[UbuntuWomen] [ubuntu-marketing] UWN #51: "... and this evenincluded some wi

Jennifer Redman jenred at gmail.com
Tue Aug 7 20:12:30 UTC 2007

> I'd like to point out, though, that Mr Olive's comment seems to be of
> the drive-by variety; a search with Google through the ubuntu-marketing
> mail archives seems to indicate that he has no prior involvement on that
> list, so please don't assume that he speaks for the marketing team.
> Martin Albisetti, on the other hand, who has a bit more involvement, has
> done more than simply blow off suggestions that this should change.

Actually, I did read the entire thread before posting.  My biggest problem
is with the initial response by Martin Albisetti.  As a leader (his name is
on the newsletter masthead) it's his responsibility to set the tone of the
discussion.  His  response was defensive.  And then his follow-up response
trivialized the criticism:

>From the original thread (my emphasis added in bold):


I sincerely apologize if it came out too defensive, I was just
surprised (and a bit annoyed) it sparked two emails on such a small
detail, the first thing that popped into my head way "it's so much
easier to just take a peak at the UWN beforehand if these things are
so important".
Probably answered too quickly, and it goes without saying it only
represents my take on the matter, not the whole team's."

Of course, since the newsletter is a collaborative effort, there is
> little that one person can do about this matter directly, but I would
> hope that this notice will have made people a little more vigilant in
> their proof-reading.

Collaborative effort means everyone involved in writing, funding,
proof-reading and reading is responsible for the end product.  Leaders
within that group should be particularly vigilant with regards to staying on
message -- particularly in a marketing effort.  The Ubuntu message/mission
is an inclusive one.  Elizabeth and Melissa did their part as readers of the
newsletters and leaders in the Ubuntu community by pointing out that they
felt a specific item was not in tune with the Ubuntu message.  Expecting
them to also take the responsibility to proof-read as a response to a
criticism is ridiculous.  Martin's -- who takes a leadership role in
publishing the newsletter -- reply should have along the lines of:

"You know you're right, we didn't think through how "and wives" would be
interpreted.  Thanks for pointing this out, we'll publish a correction and
be sure to use more inclusive verbiage in the future."

And yes one person can make a difference in influencing and controlling the
tone of a mailing list thread, especially when they are a leader.  So often
women make logical, kindly worded responses on a subject which they are
inherent experts because of their gender to help steer the community away
from accidental sexism only to be lambasted for speaking up.

It's bad enough getting this sort of response on/in technical mailing
lists/forums, but it absolutely should NEVER happen in a Ubuntu community
dedicated to marketing.

I'm posting to the Ubuntu-Women mailing-list on this topic to support the
women who are making an effort to continue with the kindly worded
responses.  I'd also like to encourage them to take things to the Canonical
management when they receive the  sort of response they did in reply to
their criticisms from fellow leaders in the community, particularly when it
deals with marketing.

I have no desire to get involved in a session of bickering on the marketing

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