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comment by thenewgreen
thenewgreen  ·  3218 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The Results are In.

If you would like to see more women on Hubski (I share that wish btw) then invite some to join us :)

I recall reading the comment you mention and I don't think it was intentionally meant to be sexist. In fact, I think it was meant to be conciliatory. Apparently though, it could be construed as being sexist, but I think that intentions count for a lot in communication. In fact, what I gathered from the comment was that the person was trying to convey (in what appears to not be his native tongue) the gulf between the different communication styles between the genders. Something lil has spoken about it the past, something most of us are familiar with.

What I've witnessed in my time on Hubski has been an amazing amount of understanding and empathy from almost all the interactions between men, women and transgender users here and I think it's a disservice to our entire community to suggest that it is pervasively otherwise. That said, if you have felt this to the extent that you are worried to post something, well... that is concerning.

ALL THIS SAID....The community is small enough that if you invited 10 women that would be active participants, you would literally change the landscape here. Aggregators are largely male, why that is I am not entirely sure, I do think that the space suffers from this though. The most intelligent and interesting people I know in my private life are women. On Hubski, my favorite commentary is often from lil, Saydrah or insomniasexx and I've been introduced to the struggles and accomplishments of transgender people by Laurelai.

But we can't just rely on you or the other women of Hubski to invite females in to our fold, we fellas need to invite the brilliant women of our lives in to the mix, something I know briandmyers did, something I know that cW has also done and something that I also try to do.

    I think we ourselves could make that happen, and make this place the center of human interaction we all look towards it to be.
-The doors always open, invite away! and you were most certainly welcome in my book, which is why I followed you.


insomniasexx  ·  3218 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Hubski is FAR less sexist than most sites. That comes with the intelligent discussion and the lack of short, witty, pun-filled comments. The easiest jokes to make (like the ones that populate the top comments on sites like reddit) are the ones that make shallow jokes that sacrifice respect towards gender, sexual preference, race, religion etc.

I can mostly speak to reddit but there are two types of people who piss me the fuck off and reiterate the "the internet is sexist" impression. First, the short comments by people who probably aren't actually hateful but want attention and the people who actually have crazy fucked up opinions about certain groups. While enlightening to observe, I still stand by my GTFO -> go to the 1800's mofo.

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user-inactivated  ·  3218 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    Hubski is FAR less sexist than most sites.

Hang on, and I know this isn't the point you're making, but I've never seen any sexist comments or posts on this site at all. And certainly not from the 50 or so most active users.

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insomniasexx  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Alright you might be right on that one.

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lil  ·  3218 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Good morning all who are responding to these statistics, particularly IntimidatingScones who said this

    What is it about places like this that drive females away?
I would not draw that conclusion from the statistics. Your statement implies that women have visited here and been driven away by the content or attitudes of the posters. We have no evidence for that. In fact, I've been attracted by the content and attitudes of the posters and I belong to the 2% age demographic and the 5% gender demographic.

In a recent conversation with flagamuffin about Hubski as a Third Space we explored how an online community like Hubski is like a familiar coffee shop or bookstore. When you participate here for a while, it becomes like that and you return to see how your friends are doing and what they are thinking. When one of your friends doesn't show up for a while, you worry. Has littlebirdie's cancer returned? How is mk recovering from his flu?

Perhaps male-gendered people 18-24 have a greater capacity for this sort of hanging out, maybe they come back for the music, the news, the coffee. Maybe women prefer face-to-face meetings, maybe they just do not find their way here. Hubski does not give instant gratification and you do have to give a lot before you get back, so it might be frustrating. Intimidating Scones: I've read your posts because 90% of your posts have been text, and I'm interested in what people think and write, moreso than links to videos or articles. That's just me. Other people are looking for science or music or whatever.

1. Re Sexism There may well be offensive people on Hubski. If you could see who I am ignoring and muting, you will see who some of them are. What might be an insensitive comment, might also just be someone whose writing is not 100% clear. If that might be the case, say "What do you mean?" and engage in a dialogue. As you can see here, I was once disturbed by this comment but satisfied with the clarification.

