hear what Jesse is saying?

The stuff about the dongles wasn’t even logical and as a self professed nerd, that bothered me. Dongles are intended to be small and unobtrusive. They’re intended for network connectivity and to service as physical licence keys for software. I’d consulted in the past with an automotive shop that needed data recovery and technical support. I know what PCMCIA dongles look like.

I was telling myself if they made one more sexual joke, I’d say something.

The it happened….The trigger.

Jesse was on the main stage with thousands of people sitting in the audience. He was talking about helping the next generation learn to program and how happy PyCon was with the Young Coders workshop (which I volunteered at). He was mentioning that the PyLadies auction had raised $10,000 in a single night and the funds would be used the funds for their initiatives.

I saw a photo on main stage of a little girl who had been in the Young Coders workshop.

I realized I had to do something or she would never have the chance to learn and love programming because the ass clowns behind me would make it impossible for her to do so.

I calculated my next steps.  I knew there wasn’t a lot of time and the closing session would be wrapping up.  I considered:

  • The type of event
  • The size of the audience
  • How the conference had emphasized their Code of Conduct
  • What I knew about the community and their diversity initiatives
  • How to address this issue effectively and not disrupt the main stage

Added 3/19: Description and photo of ballroom

The ballroom was huge.  Here’s a photo from that morning of the keynote speaker, Guido van Rossum, creator of Python.  Each section was 12 seats wide and 20 rows deep with six sections (front and back) in the ballroom.  I would estimate it held over 1,000 people that afternoon. I was located approximately 10 rows deep from the front right screen in the top-right section and about 5 seats in from the aisle on the left of the section.

pycon 2013 ballroom

(Math inclined folks: feel free to provide your estimates on how many people the ballroom held in the comments.)

Accountability was important. These guys sitting right behind me felt safe in the crowd. I got that and realized that being anonymous was fueling their behaviour. This is known as Deindividualization:

Deindividuation is a concept in social psychology that is generally thought of as the losing of self-awareness in groups.   Theories of deindividuation propose that it is a psychological state of decreased self-evaluation and decreased evaluation apprehension causing antinormative and disinhibited behavior.

Deindividuation theory seeks to provide an explanation for a variety of antinormative collective behavior, such as violent crowds, lynch mobs, etc. Deindividuation theory has also been applied to genocide and been posited as an explanation for antinormative behavior online and in computer-mediated communications.

It very much reminded me of Lord Of the Flies.  I decided to put out the fire at the base.

PyCon has gone to great efforts to position themselves as a conference that everyone is welcome to attend according to their homepage:

PyCon is the largest annual gathering for the community using and developing the open-source Python programming language. PyCon is organized by the Python community for the community. We try to keep registration far cheaper than most comparable technology conferences, to keep PyCon accessible to the widest group possible.

and they go on to say:

PyCon is a diverse conference dedicated to providing an enjoyable experience to everyone. Our code of conduct is intended to help everyone maintain the PyCon spirit. We thank all attendees and staff for observing it.

I did a gut check and waited until Jesse finished introducing Diana who would be the new PyCon US chair for 2014. I stood up slowly, turned around and took three, clear photos. I said back down, did another gut check and started composing a tweet.

Three things came to me: act, speak and confront in the moment.

I decided to do things differently this time and didn’t say anything to them directly.  I was a guest in the Python community and as such, I wanted to give PyCon the opportunity to address this.

A few minutes later, one of the PyCon staff member approached to the left.  I stood up, went outside to talk with him and explain the situation with a few of the other PyCon staff.  They had seen my tweet.  After explaining, they wanted to pull the people in question from the main ballroom.  I walked back in with the PyCon staff and point them out one by one and they were escorted to the hallway.

As I walked back to my seat, I cannot tell you how proud I was of the PyCon and Python community at the very moment for keeping their word to make the conference a safe place to be.  A bit shaken, I took my seat to continue watching the lightning talks.  I sent an updated tweet that the situation was being dealt with and later on, PyCon tweeted they had addressed the issue.

For context, I’m a developer evangelist at a successful startup.

That means I’m an advocate for developers, male and female. I hear about demanding bosses with impossible deadlines for product launches and the overall experience of working at other startups firsthand.

