Re: Code Of Conduct

On 5/30/06, Christian Fredrik Kalager Schaller <uraeus linuxrising org> wrote:

> > A quick browse of intake statistics for the University of Western
> > Australia says that of 47 BCompSc freshers last year, only 2 were
> > women. For BEng (all majors) the female intake was only 10%.
> We seem to be far below 10%. And way below the 25% or so number that
> I've read for general proprietary involvement.

Well to bring up some anecdotal argumentation here. At Oracle the
consulting department, where I worked, about 70% of the developers where
women. One thing I can say for sure about these women was that they
couldn't care less about GNOME or GNU/Linux in general. They had a vague
general interest in the sense that it influenced their work when
customers deployed on GNU/Linux systems, but even the vaguest suggestion
about spending some personal time on a development project like GNOME
just gave me 'are you from Mars?' looks. The issue of harshness of
language in the community didn't even register as they where never
interested enough to engage on a level where that potentially could have
mattered, we lost them loooong before that.

So you could say, 'so what?', these women are not representative, its a
random example of some women you know and you can't apply their attitude
or behavior to women as a whole. To which I can only answer, I
absolutely agree.

So why did I bring it up? Well because the claim that harsh/rude
language is the reason more women isn't involved with the GNOME
community is based on the same kinda anecdotal evidence. So while I
don't oppose a 'code of conduct' document for GNOME I think we are being
rather naive if we think it will open the floodgates and bring big
amounts of female participation in GNOME projects.

Why does this need to change the male-female imbalance in
participation in order to be successful?  I don't understand that.

To be honest, we're a rather prickly bunch as a whole.  It tends to
not bother those of us who are in the community; in fact, not being
bothered by the prickliness of the community (or subelements thereof
-- not that most can tell the difference especially since we do little
to dull the sharp edges) is quite possibly a necessary attribute to be
able to not feel driven off from it.  Here's one section from a page
giving advice on joining the community from

 You will be flamed. As a rule of thumb, no matter what you do or
say, someone is
 going to flame you. It's just the way of the Internet. Some people who haven't
 learned this lesson yet get upset and storm off as soon as it
happens; don't do
 that. If you lurk on the mailing lists, you'll soon learn which
people are likely to
 have valid points and which are just habitual flamers. (Not that the two are
 mutually exclusive; some of the most productive hackers are also
huge flamers.)
 Develop thick skin, you're going to need it.

I think Murray's idea sounds like a great way to try to dull some of
the sharpness of the community.  Personally, I don't think it'd affect
the male/female or asian/european imbalances (though it might be a
helpful first step) but I do think it may help us grow the community
in all areas.

Just my $0.02,

[Date Prev][Date Next]   [Thread Prev][Thread Next]   [Thread Index] [Date Index] [Author Index]