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JTHipster  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

To explain the nale demographic, men are typically the dominant gender in the IT fields and usually end up at the front of whatever new is happening on the internet, with exceptions of course.

Because a great deal of internet culture developed first with men and has only really started adapting to large numbers of women a couple years back, its to be expected that a new site is going to have a predominantly male userbase, especially a content aggregator. If Hubski hits a reddit like period of growth then you can expect the female userbase to grow in turn.

That being said, I will be sure to invite some women I know on here if they seem like they'd fit. An echo chamber is always a terrible place to be unless you feel like stagnating.

....except that the mindset of echo chambers being negative is just a product of the echo chamber of being in an intellectual community. Circles within circles, all the way down.

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mk  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    How is mk recovering from his flu?

Much better, thanks!

Myabe not clear-headed enough to weigh in here yet, though. :)

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user-inactivated  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Good post; I agree.

    Has littlebirdie's cancer returned?

I haven't heard from her in quite sometime. I've been thinking about that this week.

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thenewgreen  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I'm concerned too. Could be she just moved on though.

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user-inactivated  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I hope not! She was going to send me a copy of her book cum memoir, and I was going to send her back something cool and I was really looking forward to that.

Selah, I guess.

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thenewgreen  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I bought one of her books from Amazon about 4 weeks ago and it still hasn't arrived. I should probably look in to that...

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user-inactivated  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Yeah, either she never got mine off, or it got waylayed. I messaged her but didn't get a response.

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thenewgreen  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I emailed her. I hope she is well.

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cW  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  

This is a really interesting thread. Alas, the whole discussion relies on some really shifting and non-determinable factors, each of which is chocked full of myriad possible causes. Why is hubski predominantly male? (Assuming that the test group was representative, and that it _is_ in fact predominantly male -- this is probably the least of all necessary leaps to be found in this discussion). Well, if it is predominantly male, then it might just be so because it's predominantly male.

I don't mean this just as tautology, or as blatant circular reasoning for its own caddyshack-esque sense of pseudo-zen. I mean rather that many situations are self-perpetuating. To whatever extent that styles of communication/objects of inquiry or interest are at all gender-specific or determined (and of course behind each of these quotients stands a rat's nest of conflicting evidence and well-informed, well-reasoned opinion), these patterns are likely to perpetuate themselves and to reinforce existing lines of demographic composition.

Fortunately, this is a community created (largely) by a consensus of contributors. The only guidelines (and these are really only enforced by practice and example, rather than by edict) are that subjects be raised for thoughtful consideration and discovery, and that discussions be conducted with at least civility, if not collegiality. If anyone would like to suggest that these orientations are at all gender-exclusive, I'm willing to hear your argument (as I'm willing to hear just about any argument), but I think you'll be facing an uphill struggle. In short, the field of play is open, and hubski will continue to define its identity as it continues to grow and change. I am personally refreshed by how much lucid discourse can be found on this site, and how little space or attention is given to trolls, to vandals, or to any other variety of cyber-bully. Regarding diversity of viewpoint, not just of gender, but of all varieties: bring it on!

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wiffleaxe  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I'm new here, but I'm wondering what will happen if there is an influx of members, as far as moderation is concerned, to keep the discussion civil and on-topic? I honestly see that as being the make-it-or-break-it moment as far as bullying is concerned.

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thenewgreen  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  

First of all, welcome, that is a valid question wiffleaxe. Like any site, it's impossible to completely insulate any discussion completely unless we were to become a gated community, which is something that has occasionally come up. As it is, you can ignore and mute other users. When you ignore a user, their content doesn't show up in your feed and you essentially don't see anything they post, but they could still comment on your posts. When you "mute" a user, they can no longer comment on anything you post. You've essentially "silenced" them. That said, they can still comment in other peoples posts that you partake in.

We are very aware of potential threats to the overall good-natured community we have and are open to suggestions. As new needs arise, we develop new methods. There is no doubt that having an "influx" of users presents new challenges, but that is a great way to test what we have created and to present new opportunities for change.

Bring it on!

