You mean this stuff helps?


Sue Black recounts her experiences as a woman in computer science.

Carrying out research for a PhD in computer science and going to academic conferences I was very much in a minority as a woman. The ratio was around 2:8 female to male, or lower, and sometimes this made things a bit uncomfortable. I remember going to one conference where, after being told by my supervisor that I needed to network at conferences, I approached a couple of guys during a break to discuss the previous session. I plucked up courage and said something friendly about the last speaker to start a conversation with them. They looked me up and down, and then started talking to each other as if I hadn’t said anything. I stood there feeling really silly, realized after about thirty seconds that they were going to continue to ignore me, and then walked away feeling absolutely mortified.

I had a few other encounters similar to this, and of course some good ones too, but I never felt completely at ease in that type of situation. That was until I went to a conference in Brussels for women in science. This time there were about one hundred women and two men. As I walked into the conference room and stood looking around wondering where to go and sit, a woman came over and started talking to me. We had a great chat and joined a conversation with some other women, probably about why we were at the conference and what we hoped to get out of it. What an amazing difference. I met some truly amazing, inspiring and supportive women. That conference changed my life.

I had thought that it was me, and my lack of social skills, that was preventing me from enjoying academic life to the full. Now I realized that wasn’t the case.

Read the whole thing. You know that stuff about women doing it in high heels and backwards? Try getting a Ph.D. as a single parent with 3, later 4, kids.

Comments

  1. crocodoc says

    Let me mansplain:

    The reason why she felt better at that conference is that women there only talk about girlish stuff like how they want to be treated equally, while in a conversation with men they have to talk about actual computer science.

  2. pHred says

    I hate the general conferences in my field, though the ratio of women to men is better in general, in my sub-discipline it was just about as bad. I thought I was the odd one too, until I started working with an international, interdisciplinary group with close to a 1:2 ratio and populated by men willing and able to listen to women. It was WONDERFUL! Life got sooooo much better and I am way more productive now even though I basically ended up abandoning 10 years worth of research in my original field.

  3. Renee says

    Im in renewable energy, and there are so few other women, especially in non-customer service/HR positions. Most conferences have ratios even worse than 2:8. Thankfully, I never experienced any rudeness. I am not sure why this is, since I dealt with men 99% of the time.

    I was at a (German) company that wanted to hire women, recruited for them specifically. They managed to get 2 of us in my department (out of 20+, and I was the only one for years.), and found *one* to be the head (and only) of US engineering. The CA office was 98% male.
    Back in Germany, where the home office is, HALF of all staff- engineers included- were women. Walking through the office was amazing.

    It is getting better in RE now, but the ratios are STILL very low. I wonder why the harassment and rudeness is so much less? It is a forward looking industry, maybe this helps?

  4. Rob Bos says

    System administration, as a profession, has a similar problem – it takes truly determined and extraordinary women to deal with some serious institutional sexism, though I suppose it varies from place to place. It is a problem and will be a problem for some time.

    There’s a Women in Advanced Computing conference happening this week.

    https://www.usenix.org/conference/wiac13

  5. Lynn Dewees says

    Despite the first name, I’m a guy.

    I started my professional career in 1980. At the first national conference I attended (Air Pollution Control Association), there were WOMEN IN BIKINIS standing in front of manufacturers’ displays to convince men to come in and have a look. I have seen plenty of sex discrimination in my life.

    I’m not convinced that “men didn’t talk to me at a conference” is sex discrimination. Also, having a “few other encounters similar to this, and of course SOME GOOD ONES TOO” (emphasis mine) sounds exactly right for trying to network in ANY situation. When I was younger and more bashful, and even today, trying to start a conversation with a GROUP of people I do not know is difficult. People tend to be cliquish and turn their back on strangers in those situations because when you try to break into their group, you are pushing into their comfort zone.

    Note that at the women’s conference, she was STANDING BY HERSELF when someone came up to talk to her. When I’m in a new situation, with people I don’t know, I start by walking up to someone who looks as lost as me. It’s an easy way to meet people.

    Just to be clear, I know that sex discrimination happens and I am sure Ms. Black could provide plenty of other non-conference related incidences. This particular set of incidences just seems to be everyone’s experience at conferences and networking events.

  6. =8)-DX says

    2 : 8 ?

    Out of 10, silly. No wait.. Darn, ratios feel different when written down differently. Compare:
    1/4
    25%
    One in four.
    2 : 8

    Those 8 big men standing next to the 2 women… it must be that feminist rhetoric distorting statistics or women are bad at maths or something!

  7. =8)-DX says

    @Lynn Dewees
    she expands on this:

    I had a few other encounters similar to this, and of course some good ones too, but I never felt completely at ease in that type of situation.

    Even *if* it is true that as a man you experienced the same rejections during conferences, that doesn’t excuse the rude behaviour and points to a different socialisation of men and women towards cross-gender or inter-gender communication and is therefore a gender-gap problem.

  8. sezit says

    Oh, my. Brings back memories. I was an engineering major in the mid 80’s – male students would deliberately slam the door in my face as I came to it. Professors would single out female students to pick on. Internships where I was groped, stalked, and blamed for it. Reporting back to the college, they had nothing to offer. Graduating, joining professional orgs where men would turn their backs as I tried to talk to them. New jobs where I was cat-called, stared at, and sexually assaulted – then blamed for it. Not just by my management, but also by HR and my friends too!
    After 10 years of professional work, my little brother graduated with his engineering degree. I took him to a Society of Women Engineers meeting, where everyone was – of course! kind, friendly, and helpful. I told him my experiences, and asked that he treat women kindly in his professional life. Amazingly, he absolutely had no clue what I was talking about, and still doesn’t.
    I would never choose engineering again if I could go back. Needless to say, I still carry a chip on my shoulder.

  9. Lynn Dewees says

    #9 @=8)-DX
    *IF* that is your real name…..
    1.*If* you are suggesting that I am lying about my experience, f*** you.
    2. I am NOT excusing rude behavior, I am explaining it. There is a difference.
    3. You make a leap to “points to a different socialisation of men and women towards cross-gender or inter-gender communication and is therefore a gender-gap problem” without ANY logic. If you have some logical connection, please present it.

  10. =8)-DX says

    @Lynn Dewees
    0. Of course not. Why is that relevant?
    1. Sorry no, I was suggesting that your experiences might not be equivalent, although you feel that way.
    2-3. The connection is that how *you* (as a man) view social rejection and rudeness at conferences with how Sue Black (as a woman) did. Socialisation is just one possible cause, but I lept to that conclusion because of personal experiences: I often feel I’m able to accommodate “rude” male behaviour, while not being subject to broad gendered harassment myself. It seemed to me that this experience was not just anecdotal, since the author of the linked article had come out of an abusive marriage and had first-hand experience of gendered abuse. My point was that you can’t just simply equivocate your experience in this situation, because the “technically” very same behaviour by other conference attendees may have been differently motivated, not have included the same genedered behaviours (“looked me up and down”).
    You may be right that interacting with other groups of people at conferences is difficult, but I don’t think you can just assume that the gendered component wasn’t there. Sue Black clearly felt that way and had differing experiences when interacting with women and men.

  11. Lynn Dewees says

    #10 @sezit
    The first time I went to an SWE meeting (early 1990s), I was totally blown away by how different it was from what I experienced in the local National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE). The men at the NSPE meetings were totally trying to be dominant at all times. (As far as I recall, no one stood up on a table and pounded his chest, but still). The SWE meeting was very low key and friendly. I haven’t been to one or the other in quite some time, so I don’t know if it’s still the same.

  12. Lynn Dewees says

    @=8-DX
    Here is how I interpret what you are saying:

    1. Everyone experiences the same rejections at conferences, male or female.
    a. Males reject males
    b. Males reject females
    c. Females reject males
    d. Females reject females
    2. If a female experiences a rejection at a conference from a male, it is automatically sexism. No other explanation.

  13. CaitieCat says

    Her experience is why, after a final year of high school where my average in six math and science classes was 95%, and my average in History and English was 45%, I decided to apply to General Arts as a major, and eventually settled on linguistics. Because I knew I’d be transitioning within a few more years, and I knew that this was how women were treated in the STEM professions, and I simply didn’t have the courage to deal with the heavy-duty misogyny on top of the heavy-duty transphobia.

    I know a number of other women, many of them technical writers, who are excellent at that because they’ve been techies all their lives, but who stayed away from STEM because they didn’t want to have to fight every hour of every wasted bloody day with jackasses defending their turf.

    I’m grateful, though, that we’ve had a man come along who has told us not to worry our silly little heads about it, and that he’s quite sure it wasn’t sexism we’ve experienced, because…well, because, that’s why. I mean, if he hasn’t seen it that way, then it obviously isn’t that way, because if the world has taught us nothing else, it’s that if you need a strong opinion on what women experience, ask a man.

    Obviously.

  14. echidna says

    Lynn,
    You are off the mark. You have assumed that Sue Black couldn’t tell the difference between a sexist rejection and the result of shyness, with all of the sexism you know she must have experienced over the decades that you have not. Sure rejection happens for all sorts of reasons, but you are not trusting someone who would have experienced it all to correctly classify the experience. You, however, know better because…..because you can think of a situation that might fit Sue Black’s description that you would classify in a different way. Have I misunderstood you?

  15. jim1138 says

    I have seen this sort of thing happen in biotech as well. A very intelligent woman with a PhD offering an excellent suggestion and the men continue talking as if she hadn’t said a thing. She later quit and to get a law degree. Unfortunately, I was too stunned, naive, and really, cowardly to say anything. That wasn’t the only woman to quit that company for those reasons. I have also seen it at other biotech companies. A woman points out a problem with a male engineer’s design and is ignored. I did give this guy a lot of grief over this, but I don’t think he learned anything. Similar issues with his wife. Might have been a learning disability…

  16. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Oh I see Lynn, your opinion is accurate and germane while the opinion of the woman how experienced the events detailed is not. Fuck you.

  17. otrame says

    So Lynn Dewees, you just wanted to give a perfect example of mansplaining, showing how ridiculous and stupid it is, and forgot to add the (snark) tag at the end, right? I mean you didn’t really just come here, of all places, and be dismissive and condescending to a woman who has described her experiences, explaining that she was wrong (and rather silly), right?

  18. Lynn Dewees says

    #19 @otrame
    If you can demonstrate where I described anyone’s experience as silly or ridiculous or stupid, I’ll give you $1,000.

  19. Ariaflame, BSc, BF, PhD says

    No, you just dismissed her perceptions. You suggested, against the lived experience of many women, that men and women get treated exactly the same in STEM conference settings.

  20. Lynn Dewees says

    #18 @FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist)

    Fuck you too. Have we advanced this discussion?

  21. Lynn Dewees says

    #21 @ Airaflame, BSc, BF, PhD, LMNOP

    If you can demonstrate where I “dismissed her perceptions” I will give YOU $1,000.

  22. John Morales says

    [meta]

    Lynn, I get it: you claim not to be convinced that her perception was accurate, based on your own experiences.

    (I’m not convinced that you’re genuine, and that carries no less weight than your own claim)

  23. otrame says

    @20

    Well, I can’t earn that money, since I did not claim you said her experience was silly or ridiculous or stupid. I said you told us that you were pretty sure her interpretation of the events in question was wrong. And you implied pretty strongly that she was being naive and rather silly to interpret her experience as sexist behavior.

    Do you really think that at a conference of a profession traditionally considered to be “men’s work”, where men outnumber women at the levels she describes, that her experience would be substantially the same as your own and therefore, she must have misinterpreted?

    Assuming for a moment that your intentions are genuinely benign, try actually WATCHING how women are talked about and treated in environments like that. If you are just another man that assumes he knows all about a woman’s experience in life, so women should shut up and listen to your wisdom, just fuck right off.

  24. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    You’re not interested in discussion Lynn. If you were you’d have addressed the majority of what I said rather than the emotional tag I added at the end to convey my disgust at your privileged bit of manspaining.

  25. Lynn Dewees says

    #24 @John Morales

    Please provide ONE example that shows I am not genuine? I’m even using my real name. Are you?

  26. Lynn Dewees says

    #25 @otrame

    Your “arguments” have already become tiresome. I have not in any way stated or even “implied” that Ms. Black was being silly or naive. I stated, (I think clearly) that people behave badly at these conferences. Please show where I said Ms. Black was silly or naive. Perhaps you would like to go back and re-read what I wrote or perhaps you would not.

  27. John Morales says

    Lynn, you made your claim and I doubted it, just as she made hers and you doubted it.

    (Such symmetry!)

  28. Lynn Dewees says

    #26 @ FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist)

    Your original post:

    “Oh I see Lynn, your opinion is accurate and germane while the opinion of the woman how experienced the events detailed is not. Fuck you.”

    What was I SUPPOSED to respond to? There is NO ARGUMENT there. Perhaps you would like to go back and read what I ACTUALLY posted, or perhaps you would not.

  29. Lynn Dewees says

    #25 @otrame
    “you just wanted to give a perfect example of mansplaining, showing how ridiculous and stupid it is”

    “since I did not claim you said her experience was silly or ridiculous or stupid”

    2 quotes from you. Apparently, I can’t understand English.

  30. echidna says

    Lynn,
    Let me draw your attention to my comment at #16, and reiterate my question. Have I misunderstood you?
    For the record, I’m an engineer that’s been around the traps a while too.

  31. =8)-DX says

    @Lynn Dewees

    Here is how I interpret what you are saying:

    Almost.

    1. Everyone experiences the same rejections at conferences, male or female.
    a. Males reject males for reasons (ingroup/outgroup)
    b. Males reject females for reasons (ingroup/outgroup, sexism)
    c. Females reject males (ingroup/outgroup, but more socialised to be accepting)
    d. Females reject females (ingroup/outgroup, but more socialised to be accepting)
    2. Females experience rejections at conferences more for reasons of sexism, and due to their experience of sexism in general life, they are more likely to feel unwelcome at male-dominated conferences than men.

    This of course being evidenced by.. wait for it womens’ related experiences, such as by Sue Black:

    They looked me up and down

    As well as her description of the female-majority conference and other experiences with interacting with women vs. men in her article.

    This particular set of incidences just seems to be everyone’s experience at conferences and networking events.

    Because it’s also your experience, doesn’t mean it’s everyones. And everyone’s experience is obviously not the same, because Sue Black experienced sexist behaviours and felt unwelcome due to her gender.

  32. Lynn Dewees says

    #32 echidna

    Sorry, I had to respond to the knee-jerk responses before I could look at yours. Thanks for bringing it up again. Yes, you have misunderstood me. I believe that my original post clearly explains WHY I think Ms. Black was not being subjected to sexism in THE PARTICULAR INSTANCES that are raised in the discussion at the top of this article.

    First, yes, I believe that is it possible to conflate sexist rejection and shyness. As someone who was EXTREMELY shy as a young professional, I was MORE THAN willing to assume there was something wrong with me when I couldn’t strike up a conversation with strangers at a trade show or conference or networking event. I was REJECTED, even though I was a man, or even IN SPITE OF the fact that I was a man, because I did not know how these things worked.

    Second, Ms. Black herself said “I had a few other encounters similar to this, and of course some good ones too”. So the BAD experiences were sexist but the GOOD experiences were………..what?

    Go back and read the section about the women’s conference. She was ALONE and someone came up to speak to her. Is that because it was a WOMEN’S conference or because someone smart saw Ms. Black and that she needed help? How does this compare to the GOOD experiences she had at non-women based conferences?

    To just repeat what I said in my original post (if anyone bothered to actually read it?)

    “Just to be clear, I know that sex discrimination happens and I am sure Ms. Black could provide plenty of other non-conference related incidences. This particular set of incidences just seems to be everyone’s experience at conferences and networking events.”

  33. CaitieCat says

    So…she was on the scene, and explains the ways in which sexism informed her experience.

    You decide, based on your long experience as a woman – no, wait, that’s not it. You just offer your opinion that because you don’t experience sexism at conferences, then clearly she has no idea of what she experienced, and your opinion should hold because, as you were at pains to point out lest anyone think your opinion had the inferior stink of oestrogen attached to it…you’re a man.

    Well, thanks for your pretty-much completely uninformed and unevidenced wild-ass guess “opinion”. We’ll give it all due consideration.

    Where did the pixel-recycler go, anyway? I thought it was over there by the chocolate fountain?

  34. Lynn Dewees says

    #33 @=8)-DX
    Can you provide definitive evidence of your #2? Especially that women experience MORE for reasons of sexism? (This is supposed to be a scientific discussion, after all (right Pharyngula?))

    Ms. Black said “I had a few other encounters similar to this, and of course some good ones too”. So the BAD experiences were sexism but the good experiences were……..what?

    Please re-read my original post. I’m not convinced that you actually read it before your knee-jerk reaction

  35. Lynn Dewees says

    #35 @CaiteCat

    I know…..read my post and actually respond to something I said!!! Thanks.

    Have you ever been rejected for any reason OTHER than being a woman??

    I PERSONALLY have experienced PERSONAL rejection at networking events, even though I am (OMG) a MAN! How can that be?

    Ms. Black said “I had a few other encounters similar to this, and of course some good ones too”. So the BAD experiences were sexism but the good experiences were……..what?

    Please re-read my original post. I’m not convinced that you actually read it before your knee-jerk reaction

    Rainbows and unicorns!

  36. John Morales says

    [meta]

    Lynn:

    I PERSONALLY have experienced PERSONAL rejection at networking events, even though I am (OMG) a MAN!

    Can you provide definitive evidence of this?

    (Your schtick wears thin)

  37. Lynn Dewees says

    #38 @ John Morales

    In fact, I have already provided as much evidence as Ms. Black……MY experiences are equal to hers even though I am (OMG) a man.