I listen and offer suggestions, ideas and mentoring to help developers become problems solvers. Sometimes the answer is our API or not answering email after 7pm while other times it about being assertive and shedding impostor syndrome.

The forking joke set the stage for the dongle joke. Neither were funny.

What many of you don’t know is that this wasn’t the first time that day I had to address this issue around harassment and gender.

I had been talking with a developer after lunch in the hall and he told me he had made a joke. He had been looking for some boxes and said aloud that he was looking under the skirt (he had meant a table skirt) in the expo hall. A woman had “given him a look” and/or made a comment after he said this so he responded by saying “it was bare, just the way he liked it” as an innuendo for when women shave off all their pubic hair. I explained that while this could be funny, it was out of context because:

  • We were at a tech conference
  • There was a job fair going on
  • Women historically have felt unwelcome at tech conferences
  • PyCon was making a special effort to be welcoming to women
  • There were several women’s groups here (PyLadies, Women Who Code, CodeChix, Ada Initiative)
  • He was wearing company logos and that meant his actions and words carried on their behalf

….much further than his sense of humor ever would.

He disagreed. I urged him to talk to someone at the conference who worked for the same company who was a guy and who would understand this issue and potential for brand/reputation damage. We were able to discuss this because we were in the hallway, not a packed ballroom.

At a conference where it was was celebrated that 20% of attendees were women

it wasn’t the place to make “jokes” like this. I felt our chat went well (as well as could be expected) and headed on my way to more sessions and the final closing talks. Why did he share his joke with me?   Maybe because I told him I’d just finished a 5 week stand up comedy class and he wanted to reciprocate. Maybe because my job as a developer evangelist means I spend a lot of time around male developers and he thought I would understand.  What I did know is I needed to say something instead of laugh.

I have been to a lot of tech conferences and hackathons over the years.  I’ve heard a lot of things said.  That means I’m more desensitized than others but it doesn’t make it ok.  Here I could go into all sorts of comparisons on things I could say around guys to make them uncomfortable but that’s not the point of this post.

There is something about crushing a little kid’s dream that gets me really angry.

Women in technology need consistant messaging from birth through retirement they are welcome, competent and valued in the industry.

Let’s unify the message to our daughters and to the women developers we work with:

“We want you to be here and we will do our best to welcome you into the world of programming.”

What has to change is that everyone must take personal accountability and speak up when they hear something that isn’t ok.  It takes three words to make a difference:

“That’s not cool.”

Not all men at tech conferences are like these guys.

Not every woman who attends a tech conference is a victim in waiting.

We need to build bridges and be aware of our actions and not discount that our words carry weight.  A guy in my PyCon sprint group today shared a beautiful French proverb today:

“Live a good life then make room for others.”

Yesterday the future of programming was on the line and I made myself heard.

54 thoughts on “Forking and Dongle Jokes Don’t Belong At Tech Conferences

  1. Shareef Jackson

    I’m glad you spoke up. People need to be held accountable for the garbage they spew. If we want any chance at diversifying the tech space, these crude jokes have to stop.

  2. Bengt

    I think this was a totally appropriate reaction and I’m glad that the PyCon Staff take this kind of behaviour seriously. Even though one of them was a sponsor.

    I’m however a bit saddened to see how unreasonable a lot of the comments are on Y Combinators HackerNews aggregator. I’m unfortunately, not suprised at all.

  3. Richard Anders

    Overreaction of a century. Perhaps inappropriate behavior from those chaps, but hanging people out in social media like this will only lead to more issues than you just tried to solve. But surely a way of getting more attention to your blog.

  4. antihero

    Wait so now it is 100% un-okay to make any kind of sexual joke ever if women are remotely in the proximity? I make sexual jokes with female friends all the time, and they don’t care if some of them are duds, because they are reasonable people. To claim that women should not be “exposed” to any sort of sexual humour in any context ever seems immensely patronising.

    What exactly were these guys doing? Making some jokes amongst themselves? Overtly making them to make you feel uncomfortable? Making them *about* you? Because of course the last two are unacceptable, but there needs to be context and intent. Sexual dongle and forking jokes aren’t exactly offensive on their own but to all but the most prudish of people.