Hope you enjoy yourself here wiffleaxe, feel free to PM me if you have any questions.

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wiffleaxe  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Thanks!

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user-inactivated  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

IntimidatingScones and I talked about this, and we came to the conclusion that Hubski didn't feel welcoming from the start for her. This makes me worry for new users.

Example:

Let's take this from the view of a new user. The new user, after lurking for maybe 20 minutes, makes a post that is quite interesting to them, but it may be controversial to others. They believe Hubski will accept their post, because a friend told them Hubski was a cool and accepting community. Another user makes a comment on the new user's post that could have been written better and the new user sees as unnecessarily harsh. The new user doesn't know about the ignore function, and is quite hurt that someone would be that mean. Thus the new user decides to quit coming to Hubski, and moves on believing that the whole of Hubski is similar.

END SCENE

If I tried to integrate into a community and that happened to me, I can assure you that I would move on and never look back. Luckily it didn't happen to me, but that doesn't mean that it won't happen to other new users in the future. Sure maybe it's assuming too much of the community, but the new user doesn't know that. Haven't you ever been put off of something after trying it out for the first time? I agree that there is the aspect of the commenters intentions being good, but not everyone would ask for clarification after being offended. Some people would rather just drop the issue as a whole.

But you ask, "Why should you care what some anonymous user on the internet thinks of your one post? Screw them and move on!"

I ask, "Why not?"

Because it's some random person's opinion? It still hurt. If someone came up to you on the street and said that shirt was ugly, wouldn't that hurt? It's the same thing. Sure it may not be a big deal to you, but it will be a big deal to others.

I'm not saying that hubski as a whole is like this, I love hubski and the community, but if you were that new user would you say the same thing?

The point I believe, and correct me if I'm wrong dear, is that we can do better. Better moderating posts, better calling people out, better communicating, and just having a better community in general. There aren't any mods, so we must be the moderators. We need to set down a list of ground rules as to what we want this community to be, and to support.

We need to be the change.

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kleinbl00  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Oh

for

fuck's

SAKE.

You wanna air dirty laundry? Let's air some fucking dirty laundry because if you're going to make me your fucking bogeyman, we're gonna see both fucking sides of the coin.

@intimidatingscones@ is butt-hurt because in response to this, which I saw as the archetypal "suffering beats success" diatribe about art, I posted a fucking Van Halen-grade Motivational Speech.

I was immediately muted ("The new user doesn't know about the ignore function, and is quite hurt that someone would be that mean!") and recieved this love-letter:

    I don't know what got you so damn butthurt, but lay the fuck off the young writers. It took me seven years to write it because I was going to high school, through college, AND learning to write, all with severe dyslexia. It had to be rewritten A LOT because I was doing that oh so shameful thing called learning. Fucking get over yourself. You want me to yelp to the high heavens, well good job because nothing pisses me off more than one writer trying to shove their insecurities and deadlines up another writer's ass. If you're pissed that you sold out and I didn't then be pissed at yourself; don't go mucking up my parade.

    If sympathy fucks are the worst kind, then gift my book to someone who will actually read it for enjoyment. I don't need shit from you.

To which I spent an hour crafting this response:

    Well then.

    1) I have no reason for knowing you're young.

    2) I have no reason for caring you're young.

    3) I have no reason for knowing you have dyslexia, severe or otherwise.

    4) I have no reason for caring if you have dyslexia, severe or otherwise.

    5) Writing isn't graded on a curve.

    6) Writing isn't graded at all.

    Wanna be a writer? Write. Don't make excuses. Want me to read your writing? Tell me why it's awesome, not why it's so hard for you. I mean you exactly zero ill will, now as then. I still have a great deal of sympathy despite the fact that you do not seem prepared to hear anything that isn't delivered in the tone of voice you require.

    If your brony buddies asked you why they should read your book, would you tell them that it's an erudite exploration of self delivered through fantasy? Or would you tell them that you worked really hard on it? 'cuz even your friends need a compelling reason.