    Ms. Black said “I had a few other encounters similar to this, and of course some good ones too”. So the BAD experiences were sexism but the good experiences were……..what?

    Please re-read my original post. I’m not convinced that you actually read it before your knee-jerk reaction

  38. Lynn Dewees says

    OK. It is 2 o’clock in the AM here and I need to go to bed!

    I am extremely disappointed in the responses to my post. Just because there is a lot of misogyny in this community does NOT mean that every contrary post is misogynist.

    There are many reasons why someone could be rejected at ANY conference, anywhere, anytime. Whether John Morales believes me or not, I HAVE experienced rejection from men AND WOMEN at conferences. (Shtick my ASS!)

    If Ms. Black felt unwelcome at that first conference, I can empathize, because I have BEEN THERE.

    What I want to know is what was different about those GOOD experiences that she mentioned and WHY she was not being subjected to discrimination during those good experiences.

    I have presented MY explanation of why she had a good experience at the women’s conference and it was NOT dependent on there being women there. She was ALONE and someone TOOK CARE OF HER. Please explain what this has to do with sexism. I PERSONALLY, have done this (John Morales – schtick my ass)

    If I wrote a post that said I ran into ghosts at a conference, you would ALL, WITHOUT DOUBT, dismiss my claims and provide more reasonable explanations. I have presented what I believe to be a reasonable explanation of what happened to Ms. Black that does not involve sexism OR GHOSTS. If you understand my metaphor, please respond. If not, bite my shiny metal ass!

    Love, rainbows and unicorns….

  39. John Morales says

    [meta]

    Lynn:

    In fact, I have already provided as much evidence as Ms. Black

    You claim to be unconvinced as to the reality of her perceptions, but you expect your own to be believed, eh?

    I am extremely disappointed in the responses to my post. Just because there is a lot of misogyny in this community does NOT mean that every contrary post is misogynist.

    Your tilting at straw-dummies is farcical if predictable.

    (“The guilty fleeth even when no man pursueth”)

  40. =8)-DX says

    #33 @=8)-DX

    Can you provide definitive evidence of your #2? Especially that women experience MORE for reasons of sexism? (This is supposed to be a scientific discussion, after all (right Pharyngula?))

    We are discussing the experiences of Sue Black. She mentiones being dismissed by men (looked over), feeling uncomfortable at male-dominated conferences and later feeling the opposite at female-dominated events, or interacting with females in general. You for some reason are denying that, because for some reason you take specific instances given by Sue Black as anecdotal non-data, while from the text it is clear she is narrating these as examples of a trend from her experience.

    Ms. Black said “I had a few other encounters similar to this, and of course some good ones too”. So the BAD experiences were sexism but the good experiences were……..what?

    Presumably… wait for it… not sexism! Sue Black went out of her way to emphasize that not all men at male-dominated conferences were sexist/rude/unwelcoming. What is there in this that you don’t understand?

    Please re-read my original post. I’m not convinced that you actually read it before your knee-jerk reaction

    And I’m being convinced you haven’t actually read anything I’ve wrote if you call it knee-jerk. I read your contribution multiple times and it still comes out as a kind of desperate denial of sexism – even with all the caveats you give, you don’t trust a woman to be able to distinguish sexist and non-sexist behaviour, you don’t trust her description that she was experiencing problems due to her gender rather than just social skills.

  41. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Well, you couldn’t parse my response to you. Colour me surprised.

    How about this:

    Your dismissal of Ms. Black’s experiences in favour of your own is a classic example of the availability heuristic leading to a false conclusion.

    Your continued defense of that fallacious thinking is a classic example of how privilege blindness can influences the behaviour and attitudes of otherwise rational skeptics* to the detriment of our society.

    *I’m making a big, charitable assumption here.

  42. CaitieCat says

    John Morales: You claim to be unconvinced as to the reality of her perceptions, but you expect your own to be believed, eh?

    Well, DUH. I mean:

    Despite the first name, I’m a guy.

    …PENIS!

    Of COURSE his experience means more than hers. It just stands to reason. Or something.

    Apparently you don’t need logic when you have one of those. You just need the magical power of Greyskull DANGLY BITS! It’s like a trump card or something.

  43. echidna says

    Lynn,
    I’m going to give this one last try. You said this, to illustrate how Sue Black may have misinterpreted events:

    People tend to be cliquish and turn their back on strangers in those situations because when you try to break into their group, you are pushing into their comfort zone.

    I’m a woman, and an engineer. Every day as a student, every day of my work life, I have been pushing into men’s comfort zone. Maintaining the comfort zone of an predominantly male group will automatically lead to sexist behaviour. There is no ill-intention required. That’s the problem. There is no comfort zone for a woman in a predominantly male environment except for what you carve out for yourself – that is the point of her story. She created a support group for technical women because she was aware that it was necessary for people to have the support of other people, and support for technical women is just not on the radar in a predominantly male environment.

    Do you really think that Sue Black is so clueless that she would be unaware of discomfort with her presence on the basis of her gender, and unable to recognise it? And that you, who were not there, without the experience of such entrenched discomfort at the disruption to the status quo, know better than she does what she experienced?

    Do you have any idea how arrogant, and blinkered, that the attitude you display is?

  44. John Morales says

    FossilFishy,

    She mentiones being dismissed by men (looked over), feeling uncomfortable at male-dominated conferences and later feeling the opposite at female-dominated events, or interacting with females in general.

    Apparently, to Lynn that’s about as credible as running into ghosts at a conference, and therefore disbelief is the only reasonable stance, absent “definitive evidence”.

  45. =8)-DX says

    Apparently, to Lynn that’s about as credible as running into ghosts at a conference, and therefore disbelief is the only reasonable stance, absent “definitive evidence”.

    Also, the huge and imporatant problem with sexism, is making sure that something you feel to be sexist is 100% only sexism and not assholery. The thing to remember here, is that claiming sexism at conferences without recordings, confessions from sexists, explicit mentions of gender, is a terrible mistake and any sincere hypersceptic must immediately doubt the truthfulness of such claims. Also, as Lynn accepts – sexism is ubiquitous but never happens at conferences, because they are sacred/special/it didn’t happen to me.

    The problem with sexism is all the women feeling sexism without being absolutely sure that it was sexism o.O.

  46. =8)-DX says

    Conversely, it’s fine for men to be sexists if they are also assholes to weak/shy/outsider men.

  47. casus fortuitus says

    @Lynn Dewees, #40:

    I have presented MY explanation of why she had a good experience at the women’s conference and it was NOT dependent on there being women there. She was ALONE and someone TOOK CARE OF HER.

    Your explanation requires some unjustified assumptions, though, such as: Black was not alone at the male-dominated conferences where no-one took care of her. If she was alone (as her testimony seems to indicate), why did no-one at these male-dominated conferences take care of her?

    Do you find it interesting that you have to assume so much that is not in evidence in order to explain how Black’s treatment wasn’t sexist?

    If I wrote a post that said I ran into ghosts at a conference, you would ALL, WITHOUT DOUBT, dismiss my claims and provide more reasonable explanations.

    That’s because “ghosts” is not prima facie a reasonable explanation. Sexism as an explanation for dismissive treatment is, however, sadly reasonable. It happens all the time, and it’s a common complaint at professional conferences.

    Do you find it interesting that you have likened the existence of sexism (which has been shown to exist in precisely the ways experienced by Black) with that of ghosts (which have never been shown to exist at all)? Why do you think this is a useful comparison?

  48. Silentbob says

    @ 8 =8)-DX

    Darn, ratios feel different when written down differently. Compare:
    1/4
    25%
    One in four.
    2 : 8

    I’m not sure if you were kidding, so maybe I’m stating the obvious. If the female to male ratio is 2 : 8, then women are one fifth of the population, not a quarter.

    (Ignoring the difference between sex and gender and assuming a binary population, etc.)

  49. Thumper; Atheist mate says

    I see I missed all the fun with the shiny new MRA chew toy. I mean seriously, he compared the probability of sexism at a conference with the probability of ghosts at a conference. What a tosspot that guy was.

  50. Turtles says

    They looked me up and down, and then started talking to each other as if I hadn’t said anything.

    Argh, why are people so stupid! They’re ignoring half the brains on the planet, and no one can claim we’ve got “too much ‘clever’ already”.

  51. says

    You have to wonder at the obviously desperately motivated reasoning displayed by Lynn. You see it over and over again – someone not a member of the marginalized group, insisting against evidence and logic that the member of the marginalized group could not possibly have been correct in assessing their experiences. That it could not possibly be [sexism/racism/homophobia/transphobia/etc.], but instead it must be… something. Some other explanation. ANYTHING but sexism – literally any explanation will do, so long as it’s not sexism, no matter how far you have to throw parsimony out the window to arrive at the conclusion that it’s NOT SEXISM!

    Why is it so important to Lynn (and his many, many fellow travelers I’ve seen over the years, all over the internet) that is be NOT SEXISM? One can only speculate, since they are rarely self-aware enough to answer the question themselves. Fear of change? Fear of loss of privilege? Who knows.

  52. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    If you understand my metaphor, please respond. If not, bite my shiny metal ass!

    Oh dear, I missed that bit. I must have been too busy pondering his oh so deep metaphor. Anyway, there you have it folks: confirmation that Lynn has no interest in any sort of meaningful dialog. Intellectual dishonesty at its finest….

  53. pHred says

    I find it utterly fascinating this fixation on Dr. Black’s brief mention of what those conferences felt like to her when it is only a very tiny portion of a much, much longer article. Utterly misses the point. Perhaps you might contemplate actually reading the article ?

    Also fascinating this concept that women clearly are not qualified to understand their own experiences.

    Oh – and that looking up and down bit – most people (and yes I know it happens to men too, just not as often and I have never seen it happen at a conference) are fully aware of this experience, know exactly what the intent is and generally want to a) firebomb the perpetrator and b) take a shower to get the slime off. I almost beaned my then boyfriend’s coworker over the head with a chair when he did it to me right in the workplace at a meeting. I settled for channeling Katharine Hepburn instead but still wanted the shower.

  54. Lynn Dewees says

    I mentioned right at the beginning that I was a man because many people see my first name and assume I am a woman. I did not want anyone to be misled. However, apparently since I have both a penis and an opinion that runs contrary to the group, I must be a misogynistic, MRA, cave-man because — PENIS!

    I believe I have presented my case fairly and logically, I have not used any of those nasty words that the MRA types seem to think are cool. I have been accused ON NO EVIDENCE of minimizing sexism. FossilFishy is subtly suggesting I am not even a skeptic. CaitieCat seems to think my argument is only based on my penis, not my 30 years of experience in attending conferences. John Morales can’t even understand a simple metaphor. =8)-DX accuses me of saying that sexism NEVER happens at conference, even thought I have NEVER said that. Also, John Morales, you need to look up the meaning of the straw-man argument, because my reference to misogynists was definitely NOT a straw man.

    I understand there is a lot of legitimate anger at the MRA types. I believe (most of) you are applying that legitimate anger to me, even though NOTHING that I wrote would otherwise be interpreted that way.

    You may now all begin your superior dance about how I am now claiming to be a victim or something.

    Kittens, unicorns, fairies

  55. Lynn Dewees says

    From Wikipedia:
    “The availability heuristic is a mental shortcut that occurs when people make judgments about the probability of events by how easy it is to think of examples”
    This cuts both ways. Is it possible that it is easy to think of examples of sexist behavior and therefore the events at the conference were sexist?
    As the kids say, just sayin’

    Leprechauns!

  56. says

    Well, obviously it can’t be sexism. No one shouted “I hate bitches” while they were ignoring Dr. Black or honked her boobs.

    *eyeroll* It’s not like the effects of a social system could be subtle, far-reaching and create aversive behaviors. Nope. And it’s not like Dr. Black’s experiences are part of a chorus of women talking about being ignored or treated poorly in the STEM disciplines. It’s also not like CS has a reputation for this sort of thing.

    And on a personal note, as someone taking STEM classes, that shit happens a lot when women talk.

  57. says

    #24 @John Morales

    Please provide ONE example that shows I am not genuine? I’m even using my real name. Are you?

    So Walt Garage isn’t your real name?

    Tell Walt to stop using your IP number.

  58. says

    Yup, Lynn has all teh logicks. Nobody can claim he has been less than logickal. Why? Because he says so! THAT is how you logick, people!

  59. Rey Fox says

    Come on juys, conferences don’t have booth babes anymore*, so sexism is over!

    * Oh wait, many of them still do

    I’m even using my real name.

    Congratulations, you win a cookie.

    By the way, even if we had assumed you were a woman, you would have gotten the same response. That you’re invalidating someone’s experience because it doesn’t fit with your limited experience. Over the last few years, we’ve had plenty of opportunity for women to come in and say “Well I haven’t experienced sexism at conferences, so what you say is sexism can’t possibly be sexism. Your identification as male certainly fits the pattern of the mansplainer though.

    I believe I have presented my case fairly and logically

    Well, you didn’t.

  60. Lynn Dewees says

    @echidna Here is some background information.

    I,too, am an engineer. In my graduating civil engineering class (1979), there were about 50 people of which about 5 or 6 were women. I have no clue what they may have been put through as female students in general and especially what they may have encountered as female engineering students.

    Since I began my professional career I have seen a dramatic change from my first job where all engineers and people of authority were white men, to my last job where I worked at a woman-owned contracting business. (Still all white, though.)

    In answer to your question – NO I do not think Sue Black is or was clueless. Thousands of people (maybe more) experience rejection at trade shows and conferences and dinner meetings every year. Because of her personal history and experience, she interpreted her rejection as sexist. My argument is that the odds are there was no ulterior motive behind the rejection, it was just another day on the conference floor.

    Based on the available evidence (not much), those are my thoughts on the matter.

    My advice to you, not that you asked for it, is find a new job (not at all an easy task in our current economy). There are plenty of engineering firms where you can make your mark without fighting a bunch of sexist crap.

  61. Rey Fox says

    I have no clue what they may have been put through as female students in general and especially what they may have encountered as female engineering students.

    This is the beginning of your education.

  62. says

    Thousands of people (maybe more) experience rejection at trade shows and conferences and dinner meetings every year. Because of her personal history and experience, she interpreted her rejection as sexist. My argument is that the odds are there was no ulterior motive behind the rejection, it was just another day on the conference floor.

    Look at you, conflating “sexist” with “ulterior motive.”

    Let me guess: this is the first or second time in your entire life that you’ve thought about sexism for more than a couple of seconds at a time.

  63. Lynn Dewees says

    Walt Garage is NOT my real name, but thanks for asking.

    Butterflies, Hummingbirds

  64. Lynn Dewees says

    @ Chris Clarke -if you really and truly don’t believe me name is Lynn Dewees, you should take a moment, log in to LinkedIn, search for my name and I will be right there in all my glory.

  65. says

    You know what I always find incredible? The fact that anyone thinks their intention determines all the various implications and effects of an interaction, and that they think they are aware of all the cultural forces that have an effect on their behavior.

  66. Lynn Dewees says

    @ Rey Fox – let me respond at the same level of logic that I seem to be getting:

    You mean you are going to educate me about what the female students in my graduating class went through? You can’t do that! That’s impossible! You must be a complete idiot!

    BTW, I know you didn’t say that, but that seems to be the level of attitude I am receiving from many on this list.

  67. says

    Lynn: If you think that’s the only argument you’ve been given, you haven’t been reading carefully.

    Sally: My vote is for arrogant and unable to concede that his perspective may be fallible. You’d think reminding him that his experience is just his experience, not the only way things can be experienced would be enough, but I think he may be immune to common sense proposals.

  68. Lynn Dewees says

    To get a better handle on this discussion, I would like to summarize what I believe most of you are saying.

    Most of you seem to believe that if a women is rejected by a group of men at a conference it is always and forever a sexist response. If a man is rejected by a group of men, that’s just the normal crap that goes on at a conference.

    Because I believe that most rejections that occur at conferences are the result of ordinary stupidity and rudeness, I am a misogynist or MRA who only thinks with his little head and doesn’t believe in sexism.

    Have I laid out your positions correctly?

  69. =8)-DX says

    My argument is that the odds are there was no ulterior motive behind the rejection, it was just another day on the conference floor.

    And your evidence to back this up is your experience of rejection at conferences as a male, which weren’t based on your gender.
    1) Sue Black said she experienced rejections based on her gender. The only other people that were part of the situations she experienced aren’t here, so you’re arguing that your experience as a man is better evidence for how a woman is received at such tech conferences, than hers. As many have said, the experience of a person within a group perceiving discrimination is more important than those outside – pointing to sexism.
    2) Even IF your experience were to be taken as a better authority here, and you had some special insight on conference interactions and men’s ulterior motives, the fact remains that Sue Black’s experience at male dominated conferences was of rejection and loniliness and an inability to penetrate the men’s comfort zone, something she didn’t feel when interacting with women. That would mean there is different socialisation of the men and the women making them welcoming/assholes, which would point to broad gender stereotypes and socialisation of male and female behaviour in society – still sexism.
    3) I may be going out on a limb here, but things like belief in traditional gender roles, sexism, racism, ableism, ageism and assholery seem to correlate. It’s quite possible for tech conferences to be places at which self-aggrandizing bigots congregate, and are rude towards young nervous males, people of colour, women, disabled or obese people, whatever. Just saying “just another day on the conference floor” doesn’t erase the individual bigotries of these behaviours, even though many of them could be defined as “rejections”. And so your point *still* doesn’t stand.

  70. Rey Fox says

    Most of you seem to believe that if a women is rejected by a group of men at a conference it is always and forever a sexist response.

