So are any of the ladies in the group going to TODAY'S NYC Seven Sister's
event that's designed to address these issues?

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Elias Friedman A.S., CCEMT-P
אליהו מתתיהו בן צבי
"יְהִי אוֹר"
On Mar 4, 2014 1:44 PM, "Jennifer Baek" <> wrote:

> Hi Dorothy,
> Thank you for your thoughtful and honest email. You raise very important
> matters that the group should begin discussing openly. I have had similar
> experiences with Wikimedia NYC and other tech/activist groups, and
> sometimes felt a little discouraged or shy about speaking up, and a lot of
> times, I rationalize and brush off what I experience as something I would
> always experience in groups that are predominantly male.
> I'm happy to coordinate our efforts on conference planning to begin a
> conversation about this. If you need any assistance in organizing a
> diversity training for our group or would like to set aside time to have a
> Wikimedia NYC Board meeting for this, please let me know. I will do
> anything and everything to help start this conversation.
> Thanks again,
> Jennifer
> Jennifer Baek
> (646)756-9783
> On Mon, Mar 3, 2014 at 2:56 PM, Dorothy Howard <> wrote:
>> Dear All,
>> As one of the few female members of Wikimedia NYC I want to express to
>> you all my thoughts on the gender dynamics of the group to put things in
>> perspective. I hope that this email can continue into a wider discussion
>> about the gender politics of Wikipedia and how to address potential issues
>> of sexism in our community.
>> First off, I have been incredibly thankful for the opportunity to work
>> with all of you and have learned a lot from my participation in this group
>> and the gracious help of many of you.
>> That said, I have felt that the attitudes of some community members has
>> been quite antagonistic towards myself and that this had made me feel
>> unwelcome. Part of my criticism is that I have felt judged at different
>> points for not having the same technical strengths and/or community
>> connections in the group. I think it is important for older members of
>> Wikimedia NYC to remind themselves that not everyone has the same set of
>> skills/references to draw from and in order to create a friendly and open
>> environment for new members we have to be patient teachers to newcomers,
>> not judgmental exclusivists or lecturers. I also bring this up because I
>> have had several other women that have been in some way involved or have
>> worked with Wikimedia NYC members at events express discomfort at the
>> masculine and/or sexist undertones of some of the training styles of
>> members of Wikimedia NYC this was even true at the ArtAndFeminism event-
>> which I found very concerning. This greatly concerns me as the group
>> already is mostly male members, and the perception of this kind of negative
>> attitude could only prevent the diversification of our group and its
>> addressal of the concerns with the gender gap more widely in the Wikipedia
>> community.
>> I think one of the problems is that attendees of events don't want to be
>> told how things are and lectured to as much as they want to be given enough
>> encouragement to go out and learn the policies/editing on their own. The
>> difference might seem subtle but I think it is noticeable. I ask each
>> member of this group to please consider if perhaps you may be implicated in
>> my concerns here, because this email is not coming out of nowhere but out
>> of the discomfort and conversation among other members of the group to
>> which I will leave unnamed.
>> I also want to stress that Wikimedia NYC should not be a place for
>> unwanted, unprofessional romantic attention. This kind of attention makes
>> it hard to feel like a real person when one's intellectual interests are
>> being interrupted by an objectifying gaze. I ask that the group treat our
>> events and meetings like a workplace in the sense that harassment of a
>> sexual or romantic nature should not be tolerated.
>> Thanks for listening. I hope this conversation evolves perhaps into a
>> training on how to faster a friendly space environment in groups and/or a
>> larger discussion of the potential gender gaps within the group. I really
>> think it should be a conversation- I just felt I needed to express these
>> frustrations upfront instead of continuing to leave them unaddressed.
>> Thanks for reading,
>> Dorothy
>> --
>> Dorothy Howard, Open Data Fellow
>> Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO)
>> 212.228.2320 x127
>>  <>
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