    I've got scripts my wife hasn't read. That's not an insecurity thing, that's a "I don't think it's for you" thing. If your writing isn't for your friends, don't expect them to read it. Do expect, however, to have to fight for your readers, always and forever.

    Helen Keller wrote a book. So did Christy Brown. Adversity's a bitch, don't get me wrong... but in the end, the only reason people read books is because they're entertaining. You can call that "selling out." I call it "putting food on my family."

    It's a quote, by the way. "Barbaric YAWP." Walt Whitman - who, even though he was a conscientious objector, wandered around civil war battlefields ministering aid because he wasn't afraid to get dirty. Died at 72, lungs shriveled to the size of bananas, unable to walk for the past 20 years, having finished his "deathbed edition" of Leaves of Grass.

    I doubt either Whitman nor Hemingway drew comfort from describing themselves as "failed."

Still muted, I received in response:

    Bona Fortuna, Miselle Passer.

(Good luck, unfortunate little sparrow)

In short, to reward two solid hours of effort spent delivering honest, heart-felt, tailored advice to another writer, I got "fuck off and die" and "Latin insults are the best kind of insult."

I'm still muted. If I want to have a conversation with IntimidatingScones it's via PM, and that worked out oh so very fucking well.

So you know what? The problem here isn't the community. The problem here is that some people really want to be offended. She's got me on mute, so I can't say anything to her one way or the other, nice or mean.

But if you wanna keep talking backwards about the big bad boogeyman who, in fact, is one of the few people to actually make an effort (one writer to another) to address the core feelings rather than saying "there, there, it's noble to think that you suck" you might wanna get your facts straight and see just how much of a terrible person that boogeyman actually is.

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IntimidatingScones  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  

kleinbl00, I muted you because you're a jerk to me and a lot of people. It's not news to anyone around here, but it was news to me a week ago. This isn't about you being a jerk though. It's about someone completely different saying something sexist that might drive women away. It might explain the trend. Seen above. In the graph.

Not about you.

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kleinbl00  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  

You muted me because I told you what I thought you needed to hear instead of what you thought you needed to hear and because you aren't actually interested in discussing your ideas in open discourse. But that's okay. We'll get into it further because you and your boyfriend are an informative case study.

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IntimidatingScones  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    We'll get into it further because you and your boyfriend are an informative case study.
Point and fact. Don't be a jerk and people won't mute you.
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kleinbl00  ·  3215 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Interesting. So "audience" equals civility?

Are you sure you want to go with that?

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thenewgreen  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

    we came to the conclusion that Hubski didn't feel welcoming from the start for her.
Here is her first post, I'm not sure how we could have been more inviting? Let me know.

You're definitely right that we could do a better job of letting people that are new know about the tools at their disposal. These tools are designed so that we can take control of our experience here so that we don't need people moderating behavior on your behalf. It will never be perfect, but we can certainly strive for it to be better. This said, the post that hurt her feelings was overwhelmingly positive. The negatives that she felt came from a minority of comments that seem to me to have been intended to give helpful advice but did so using a forwardness and perhaps an aggression that obviously offended her. But if I walk around asking people what they think of my shirt, I might brace myself for the possibility that someone may not like it. If 9/10 like it and are kind in their interpretation of it, I'd count that a victory. But that's just me.

I agree that the best way we can build a thoughtful community is to "be the change". Set examples for new users by conducting ourselves via the "golden rule". But I don't think I'd like to visit a place where everyone always told me my shirt looked good. Sometimes it's nice when people don't like your shirt and tell you why.

I'm glad you like it here, I do too. I'm glad you and others in the community try and think about ways to improve the site, including IntimidatingScones -her first post was about a suggestion that we adopted. This is a journey that we're on and the site is definitely changing and will continue to. Glad to have you aboard. I'm going to think on ways to make the new users experience better. Thanks for the food-for-thought dupurz.