    We believe that in this particular instance it’s sexism because of the rest of this lady’s narrative and the fact that it fits a well-established pattern.

    If a man is rejected by a group of men, that’s just the normal crap that goes on at a conference.

    As =8)-DX pointed out (and I love the work you’re doing here, but having to copy and paste that emoticon…), it could well be discrimination of another kind.

    Because I believe that most rejections that occur at conferences are the result of ordinary stupidity and rudeness, I am a misogynist or MRA who only thinks with his little head and doesn’t believe in sexism.

    You’re going out of your way to deny this woman’s account of sexism. It fits the general pattern of sexism denial and unexamined privilege.

    (Note that I’m not flinging the MRA or even misogynist accusation, note in fact that only one person has called you an MRA (and I think that sort of knee-jerk reaction should be curbed), and exactly nobody has accused you of misogyny).

  71. =8)-DX says

    Most of you seem to believe that if a women is rejected by a group of men at a conference because she is a woman it is always and forever a sexist response. If a man is rejected by a group of men or a woman is rejected for other reasons, and the frequency of rejection is the same, that’s just the normal nonsexist crap that goes on at a conference.

    Because I believe that most rejections that occur at conferences are the result of ordinary stupidity and rudeness despite reading from women who say they were rejected due to their gender and many others in comments here who confirm that experience, I am a misogynist or MRA a clueless chump who only thinks with his little head and doesn’t believe in understand sexism.

    FTFY

  72. =8)-DX says

    (and I love the work you’re doing here, but having to copy and paste that emoticon…)

    Aw.. wait cut that out, no cookies! (I’m just so used to the =8)-DX emoticon and type it in one motion, use dx/8DX if that’s easier ;)

  73. says

    Thumper referred to Lynn here as an “MRA chew toy,” but Lynn himself was the first and only person to label himself a misogynist.

  74. Lynn Dewees says

    @Rey Fox, #75 – you are correct, no one has called me a misogynist.

    =8)-DX started by questioning my veracity “Even *if* it is true that as a man you experienced the same rejections during conferences, ”
    CaitieCat explains that she is glad “we’ve had a man come along who has told us not to worry our silly little heads about it”
    FossilFish contributed a wildly inaccurate summing up of what he/she thinks I said “your opinion is accurate and germane while the opinion of the woman how experienced the events detailed is not.”
    Otrame accused me of just coming here to be “dismissive and condescending to a woman who has described her experiences, explaining that she was wrong (and rather silly)”
    CaiteCat then tells me that I think women are inferior “as you were at pains to point out lest anyone think your opinion had the inferior stink of oestrogen attached to it…you’re a man.”
    =8)-DX then said my argument was “a kind of desperate denial of sexism”
    SallyStrange apparently believes that “this is the first or second time in your entire life that you’ve thought about sexism for more than a couple of seconds at a time.” and wants to know whether I’m “trolling, or just monumentally dumb?”
    ChrisClarke seemed to be implying that I was posting here under a false name (really, you think Walt Garage is a real name??), then when I showed he was wrong, Rey Fox proceeded to imply that there was something wrong with me challenging ChrisClarke. “He can’t be trolling because he’s a Real Person with a Real Name.”
    mouthyb, Vagina McTits votes that I am “arrogant and unable to concede that his perspective may be fallible”.
    And then, hopefully finally, =8)-DX has told me I’m a “clueless chump” who doesn’t understand sexism.

    But yeah, no one called me a misogynist. My bad.

  75. CaitieCat says

    Well, I wasn’t sure, but I think I’m going with Clueless Claude, veering towards Livid Larry when challenged. I wonder how long we could go talking about him in the third person, you know, basically completely and with prejudice ignoring his opinion in pretty much the same way he ignores Ms. Black, before he flounces with a flourish of manly boa?

    Or is there anyone willing to make book on his actually getting it at some point? I know we’d be talking long odds, but might be worth a flutter if the numbers look right…

  76. Lynn Dewees says

    #74 =8)-DX

    Thanks for fixing that for me. 8>)
    Allow me to return the favor:
    If a women is rejected by a group of men at a conference for sexist reasons, it is always and forever a sexist response. I agree. Sounds like a tautology.
    If anyone is rejected at a conference for non-sexist reasons, it is just the normal non-sexist crap that goes on at a conference. I agree. Again, sounds like a tautology.
    Lynn Dewees is a clueless chump who doesn’t understand sexism. Lynn Dewees did not have a mother who may have experience sexism. Lynn Dewees does not have any sisters, female cousins, sisters-in-law or nieces who may have experienced sexism. Lynn Dewees does not have a wife who may have experienced sexism. Lynn Dewees has never had a professional female boss. He has never had female peers and he has never had direct report female employees who may have experienced sexism. Lynn Dewees did NOT say, on this very blog ” The men at the NSPE meetings were totally trying to be dominant at all times. (As far as I recall, no one stood up on a table and pounded his chest, but still). The SWE meeting was very low key and friendly” I guess there really is no arguing with your conclusion.

  77. Lynn Dewees says

    #58 mouthyb, Vagina McTits: If you can show where I ever said anything about shouting “I hate bitches” or honking anyone’s boobs or even implied that I thought that was the only type of sexism there is, I’ll give you my house, free and clear. (Worth about $100k)..
    If you can show where I said “it CAN’T BE SEXISM” (emphasis added) I will also give you my house.

    But of course, no one has accused me of misogyny.

    BTW, love the name. I’m sure you’re really showing….uhm…. someone …aaaa…what’s what or, or, or….SOMETHING!

    Bye. I’m going to go have a beer.

  78. says

    So, I guess it’s “All about Lynn Dewees Day”!

    =8)-DX started by questioning my veracity “Even *if* it is true that as a man you experienced the same rejections during conferences, ”

    Questioning your veracity? No. Let’s look at what was actually said:

    Even *if* it is true that as a man you experienced the same rejections during conferences, that doesn’t excuse the rude behaviour and points to a different socialisation of men and women towards cross-gender or inter-gender communication and is therefore a gender-gap problem.

    No actual comment on your personal veracity. Just pointing out that the experience you recount is in no way an excuse or mitigating factor for what Dr. Black was talking about.

    CaitieCat explains that she is glad “we’ve had a man come along who has told us not to worry our silly little heads about it”

    Again, it’s worth looking at the whole comment. Here’s what Caiticat said:

    Her experience is why, after a final year of high school where my average in six math and science classes was 95%, and my average in History and English was 45%, I decided to apply to General Arts as a major, and eventually settled on linguistics. Because I knew I’d be transitioning within a few more years, and I knew that this was how women were treated in the STEM professions, and I simply didn’t have the courage to deal with the heavy-duty misogyny on top of the heavy-duty transphobia.

    I know a number of other women, many of them technical writers, who are excellent at that because they’ve been techies all their lives, but who stayed away from STEM because they didn’t want to have to fight every hour of every wasted bloody day with jackasses defending their turf.

    I’m grateful, though, that we’ve had a man come along who has told us not to worry our silly little heads about it, and that he’s quite sure it wasn’t sexism we’ve experienced, because…well, because, that’s why. I mean, if he hasn’t seen it that way, then it obviously isn’t that way, because if the world has taught us nothing else, it’s that if you need a strong opinion on what women experience, ask a man.

    You failed to deal with what Caitiecat was actually saying. She personally chose to avoid STEM fields because she was aware of the sexism there. She knows several women who have done the same. She was remarking on the arrogance combined with ignorance that you display in assuming that your personal experiences should have greater weight than Dr. Blacks combined with Caitiecat’s combined with the experiences of the women Caiticat knows.

    But you refused to deal with that, didn’t you? No, instead you choose to whine about how unfair it is that Caiticat a.) noted that you were male and b.) pointed out how ludicrous your expectation of your personal experiences and your interpretation of events outweighing those of ALL the women who’ve commented so far on the issue.

    FossilFish contributed a wildly inaccurate summing up of what he/she thinks I said “your opinion is accurate and germane while the opinion of the woman how experienced the events detailed is not.”

    How is that inaccurate? That’s exactly what you have done and continue to do. You claim, based on nothing, that YOUR interpretation of Dr. Black’s experiences should be given more weight than hers. Apparently you are incapable of even perceiving how ludicrous your stance is. You think it’s perfectly reasonable that we should believe you over her, even though she was there, and you were not. You think it’s perfectly reasonable that we should believe you over her, even though she, as a woman, has far more direct experience with sexism than you do.

    Otrame accused me of just coming here to be “dismissive and condescending to a woman who has described her experiences, explaining that she was wrong (and rather silly)”

    You were dismissive and condescending to a woman who described her experiences. You said that she was wrong, that what she experienced was not sexism, based, again, on nothing but your uninformed opinion. What other conclusion are we supposed to draw? Token acknowledgement that Dr. Black may not be a COMPLETE idiot does not erase the effect of you insisting that her interpretation of her own experiences with sexism is wrong.

    CaiteCat then tells me that I think women are inferior “as you were at pains to point out lest anyone think your opinion had the inferior stink of oestrogen attached to it…you’re a man.”

    You really need to stop cherry-picking your quotes and actually deal with the substance of what’s being said. If you consistently demonstrate that you expect your uninformed opinion about the personal experiences of a woman who is a stranger to you should trump those of the woman herself, then it is a reasonable conclusion that you consider her an inferior–at the very least, you consider her ability to correctly identify sexism in social interactions to be inferior to yours. And you seem genuinely shocked that not everybody is willing to allow your interpretation of her experiences to trump her interpretation of her experiences. Strong evidence that you don’t view her as an equal.

    =8)-DX then said my argument was “a kind of desperate denial of sexism”

    It’s definitely a denial of sexism. I suppose you might argue that it’s not “desperate” but it certainly comes across that way.

    SallyStrange apparently believes that “this is the first or second time in your entire life that you’ve thought about sexism for more than a couple of seconds at a time.” and wants to know whether I’m “trolling, or just monumentally dumb?”

    IS this the first or second time in your life you’ve ever spent more than 2 seconds thinking about sexism? I still want to know. I also want to know if you’re sincere. If you are sincere (i.e., not trolling) then you do in fact present as being quite dull-witted, because you show a consistent inability to either understand or respond to what is being said to you.

    ChrisClarke seemed to be implying that I was posting here under a false name (really, you think Walt Garage is a real name??),

    Sounds about as real as “Lynn Dewees.” We have no way of knowing, either way. Except Chris, he does get to look at the metadata for your IP. All he was saying was that that’s the name associated with your IP address.

    then when I showed he was wrong,

    You “showed” nothing. You simply reiterated your assertion.

    Rey Fox proceeded to imply that there was something wrong with me challenging ChrisClarke. “He can’t be trolling because he’s a Real Person with a Real Name.”

    Nope, Rey’s remark was meant to illuminate the stupidity of thinking that having your real name associated with your comments automatically means that you are sincere (i.e., not trolling) about what you’re saying.

    mouthyb, Vagina McTits votes that I am “arrogant and unable to concede that his perspective may be fallible”.

    Right, that’s a bit more complimentary than just thinking you’re an insincere person trying to stir up shit just because (i.e., troll), or just plain stupid, so you should be thanking her, honestly – she’s giving you credit for having enough intelligence to grasp why you’re wrong, if you would only let your massive ego deflate for a moment.

    And then, hopefully finally, =8)-DX has told me I’m a “clueless chump” who doesn’t understand sexism.

    You obviously don’t understand sexism – that much is clear. Asserting that “YUH HUH I DO TOO UNDERSTAND SEXISM” will only demonstrate that you do not understand either sexism OR logical argumentation.

    But yeah, no one called me a misogynist. My bad.

    That is the least of your bads. But it is the one that you chose to focus the most attention and effort on so far, lending credence to mouthyb’s theory that your problem is not lack of intelligence or sincerity, but lack of humility.

    In conclusion, fuck you.

  79. Lynn Dewees says

    OOOPS! Beer has to wait a minute, there’s still someone wrong on the Internet!

    #80 CaitieCat – YES, I have noticed that you are talking about me in the third person. It reminds me of that time I approached a group of people at a conference and they rejected me.

    I’ll bet you are every bit as adorable in real life as your screen name would imply.

  80. says

    If you can show where I ever said anything about shouting “I hate bitches” or honking anyone’s boobs or even implied that I thought that was the only type of sexism there is, I’ll give you my house, free and clear. (Worth about $100k)..

    I dunno, mouthyb, remarks like this make me lean towards “just really kinda stupid.”

    Then again, the part about his house being worth a ton of money points towards “staggeringly arrogant.”

    Let’s split the difference, shall we?

  81. says

    I’ll bet you are every bit as adorable in real life as your screen name would imply.

    Oh wow, going for a trifecta! Add “creepy” to the list.

  82. CaitieCat says

    You’re disingenuous, as always, but also as always, only partly right.

    I am, indeed, every bit as adorable, to people who aren’t overprivileged condescending sexist assholes. To overprivileged condescending sexist assholes, I’m just as snarky as I am right now.

    I’d leave it to you to figure out which end of the shit-stick you’re getting – hint, it’s the one that feels familiar on your tongue – but really, it’s obviously unfair to ask a man to use logic when he already doesn’t recognize the lumpy brown stain of formal fallacies running down his chin.

    Have a nice day, PNG.

  83. Rey Fox says

    You know, if you put a tenth as much effort into learning about sexism as you do protecting your honor, then we might have some progress here.

    Nope, Rey’s remark was meant to illuminate the stupidity of thinking that having your real name associated with your comments automatically means that you are sincere (i.e., not trolling) about what you’re saying.

    And also to illuminate the silliness of thinking that having one’s real name associated with one’s comments means even one rat’s buttock.

  84. says

    Hell, I was trying to give you credit, Lynn, for merely being afraid to try on other points of view because ego. (Nice catch, SallyStrange.)

    Silly me, giving you intellectual credit.

    So I won’t reiterate that you’ve come making extraordinary claims (“I totally wasn’t there, but when it happens to me it’s not sexism therefore it isn’t sexism when it happens to her”), because I see several people have covered that.

    I won’t reiterate that you’ve been dribbling category errors, because CatieCat has that covered.

    I won’t point out that assuming your experience is representative across demographics is a bad idea, because =8)-DX has that covered. =8)-DX also has it covered that your experience is not the only way to interpret things.

    Instead, I think I’ll just quote stats at you, though I doubt you’ll care (I find if common sense arguments–topoi–don’t work on you, numbers won’t either). As far as prevalence goes, 63% of the women in science, engineering and technology fields report experiencing some sort of sexual harassment. One of the central reasons given for leaving the academic end of STEM disciplines is the inability to find institutional support, including a lack of career advancement and the inability to freely express their ideas.

    But hey, don’t let research studies prove anything to you.

  85. says

    SallyStrange: You say poh-tay-toe, I say poh-ta-toe, etc.

    I just love it when some total stranger bets me his house. The best thing about it is that the bar of proof is convincing him, though he seems to think it’s “proving” he said something sexist. The former is impossible and the latter has broad consensus, but you can’t convince someone whose smarmy self-satisfaction relies on their being right no matter what, to bastardize poor Upton Sinclair shamelessly.

    Lynn: You’re bad at this whole sarcasm thing, aren’t you?

  86. says

    ChrisClarke seemed to be implying that I was posting here under a false name (really, you think Walt Garage is a real name??), then when I showed he was wrong,

    Dear “Lynn”;

    I don’t give a shit whether your name is Lynn Dewees, Walter Carhole, or Ima Pseudonym. Who you really are matters not at all. But I do find troll behavior interesting, so I looked you up.

    I have access to the back end here. Which means I have access to metadata for comments, including IP numbers from which comments are posted. The one you’ve used consistently throughout your lovely stay here is associated with a particular cable company in a particular location. That same IP number is the one from which “Walt Garage” posted this trollish comment a mere five days before your entry into this thread.

    Having the same IP number as another commenter isn’t slam-dunk proof of sockpuppeting. But in this particular case, it seems highly likely. Both “you” and “Walt” make inane, trite arguments in that “leading with the chin” style especially favored by people who are more secure in their social competence than is warranted.

    Now because your sense of self-worth seems to be valuated in Dunning-Krugerrands, it is also very unlikely that it occurred to you that your apparent use of more than one handle — a potentially bannable offense hereabouts — would be detected.

    But it has.

  87. John Morales says

    [meta]

    Lynn:

    John Morales can’t even understand a simple metaphor.

    This is your effort: “If I wrote a post that said I ran into ghosts at a conference, you would ALL, WITHOUT DOUBT, dismiss my claims and provide more reasonable explanations.”

    I understand your metaphor (analogy) as indicating that you consider a woman running into sexism at a conference is about as credible as you running into ghosts at a conference.

    If your intended point of similarity there was not the degree of credibility of the claim, what then was it?

    In passing, I note you don’t understand to what conflation refers (“First, yes, I believe that is it possible to conflate sexist rejection and shyness.”).

    (Mistaking one thing for another is not to conflate those things, that would be imagining they’re both the same thing)

  88. =8)-DX says

    @Lynn Dewees
    Please respond to the substance of my post #73.

    Namely, explain how your following statements arent denying sexism described by Sue Black:

    This particular set of incidences just seems to be everyone’s experience at conferences and networking events.

    My argument is that the odds are there was no ulterior motive behind the rejection, it was just another day on the conference floor.

    and how you reconcile you opinion with my points 1) of your outsider opinion of what Sue Black says not being more valid 2) different behaviour of men and women at conferences pointing to broad sexist stereotypes 3) the possibility that multiple forms of descriminatory behaviour are occuring, including sexism.

