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Why I’ve been refusing invitations to women in tech panels

April 15, 2015

This is a pretty decent summary of (one of the major reasons) why I’ve stopped being quite so supportive of women in technology events and panels:  An Unpopular Opinion about Diversity Panels

To excerpt the summary:

Diversity panels do not help further the cause of diversity.  They just don’t.  They are nice and I love hearing marginalized folks share their experiences.  But they suffer from an echo chamber effect that diversified panels, panels where a member happens to be from a marginalized group, do not face.  Diversity panels make conference organizers feel like they’re doing their part to further diversity, but all they really do is further ghettoize diverse authors and marginalized voices because the audience for those panels are the people who are ALREADY LISTENING.

Emphasis mine.

And a proposed solution:

…to get the people who don’t care to start thinking about diversity you have to put it in front of their face when they aren’t thinking about it.  You have to slip black beans into their brownies and only tell them about the benefits of what they ate after the fact.

I shall have to muse upon this further…

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