The dark side of open source conferences
Posted Dec 3, 2010 16:56 UTC (Fri) by njs
In reply to: The dark side of open source conferences
Parent article: The dark side of open source conferences
What thread are you referring to where someone asked what cis-privilege was? I can sort of kind of read that into this comment if I squint but... not really.
If some hypothetical poster *had* said "hey, this is really interesting and I want to know more but I've read this stuff on the wiki and tried to google for this other thing and couldn't find it, anyone have any suggestions?" then I think they'd have gotten a very different response. Graydon's responding to this attitude of "wah this is too confusing and impossible, no-one could possibly understand this stuff so I give up". Which, if you've been in these kinds of discussions before, is something you've seen over and over as yet another way that people avoid confronting this stuff. I mean, it *isn't* easy to think about or deal with, but it's possible, and the other option is to be part of the problem. If you're choosing "be part of the problem" then of course you can expect some flak.
Anyway: "privilege" is a cover term for the benefits a member of a higher-status group receives over a member of a lower-status group, usually without the higher-status person even being aware of what's going on. So it distorts our ability to understand and interact with other people, and it produces unjust outcomes. This is an excellent post about the various privileges that John Scalzi enjoys. This is an excellent summary of what "privilege" does and doesn't mean. For more links and a discussion of male privilege specifically, this article seems good.
"Cis privilege" is the privilege that people receive for being born into a body whose sexual characteristics match their experience of gender. If you want to get a sense of all the things that cis-privilege lets you take for granted, then googling "cis privilege checklist" will get you a bunch of people's lists -- I'm not really qualified to tell which are 'better' (or perhaps they're complementary), but this one seems readable.
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