  5. Marty Pitt

    How are jokes about ‘forking’ exclusively disparaging toward women? These are jokes about sexuality, which, last time I checked, women only hold a 50% stake in.

    Are these more or less disparaging towards women, than jokes about socks down pants are towards men? [1]

    Are jokes about socks in pants less about penises than jokes about big dongles? I’m confused.

    How about retweeting cracks about autism? [2], or innuendo of dollar bills being ‘six inches long’ [3] — this implies a sexuality that others may not be comfortable with.

    As a developer, I find your jokes about the social awkwardness of other developers to be offensive. [4] (Am I overreacting because you used the hashtag of Joke? Is that what these guys were missing?)

    Or is it okay to be sexist and offensive if it’s done via twitter?

    [1] https://twitter.com/adriarichards/status/312265091791847425
    [2] https://twitter.com/TheSportsBrain/status/312293963639971842
    [3] https://twitter.com/adriarichards/status/312410699311755264
    [4] https://twitter.com/adriarichards/status/312293950058815488

  6. Jake

    Wait, so now it’s even 1% okay to rude in public? Come on now, be reasonable. OP was at a professional conference listening to the speakers on stage. She should not have to be bothered with the guy being crude behind her.

  7. Kura

    Why have you been deleting all of the negative responses you’ve had to this post?

    @twitter-52344006:disqus makes a very good point and you have chosen to ignore three out of the
    four things he points out about your conduct while at PyCon.

  8. Kura

    Marty’s is sure still up there, but the other comments are not. I saw earlier this morning that other people from HN had made comments on the article here, either instead of on HN or as well as on HN and those comments have vanished in to the ether.

    While I agree that their conduct was incorrect, I completely disagree with your overall reaction to it. Going out of your way to lambast like this is not on.

    And you are flying the flag of double standards with pride. I have many females both inside and outside the tech industry, we talk shit to each other all the time and sure, sometimes people may not like something that is said, that’s life, it happens, you deal with it and you get over it.
    You have gone so far out of your way to not get over it, going as far as to bring race in to it on Twitter against a guy that clearly was not bringing race in to it.

    As a member of the tech industry, I find your reaction to this totally disgraceful.

  9. adriarichards

    Kura,

    This is my space on the internet.

    I have the same policy as I do on my YouTube channel, “If it doesn’t add value to the conversation, it gets deleted”.

    I forgive you for your obvious baiting and trolling. It’s not going to get you very far here. I hope you learn to be more balanced and altruistic in your life choices.

  10. missdk

    Did you miss the part where she was at a professional conference and these men behind her were representing their companies? Seems problematic that you would immediately jump to your right to make sexual jokes anywhere and everywhere you please rather than consider the impact it makes on women in these spaces. That you would jump to NO JOEKS EVAR from the simple (yet brave) request to make spaces less hostile for women by keeping them professional. But what’s especially problematic in your response is that you conflate safe, close relationships with your girl friends with women you don’t know. If you can’t discern the difference of these contexts, you need to seriously sit down and reevaluate how you project privilege and power in these spaces.

  11. barbara

    Thank you so much for speaking up and being proactive about this. :) I’m a little ashamed now for all the inappropriate jokes I’ve let pass by over the years when maybe I could have done something to make the community just one iota more welcoming. Without the context, I’m sure a lot of people think that behavior like this is a one-time occurrence, but it’s really just another drop in the bucket. Maybe I’ve just become inured to it over the years, but my jadedness is no excuse not to speak up.

    Btw, if you get a chance, you should take a look at Katie Cunningham’s post from last year, “Lighten Up” – it adds a little more perspective to this whole thing (it’ll be like preaching to the choir to you, but her experiences will give you a little more backup).

    And don’t let the rude commenters get you down (although if it starts to get ugly, I recommend turning comments off – I did it last year, and I sleep so much better at night now). It’s your space to speak, you can do what you want with it.

  12. ajstar

    I consider myself a feminist and I agree the guy should have stopped with his immature comments. However I just have one question, did you ask him to stop, or say in your own words “That’s not cool”?