    Perhaps it came off rather condescending (I’m a clueless chump about lots of things as well), but you completely failed to engage with my criticism in the “fix” of your post “despite reading from women who say they were rejected due to their gender and many others in comments here who confirm that experience,”. If your answer was to imply that I’m denying you have any experience with sexism, know any (or many women), then you’re wrong, I never said that. What you are denying is the sexism (or the amount) experienced in conferences by Sue Black. Perhaps none of the women you know personally have experienced sexual harassment at conferences, or haven’t talked to you about it, that doesn’t make you an expert on the matter (quite the opposite) and it still doesn’t make it valid to deny Sue Black’s experiences as nonsexist, for the reasons I gave in post 73.

    And complaining about tone, when you repeatedly post all caps phrases, pretend people are accusing you of things they aren’t, make offers of money, brag about your experience and property… just don’t.

  89. echidna says

    Lynn,

    My argument is that the odds are there was no ulterior motive behind the rejection,

    And I agree with that. I did not say otherwise.
    Read my posts carefully: motive is not required. Learning to work with individual women is how entrenched sexism gets broken down, I know. I’ve been the first woman that groups of men have worked with or for several times. These were life-shaping experiences, and not just for me. I get that men behave badly towards women without meaning to. That’s understandable, but it is not an excuse. Men will play dominance games with each other in an all male environment, which play very differently when there is a woman present. These dominance games hurt men as well, and I have been the catalyst for culture change a number of times.
    By the way, the key to understanding what Sue was saying is where she described the men looking her up and down. There are a lot of social clues that are given in that gaze. If nothing else, it tells you that she was observing body language. You, on the other hand, weren’t there, and you seriously are out of your area of expertise in this area.

  90. CaitieCat says

    I love it when people think my ‘nym means I’m all kinds of love-bundle cutiepie.

    And are then inordinately surprised when the battle-scarred old panther raises her head and gives ‘em the “ooh, fresh prey!” stare.

    *grin*

    There’s more than one way to be a cat. :D

  91. Lynn Dewees says

    SallyStrange – you all made it Lynn Dewees day but saying bullshit about me. If you don’t like it, stop with the bullshit. I will give you me house free and clear if you can demonstrate that I actually said any of the bullshit you have attributed to me. BTW, don’t know where you live, but a $100k house is a dump in my neck of the woods. Put YOUR money where YOUR mouth is, or fuck off. If you don’t get the sarcasm of my comment on Caiteecutecritter, bite my shiny metal ass.
    Caitecutecritterthingy – aside from my snide comment and now my deliberate misspelling of your super-cute and adorable screen name, please show where I was a condescending sexist asshole. You don’t like my opinion, too bad. Oooh, you’re actually a mean old battle scarred panther! Wow. The other thing your talking about me in the 3rd person reminded me of was the “cool girls” in high school who couldn’t be bothered with “uncool” guys like me. Truly, you are absolutely the coolest critter thing on the intertubes.
    Rey Fox – nearly everyone on this pusillanimous list (look it up) has condemned me for no reason. Why should I not defend myself. Please show where it is indicated that I don’t know about sexism. Wait, don’t bother, that is something you personally have projected on me. Very sad.
    mouthy b vagina tits – I have not ever on this list tried to say that there is no sexism. I have merely pointed out that there may be an alternative interpretation of the events at one particular conference. The bar to winning my house is that you have to actually show that I said what you accused me of saying. You can’t do it, because I didn’t say it. You can sling the bullshit all day. Obviously you can’t back it up.
    ChrisClarke – if you don’t give a shit about my name, why did you bring it up??? Read the comment that Walt Garage made – it is sarcasm you stupid shit. If this is the level of discourse I need to deal with here, PLEASE BAN ME.
    John Morales – As far as my metaphor / analogy – I did NOT say that ghosts and sexism are equally valid or equally credible. What I meant (and obviously you don’t get it) is that just because someone SAYS it is sexism or ghosts, doesn’t mean it is. We should expect something a little more credible that “that’s what I felt, therefore that’s what it is”. And actually, I do mean to “conflate” sexism with shyness. An individual can be rejected for shyness and an individual can be rejected for sexism. If the individual mistakes on rejection for the other, they have ……… “conflated” the two. Feel free to look it up.

  92. Arawhon says

    Lynn/97

    Rey Fox – nearly everyone on this pusillanimous list (look it up) has condemned me for no reason. Why should I not defend myself. Please show where it is indicated that I don’t know about sexism. Wait, don’t bother, that is something you personally have projected on me. Very sad.

    Caiteecutecritter, Caitecutecritterthingy, mouthy b vagina tits

    Yeah, you are an idiot.

  93. says

    Lynn: Man, are you fucking up. I take it you have zero background in statistics or argumentation–this is going to keep making you look dumb. You could learn, but you appear to be proud of looking stupid.

    Shit. I’m actually starting to be embarrassed for you.

    Here, I’ll hand lead you. Likelihood of something occurring is often strongly effected by Bayesian priors (quick and dirty: past events that provide information used to calculate the odds for the current situation.) The studies I linked suggested that roughly 2/3 of the women working in tech and science have experienced harassment. This means that, without any priors from Dr. Black, in any random 2/3 of her interactions, sexist behavior is likely to have occurred. The odds are much more in the favor of their being harassment there than they are of there not being harassment.

    You don’t appear to be aware of this, but harassment is in the eye of the harassee, not the harasser. Check the EEOC entry on it, if you’re in the US. Whether or not the person who enacted the behavior Dr. Black describes meant to harass her is ENTIRELY BESIDE THE POINT. What matters is whether that behavior was a part of a climate of discrimination, which would be what those two studies I linked to discussed, assuming you read them. Hint: it exists and the STEM disciplines have a well-documented problem with them.

    We know this is a problem because the people around here read research studies. We also know this is a problem because it is well-reported, even in anecdotes on this site. Administrators of tech conferences, administrators in colleges, the NSF, the EEOC, the governments of almost any nation you can name, the HR department, everyone who has any position of authority in any governmental or large scale organization knows that this behavior is prevalent, a problem, serious and has the effect of draining talent from the job pool.

    What you are making, with the “I’m sure it was just normal behavior” line of argument is what’s called an extraordinary assertion. As in, you are asserting in the face of the facts. Or, in case you can’t focus very well, you are asserting that the sky is currently vanilla pudding, because you like vanilla pudding, when we can all see that it is not.

    Where is your evidence that the sky is vanilla pudding?

    Also, because I’m beginning to think you’re a dim bulb, let me walk you through satire and its forms. There is a form of satire called hyperbole. In hyperbole, you take someone’s essential position (in your case, that the word of the woman that experienced harassment isn’t enough because you don’t experience harassment of this kind), and you blow it up so that it appears ridiculous (eg: it’s not sexism unless someone yells “I hate bitches” and slaps a woman on the tits), in order to demonstrate that there is something wrong with their original claim.

    The fact that you didn’t read that, I assure you, is entirely your fault.

  94. John Morales says

    [OT + meta]

    Lynn:

    John Morales – [1] As far as my metaphor / analogy – I did NOT say that ghosts and sexism are equally valid or equally credible. What I meant (and obviously you don’t get it) is that just because someone SAYS it is sexism or ghosts, doesn’t mean it is. [2] We should expect something a little more credible that “that’s what I felt, therefore that’s what it is”. [3] And actually, I do mean to “conflate” sexism with shyness. An individual can be rejected for shyness and an individual can be rejected for sexism. If the individual mistakes on rejection for the other, they have ……… “conflated” the two. Feel free to look it up.

    1. What you intended to express may have been that, but (as I’ve noted) what you did express was that Sue Black’s claim was comparable in credibility to you claiming you’d run into ghosts and warrants similar disbelief; leaving the attempted hyperbole aside (and ss noted by mouthyb), this fails because it’s a category error — a particularly egregious one since you’ve acknowledged sexism exists and you clearly think ghosts don’t*.

    (It was a very revealing comparison you made)

    2. It is you who wrote “In fact, I have already provided as much evidence as Ms. Black……MY experiences are equal to hers even though I am (OMG) a man” in response to my own parallel expression of doubt about you claim.

    (You’re the gander to her goose, O hypocrite)

    3. You are an ignoramus. But sure, let me look it up: Conflation.

    * Or do you? :)

  95. Lynn Dewees says

    #95 @ echidna

    I said “My argument is that the odds are there was no ulterior motive behind the rejection,”

    You said “And I agree with that. I did not say otherwise.” Good. We agree on something! 8>)

    “Read my posts carefully: motive is not required. Learning to work with individual women is how entrenched sexism gets broken down, I know. I’ve been the first woman that groups of men have worked with or for several times.”

    We disagree on this. Some form of motive is required. If a given group of men at a conference turn their back on EVERYONE that comes up to them, they are being dickish, not sexist.

    “I get that men behave badly towards women without meaning to. That’s understandable, but it is not an excuse. Men will play dominance games with each other in an all male environment, which play very differently when there is a woman present. These dominance games hurt men as well, and I have been the catalyst for culture change a number of times.”

    Men behave badly towards EVERYONE. (If you are ever going to trust a statement from a man, trust this one!) It is perhaps “understandable” but it is definitely not an excuse. Dominance games hurt everyone, I agree. But if men approach every encounter in terms of dominance, why is it sexist when they treat women the same way they treat men?

    You, on the other hand, weren’t there, and you seriously are out of your area of expertise in this area.”

    I was not there. I agree. Neither were you. Who DOES have expertise in this area?

    Let me say, once again, that I do not deny sexism and that I believe women can be subjected to sexist activities even at a professional conferences.

  96. Lynn Dewees says

    Sorry John Morales – this is what I wrote:

    “If I wrote a post that said I ran into ghosts at a conference, you would ALL, WITHOUT DOUBT, dismiss my claims and provide more reasonable explanations. I have presented what I believe to be a reasonable explanation of what happened to Ms. Black that does not involve sexism OR GHOSTS.”

    I obviously did NOT say that ” Sue Black’s claim was comparable in credibility to you claiming you’d run into ghosts”. Go ahead, read it again, I can wait. When we encounter claims of ghosts, we present evidence of other activities that explain the alleged ghosts as well or better than the claim of ghosts. I claim that my explanation of the events at this particular conference explain the situation as well as or better than the claim of sexism. Nothing more, nothing less. Please feel free to misinterpret as wildly as you care to.

    I DO believe in spooks. I DO believe in spooks.

  97. echidna says

    Lynn,
    So I will take it, by your silence regarding my post #95, that you have no argument with it. I will reiterate: sexism is not necessarily intentional. What you interpret and accept as standard male dominance behaviour is automatically sexist when applied to women, just as standard male dominance behaviour patterns are racist when applied across ethnic boundaries. The kicker is that these behaviour patterns have destructive elements that hurt men too. A good engineering environment will balance authority through hierarchical structures to streamline decision making where appropriate, while simultaneously allowing room for authority through expertise at the appropriate times. It allows input from the cleaner with PTSD who has industrial expertise but cannot hold down a management job – an idea that was established and developed quite intentionally in a former workplace of mine for returning soldiers many decades ago (in Australia). I’ve never seen anything quite like it in the US, except from ex-soldiers who had been through Westpoint, where the study of military history included WWI examples where success depended on top brass deferring to the person with expertise at critical moments.

    I think it is likely that your consideration that Sue Black’s expertise regarding the classification of sexist behaviour at tech conferences is mistaken, and consequently that your notions are superior, because you are mistakenly of the belief that sexism must have an intentional element to be properly called sexism, and you are quite well aware that standard dominance displays such as rudeness need not be sexist. But, seriously, reconsider your definition of sexist behaviour, and more pressingly, I urge you to reconsider the idea that your expertise trumps hers.

  98. Ichthyic says

    It reminds me of that time I approached a group of people at a conference and they rejected me.

    kinda like Dennis Makuze (aka: David Mabus)…

  99. Ichthyic says

    If you don’t like it, stop with the bullshit.

    you have a tremendously overinflated impression of your impact here. I expect that extends to your entire internet experience.

  100. Ichthyic says

    Feel free to look it up.

    feel free to look up the definition of a word you scarequoted, which implies you are using a special meaning for it?

    anyone tell you you are a complete waste of time?

  101. Ichthyic says

    PLEASE BAN ME.

    says the man who can’t stop himself from spewing drivel…

    we hear your plea for help, but I rather think some here aren’t done chewing on you yet.

  102. says

    What I meant (and obviously you don’t get it) is that just because someone SAYS it is sexism or ghosts, doesn’t mean it is.

    Wrong. Rule of thumb: sexism exists; ghosts do not. Not only does sexism exist, sexism is common. Therefore, if someone says it was sexism, it’s a fair bet that there was sexism. There’s a possibility they’re lying, just like there’s a possibility your friend is lying when he says he stopped to get gas for his car the other day. Now, getting gas for your car is a common occurrence, at least, in many parts of the world, especially the USA, correct? Therefore, unless you have some reason to doubt your friend’s claim in that particular instance, it’s reasonable to assume that they were indeed at the Citgo on Monday, paying three and three quarters dollars per gallon. Claiming to have experienced sexism is more like claiming to have bought gasoline than it is like having seen ghosts.

    As John Morales says, it is telling that you chose to make that comparison.

  103. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    . Please show where it is indicated that I don’t know about sexism. Wait, don’t bother, that is something you personally have projected on me. Very sad.

    Actually every clueless post you made. Which is all of them. Loser. Try honesty, which you lost acquaintance with years ago.

  104. Rey Fox says

    As John Morales says, it is telling that you chose to make that comparison.

    He’s Mr. Super Skeptic Man, that’s why. And he has examined the evidence.

    The other thing your talking about me in the 3rd person reminded me of was the “cool girls” in high school who couldn’t be bothered with “uncool” guys like me.

    Well, this explains a lot.

    (Yeah, I’m just taking potshots now, it’s the only thing Lynn reads and comprehends.)

  105. Lynn Dewees says

    #101 @echidna

    By now, hopefully, you have seen that I did indeed respond to your post.

  106. Ichthyic says

    And he has examined the evidence

    …and mansplained his conclusions to us poor peons.

  107. Lynn Dewees says

    Oddly, my last couple of posts have not seen the light of day. Maybe I have been banned? This is a test.

  108. Lynn Dewees says

    HEY, it looks like I have not (yet) been banned 8>0

    #114 @echidna – I have responded to you at #34, #62 and #101.

  109. Anri says

    So, may I be allowed to apply the It’s Glaringly Obvious When It’s Racism Instead Of Sexism Test to what Lynn is saying?

    ‘Cause when put in that light, it really sounds like Lynn’s trying to tell one of his black friends that it wasn’t racism that caused the hassling he got in East Jefferson Davis, seat of Forget, Hell! County. Because, yanno, Lynn’s got a big-city accent, too, and Lynn is presumably better at detecting racism than any random black guy.
    Because reasons.

    Am I way off base here?

  110. John Morales says

    [meta]

    HEY, it looks like I have not (yet) been banned 8>0

    But you have been deflated. :)

  111. Lynn Dewees says

    #118 John Morales – indeed I HAVE been deflated. I thought this was a place for intellectual discussion but instead I get #117 from Anri apparently accusing me of racism in addition to sexism. Can YOU explain to me WTF that post was about??

  112. says

    What was that post about? It was not about accusing you of racism, I can tell you that much. It wasn’t the best metaphor, but apparently you don’t grasp metaphors or hyperbole or other basic concepts.

  113. vaiyt says

    Put this in your head, Lynne:

    You are not special. Your insight isn’t novel or amazing. We’re not stumped by your intelligence. We’re not mad that you burst our bubble. We’re mad because we’ve seen you before, countless times.
    Every fucking Thor-damn time there’s a thread on this blog about a woman suffering an experience of sexism, some asshole jumps out of the woodwork to mansplain to us how her experience is totally invalid and we should trust their uninformed opinions instead. You sound like a clone of every idiot that came before you. The same arrogance, the same lack of self-awareness and the same insistence that the world revolves around their bellybutton.
    Between ourselves, we could dismiss your inane denialism (I refuse to call this “hyperskepticism”, it’s just plain shove-head-in-sand denial) and call it a day, but we fight our exasperation at the endless parade of idiocy and challenge you anyway, for the lurkers. Not for you. You’re not special.

  114. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Thanks Lynn, I needed that laugh.

    Your derision towards the level of intellectual discourse here coupled with your complete failure to understand Anri’s point was truly a laugh out loud moment. It would appear that your lack of self-awareness is truly all encompassing. Ah well, at least you’re consistent, that’s more than some can manage.

  115. John Morales says

    Lynn:

    Can YOU explain to me WTF that post was about??

    Sure: a non-category-error analogy where racism is the analogue for sexism; specifically, one wherein your opinion that sexism is an implausible explanation for Sue’s anecdotal experience is likened to you opining that racism would be an implausible explanation for a black friend’s anecdotal experience.

    (It’s flawed only inasmuch as it’s possible that you are a black person, though the likelihood is that you are not, because if you were you’d have grasped its significance)

  116. echidna says

    Lynn,

    But if men approach every encounter in terms of dominance, why is it sexist when they treat women the same way they treat men?

    Stop and think about this for a while. Civilisation is all about cooperation, and controlling behaviour so that the system, whatever you conceive it to be, works. The problem with men approaching every encounter in terms of dominance is that this approach leads directly to slavery, racism, sexism, genocide. So we build elaborate legal and social structures to compensate.

    It is sexist to try to dominate women. It is racist to try to dominate other nationalities. The fact that men try dominate other men all the time as well doesn’t make the other things not sexist or racist.

  117. says

    Actually, Lynn, you’ve gotten a more intellectual conversation out of others than you’ve bothered to contribute to. People have been more than fair.

    If you feel deflated, it’s probably because you weren’t able to keep up with and contribute to the conversation.