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IntimidatingScones  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  

To clarify, I never said I was angry about the suggestions for my writing, or even that I was angry about the sexism, but just pointed it out using myself as an example. I never raked anyone across the coals in any of my interactions in those threads. I explained my point of view with the suggestions and ignored the sexism assuming it was just one person. But a graph like that suggested to me that I might not be the only one getting that treatment, that it might not have been a fluke after all. I posted my observation and a suggestion of support and action. I'm sure, thenewgreen, you're point is somewhere on the cusp of "We aren't all sexist," and yes, I agree. It was overly dramatic. I'm sorry.

I was just trying to say let's watch out for one another, ok?

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user-inactivated  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Whoops okay so maybe not " from the start, " but you see my point. While I agree the post was overwhelmingly positive I've found that most people, even in a sea of support, focus on the one negative. I'm guilty of this myself. I agree that being in a community that always said positive things would become drab. However, if they could say it in a better way, that would be preferable. Maybe that's asking too much, but it's what I would like.

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thenewgreen  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

That doesn't exist in real life, yet alone online communities. I would suggest you go through all of the interactions IS and yourself have had on this site and then ask yourself what Hubski could have done differently? I'm not seeing it, aside from making the tools available more obvious.

Anyways, on to other topics :) hope you two have a great night.

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user-inactivated  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

You too! Sorry for the miscommunication. Hope all is well.

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user-inactivated  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Problem.

    and is quite hurt that someone would be that mean. Thus the new user decides to quit coming to Hubski, and moves on believing that the whole of Hubski is similar.

    If I tried to integrate into a community and that happened to me, I can assure you that I would move on and never look back.

Hypersensitive users like your hypothetical are not who I want to be a part of my internet experience, anyway. Do we want to be known as a "cool and accepting" community? Well, personally I'd rather we be known as a knowledgeable and intelligent one, if we're known as anything, which hopefully we won't be. Cool is fine. Whatever "accepting" means, I see as an afterthought. Just one man's opinion, although I'm reasonably sure kleinbl00, who your hypothetical seems mostly directed at, would agree with me.

    The point I believe, and correct me if I'm wrong dear, is that we can do better. Better moderating posts, better calling people out, better communicating, and just having a better community in general. There aren't any mods, so we must be the moderators. We need to set down a list of ground rules as to what we want this community to be, and to support.

I'm not sure what you've seen on hubski, and what you've seen on the internet in general, to make you think that hubski isn't one of the only bastions of acceptance and intelligent discussion I've ever found anywhere online. I mean, you're talking about "reforming" an internet third space that is worlds better than anything remotely of its ilk. No point. Enjoy it for what it is, use the ignore button, or move on if you see fit.

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kleinbl00  ·  3217 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It's not like effort wasn't made to reach out.

I love how my comments have suddenly become "sexist" when at the time, she accused me of picking on the young.

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user-inactivated  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I don't know what you want me to say, haha. You're obviously in the right. And just as obviously the issue doesn't have anything to do with gender. I don't really care, I'm gonna go back to my weekly music threads; I like them.

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kleinbl00  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Vaya con dios. I was simply responding to point out that I'd responded.

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user-inactivated  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  
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IntimidatingScones  ·  3216 days ago  ·  link  ·  

It is a lot to do with better, and so much to do with new users.

A big part of my point is that when you're new to a site you don't know the norm, you don't know the local trolls (COUGHSEEBELOWCOUGH!) and the only way to do that is to lurk. Which is probably why that's exactly what most people do. But I'm not a wallflower. I prefer to go up to people and say "hi."

But yeah, when I'm very quickly discriminated against, the community pales quickly even if the local moderator did say "Welcome, nice to have you around."

The comment was hurtful to me. I have never seen men and women communicate differently. I don't write that way because I didn't observe that. Could it be possible lil noticed that difference because she is a different generation? Maybe older men and women feel more of a barrier, because in their times issues were still being ironed out? Nowadays, supporting behavior like that is a bit backwards. Let's not undo the work that lil and her generation worked so hard to accomplish.

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Laurelai  ·  3218 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Its transgender people not transgendered

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thenewgreen  ·  3218 days ago  ·  link  ·  

edited....and my education continues. My sincere apologies Laurelai, thank you for the correction.

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Laurelai  ·  3218 days ago  ·  link  ·  

:)

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