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

Elizabeth Bevilacqua lyz at ubuntu.com
Wed Aug 8 11:07:10 UTC 2007

On 8/8/07, NurseGirl <thealp+ubuntu at gmail.com> wrote:
> I've been off sick for months, with a plan to come back to the
> community in August, and what a week to start getting back involved.

Glad to see you're back! I hope you're all recovered:)

> I'd suggest that we talk to Jono Bacon, as his role is community
> manager, and this is as much (or more) a community issue as it is a
> corporate operations issue. He's been very insightful and good at
> bringing reconciliation in the past. His blog says that he finishes
> his vacation on Wednesday, UK time., so probably just a couple hours
> after when this post is finished.
> I know what it's like to come back from vacation, but if he hasn't
> responded in a day or so, we should email the links to both
> mailing-list threads to him.

I respect this suggestion so I think I should explain more my
reasoning for not supporting taking this to Jono/Jane/CC.

F/OSS projects grow organically. People make changes, contribute, and
shape the community. Projects like Ubuntu-Women are built to use these
traditional methods to (slowly) change the landscape and make their
respective projects more aware of female contributions and to promote
MORE female contributions.

This has been proven to work. It worked for Debian-Women. It has
worked in my own LoCo team. Just about every person I work with in
Ubuntu these days is aware of what women go through because they've
seen it or I've pointed it out to them where they just hadn't seen it
before. One awesome guy in my LoCo team even told me that when he read
the "wives" comment on UWN he cringed and attributed that sensitivity
to me and the other women working in the LoCo team.

The risk by running to Jane, Jono or the CC every time a problem
arises is that it forces change to those who don't want it. This
causes significantly more conflict, these few guys who "don't get it"
and are feeling forced into being "Politically Correct" recruit their
friends to attack us and it becomes a terrible mess. People are smart,
if they read the exchanges on the lists they will draw their own
conclusions, and, from the response I received, we ARE changing minds
and making people aware.

For those of you who don't believe this approach is working and the
Ubuntu-Women project is making progress, please consider the IRC
channel. A year ago the channel was less than 10 women and a couple
lurkers and was trolled regularly. Today we have the support of
several key people in the Ubuntu project as well as A LOT more women.
Trolls are less common, and we're growing increasingly able to bat
them off with humor and by not letting their comments cause the
reaction they're trolling for. We're also still regularly gaining
members on our LaunchPad team.  I'm delighted to say that this past
week three women have joined my LoCo team in some capacity (whether it
be by joining launchpad or deciding to attend our BBQ this weekend -
and not as someone's wife!). These are key indicators of the changes
the project is making.

I concede that progress is slow and it can be terribly frustrating,
but I'm in this for the long haul :)

Elizabeth Bevilacqua

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