  118. says

    echidna: Thanks for pointing that out; it’s a wonderfully apt reminder of what civilization is. To be civilized is to cooperate (and to distribute work and/or specialize, but that’s also accomplished through large-scale, organized cooperation). The ahistorical fetish for viewing all human interactions as dominance rituals gets fucking annoying.

  119. =8)-DX says

    Does anybody BUT Lynn not get what Anri’s post was about?

    Yargh, he’s the only one who doesn’t get it.

    Lynn Dewees, please respond to my points at #73. echidna has made further and stronger points, but if you ignore those 3 points, I’ll just have to assume you have no answer and are merely making the baseless assertion “That wasn’t sexism because I say so!”.

  120. =8)-DX says

    Another point to look at this from is about definitions.. Lynn’s definition of sexism seems to be “actively discriminatory behaviour motivated by or targetted at another person due to their gender.” While other people are explainging that that is not the only kind of sexism, nor necessarily the most pervasive kind, and that gender differences in society have many other, more suble effects, which can on a whole lead to gender disadvantages despite people’s well-meaning intentions and having stronger effects (due to pervasiveness, ubiquitousness) and from this point of view Sue Black’s conference experience were still sexist even if there was no particular individual sexist behaviour by Lynn’s definition.

    If that original definition and a rejection of calling anything else sexism is Lynn’s position (and he can somehow show “They looked me up and down” wasn’t an example of direct sexism even by his definition), then we could reach some kind of understanding.

    This kind or reminds me of the similarly ignorant definitions of racism from the colour-blind, “racism is over” crowd.

  121. Anri says

    Lynn:

    #118 John Morales – indeed I HAVE been deflated. I thought this was a place for intellectual discussion but instead I get #117 from Anri apparently accusing me of racism in addition to sexism. Can YOU explain to me WTF that post was about??

    Wowee. People have certainly disagreed with that analogy when I’ve used it before, but I can’t honestly think of any time someone actually misunderstood it. But I’m often unclear in my writing, so I’ll put the blame on me.

    I started reframing (sorry!) instances of possible sexist behavior in racist terms because it seems to make them much more obvious. The usual way to do this s to simply substitute white for male and black for female and the egregious nature of the situation tends to pop right out.
    I personally find this useful as I am (for whatever reasons) more sensitive to and aware of racism than I am of sexism. Whenever I found myself disagreeing with my fellow feminists on a given issue, I’d put it to myself in racial terms and get a better sense of what was going on.

    So, I started doing this ‘out loud’, and called it The It’s Glaringly Obvious When It’s Racism Instead Of Sexism Test. So our current situation:

    Man tells women she must be mistaken about possible sexism because he’s felt awkward in similar situations. This assumes, of course, than the man is better at picking out instances of sexism than this woman, whom he’s never met.

    …becomes:

    White guy tells black guy he must be mistaken about possible racism because he’s felt awkward in similar situations. This assumes, of course, than the white guy is better at picking out instances of racism than this black guy, whom he’s never met.

    …but it’s certainly possible I was too snarky in my example to make it clear.
    (Except, of course, for the fact that every-freakin-body-else who commented seemed to get where I was coming from.)

    So, no I wasn’t accusing anyone of racism. I was showing that if this had been an issue of race it would clearly be racism. As it’s an issue of gender, well, you do the math.

  122. Rey Fox says

    instead I get #117 from Anri apparently accusing me of racism in addition to sexism.

    Boy, I could have called that. Lynn, you’re like a dog that stares at a persons finger rather than what that person is pointing at.

    (Heh, now he’s going to freak out that I’m comparing him to an animal. Sorry to contribute to the further devolution of this thread but well, there wasn’t much chance of anything otherwise, was there?)

  123. Lynn Dewees says

    #129 =8)-DX Sorry, in trying to read thru all this stuff, I apparently missed responding to your post at #73.
    You wrote “And your evidence to back this up is your experience of rejection at conferences as a male, which weren’t based on your gender.” I would say my evidence is based on mine and many others’ experiences at trade shows, period.

    You said “1) Sue Black said she experienced rejections based on her gender. The only other people that were part of the situations she experienced aren’t here, so you’re arguing that your experience as a man is better evidence for how a woman is received at such tech conferences, than hers. As many have said, the experience of a person within a group perceiving discrimination is more important than those outside – pointing to sexism.”

    I have never said my experiences are better evidence because I am a man. Never said it, never will. I said, just to reiterate, that everyone experiences these rejections and I am not CONVINCED that this particular case is sexism.

    “2) Even IF your experience were to be taken as a better authority here, and you had some special insight on conference interactions and men’s ulterior motives, the fact remains that Sue Black’s experience at male dominated conferences was of rejection and loniliness and an inability to penetrate the men’s comfort zone, something she didn’t feel when interacting with women. That would mean there is different socialisation of the men and the women making them welcoming/assholes, which would point to broad gender stereotypes and socialisation of male and female behaviour in society – still sexism.”

    Perhaps in my original post I should have generalized more, I thought the personal approach would make it more, I don’t know, personal. But at the end I did say that this is EVERYONE’s experience. My personal experience is NOT a better authority, my personal experience is part of a broad pattern of experiences. I know that this is a broad pattern because a) I’ve experienced it b) I’ve seen others experience it c) I’ve talked to others who have experienced it and d) there are people making tons of money writing books and conducting seminars on how to deal with it.

    My PERSONAL experiences at male dominated conferences (initially) were very similar to what Ms. Black encountered, in your words, rejection and loneliness and an inability to penetrate the men’s comfort zone. And like Ms. Black I did not feel these things when interacting with women AT WOMEN’S CONFERENCES. I have been rejected by women at gender neutral conferences and I have been rejected by mixed groups of men and women at gender neutral conferences. (Just a note, in my field (environmental) it seems the vast majority of meetings, conferences, trade shows are now gender neutral.)

    I think part of your socialization argument is “the different socialization of men and women is sexist”. And I agree with that. I am guessing that the second part of the argument would be, “because the socialization is sexist, the default assessment of any interaction between man and woman is sexist”. Is that a good interpretation? I won’t comment on it until I’m sure I understand it.

    3″) Just saying “just another day on the conference floor” doesn’t erase the individual bigotries of these behaviours, even though many of them could be defined as “rejections”. And so your point *still* doesn’t stand.”

    I think the simplest explanation for what goes on in these situations is that it is normal human behavior. I believe that you think a more complex explanation is required i.e it’s normal human behavior AND its sexism. I do not think that adding the complexity improves the explanation.

  124. Rey Fox says

    I think the simplest explanation for what goes on in these situations is that it is normal human behavior.

    But that’s really not a simple explanation at all. It’s just a glib dismissal. What is normal? Why is it normal? Is sexism part of normal?

  125. Lynn Dewees says

    #121 vaiyt has rejected me in no uncertain terms. Is that normal human behavior or should I look for some other, more complex explanation? I say it’s normal human behavior.

  126. Rey Fox says

    It’s like when creationists try to claim that “God did it” is a parsimonious explanation.

  127. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I think the simplest explanation for what goes on in these situations is that it is normal human behavior.

    Why should we care what fuckwitted egotist like you thinks? Really, you should be dismissed out of hand. And I dismiss your unevidenced OPINION out of hand. Just like you dismiss all opinions and anecdotal evidence that doesn’t agree with your presuppositions and prejudices.

  128. echidna says

    Lynn,

    I say it’s normal human behaviour.

    From your posts, and with that view, I suggest that your work environment is likely to be toxic, and that you don’t do anything to ameliorate that.

  129. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Lynn is a perfect example of an MRA who needs to shut the fuck up and listen. And he doesn’t have the bravery to do that…..BEAWK….

  130. echidna says

    Nerd,
    I agree. On linked-in he describes himself as team-oriented, but I doubt that he understands that term in anything like the same way as I do.

  131. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    he describes himself as team-oriented,

    My suspicion is only if he is a major player in the team. I’ve seen his ilk over the years. There’s a reason I’m still here at my company, and those people who played political/penis games are gone….

  132. Anri says

    Lynn:

    I think the simplest explanation for what goes on in these situations is that it is normal human behavior. I believe that you think a more complex explanation is required i.e it’s normal human behavior AND its sexism. I do not think that adding the complexity improves the explanation.

    And the explanation given by someone who was actually there, and actually experienced the actual behavior we are discussing is sexism.
    I still haven’t seen you explain why you are either:
    a) better at detecting sexism than the woman who experienced the behavior,
    or
    b) more familiar with the situation and therefore able to apply the facts better.

    Up to this all I have seen are variations of “Well, heck, I can’t think why she thought it was sexist, therefore it must not be!”
    So, tell us, are you dismissing her claim of sexism because you know sexism better than her, or because you know the situation better than her?
    To put it another way: why is your opinion on the matter worth more than hers?

  133. says

    Lynn, your post at #7 is pretty much the poster child for mansplaining: you’re putting your own outsider’s experience of sexism above the account of one who has experienced the sharp end of it. Sexism isn’t just “girls in bikinis”, it’s a zillion less blatant things experienced every day by women (see also other -ism’s against the non-white, disabled, trans-gendered, non-heterosexual, poor, and so on). As you are none of these — I’m guessing, but my experience leads me to believe that this is true — why should anyone value your doubt over the experience of those who have been devalued as a person because of one or more of these -ism’s?

    You can doubt all you want, but the doubt is your problem, for you to sort out, not anything anybody else is obliged to help you with, nor is anyone obliged to pay you any positive attention at all as long as you’re rehearsing a script we’ve all seen many times before.

  134. vaiyt says

    #121 vaiyt has rejected me in no uncertain terms. Is that normal human behavior or should I look for some other, more complex explanation? I say it’s normal human behavior.

    Good. Now get the hint and go away.

  135. =8)-DX says

    1)

    I have never said my experiences are better evidence because I am a man. Never said it, never will.

    I didn’t mean to imply that. I was talking about your experience as a man compared to Sue Black’s as a woman. Your personal experiences are more relevant to the question of what men experience at conferences (they also experience rejection, but not for reasons of sexism as far as you can see), but surely women and their reported experiences are the most relevant to the question of what women experience at conferences. You saying you aren’t convinced that what she experienced was sexism is essentially saying Sue Black shouldn’t be trusted to identify sexism in her interactions with other people.

    2)

    I think part of your socialization argument is “the different socialization of men and women is sexist”. And I agree with that.

    Good. That’s something you didn’t express in your original post, and I hope that means you concede that the problems Sue Black experienced at conferences *at least* are due to pervasive widespread sexism (which was therefore part of her individual experiences).

    “because the socialization is sexist, the default assessment of any interaction between man and woman is sexist”

    Not necessarily (that would depend on individual socialisation, individuals can and do and should overcome that), just that the specific conference experiences showed these sexist differences. More on this later.

    3)

    I think the simplest explanation for what goes on in these situations is that it is normal human behavior. I believe that you think a more complex explanation is required i.e it’s normal human behavior AND its sexism. I do not think that adding the complexity improves the explanation.

    I find this whole idea rather baffling. In what way (in what universe) is sexism not normal human behaviour? Similarly to racism, ableism, tribalism – these things are ubiquitous, pervasive, majority behaviours (to varying degrees), how is that not normal? Yes, simple explanations should be preferred due to Occam, but we already know that human interactions, motivations, behaviours are most often complex and multi-faceted, we know sexism is normal (to the point of infuriatingly banal). How is: “Sue Black experienced sexist rejections at conferences” not “a simple explanation”? Your premise is actually that the situation is more complex, that there are other things at play than direct sexism, that male-dominated spaces are exclusionary to more people and for more reasons than just hatred of women. Fine.

    Going back Lynn, I think the main beef here is, is that you aren’t convinced those rejections were sexist (albeit perhaps only in part, even Sue Black implies many of the interactions weren’t sexist), despite reading: “They looked me up and down, and then started talking to each other as if I hadn’t said anything.” and despite this being a person with a whole life’s experience of sexist behaviour towards herself.

    And lastly, some points of echidna that I don’t think you adequately responded to concerning dominating male behaviour and my second point. If many men are socialised to exhibit dominant behaviour over others, if they feel that this behaviour is what defines them as men (that to be “submissive”, “weak”, “friendly” is “feminine”, “unmanly”), surely that sexist stereotype being part of their identity means that these dominating behaviours will all be sexist, due to their inherantly sexist root. Whether or not a man is expressing this stereotypical behaviour towards women (in the form of misogyny), other males (in some kind of alpha-male display). A man behaving like a rude asshole towards another man, because he thinks or feels(perhaps unconsciously) that behaving decently would be “unmanly”, is due to sexism, is sexist by the very definition:

    sexism:
    1: prejudice or discrimination based on sex; especially : discrimination against women
    2: behavior, conditions, or attitudes that foster stereotypes of social roles based on sex

    On 1 indirectly: because a man is exhibiting predjudice or discrimination based on his own sex.
    On 2 directly: because he is fostering stereotypes of a dominant male social role.

    Good to see we’re getting constructive here.

  136. =8)-DX says

    And just an addendum: I’m also not saying that all male dominant behaviours are sexist, many “dominant” behaviours by both men and women are quite possibly positive – taking control in a crisis situation, making hard decisions in a managerial role, commanding from authority in a military setting, many examples in parenting. I’m saying that dominance as a male imperative is sexist (I’m a man, I must rule!)

  137. Lynn Dewees says

    =8)-DX I would like to continue this conversation with you but it is taking up too much time and I’m getting a headache trying to maneuver thru 150 different comments to find, add or correct a point. Based on the trajectory so far, we are not coming any closer to agreement. However, if you could convince most of the rest of the group from lobbing in various comments on my intellect, I would be willing to give it a try.

    =@echnidna – You don’t know anything about me and I have not spoken about my work environment. Your other comments were reasonable and rational and I apologize if I missed responding to them. I would love to know how you came to the conclusion that my work environment is “toxic”.

    Love and kisses.

  138. bargearse says

    I can almost handle Lynn’s mansplaining and the impenetrable denseness he’s shown so far, it’s pretty much par for the course. It’s the fucking sign offs, love and kisses, unicorns and rainbows and other such nonsense. How is anyone supposed to take him seriously when nearly every post is concluded with some obnoxious passive aggressive bullshit?

  139. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    However, if you could convince most of the rest of the group from lobbing in various comments on my intellect, I would be willing to give it a try.

    Sorry fuckwitted mansplainer, your opinions aren’t sought, and are dismissed since you can’t really discuss what non-white males have to deal with. Because first, you NEED TO SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN. Only then, can you cogently make remarks. I say this as an old-fart male who did shut the fuck up and listened.

  140. Lynn Dewees says

    mouthyb:

    In post #99, I believe you may have made a mistake in your interpretation of the statistics:

    “2/3 of the women working in tech and science have experienced harassment”
    is not equivalent to
    “in any random 2/3 of her [any woman’s] interactions, sexist behavior is likely to have occurred”.

    Assume a hypothetical office where there are 100 men and 3 women. Over a period of time, each woman has one interaction with each man for 300 interactions. If 2 of the women each has only 1 interaction involving harassment, that would mean in this scenario that 2/3 of the women have experienced harassment but only 0.67% (2/300) interactions involved harassment. For the original argument to to be correct, for those 2 women, every transaction with a man in that office would have had to involve harassment.

    My single, solitary and only point here is that the original statistical analysis was mistaken.

  141. opposablethumbs says

    Thank you, =8)-DX, for expressing that so well and so clearly.

    Lynn, you appear to care about tone a lot; I suggest you cut the passive-aggressive crap.

  142. Lynn Dewees says

    #156 #opposablethumbs

    I just went back and checked. 7 of the first 10 responses to my original post and 8 of the last 10 before yours contained insults or challenges to my integrity or passive-aggressive language. (I am giving =8)-DX the benefit of the doubt here because he said he did not mean it they way I took it.). That’s a pretty high percentage. I know that “You started it” isn’t a very mature response but sometimes it is more fun to respond tit-for-tat.

    I hereby do pledge and affirm that from here on out, I will respond with reasonable rational argument to those who wish to engage me in that manner.

  143. Lynn Dewees says

    #148 =8)-DX

    In #78 you said “[I’m] arguing that [my] experience as a man is better evidence for how a woman is received” at conferences/

    I responded “I have never said my experiences are better evidence because I am a man. Never said it, never will.”

    Then you said “I didn’t mean to imply that. I was talking about your experience as a man compared to Sue Black’s as a woman.”

    I will take your word for that, but surely you can see that my interpretation fits with what you said.

    In answer to most of the middle sections of your post, 2 things.

    You said” You saying you aren’t convinced that what she experienced was sexism is essentially saying Sue Black shouldn’t be trusted to identify sexism in her interactions with other people.”

    I reject that interpretation of what I said. It assumes what an attorney might object to as “facts not in evidence”.

    Please remember that I ended my original post with:

    “Just to be clear, I know that sex discrimination happens and I am sure Ms. Black could provide plenty of other non-conference related incidences. ”

    In retrospect, I should probably have said “Just to be clear, I know that sex discrimination happens and I am sure Ms. Black could provide plenty of other [conference] and non-conference related incidences.” or “Just to be clear, I know that sex discrimination happens and I am sure Ms. Black could provide plenty of details of other incidences”.

    You wrote: “Going back Lynn, I think the main beef here is, is that you aren’t convinced those rejections were sexist […..] despite reading: “They looked me up and down, and then started talking to each other as if I hadn’t said anything.[……]”.

    No matter what I say about “looked me up and down” is going to bring a sh*t-storm down on me.