  13. Bob

    You didn’t really answer all of his questions. Was your publicly posted joke about stuffing your crotch with socks somehow less offensive than a “dongle” joke told in private between friends? I’m curious.

  14. Will Taylor

    Oh holy shit I can’t believe how much this pissed me off.

    I’m not even that mad at her twitter post. Fine, all of us can get mad over stupid stuff. I can get passive-aggressive too, if I’m tired and trying to listen and some clowns are sniggering in the back, I can see myself getting pissed and maybe venting somewhere.

    But what kind of person goes and elevates something like this and gets people ejected?

    Then what kind of company fires their employees because somebody didn’t like their jokes? What the? I really want to know who these guys worked for, and what kind of excuse that company has.

    And finally, what kind of person goes on to write a rambling self-serving inane blog post when they get people fired over a joke? If you are so concerned about how people are affected by other people’s actions, where is the soul searching when somebody is affected by yours?

    What a normal person would have done is turn around and confront those guys directly. You don’t have to tweet and call event organizers and passive-aggressive have somebody else deal with it for you. Or all right, fine, be passive aggressive, but there’s a limit to everything. If you find out that people lost their JOBS over your actions, you go and you do everything you can to get them their jobs back and you make it right.

    Your hurt feelings over somebody’s dumb joke are nowhere near equal to two people losing their jobs, especially in a state with the highest unemployment rate in the nation.

  15. joshuajonah

    How can you be so offensive in the name of equality? I thought programmers were logical.

  16. Jason Orendorff

    Hey. Thanks for speaking up, and wow, PyCon staff were on their toes, weren’t they?

  17. Christopher Dell

    What has to change is that everyone must take personal accountability and speak up when they hear something that isn’t ok. It takes three words to make a difference:

    “That’s not cool.”

    I don’t understand why you didn’t just do that in the first place?

  18. Jessy Lauren Blanchard

    You are a right and proper Twittle Tale. How come the guy who makes a bad joke about dongles gets dragged through the mud and eventually fired, yet the guy who made a much more condescending joke about female genitalia got off with a warning? Maybe you’d do better to consider your audience, as well, and deal with situations that make you uncomfortable rather than rely on the internet reactionary squad to fight your battles.

  19. a guy

    Sexual jokes are simply inappropriate in this context. You handled this well and I am proud of the PyCon folks for taking a stand and following through.

  20. Chris Jaure

    Wow, that took some guts. It’s awesome that PyCon has a Code of Conduct that makes reporting this kind of stuff a lot easier.

    Thanks for making the industry a better place for my daughters :)

  21. Jason Orendorff

    Seriously, 31 upvotes? Practically none of these points are even serious!

    [1] Yes, dick jokes are *much* more appropriate on twitter than at a professional conference.

    [2] Adria replied to this. Self-deprecating humor is usually OK.

    [3] That doesn’t read like innuendo to me at all.

    [4] I was there and I didn’t find that joke funny. It’s a tired stereotype. But I cannot imagine what your point is in pretending to take offense.

    More fundamentally: this kind of “gotcha” response is ad hominem reasoning, a logical fallacy. I can live with a little hypocrisy. It’s inevitable. What I can’t live with is men continually driving women out of the places where we as programmers come together to work and learn.

    I have a daughter.

  22. Evan Light

    Let’s get real for a second. There’s a big difference between jokes among friends and making such remarks in a public place. Sexual remarks don’t have a place at a technical conference.

    Yes, I’ve goofed once in this capacity in the past. But I learned.

    We all need to be aware of context. A small gathering of friends is a safe context for your own brand of humor. A professional gathering is a dicey one. Choose accordingly.

  23. KuraFire

    > Marty Pitt makes a very good point

    No he didn’t. To top it off, he wasn’t particularly respectful while doing his bullshit routine of pretending to be offended.

  24. svenfuchs

    Want people around you feel comfortable? Then stop doing things that might make others feel uncomfortable. Simple as that.

  25. Malia Stubben

    This is satire of what an overzealous feminist would do… right? You didnt *ACTUALLY* ruin 2 peoples(and by extension, their families) lives because of a immature and harmless joke, right? And you wouldn’t flaunt that ability as some wonderful accomplishment, right?

