So, you made a mistake..

There was a recent incident that made the blogosphere go nuts, a slip during a talk (35 min through the talk).
As always, Matt Zimmerman had a very useful and thought through post.

Where to go from there ? Maybe read this (stole the article title for this blog post), or that and the ongoing discussion (thanks Jan).

So, Mark, why remain silent? Is commenting/apologising/moving on with it for the whole community not worth it? How many additional incidents will be needed for the Ubuntu community collective unconscious to take note that even under 3 % of the FLOSS population is not expandable ?

/me will patiently wait. Cheers :)

Times are changing.

For the best, I hope.

Ubuntu-Women got subscribed to a LP bug regarding nmap. Browsing through the provided link (see References), you can read this:

Political correctness
To cultivate a professional image, we long ago capitalized all references to God in error message text and also reworded all instances of “fucked up” to “borked”. We have now also changed this warning message: “TCP/IP fingerprinting (for OS scan) requires root privileges. Sorry, dude.” A woman reported that it was “highly offensive and sexist”, that “times have changed and many women now use your software”, and “a sexist remark like the one above should have no place in software.”

Although I do not read the “Sorry dude” as offensive or sexist, it was clearly exclusive, supposing only cool guys would use the application and read the warning. Good point.


LP bug report post
nmap release note

Tim Berners-Lee talks about women in IT

Tim Berners-Lee invented the WorldWideWeb. I like the screenshots of the browser you can find here :)

In a recent article on by Tom Espiner, he points at the “geek culture” that “that disregards the work of capable female engineers, and puts others off entering the profession.”
Interesting reading.

I’d like to point out that “geek culture” is only one of the ingredients to the under-representation of women in IT, or in Sciences in general. I see it also as a social and education issue (link to a related UF thread, with very good points discussed).
Of course, it would help a lot that women involvement/employment/careers gain the same opportunities than the men ones (the other way around is also true), and that women representations shift away from the hot chick/go-go dancer/blond with big boobs objectifications. Our society has to evolve, our education system has to stop renewing the usual stereotypes (all of them, including ethnics and religion, not only regarding gender).
Lots of work ahead!

Thanks to Aurelie who linked that article in the mailing list, and to all the humans who work towards integration, especially within Linux communities.

Women in Technology

Women in Technology

An O’Reilly series of articles on women in Tech, written by women, during the month of September. Looking forward to reading them. I’ll link them here as they come.

Thanks Liz for sharing this on a LinuxChix mailing list :)


ubuntuforums thread
Ubuntu-Women mailing list thread

Examples of women representations in Hi-tech ads (”Conseil Général des Yvelines” website and Linux Journal)

I wish to relay here two actions undertaken on LinuxChix mailing lists .org and .fr, links to websites are in right panel.
Both ads share the same visual support for Hi-tech, women body parts, in a French “Département” website or in a Linux paper mag. No need to remind me that yogurt or cars get the same type of ads. This is no proof of being adequate or that it will never change.

If you think, as I do, that Hi-tech can be sold to prospective customers without supposing that they are men (yes, they are women within these customers) who need to be comforted suggesting that the product, such as the women body, will always be available (*Ahem-cough-cough*, gentlemen, you’re worth much better than this), you could send an email (link « Nous écrire » or « Contact Us » on each websites). Thanks.

French version here.

Women representations in Ubuntu: yes, we can do it.

I blogged yesterday about a questionable women representation that got into Planet Ubuntu-fr.

I did not feed it into Planet Ubuntu-Women, or in Planet Ubuntu-Users. I also closed the comments, I already got into this kind of discussion (this fun, this is art, this is a (copyrighted) drawing, you have no humor, watch TV…) and heard it all.

As I stated, you can write, post, draw whatever you want in your private place, your home, your car, your blog, your site, your body, whatever you want. But a Ubuntu Planet, Forum, Mailing list, Wiki etc. is an official place, tied up by rules, representing the whole community. Women are no objects, neither are men, and Ubuntu spreads human values. This is one of the reasons that got me into it.

So I vented privately on my blog, and emailed Jono Bacon and Ubuntu Women mailing-list. Thanks to you, Matthias, probably thanks to you Jono, and Liz, and the ones in Sevilla who got the blog article removed from Planet ubuntu-fr.

It’s still on the original blog, which is fine with me.

Doing this alone does not work. I know it. Thanks community.

Looking forward to an official editorial policy :)