    You said “And lastly, [………] If many men are socialised to exhibit dominant behaviour over others, if they feel that this behaviour is what defines them as men […………], surely that sexist stereotype being part of their identity means that these dominating behaviours will all be sexist, due to their inherantly sexist root.”

    Here are a few scenarios to think about:

    A. I’m driving down the road and someone cuts me off, forcing me to slam on my brakes. I blow my horn and shout nasty things out the window. The other driver is a woman. Is that sexist behavior?

    B.My wife is driving down the road and someone cuts her off, forcing her to slam on her brakes. SHE blows her horn and shouts nasty things out the window. The other driver is a woman. Is that sexist behavior?

    C. My wife is driving down the road and someone cuts her off, forcing her to slam on her brakes. She is so upset she has to pull off the road and wait 10 minutes before she feels calm enough to drive any further. She noticed, however, that the driver was a man. Was that man exhibiting sexist behavior?

    D. I’m coming out of an office building and I hold the door open for a woman. Is that sexist behavior?

    E. I’m coming out of an office building and I hold the door open for a woman and for a man.Is that sexist behavior to the woman but not towards the man?

    I would say NONE of these scenarios, as presented, involve sexist behavior. Let’s start there. If you disagree with me on this, I don’t think it makes any sense to continue this discussion.

  144. says

    I would say NONE of these scenarios, as presented, involve sexist behavior. Let’s start there. If you disagree with me on this, I don’t think it makes any sense to continue this discussion.

    Oh, so you don’t want “discussion.” You want “Yes Lee, you’re right.”

  145. vaiyt says

    Lynn Dewees:

    I have never said my experiences are better evidence because I am a man.

    Oh, you fucking did, asshole (number eleventy billion). You basically stepped into this thread to handwave how her experience of feeling unwelcome due to sexism is less reliable than yours, even though you’re not a woman and you’ve not been there. You fit very neatly into a pattern of people who come here in every thread about episodes of sexism to dismiss the experiences of women with no reason besides “bitchez gonna lie”.

    Feel free to cry and ignore me because I called you an asshole. I don’t give a shit.

  146. Tigger_the_Wing, Back home =^_^= says

    I’m curious, Mr. Dewees; why are you wanting to take this thread in a ‘Sexism 101′ direction?

    Everybody here knows what is, and isn’t, sexism.

    Everybody here (except, apparently, you) accepts Dr. Black’s view that the behaviour she encountered, and described as sexist, was sexist.

    Can you ask yourself why you are so invested in denying her version of events? If that isn’t what you think you are doing, please ask yourself why everyone reading your comments has interpreted them to mean that. And try re-writing them without the condescending mansplaining.

  147. vaiyt says

    @Lynn Dewees again at 158:

    I have a better suggestion.
    Let’s talk about real issues that affect the lives of real people, instead of fabricated hypotheticals.
    Let’s not talk about incidents as if they’re all isolated and exist in a cultural vaccuum.
    Okay?

  148. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Ah, the mansplainer still hasn’t learned how to shut the fuck up and listened. Prima facie evidence of his mental deficiencies. Here’s a clue cupcake, quit telling women how they should feel, and listen to them tell you how they feel. You would find that educational. But then, you don’t want to or can’t learn.

  149. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Oh, so you don’t want “discussion.” You want “Yes Lee, you’re right.”

    Called it at #26. Mind you, I’ve been really impressed by all the different ways that folks have tried to get through to Lynn. It will be a useful resource the next time I’m banging my head against a wall of privilege blinded obstinance.

  150. says

    Actually, Lynn, the her in my quote explicitly referred to Dr. Black, who is working in tech and is therefore a part of the population which is being discussed in the paper (eg: women who work in tech and science jobs.) The decontextualization you added in brackets is not in the original.

    See, in English if a paragraph has only one named person in it, all analogous pronouns are assumed to belong to the person you’re talking about. But maybe writing is also not your strong suit.

  151. =8)-DX says

    I will take your word for that, but surely you can see that my interpretation fits with what you said.

    I can’t vouch for your interpretations, but to once more clarify, as I explained in my last posts: you are saying that you can better interpret what a woman experienced, than she can herself. Your personal experiences, as a man, as in:

    When I was younger and more bashful, and even today, trying to start a conversation with a GROUP of people I do not know is difficult.

    are not relevant to what Sue Black experienced, as a woman. Men are not necessarily better or worse at noticing sexism in general, but it is a general truth that people in any given group have more relevant experience describing discrimination against their own group, than people outside the group. It’s not that your personal experiences aren’t relevant at all, but that as a man you should accept as more relevant the experiences of women, when talking about what women experience (just as women should for your insight on what men experience). You have reported other knowledge (interactions with women, knowledge of conferences), which may be more relevant, but if you want people here to accept a claim such as “women are likely to mistake the general negative atmosphere of conferences for sexism, specifically Sue Black in these instances”, you would need to provide more evidence beyond just assertion, especially when discounting the sexism described by Sue Black, who has both ample experience of sexism, conferences and male behaviour, and who was relating her story as an example of a broad trend.

    Your scenarios, A-E.
    Of course I agree, everything being equal. But, as in discussions of the physics of frictionless surfaces and ideal gasses and perfect energy conversion, these are abstract models which don’t map reality. They may be useful in moral philosophy discussions, but one can only apply them to specific situations, all things being equal (which they in reality aren’t).

    Evaluating individual events and behaviours in context is the only way to go about it. And that means, evaluating the frequency of events as well.

    Men cut in on traffic just the same as women – probably no automotive sexism.
    Men cut in on women significantly more often than otherwise – direct sexism.
    Men cut in on traffic significantly more often than women and women experience an associated number of sexist interactions – men probably influenced by gender stereotypes of how they should drive (or treated worse by their driving instructors due to gender? Probably not but its a hypothetical), and women’s reports of sexism should be taken seriously, not dismissed.

    Now either you have a problem with the concepts of differential socialisation and the existance of sexist stereotypes, or when you said

    The men at the NSPE meetings were totally trying to be dominant at all times. (As far as I recall, no one stood up on a table and pounded his chest, but still). The SWE meeting was very low key and friendly”

    you should accept (from your own experience!) that:

    A) Men at conferences behave much more dominantly than women at conferences. This behaviour is sexist.
    B) One can’t be 100% sure that Sue Black’s particular related experiences were due to direct intentional sexism (of course, as with any such situation the inner motivations of these people are invisible) or indirect sexism, but male dominance stereotypes (and therefore sexism) were most likely at play.

    Add on a C, and we’re done:
    C) Women have the best insight to interpret body language and context and determine what direct or general sexism against women they themselves experience, especially Sue Black in this case, and there is no good reason not to trust that the examples of incidents she gave were, in fact examples of sexism given the context in which they were provided.

    It seems that to you, incidents of sexism are something extraordianary and that one must treat accusations of sexism with a “innocent until proven guilty” approach. Hell, I often behave in sexist ways – I grew up with a slew of stereotypes of male behaviour, gender roles and a skewed view of women (RCC) and all I can do is try to educate myself, change behaviours, but when a woman comes along and says “this thing you men do is sexist”, I try to make it an opportunity to reasses my behaviours (at conferences for instance). Sexism (as I get it) isn’t something like “theft”, where it’s a specific defined action with intent. No, it’s ubiquitous, all pervasive (both genders), often unconscious or deeply ingrained in the culture and the people effected by it are the best people to ask about it.

  152. Lynn Dewees says

    #156 #opposablethumbs

    Once again, 8 of the last 10 posts were attacks. How long do I have to put up with personal attacks without responding? Please let me know.

  153. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    8 of the last 10 posts were attacks. How long do I have to put up with personal attacks without responding? Please let me know.

    UNTIL YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN, NOT PREACH….see, not hard. Just against your ego…

  154. Lynn Dewees says

    =8)-dx

    It’s late,I’m tired and a little bit grumpy, so just a minimal response now and maybe more tomorrow.

    “I can’t vouch for your interpretations”

    You said ““[I’m] arguing that [my] experience as a man is better evidence for how a woman is received” at conferences” Let me look at that – “MY experience as a MAN is BETTER EVIDENCE for how a WOMAN IS RECEIVED at conferences” Apparently, my English is rusty. It seems to me that you said my evidence as a man is better than that of a women. Maybe you didn’t say that, but it sure looks to me like you did. You can’t vouch for my interpretations but you can indeed read what you wrote. What you said seems pretty clear. Please read what you wrote and then tell me that it doesn’t say what it says..

    ” but to once more clarify, as I explained in my last posts: you are saying that you can better interpret what a woman experienced, than she can herself.”

    And let me reiterate that I never, ever said that I can better interpret what a woman experienced. Let me say that again – I NEVER, EVER said that I can better interpret what a woman experienced. Never. Ever. Did in mention never, ever?

    “: Your personal experiences, as a man, as in:

    When I was younger and more bashful, and even today, trying to start a conversation with a GROUP of people I do not know is difficult.”

    Read that a little bit more carefully. Pretend that I had just posted as “Lynn” and did not give you the option of rejecting my opinion because I was a man. I offered up my experiences as an insecure, naive person (who just happened to be man) Emphasis on insecure, naive, NO emphasis on man. You can understand that or not as you see fit.

  155. Lynn Dewees says

    #156 #opposablethumbs

    Ooops. Make that 9 of the last 11 posts………..

    #170, nerd of whatever:
    “UNTIL YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN, NOT PREACH….”

    Please, please, please point out where I am “preaching” about anything.

  156. Anri says

    Lynn:

    I hereby do pledge and affirm that from here on out, I will respond with reasonable rational argument to those who wish to engage me in that manner.

    Excellent.
    I presume you wouldn’t respond to attacks or insults, by saying, for example:

    Once again, 8 of the last 10 posts were attacks. How long do I have to put up with personal attacks without responding? Please let me know.

    Right?
    Oh, durn.

    Yanno, there’s exactly one person in this thread who can control how you respond, indeed even if you respond, to posts you don’t care for, Lynn.
    Wanna guess who that is?

    But anyway,

    A. I’m driving down the road and someone cuts me off, forcing me to slam on my brakes. I blow my horn and shout nasty things out the window. The other driver is a woman. Is that sexist behavior?

    I dunno, is one of those nasty things about how stupid bitches should learn how to drive? Do you assume, even on a subconscious level, that her poor driving was a result of her being a woman? Do you let her poor driving color your opinion of the next woman’s driving, or of women’s driving in general? Can you tell if you’re doing so?

    B.My wife is driving down the road and someone cuts her off, forcing her to slam on her brakes. SHE blows her horn and shouts nasty things out the window. The other driver is a woman. Is that sexist behavior?

    Possibly, see A, above.

    C. My wife is driving down the road and someone cuts her off, forcing her to slam on her brakes. She is so upset she has to pull off the road and wait 10 minutes before she feels calm enough to drive any further. She noticed, however, that the driver was a man. Was that man exhibiting sexist behavior?

    Possibly.
    Was he unusually aggressive because he dislikes women drivers? How would you wife know? How would you or I possibly know if the above version is all we get?

    D. I’m coming out of an office building and I hold the door open for a woman. Is that sexist behavior?

    Possibly.
    Why don’t you ask the woman?

    E. I’m coming out of an office building and I hold the door open for a woman and for a man.Is that sexist behavior to the woman but not towards the man?

    Possibly. Did you hold it open for her and just allow him to ‘coattail’ along? Did you hold it open for him because he was associated with her? Do you always hold doors open for people of all genders equally, with no sub-context? Could you even tell?

    Please note the underlying theme from each and every example above: sometimes, other people have to tell you if you’re being sexist. Sometimes, you can be sexist without anyone, including yourself, noticing. You might not be the very best judge of sexist behavior.

    Which, frankly, is what pretty much everyone on the thread has been trying to get into your head for the last hundred posts or so. (I exaggerate).

  157. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Please, please, please point out where I am “preaching” about anything.

    Every time you mansplain, which is every post. SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN. Otherwise, you have nothing cogent to say, which you prove with every mansplainin’ post.

  158. John Morales says

    [meta]

    Lynn :

    Once again, 8 of the last 10 posts were attacks. How long do I have to put up with personal attacks without responding? Please let me know.

    I’m not convinced that your claimed insecurity is a thing of the past.

    Read that a little bit more carefully. Pretend that I had just posted as “Lynn” and did not give you the option of rejecting my opinion because I was a man. I offered up my experiences as an insecure, naive person (who just happened to be man) Emphasis on insecure, naive, NO emphasis on man. You can understand that or not as you see fit.

    It was you whose very first words in your very first comment were that you were a man, yet now you wish for people to disregard that which you felt important to note ab initio?

    (heh)

  159. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Pretend that I had just posted as “Lynn” and did not give you the option of rejecting my opinion because I was a man.

    Then we would presume you are a female apoligizer for male privilege. What a loser if you can’t understand you are being an asshole, and need need to stop.

  160. Lynn Dewees says

    # 173 @Anri – my statistics are accurate. I am pointing out what I am facing. I am trying to respond with “reasonable rational argument”. Please explain to me how my statistics are not reasonable rational argument.

    It appears to me that you have misinterpreted my scenarios. You are “assuming facts not in evidence”. Please respond.

    I agree. You do exaggerate.

  161. Lynn Dewees says

    #174 I asked “Please, please, please point out where I am “preaching” about anything”

    You said “Every time you mansplain, which is every post. SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN. Otherwise, you have nothing cogent to say, which you prove with every mansplainin’ post.”

    That is not an answer, that is a personal attack.

    By my count, I have 34 posts here (right now about 20%). Please point to the ones where I am “preaching”.

  162. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    That is not an answer, that is a personal attack.

    No, it is an answer from a male who knows how to shut the fuck up and listen. And unitl you do, you have nothing cogent to say whatsoever. You are simply preaching your male privilege. STOP BEING AN ASSHOLE, AND SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN….

  163. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    By my count, I have 34 posts here (right now about 20%). Please point to the ones where I am “preaching”.

    Each and every post where you “mansplain'”. WHICH IS ALL OF THEM….

  164. Lynn Dewees says

    #175 @John Morales – I was challenged on my “passive-aggressive” behavior. I listed the personal attacks that I had been subjected to. My current insecurity or lack of insecurity has nothing to do with the facts.

    As I explained earlier, because of my name, many people automatically assumed I am a woman. As I explained earlier, I did not want anyone to be confused on the issue. I apologize to you if you did not read that post or did not understand my motivation.

    #176 Nerd of something – I stated right up front that I am a man and explained (see above) that I did not want anyone to be confused or mislead by my statements.

    If I had posted as “Lynn” without the explanation, you say that “Then we would presume you are a female apoligizer for male privilege.”

    It seems to me that you are defining an unfalsifiable condition. “A man cannot understand sexism” and “Any woman who tries to refute sexism is herself a sexist or at bestt a female apologizer for male privilege”.

    Is there any evidence you would accept, from anyone, that any particular incident is not sexist?

  165. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    As I explained earlier, I did not want anyone to be confused on the issue. I apologize to you if you did not read that post or did not understand my motivation.

    Your motivation is obvious. You are a mansplainer’ lowering the obsevations of women…

    I stated right up front that I am a man and explained (see above) that I did not want anyone to be confused or mislead by my statements.

    I know, because I can read. I”m also saying you are being a misogynist asshole. Stop being one. SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN, NOT PREACH. You preach if you won’t listen….

    “A man cannot understand sexism” and “Any woman who tries to refute sexism is herself a sexist or at bestt a female apologizer for male privilege”.

    Is there any evidence you would accept, from anyone, that any particular incident is not sexist?

    No evidence from you, or any other MRA, or MRA sympathizer. In other words, your word is trash, so SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN. I shouldn’t have to repeat myself unless you absolutely illiterate and abjectly stupid….

  166. Lynn Dewees says

    Mr. Nerd of the whatever:

    At #179, I said “That is not an answer, that is a personal attack.”

    you responded : “No, it is an answer from a male who knows how to shut the fuck up and listen. And unitl you do, you have nothing cogent to say whatsoever. You are simply preaching your male privilege. STOP BEING AN ASSHOLE, AND SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN….”

    I’m afraid I do not understand your answer.

    At #180, I asked “By my count, I have 34 posts here (right now about 20%). Please point to the ones where I am “preaching”.”

    You responded “Each and every post where you “mansplain’”. WHICH IS ALL OF THEM….”

    This, truly, does not help me understand what you are trying to explain. I have covered a lot of topics in my posts. I am fairly certain I have not “mansplained” or “preached” in any of them. It would be helpful if you could take some time and actually break it out for me where these things have happened.

    @Everyone – can you help me here? Can you ask Mr. Nerd to explain himself in more detail?

  167. vaiyt says

    @Lynn Dewees:

    Pretend that I had just posted as “Lynn” and did not give you the option of rejecting my opinion because I was a man. I offered up my experiences as an insecure, naive person (who just happened to be man) Emphasis on insecure, naive, NO emphasis on man.

    The first thing you did was barge in, announce that you were a man and that you were going to explain to us all what a woman was REALLY going through. For someone who claims to be insecure and naïve, you surely show a lot of pride in your ignorance and confidence in your uninformed opinions. What a joke.

  168. Anri says

    Lynn:

    # 173 @Anri – my statistics are accurate. I am pointing out what I am facing. I am trying to respond with “reasonable rational argument”. Please explain to me how my statistics are not reasonable rational argument.

    You have the absolute option of ignoring any post, or set of posts, or posters, here that you choose.
    The fact that you seem to want to dwell on the posts you don’t like smacks of doth protest too much.
    If you can’t engage with everyone, don’t – pick who you will engage with. If you don’t care for a certain type of post, that’s fine, don’t engage.

    It appears to me that you have misinterpreted my scenarios. You are “assuming facts not in evidence”. Please respond.