    The saddest part about all of this is, these women think this 3rd wave of feminism is going to work in their interest. It isnt. 3 months ago i would have considered myself a feminist, since we’re all trying to work for true equality, right? But the more i read about this…. the Anita Sarkeesian’s, the Rebecca Watson’s, and now the Andria Richard’s… The more i realize this is less about equality, and more about feelings of victimization and ‘getting even with men’, regardless what the individual did, just as long as he has a penis. Sorry, but i cant be associated with that anymore. Id rather hit the glass ceiling than blindly and arbitrarily ruin my peers lives because i dont have a penis.

    You’re a simple minded PERSON Andria. What you did reflects poorly on all of us women, but even worse on humankind.

  26. Jake

    If you’re going to a conference and you’ve got your employer’s name underneath yours in smaller font on that nametag, you’re on the clock and representing your organization.

    They didn’t lose their jobs because of Adria Richards, they lost their jobs because of unprofessional actions reflecting badly on their employers.

  27. adriarichards

    Snipeyhead, I hear you and I know how foul words and things roll off your tongue. I’m not asking you to change that.

    SUPPOSE…

    You saw a new waiter at your favorite restaurant picking his nose before serving food to your table, would you still eat there? I decided not to for that night. Sure I could have explained about hand washing and why picking your nose in public or private just isn’t that great of a human grooming task but I was hungry for a hot meal without drama.

  28. adriarichards

    Marty,

    It was your tone and inability to use critical thinking to acknowledge I’d answered your question before diving in for another attack.

    Your 8-bit avatar does not clearly disclose your race or gender. You look like a thumb with hair and glasses.

  29. Alicia Gibb

    I think you hit the nail on the head with the word “occasional” here. You’re absolutely right, I think most humans wouldn’t have a problem with the occasional childish remark. The problem is hearing this type of stuff over and over and over at various professional gatherings, work places, conferences, etc. When you’re female working in mostly male environment, it is an often occurrence, not occasional. And yep, I’m a feminist commenting on your comment, but you’re describing an exaggeration of feminism, or a straw feminist, please don’t do that. Feminists are just people believe women should have equal rights as men.

  30. Bobthecrusher

    Making two jokes does not equal harrassment in any way, they weren’t even saying it to you. Who do you think disturbed the crowd more? The two ‘sexists’ that made a couple quick comments then went back to listening, or you? You, who took a picture of them then called the convention’s security over to remove them?

    I cannot believe people like you are allowed to roam around free, purposely destroying other’s lives. I hope you never work again.

  31. Honestly Upset Caring Person..

    You remind me of North Korea… spew BS to get what you want then spew more BS to defend yourself. You handled this wrong. Accept it. You couldn’t have said something to him personally instead of going WAY OVER THE TOP with it. But as always, no point in saying anything since you will just delete anything you disagree with… Good job on all the blog views though… hope it was totally worth it…

  32. bla34112

    You got a man fired, for a joke you didn’t like?

    You do realize that this guy has 3 kids, right?

    3 kids, no job, because you disapproved of his joke… shame on you. Have you no heart? Do the lives of others mean nothing to you?

  33. horsemen war

    well I take offence to the fact that you think I should wory about offending offended people and demand that you remove this offencive post or else Ill file an offenceive offence clame with cyber police offence squad

  34. Robert J Goatse

    What passive aggressive douce you are. Those guys made a joke. You have tweeted se ist jokes in the past. Yea, you have. I hope you get fired, too.

  35. adriarichards

    and like public health, there was a code of conduct for the conference.

    You have the right to disagree with my actions.

    I took action, that’s the point.

    If you want to play devil’s advocate or paint your perceptions over my experience, that’s on you Snipeyhead.

    It’s not going to change me documenting my experience or encouraging others to speak up when they feel bothered, harassed disrespected or any other negatively associated feeling when attending tech conferences.

    I had a great time with many folks at PyCon, men and women. These guys behind me kept going…and kept going…until I’d had enough.

    They felt safe being anonymous in a crowd. I changed that power dynamic and this is what the uproar is really about.

