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Overt outreach

Overt outreach

Posted Feb 2, 2013 22:36 UTC (Sat) by man_ls (guest, #15091)
In reply to: 25 Women in 10 Free Software Organizations for GNOME's Outreach Program for Women by blujay
Parent article: 25 Women in 10 Free Software Organizations for GNOME's Outreach Program for Women

This program does not discriminate; it is not sexist. It is a program explicitly designed for women. Discrimination in a program happens when admission is biased by a factor not related to the program itself. Now for some examples to let you know the difference. Using race to select scientists: bad. Using income to help poor people: right on the money. Using gender to select developers: bad. Using gender to increase women participation in free software: only logical. (The issue of whether increasing women participation is worthwhile can be discussed separately; if you think it is not worthwhile I am sure you can find 25 other cavemen to agree with you.)

Many people are against positive discrimination. This is not a case of positive discrimination, but a targeted program. The whole premise of this thread is absurd. Sorry for feeding the troll but too many people are swallowing this disgusting bait.


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Overt outreach

Posted Feb 3, 2013 0:15 UTC (Sun) by shmget (subscriber, #58347) [Link]

"Using gender to select developers: bad."

Well, that is _exactly_ what the program does.

Using gender to increase women participation in free software: only logical.
oh, so using gender is bad... except it gender=woman ?
what is logical about that ?

"Many people are against positive discrimination."
positive discrimination is an oxymoron. by the very definition of discrimination, it favor someone at the expense of someone else, and in this context, based on a criteria irrelevant to the task at hand. There is nothing positive about that, regardless who is favored.

"This is not a case of positive discrimination, but a targeted program."
A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

"The whole premise of this thread is absurd."

Fact:
Program A establish as first rule: Applicant must be of gender G.
Does anyone argue that this is not a fact here ?

Now, let's apply the golden rule ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Rule ) to that fact. Anyone still think it is a good idea ?

Overt outreach

Posted Feb 3, 2013 0:45 UTC (Sun) by man_ls (guest, #15091) [Link]

I thought it was obvious that in the first example you cite the objective was to select developers for a given development project; while in the second the goal is to increase participation of women in free software, therefore the way to do it is using gender. The objective is what counts in both situations.

Note that in free software developers are not selected but they offer to participate; in this program women are encouraged to do so with an internship. There is no exclusion of male developers in any project, just an incentive to a certain group which is grossly underrepresented.

By the way: the Golden Rule, not a good idea. Try the categorical imperative. I think applying similar programs (for men or women) to any situation where gender imbalance is about 90~99% would not be a bad idea.

Overt outreach

Posted Feb 3, 2013 2:04 UTC (Sun) by shmget (subscriber, #58347) [Link]

" in this program women are encouraged to do so with an internship. There is no exclusion of male developers in any project, just an incentive to a certain group which is grossly underrepresented. "

Certainly there is an exclusion from the internship.
iow this is a job opportunity: 'doing some work and receiving compensation for it', and a class of people are excluded from applying based on their gender.

If the program was about encouraging women to _volunteer_ to open source project, or encouraging women to _apply_ to GSOC, for example, and helping them to be successful GSOC student... that would be a completely different story.

Overt outreach

Posted Feb 3, 2013 10:16 UTC (Sun) by man_ls (guest, #15091) [Link]

Of course there is exclusion from the internship, but not from the participating projects. You may dislike the program as much as you want, but accusing it of discrimination when it is meeting its explicit goals is absurd. That is not what discrimination is about, and you should all know better.

Overt outreach

Posted Feb 3, 2013 10:46 UTC (Sun) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

> but accusing it of discrimination when it is meeting its explicit goals is absurd.

so if the KKK were to make a program to advance white males you would say that it's not discrimination because it achieves the goals of the program??

somehow I don't think so.

If you can't change the group that a program is designed to benefit to any other group without causing cries of discrimination, then it's highly likely that the program is practising discrimination in favour of the group it's trying to help.

Now, that discrimination may or may not be justified as a corrective measure for past problems, sometimes two wrongs do make a right (depriving someone of their freedom is wrong, but we do it as punishment to criminals who have wronged others), I'm not arguing that this program is evil.

but saying that it's not discrimination if the group it excludes is X for only some values of X but not for other values of X is not being true to the term.

Overt outreach

Posted Feb 3, 2013 11:05 UTC (Sun) by man_ls (guest, #15091) [Link]

The KKK was not practicing discrimination within their own organization; it just had abhorrent objectives. But these objectives included practicing discrimination in many other organizations and situations.

I believe we are just one step short of invoking Godwin's law, so forgive me if I don't participate in this discussion any more. If with the arguments provided you don't see the difference then you need more enlightenment than I am able to provide, or you are being obnoxious on purpose. Either way it is of no use.

Overt outreach

Posted Feb 3, 2013 22:19 UTC (Sun) by ovitters (subscriber, #27950) [Link]

Purposely involving the KKK in a discussion. Really, wtf?

Overt outreach

Posted Feb 3, 2013 2:15 UTC (Sun) by hummassa (subscriber, #307) [Link]

> it favor someone at the expense of someone else

The whole argument crumbles right here. If a man wants to be a Free Software programmer, he does not need the kind of help a woman needs (for instance, to understand brogrammer culture and to know what to do about it; to communicate effectively with a male majority in mailing lists and other electronic forums; to steer from social pressures that would make them go away from exact sciences).

So, when you do a program like that, you are not doing so at the expense of men; the field will be as full of us as it always has been. But if you prevent a program like that to happen, you will do so at the expense of women; the result is that the field will have the same amount of men, but less women. Got it?


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