    I’m explaining how the instances you sited might possibly be sexism. Isn’t that what you were asking? If these scenarios you proposed might be sexist?
    The answer is, yes, they might be. Possibly, depending. Just like I said. For the reasons I noted. If you feel differently, if you feel they can’t possibly be sexist, ok, I’ll listen.

    I agree. You do exaggerate.

    Um, yes.
    And when I do, I try to own up to it.
    Yanno, like I did.
    But thanks for telling me what I did.

  169. consciousness razor says

    #158:

    I would say NONE of these scenarios, as presented, involve sexist behavior. Let’s start there.

    #177:

    You are “assuming facts not in evidence”. Please respond.

    Since you get to make them up in your head and assume whatever you want about them, why don’t you present these scenarios with sufficient facts to actually decide what is happening in them?

    The questions posed by Anri in #173 are certainly not assumptions. They are directed at those kinds of assumptions, so there won’t be such a need for us to make such assumptions. All you have to do is answer some of the questions. We can only guess. Which is what makes this such a pointless game.

    Are you merely claiming here in #7 that you don’t know whether Black’s scenario involved sexism?

    Just to be clear, I know that sex discrimination happens and I am sure Ms. Black could provide plenty of other non-conference related incidences. This particular set of incidences just seems to be everyone’s experience at conferences and networking events.

    It certainly reads like you think you do know, not that you think you’re ignorant.

    Do you suppose Black can know enough of the details to make that judgment about the scenario she was in? It may seem to you that “this particular set of incidences” (which you don’t have sufficient detail to assess) is like “everyone’s experience,” but what makes your lack of information relevant or even worth mentioning, when we can know what it seems like to her? I mean, she’s a person, right? All else being equal, with no prior reason to assume you’re more reliable than she is, her judgment of this particular set of incidents would more reliable than yours, because she actually has information about them. And you don’t. Yet you keep talking. That makes you even less reliable going forward than you started out.

  170. says

    It seems to me that you are defining an unfalsifiable condition

    Nope, the reason for that is that there’s really no reason to doubt Dr. Black’s words. She says it’s sexism. You say you’re not convinced. Apparently there’s nothing that would convince you that Dr. Black was correct in identifying her experience as an example of sexism. If you’re telling Dr. Black she’s wrong about her own experience with sexism, you’re the one with a problem, whether you’re a man or a woman.

  171. echidna says

    =@echnidna – You don’t know anything about me and I have not spoken about my work environment. Your other comments were reasonable and rational and I apologize if I missed responding to them. I would love to know how you came to the conclusion that my work environment is “toxic”.

    Love and kisses.

    Sure The big assumption that I am making is that you are reflecting your normal behaviour and not outright trolling. You have made it clear that low-grade bullying is absolutely normal behaviour that is perfectly acceptable. You have displayed an unwillingness to respond to, let alone accept, any opinion that differs from you own. When responding, you choose to focus on expressions of frustration, rather than patiently explained arguments, in a “gotcha” kind of way. The attitude that you are displaying is not productive, not creative, and is getting in the way. It’s toxic.

    Your whole argument has been based on the idea that Sue Black is seeing sexism where there really was only normal behaviour. I’m telling you that your idea of normal behaviour is toxic, and that this toxicity is likely to be reflected in your workplace, or else you wouldn’t think it was normal. Unless you are trolling.

  172. Lynn Dewees says

    #185 @anri:
    “You have the absolute option of ignoring any post, or set of posts, or posters, here that you choose.” Thanks. So do you. So what?

    #184 @Vaiyt
    “The first thing you did was barge in, announce that you were a man”

    Alternative explanation: The first thing I did was post a message and explained that I was a man so that no-one would think I was a woman.

    ” and that you were going to explain to us all what a woman was REALLY going through.”

    Alternative explanation – I was going to present my opinion on what happens at trade shows and how the given interpretation might (MIGHT, POSSIBLE, I’M NOT CONVINCED) have been mistaken….

    ” For someone who claims to be insecure and naïve ” I do not now claim to be insecure or naive. I said that AT ONE TIME I was insecure and naive and therefore my experiences FROM THAT TIME were relevant AND that every insecure and naive person has similar experiences..

    “you surely show a lot of pride” – whatever “in your ignorance” – does this advance the argument in any way? Do you have anything even vaguely related to proof of my ignorance?
    ” and confidence in your uninformed opinions.” Please demonstrate in some way that my opinions are uninformed.
    “What a joke.” Indeed.

  173. consciousness razor says

    Alternative explanation – I was going to present my opinion on what happens at trade shows and how the given interpretation might (MIGHT, POSSIBLE, I’M NOT CONVINCED) have been mistaken….

    It’s possible, because you just don’t know, therefore…..?

    Please demonstrate in some way that my opinions are uninformed.

    See the quote above and my #186. You are uniformed. Your vast experience at conferences trade shows is not in any sense information about the particular incidents Black experienced. You’re not giving us informed opinion. It’s worthless drivel.

  174. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Thanks. So do you. So what?

    Who gives a shit about yours? Think about that. I dismiss everything you say a privileged fuckwittery.

    I was going to present my opinion on what happens at trade shows and how the given interpretation might (MIGHT, POSSIBLE, I’M NOT CONVINCED) have been mistaken….

    Who gives a shit what you think, since you can’t/won’t SHUT THE FUCK AND LISTEN. Which is Prima Facie eviedence your OPINIONS are mistaken.

    I was insecure and naive and therefore my experiences FROM THAT TIME were relevant AND that every insecure and naive person has similar experiences..

    Who gives a shit about your previous PRIVILEGED problems. Nobody here does. Why don’ t you keep them to yourself. Makes you sound more intelligent at the end of the day.

    Please demonstrate in some way that my opinions are uninformed.

    They are obvious “malsplainin'”, and haven’t SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTENED TO WOMEN AND PEOPLE OF COLOR IN YOUR LIFE….

  175. Anri says

    Lynn:

    #185 @anri:
    “You have the absolute option of ignoring any post, or set of posts, or posters, here that you choose.” Thanks. So do you. So what?

    …so complaining that you are in some way forced to pay attention to those you perceive as attacking you makes no sense.
    And if you don’t like the attacks, and aren’t forced to pay attention to them… why are you?

    And, by the way, if you don’t want to answer my questions, just let me know and I’ll stop wasting your time and mine, ok?

  176. Lynn Dewees says

    #188 – @echidna:

    “The big assumption that I am making is that you are reflecting your normal behaviour and not outright trolling”

    AFAIK, I have not mentioned anything about my own behavior EXCEPT being rejected at conventions when I was young and naive. If you can point to something else I said, please do so. Also, AFAIK, I have not been a troll. I have responded in unfortunate ways to certain people who have directly attacked me, but otherwise I believe I have attempted to respond to reasonable disagreements with reason. If not, please point me to my mistakes.

    “You have made it clear that low-grade bullying is absolutely normal behaviour that is perfectly acceptable”

    I don’t believe that I have ever said that any behavior is acceptable (or not). “Normal”, at least in my opinion, does not equal “acceptable”.

    “You have displayed an unwillingness to respond to, let alone accept, any opinion that differs from you own”. I’m pretty sure that I have responded rationally to your opinions. I am almost certain that I have responded rationally to opinions from =8)-DX. If you refuse to accept (what you believe to be) my opinion, how is your behavior different from mine?

    “When responding, you choose to focus on expressions of frustration, rather than patiently explained arguments, in a “gotcha” kind of way. The attitude that you are displaying is not productive, not creative, and is getting in the way. It’s toxic.”:

    By my count, 70% or more of the posts have been direct attacks on me. By my count, 22% of my posts have been responses to attacks on me. Please, please go back and have a look. Who is being toxic?

    “Your whole argument has been based on the idea that Sue Black is seeing sexism where there really was only normal behaviour. I’m telling you that your idea of normal behaviour is toxic, and that this toxicity is likely to be reflected in your workplace, or else you wouldn’t think it was normal. Unless you are trolling.”
    1. You have stated my argument without condemning it. Thank you.
    2. I agree that normal behavior can be, toxic.
    3. I do not condone toxic behavior. As far as I know, I have not condoned any behavior in this discussion (good or bad).
    4. My understanding of normal behavior reflects my experience in the world. It does not reflect my experience at any of the places I have worked.
    5. I am not trolling. (This statement is unfalsifiable, believe it or not as you will)

  177. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Also, AFAIK, I have not been a troll.

    Yes you have. You are posting for effect. If you were discussing, YOU WOULD SHUT THE FUCK AND LISTEN…..Do you have a hearing problem????

    By my count, 70% or more of the posts have been direct attacks on me.

    Yes, if nobody agrees with you, and calls you a fuckwit, direct attacks, instead of you being a fuckwitted idjit who CAN’T SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN, AND QUIT PREACHING FROM THEIR PRIVILEGE….Yes, you are deaf, dumb, stupid, and illiterate…..

    5. I am not trolling.

    UNTIL YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN, YOU ARE TROLLING….Welcome to a feminist site, where male privilege is condemned on the spot….by other males even….

  178. Lynn Dewees says

    Here is a serious question:

    # 194 @Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls has posted, among other things, “UNTIL YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN, YOU ARE TROLLING”

    Should I consider this to be (at least to be reflective of) the majority opinion of posters to this discussion?

  179. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Should I consider this to be (at least to be reflective of) the majority opinion of posters to this discussion?

    This is prima facie evidence you are preaching ,and not discussing, as this is what everybody is saying to you. Keep preaching male privilege, and you will be dismissed out of hand. Shut the fuck up and listen, and try to learn, you may finally say something cogent to be listened to. But unless you shut the fuck up for several days, that is unlikely.

  180. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Lynn, you can’t learn with your mouth open and your mind closed. Reverse that, so your mind is open and your mouth is shut. Then, and only then, can learning happen. And you need to learn a lot in order to make cogent responses….

  181. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    My understanding of normal behavior reflects my experience in the world.

    You can’t get a clearer example of the availability heuristic than that. You’re tu quoque response the last time I brought this up was no defense of your logical failure.

    Over and over people have tried in great and varied detail, using great and varied means, to explain why your dismissal of Dr. Black’s interpretation of the events she witnessed is wrong. Your failure comes from your brain, that’s understandable, we all fall prey to the AH, ’tis but human. But your continued unwillingness to acknowledge, or to even seriously consider that failure makes you an asshole.

  182. Lynn Dewees says

    #198 @fossilFishy whatever – I note that you did not respond to my “tu quoque” response to your original post. Please explain to me how our availability heuristic is better than mine.

    I have personally committed to not responding to personal attacks, but come on “Your failure comes from your brain”?

  183. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    Yes, Lynn, you are trolling. And the fact that you refuse to STFU and maybe read what everyone else has said is proof. You’re just preaching, to people who’ve demolished what little argument you’ve been able to pull out of your ass many, many times already. Nothing you’ve said is new, and it’s all typical, privileged bullshit.

    And yes, the majority of people here would, in fact, like you to post less and listen more, as almost every poster here has already fucking said.

  184. says

    You want me to code-switch? I can speak polite.

    The big assumption that I am making is that you are reflecting your normal behaviour and not outright trolling”

    AFAIK, I have not mentioned anything about my own behavior EXCEPT being rejected at conventions when I was young and naive.

    You seem to be missing the fact that what you choose to write here; who you choose to respond to and how; all of that constitutes behavior. Your current behavior is toxic.

    If you can point to something else I said, please do so. Also, AFAIK, I have not been a troll. I have responded in unfortunate ways to certain people who have directly attacked me, but otherwise I believe I have attempted to respond to reasonable disagreements with reason. If not, please point me to my mistakes.

    Okay, I can accept that you’re sincere. Doesn’t make you less wrong.

    “You have made it clear that low-grade bullying is absolutely normal behaviour that is perfectly acceptable”

    I don’t believe that I have ever said that any behavior is acceptable (or not). “Normal”, at least in my opinion, does not equal “acceptable”.

    You juxtaposed this “normal” behavior as an alternative explanation for “sexist” behavior. Now, you seem to regard “sexist” as a sort of epithet to be avoided, but it’s not clear why you think that. Like I said before, it would be instructive if this is a topic that has ever troubled your mind much before, and if so, how.

    You appear to have backed away from definitively stating outright that what Dr. Black experienced was with 100% certainty not sexism – that was the impression you gave at first. Now you seem to be really passionate about pointing out this alternate explanation. I suppose you want us to not leap to conclusions without considering all the alternatives. If so, I’d just point out that it’s an extremely condescending and ignorant assumption to make, that these alternative explanations are not considered, and that neither I nor anyone else, with all our ranges of experiences, has good reasons for rejecting that particular alternative in this particular case.

    Make sense?

    “You have displayed an unwillingness to respond to, let alone accept, any opinion that differs from you own”.

    I’m pretty sure that I have responded rationally to your opinions. I am almost certain that I have responded rationally to opinions from =8)-DX. If you refuse to accept (what you believe to be) my opinion, how is your behavior different from mine?

    Well, for starters, she is more right than you are. You may have responded rationally within the bounds of your logical premises, but your premises are flawed. It’s not rational to doubt Dr. Black’s account, simply put.

    “When responding, you choose to focus on expressions of frustration, rather than patiently explained arguments, in a “gotcha” kind of way. The attitude that you are displaying is not productive, not creative, and is getting in the way. It’s toxic.”:

    By my count, 70% or more of the posts have been direct attacks on me. By my count, 22% of my posts have been responses to attacks on me. Please, please go back and have a look. Who is being toxic?

    Exactly how does the volume of posts “attacking” you (or, rather, your ideas and words) involve you behaving in a way that’s different from what Echidna describes? You appear to be stirring the pot, hence the speculation that you are a troll. You avoid substance and complain about tone. You do not appear to grasp a good deal of what is being communicated, but also seem unaware that your understanding falls short. What you wrote here is a good example. “Look over there, it’s their fault!” No evidence of even a desire to self-examine.

    “Your whole argument has been based on the idea that Sue Black is seeing sexism where there really was only normal behaviour. I’m telling you that your idea of normal behaviour is toxic, and that this toxicity is likely to be reflected in your workplace, or else you wouldn’t think it was normal. Unless you are trolling.”

    1. You have stated my argument without condemning it. Thank you.
    2. I agree that normal behavior can be, toxic.
    3. I do not condone toxic behavior. As far as I know, I have not condoned any behavior in this discussion (good or bad).

    Your behavior has been contemtpible. By which I mean, the opposite of condoneable. Your hyperskeptical, energetic denial of sexism is exactly the sort of thing that keeps people from speaking out about it. It’s because of people like you, with reactions like yours, that every woman – any person who’s experienced discrimination – who thinks about speaking about it publicly, must consider the possibility that she was mistaken. Because this kind of rude, dismissive, gaslighting denial of the possibility that a woman who reports experiencing sexism is a form of sexism in and of itself.

    As I stated earlier, there is no really compelling, rational reason to doubt Dr. Black’s account. Yet you doubt Dr. Black’s account; you say it fails to convince you. Therefore we surmise your reasons for doubting her account are not rational, and posit sexism of the implicit bias variety as an explanation. Have you seriously considered that alternative explanation? A rational person would.

    4. My understanding of normal behavior reflects my experience in the world. It does not reflect my experience at any of the places I have worked.

    I doubt anyone thought otherwise. The question is why you thought we might not have considered the possibility that this behavior was simply normal… instead of sexism. Toxic behavior is normal. Sexist behavior is normal. Sexist behavior is a subset of toxic behavior. They’re intrinsically related – even in all-male environments, such as deep-sea oil drilling rigs, teaching alternatives to toxic narratives about masculinity, which discouraged safety checks and use of protective gear, resulted in a lower injury and death rate at those men’s workplace. Sexism is extremely normal. Did you intend to give the impression that you thought it wasn’t? It’s not clear to me.

    You’re sincere, you say. Well, maybe you need to make more of an effort.

  185. Anri says

    Lynn:

    Should I consider this to be (at least to be reflective of) the majority opinion of posters to this discussion?

    I’ve tried to engage you in a discussion.

    And that was after you said:

    I hereby do pledge and affirm that from here on out, I will respond with reasonable rational argument to those who wish to engage me in that manner.

    To give you an out if you just found my questions boring, I said:

    And, by the way, if you don’t want to answer my questions, just let me know and I’ll stop wasting your time and mine, ok?

    Apparently, you don’t care to engage with people who want to discuss things, and you won’t say that you don’t want to.
    So, you tell me if that’s trolling or not.

  186. says

    I have personally committed to not responding to personal attacks, but come on “Your failure comes from your brain”?

    Availability heuristic. Look it up. Do it now.

  187. Lynn Dewees says

    #198 @Fossilfishythingy

    You said “Over and over people have tried in great and varied detail, using great and varied means, to explain why your dismissal of Dr. Black’s interpretation of the events she witnessed is wrong [….}

    As near as I can tell, 80% of the posts in this discussion are more interested in insulting me or attacking me then engaging me in conversation.. Go back and look at your first response to me “Oh I see Lynn, your opinion is accurate and germane while the opinion of the woman how experienced the events detailed is not. Fuck you.”

    I see an unsupported accusation and an attack. Is that what you call “explaining”?

    “But your continued unwillingness to acknowledge, or to even seriously consider that failure makes you an asshole”

    Now you have called me an asshole. Have you advanced your argument in any way?

    integrity. Your very first post was “Oh I see Lynn, your opinion is accurate and germane while the opinion of the woman how experienced the events detailed is not. Fuck you.A few (echidna and =8)-DX) have actually engaged in conversation. When you are ready to engage in cUonversation, let me know. Otherwise, as you said in your first oh-so-logical post ” Fuck you

  188. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    As near as I can tell, 80% of the posts in this discussion are more interested in insulting me or attacking me then engaging me in conversation..