  36. Joe Edwards

    A victim blamer? Nowhere in the article does it say that she was the butt of any of these jokes. It should also be noted that “forking” jokes are puns, not sexist. The humour arises from the fact that “forking” is so easily translatable to “fucking”. Big dongle jokes, also not inherently sexist, dongle has the word “dong” in it, slang for penis, and would sound like slang for penis even if “dong” wasn’t a word.

    Must we remove any jokes about “size matters” or about how muscular men are generally seen as more attractive? No, until it becomes personally insulting, there is no problem, and people need a little thicker skin. This article makes no mention of any victims at any point, other than those portrayed as sexist pigs, which any reasonable minded person can see is not evidenced anywhere in this article.

  37. Mark Smith

    I would like to address Adria directly, but anyone is more than welcome to add their impressions too.

    Adria,I think the comments they were making were not intended to hurt feelings or anything like that, but were still inappropriate. I applaud you for not allowing something like this to slide: it bothered you, and was at the very least encroaching on the Code of Conduct at PyCon. That said, you missed an important line in the CoC:

    Participants asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately.

    Now, if you had asked them to stop, and they had not, this would be a whole different story. But you did not ask them to stop. You didn’t address them directly because, in your own words, you “didn’t want to be heckled or have [your] experience denied.” Instead, you took their photograph without their permission and posted it to twitter and your 9000+ followers.

    You didn’t give them the chance to do the right thing. Instead, you publicly humiliated them, in front of all of the conference attendees, all of your twitter followers, and now all of the people who have read about the incident.

    I know there will be another time when someone says something offensive within earshot of you (or me, or everyone else). When that happens, before you take someone’s photo, affix a badge of shame, and splash it across the internet, take a minute to think. Think about all of the things you’ve said that might’ve been offensive, and what you wish the people who were offended had done to express their concerns to you.

    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Badge_of_shame , for reference)

  38. Bob Sale

    I absolutely agree women programmers are essential to the industry, otherwise we would be restricting half of the world’s population of creative and intelligent thinkers from contributing their ideas that move the world’s tech scene forward. A world at half efficiency. I find things like this encouraging. Women should definitely feel welcome and although I do agree those guys were being pinheads at a melting pot community meeting, the results of their bad humor were rather harsh. For instance, my neighbors across the street are loud, obnoxious, and curse like drunken sailors regularly during night hours(which I’m within my right to say, as I am a sailor who also drinks). Am I going to call their landlords and tell them “Oh yeah those tenants of yours were talking about some show in Tijuana, Mexico that involved sexual intercourse with a donkey, and I feel uncomfortable in this neighborhood for that reason alone.” So they can get evicted? No, I walk up to them and say “Hey buddy, can you take your conversations inside at night?” Everyone’s happy. Their family can keep their home and breathe the same air I breathe without so much as a single problem from that moment fourth. People understand, you just gotta say something. Comparing their behavior to genocides is ridiculous. Handled like a human being, not a damn corporate robot. Chastising of women started with religion. We now live in a world where science is turning man, woman, black, white, and everything under the sun into Homo Sapiens. So lets just cool off and look how far we’ve come. Lets hold less grudges against the past, and hold more sincerity towards our future. Jokes are jokes. Theirs weren’t even nearly as harmful as the crap I’ve heard around the world, degrading entire selections of Homo Sapiens.

  39. Joel

    Adria, above Snipe mentioned that it could have been her that made that type of joke(s). Would you have done the same things if it had been a woman making the jokes? Somehow I doubt it.

  40. adriarichards

    Sounds like you hit the nail on the head. All these efforts going on are to intimidate me into being a good, little, quiet woman who only speaks when spoken to. I will continue to speak up.

    And I’ll say it here again, I am not a feminist. Why? Because there is a much larger problem occurring at an institutional level and it all boils down to power.

  41. adriarichards

    @Mark,

    To be clear; the comments were not intended to build community and be inviting.

    It sounds like you haven’t experienced asking someone to stop and they haven’t.

    The guys behind me had the chance to do the right thing. It’s called “awareness”.

    While it seems you left a comment to “educate” me so i could “earn” your approval, thanks but no thanks.

    Were you at PyCon 2013? A personal experience from you own life vs you judging my actions would have been more valuable.

    When was the last time you spoke up at work or a conference on behalf of someone else? Share that story.

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