    UNTIL YOU STOP TROLLING, THAT WILL BE THE CASE. AND YOU ONLY STOP TROLLING WHEN YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN, AND STOP PREACHING MALE PRIVILEGE. YOU AREN’T BRAVE ENOUGH TO LISTEN. YOU ARE FAILURE…

  189. Happiestsadist, opener of the Crack of Doom says

    Lynn, why exactly are you owed politeness? You more or less waltzed in, took a big “bitches be stupid/lyin'” dump on the floor and are surprised that nobody is impressed with you. You are not owed politeness. This space does not exist to coddle your astonishing levels of wrongness. Stop whining about how mean we are and engage with the arguments, or go the fuck away. You don’t get to dictate the tone of this place as some random trolling nobody.

    You are claiming that for some reason, you know more about a woman’s experiences of a situation…why? Pretty sure she’d be a better judge of whether a situation that she and not you were in (because you’re a man) was sexist than you could even guess were you actually even there at the time. Which, once again, you were not.

  190. Lynn Dewees says

    @Anri – you know, read the rest of my posts before responding to what you think I have not responded to. Hey, there are time lags here and my first priority in life is not responding to you. (I apologize. That’s passive-aggressive behavior, but Jesus-Mother-Fucking-H-Christ-on-a-Mother-Fucking-stick, give me a break!)

    @sallystrange – I have already responded to the “availability heuristic”. Look it up.

  191. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    have already responded to the “availability heuristic”. Look it up.

    WHO THE FUCK CARES. EVERYTHING YOU SAY IS DISMISSED AS FUCKWITTERY UNTIL YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP AND LISTEN…IF YOU PREACH *DISMISSED*.

  192. anteprepro says

    Lynn sez:

    I have personally committed to not responding to personal attacks, but come on “Your failure comes from your brain”?

    Apparently, “your failure comes from your brain” was an especially egregious insult, for Lynn to note it as a “personal attack” while acknowledging that she normally doesn’t acknowledge “personal attacks”!

    What Lynn responded to:

    Your failure comes from your brain, that’s understandable, we all fall prey to the AH, ’tis but human . But your continued unwillingness to acknowledge, or to even seriously consider that failure makes you an asshole.

    Apparently the insult was the part that was deemed something “understandable” that “we all fall prey to” and is “but human”. Obviously a noteworthy Personal Attack.

    Lynn, did you ever consider that you just don’t know a personal attack when you see it? Or that you are just on tilt, desperately hunting for errors and affronts to make yourself like Right, and doing so poorly ?

  193. hotshoe, now with more boltcutters says

    Lynn Dewees:

    @Anri – you know, read the rest of my posts before responding to what you think I have not responded to. Hey, there are time lags here and my first priority in life is not responding to you. (I apologize. That’s passive-aggressive behavior, but Jesus-Mother-Fucking-H-Christ-on-a-Mother-Fucking-stick, give me a break!)

    Goddamn, you idiot – if you’ve got a more important priority in your life than “responding” here, then get the fuck out of here and go do that, whatever it is.

    You won’t be missed here, that’s for sure. Even the people who aren’t cursing you won’t miss you one little bit. Go. Shoo. Git.

    Don’t hurry back.

  194. anteprepro says

    Also: for fuck’s sake, learn to blockquote. You have 52 fucking comments in this thread. You alone make up 25% of this thread. At least have the fucking decency to make your comments less of an assault on the fucking eyes before someone even gets to the point of reading your defensive little whines.

  195. anteprepro says

    Also, apologies, “she” should be “he” in 209.
    (Reading the thread backwards)

  196. vaiyt says

    @Lynn Dewees:

    Alternative explanation – I was going to present my opinion on what happens at trade shows and how the given interpretation might (MIGHT, POSSIBLE, I’M NOT CONVINCED) have been mistaken….

    That’s exactly the problem, dipshit. Maybe you never asked yourself why do you think it’s so important to cast doubt on her testimony, or why do you think you know what Sue Black has gone through better than Sue Black herself. Either way I don’t give a shit. You act just like any mansplaining asshole, guess what you are?

    Do you have anything even vaguely related to proof of my ignorance? Please demonstrate in some way that my opinions are uninformed.

    You argue as if Sue Black’s experience happened in a vaccuum, isolated of a context where countless women have reported similar experiences.
    You are ignorant of the specific problems women face in male-dominated fields, you don’t face those problems, and you still think you know more about a woman’s situation than a woman does.
    You keep crying about your offended feelings
    Yes, your opinions are uninformed, and I could quote just about half of what you wrote as “proof”.

    By the way, drop the tone policing, you don’t look more rational just because you can pretend to be a Vulcan. Not when you keep vomiting ignorant bullshit here. If you can’t take the attack on your precious feelings anymore, go away. Educate yourself and come back here when you’re ready to talk like an adult.

  197. Rev. BigDumbChimp says

    As near as I can tell, 80% of the posts in this discussion are more interested in insulting me or attacking me then engaging me in conversation..

    Also: for fuck’s sake, learn to blockquote. You have 52 fucking comments in this thread. You alone make up 25% of this thread

  198. echidna says

    Lynn:

    I’m not convinced that “men didn’t talk to me at a conference” is sex discrimination.

    FossilFishy:

    Oh I see Lynn, your opinion is accurate and germane while the opinion of the woman how experienced the events detailed is not. Fuck you.

    I see an unsupported accusation and an attack. Is that what you call “explaining”?

    Well, what I see is an observation and an expression of frustration. The observation is supported by your own words. Firstly, you mischaracterised what Sue Black wrote about the conference interaction, totally ignoring the detail that the men looked her up and down and the body language. You assumed that you understood the interaction better, because… I’m really not sure why. I’ve been to tech conferences too, and experienced a range of good and bad interactions, sexist and otherwise. I trust Dr. Black to be able to evaluate her own experiences. You clearly do not, but you have no basis to mistrust her judgement (unlike the hypothetical case where someone might report seeing ghosts, where there is every reason to be mistrustful).

    I find it interesting that you interpret the expressions of frustration as personal attacks. Did you really expect to start commenting on this blog with an expression of doubt that a woman could describe and evaluate her own experiences, and not expect expressions of frustration? If you did, you are unbelievably obtuse and graceless. If you expected the reaction you got, then you are a troll.

  199. anteprepro says

    The Right Reverend BigDumbChimp: That’s how bad Pharyngula is. The climate is so hostile that even Lynn felt the need to insult and attack himself for 5% of the thread, apparently. One out of every five of his comments was spent self-flagellating, weeping for us to forgive him for his short-comings before he snapped out of it and started valiantly defending himself again. But he will succumb again. The hivemind does that to those who do not Obey. Be warned, Disagreers. Be warned.

  200. Rev. BigDumbChimp says

    It’s tough out there on the wild west of the internet

    Gird your loins commenters

  201. Lynn Dewees says

    #201 @SallyStrange

    Thank you for “speaking polite”

    Let’s remember that in your first post you said: “Why is it so important to Lynn (and his many, many fellow travelers I’ve seen over the years, all over the internet) that is be NOT SEXISM? One can only speculate, since they are rarely self-aware enough to answer the question themselves. Fear of change? Fear of loss of privilege? Who knows.”

    You did not know me then, you do not know me now. You decided that, because I disagreed with something you agreed with, that I was a “fellow traveler” and that I was was “afraid of change” or afraid of “loss of privilege”. At that point, I had no idea who you were either. How was I supposed to respond??

    (FWIW, someone just posted that I came in with a “bitches be stupid/lyin’” dump”) I mean, really, WTF?

    Hey. Let’s let bygones be bygones.

    You write: “You seem to be missing the fact that what you choose to write here; who you choose to respond to and how; all of that constitutes behavior. Your current behavior is toxic. ”

    Apparently your definition of “polite” is different from mine 8>). I will assume that this is “tough love”.

    I completely and utterly reject that my behavior is toxic. I originally chose to post here because i thought I had something to add to the conversation. As I have already noted, 70% of the original responses were attacks. I ask again, whose behavior is toxic?

    You wrote: “Okay, I can accept that you’re sincere. Doesn’t make you less wrong.” Sincere but wrong, I can accept. Sincere but correct would be better. 8>),

    You wrote: “You juxtaposed this “normal” behavior as an alternative explanation for “sexist” behavior. Now, you seem to regard “sexist” as a sort of epithet to be avoided, but it’s not clear why you think that. Like I said before, it would be instructive if this is a topic that has ever troubled your mind much before, and if so, how. ”

    Anything I could possibly say about my personal philosophy on sexism (outside of this one particular case) would now seem like “special pleading”. I will stand by my original assertion “This particular set of incidences just seems to be everyone’s experience at conferences and networking events.” You can choose to read “what a sexist asshole” or “maybe he’s not a COMPLETE sexist asshole”. My preferred response would be “he has an opinion on this particular incident that is different then mine”.

    “You appear to have backed away from definitively stating outright that what Dr. Black experienced was with 100% certainty not sexism – that was the impression you gave at first.”

    I believe that all I ever said was “This particular set of incidences just seems to be everyone’s experience at conferences and networking events.” and “I’m not convinced that “men didn’t talk to me at a conference” is sex discrimination”. In my opinion, I never said or implied that what Dr. Black’s experience was “100% certainly not sexism”. What I truly believe I said was that there was a simpler explanation.

    ” Now you seem to be really passionate about pointing out this alternate explanation. I suppose you want us to not leap to conclusions without considering all the alternatives. If so, I’d just point out that it’s an extremely condescending and ignorant assumption to make, that these alternative explanations are not considered, and that neither I nor anyone else, with all our ranges of experiences, has good reasons for rejecting that particular alternative in this particular case.”

    I believe that I am “passionate” about my original point, my original explanation. In my opinion, there has been quite a bit of leaping to conclusions. In my opinion, many people on this list have come up with alternative explanations of what I said, based on their own condescending attitudes of who I am (without any clue) and what I was “trying to say” while ignoring my actual words.

    you asked “Make sense?”

    Yes, makes sense.

    To the extent that I have been trolling, I have been trolling because I was so quickly and automatically rejected for my opinion. How many times do I have to say this – I understand that there is sexism in the work place. Let me add to that, I understand that there is sexism on the conference floor. As I originally said [mumble, mumble, mumble about my personal experience] “Just to be clear, I know that sex discrimination happens and I am sure Ms. Black could provide plenty of other non-conference related incidences. This particular set of incidences just seems to be everyone’s experience at conferences and networking events.”

    Now you tell me, 70% of the responses to my post have been, in one way or another, personal attacks. Make sense?

  202. =8)-DX says

          A highly frustrating point in Lynn Dewees misunderstanding of sexism and privilege is exactly here:

    Pretend that I had just posted as “Lynn” and did not give you the option of rejecting my opinion because I was a man.

          Lynn Dewees assumes that in any given situation merely exchanging genders, all else would remain the same. Well, welcome to the 21st Century, it’s not all the same. Sexism affects men differently than it does women. Lynn, you are actually showing stark raving blindness of your own privilege if you really think that exchanging “man” for “woman” in any situation (apart from hypothetical ones where you pretend sexism doesn’t exist), leads to equal results.

          And to answer your question: yes, it’s possible that I would have found your opinion more relevant if I thought you were a woman. You see when I evaluate situations where I don’t have direct or sufficient personal experience, I’ll go with (from least to most relevant):
    1) My own general background knowledge (of sexism, of women’s experiences).
    2) Experiences of others outside the group in question (Lynn).
    3) Experiences of members of the group in question (Lynn as woman).
    4) Experiences of people who actually participated in the situation (Sue Black).

          For instance I find the opinions and related experiences of roma people more relevant than those of white people, as to the existence and extent of discrimination against that minority in my Country. I constantly come accross white privileged people saying things like “oh it’s not that they can’t get jobs – it’s because the job market is bad now, my sister also had problems getting a job. I’m not convinced that roma people not getting jobs is racism.” I’m less likely to trust outsider opinions of white people that “all the roma do is just cash in benefits, they don’t want to work”, than first-hand experiences seeing the living conditions of my parents’ roma neighbours.

          That aside, Lynn has yet to offer any reason to consider male dominance stereotypes and behaviour not sexist, otherwise I can’t see why he could not be convinced that Sue Black was experiencing sexism only in general, but not also in those specific instances. After all, she was talking about the welcoming and rejecting behaviours of men and women at conferences, which is obviously a difference in male and female identities, stereotypes and gender roles, concentrating on the specifically toxic male ones. The only other explanation would be “well men are just born like that, they can’t help being all dominant and assholey”, which is in itself deeply sexist. The very behaviours in those specific instances are what makes these male dominated conferences unwelcoming, and as I pointed out this fit standards definitions of sexism.

          And from that point of view, Lynn seems to have been the victim of these sexist behaviours himself (isn’t it wonderful, how sexism negatively affects men as well!)

  203. Anri says

    Lynn:

    @Anri – you know, read the rest of my posts before responding to what you think I have not responded to. Hey, there are time lags here and my first priority in life is not responding to you. (I apologize. That’s passive-aggressive behavior, but Jesus-Mother-Fucking-H-Christ-on-a-Mother-Fucking-stick, give me a break!)

    I’ve read all the bits of all of your posts since we’ve started interacting there, and tried to respond to all of them that were directed at me, typically quoting them in full.

    You’re under no onus at all to respond to me.

    Which I’ve said.

    Twice now, I think.

    If you don’t want to, you don’t have to, but if you’re going to bother to, could I ask you to take at least a vague sweep at actually addressing the issues I’ve raised with what you’ve posted? Because otherwise, as I noted, we’re both just wasting our time.

  204. CaitieCat says

    Tony, it doesn’t turn out well.

    Also, if this is your pipe dreams, you need better stuff. Come on up to Canada, we’ll see you right. ;D

  205. says

    Don’t hold your breath, Tony. Lynn has lied, misquoted, selectively ignored, misinterpreted, been passive aggressive and otherwise been ridiculously disingenuous the entire time. I’mma guess it’s impossible for him to understand why he’s wrong.

  206. =8)-DX says

    One more thing to add, on “tone”, “attacks” and “mansplaining”:
    A common occurunce, when women describe the sexism they have encountered, is for men (or sexism-deniers in general) to refuse to be convinced that what happend was sexism, to ascribe other than sexist motivations to the people in question and to put forward their own experiences and knowledge as a reason to reject the woman’s evaluation. I could go on to talk about “female voice”, “privilege blindness” and “chilling climate”, but that’s basic feminism 101. Which is why you shouldn’t be surprised at women and others on largely feminism-aware pharyngula comments sections are rightly annoyed, disgusted or just plain tired with this happening on a regular basis.

    Case in point – I can’t remember the issue, but I myself remember having similar views a few years back, especially on sexism being about direct, specific, motivated actions and thinking that as a man I was just as qualified to interpret experiences of sexism as women. I also got my ass handed to me and had my misconceptions and ignorance ripped to shreds both intellectually and with actual evidence. I’m thankful for the whole learning experience – I’ve learned a lot just in these comments – so thanks to all ya’s ^.^.

  207. hotshoe, now with more boltcutters says

    I believe that all I ever said was “This particular set of incidences just seems to be everyone’s experience at conferences and networking events.” and “I’m not convinced that “men didn’t talk to me at a conference” is sex discrimination”. In my opinion, I never said or implied that what Dr. Black’s experience was “100% certainly not sexism”. What I truly believe I said was that there was a simpler explanation.

    I don’t care what you truly believe. No one cares what you truly believe. Your belief isn’t worth the electrons. Like creationists and global-warming deniers, you are truly wrong in what you truly believe. You cannot possibly begin to be right until you first admit that you are wrong and have been wrong all along in what you “truly believe”. Your opinion is worthless since it’s not based on evidence, only on a fake skepticism. You need to shut up and listen. If you can’t do that, you need to just plain shut up.

  208. hotshoe, now with more boltcutters says

    Jesus fuck, Lynn Dewees, if you can’t shut up, at least learn to blockquote, you pretentious selfish little shit.

  209. echidna says

    Lynn:

    I completely and utterly reject that my behavior is toxic.

    You thought your contribution added something to the discussion. Sorry mate. You are unbelievably clueless, sucking the bloody life out of the thread.

    Now you tell me, 70% of the responses to my post have been, in one way or another, personal attacks. Make sense?

    No, they have not. Expressions of frustration at your obtuse comments are not personal attacks on you. You are not entitled to have people agree with you. You are not entitled to politeness when you repeatedly mischaracterise what people are saying.

    If you are sincere, then accept that we are sincerely pointing out that you are wrong about the whole idea of what constitutes sexism, and who can most validly make judgements about what is and isn’t sexist. When a woman describes an incident, at least have the decency to take her at her word, just as you would a male colleague.

  210. echidna says

    Nah, I’m done. I’ve clearly lost any shred of patience I had with this arrogant twit.

  211. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I have been trolling because I was so quickly and automatically rejected for my opinion.

    Yes, and your opinion will be dismissed as mansplain’ until you show you have shut the fuck up and have listened to those who have less privilege than you. Which you can’t show with your mouth open….That is the part you arrogantly miss. Your opinion isn’t wanted. You have expressed it, but nobody has to respond to it other than dismissing it and telling you you are full of shit.

    Something you should read (another PZ post).

  212. Anri says

    Can I delcare this thread dead?
    I’m doing so.

    “Thread, you have disappointed me for the last time.”
    *force-chokes thread*

  213. =8)-DX says

    “Thread, you have disappointed me for the last time.”
    *force-chokes thread*

    *waves hand
    “These are not the instances of sexism you are looking for..”