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Talk:Submissions/How to improve the coverage of women in Wikipedia

Latest comment: 9 years ago by Rosiestep in topic Hiding your issues by renaming

Tone deaf

This may well shape up to be an interesting talk, but it seems pretty tone deaf to write this in a way that starts out deliberately offensive. This is almost Exhibit A about how not to do outreach... Calliopejen1 (talk) 21:09, 18 February 2015 (UTC)Reply

I disagree. It's a hook to get people interested. Your first reaction might be "what the heck?" but then it made me chuckle. It's a pretty ironic turn of the table, or at least it was to me. It's not meant to be politically correct, it's meant to create interest on a topic that is underrepresented. I'm thinking it did it's job if it gets people to look at it and see that it is indeed interesting. Not remotely judging what you said, just saying I don't find it offensive in the least. SusunW (talk) 01:05, 23 February 2015 (UTC)Reply
I agree with Calliopegen. I'm also concerned about the part that says "Should we try and avoid English speaking white women so that we increase our benefit?" SlimVirgin (talk) 01:39, 23 February 2015 (UTC)Reply
I do agree about the "English-speaking white women" phrase and did express same to the creators. Would be much more comfortable with striking the avoid English speaking white women and saying something like "with a focus on strengthening minority women's coverage in the encyclopedia to increase inclusion?" (P.S. to developers, Grrrrrrrrr, no pinginin? No yo? Not very user friendly.) SusunW (talk) 03:11, 23 February 2015 (UTC)Reply
Hi Susan, "focus on strengthening minority women's coverage" is good, but it doesn't mean the same as "avoid English speaking white women so that we increase our benefit". I don't know what that sentence means (in particular what "our benefit" refers to), but some clarification would be good. SlimVirgin (talk) 03:26, 23 February 2015 (UTC)Reply
  • Looks like the "avoid" language has been stricken. I don't like the title much, but I do see the tongue in cheek intent and that it was sincere intent. I have to admit that there is a need to get people's attention, I just wish there was a better way to do it. Montanabw (talk) 04:57, 23 February 2015 (UTC)Reply
Thanks for drawing my attention to this page. (Geez, why no pinging??) (a) From the beginning, the title has been the subject of controversy, but mission accomplished that it's drawn attention to the topic, which is near and dear to my heart, and that of so many others. This presentation is competing with 160 or so other submissions. Maybe the controversial title will put a spotlight on the work that we do, and will give us the opportunity to talk about how to engage more women editors, and how to increase the number of articles regarding women and things important to women. (b) I didn't really get the "English-speaking white women" phrasing, so I've struck it and inserted a differently-worded phrase that an editor suggested on Roger's talkpage. (c) Finally, thank you, each of you, for speaking up, here and on Wikipedia talkpages. Your collective voices on this presentation's subject are so important -- keep your ideas coming. --Rosiestep (talk) 05:13, 23 February 2015 (UTC)Reply
Tone Deaf? I like the pun! ... the phrase "benefit" refers to the efforts that are being made to reduce the systemic bias on Wikipedia in terms of the articles that are being created and improved. You may have noticed the work that was done to increase the percentage of women represented at DYK last (and this) Women's History Month. Victuallers (talk) 18:41, 23 February 2015 (UTC)Reply
While I think that the two of you are ideal people to be doing a presentation about creating more articles about women, my reaction to the hook title and the start of the presentation is negative. It re-enforces the locker room attitude that keeps some women from participating fully in wikimedia events, and staying away from places that wikimedians gather like irc channels, mailing lists, meet ups, and unfortunately some discussions on WMF projects.
It objectifies women in a titillating way that reminds me of the use of naked or scantly clad women in tech presentations. I would strongly prefer that you change the title and hook to bring interest to the topic. Thanks for being open to feedback. FloNight (talk) 18:55, 26 February 2015 (UTC)Reply

We asked for feedback. You gave it. The title has been changed. --Rosiestep (talk) 03:16, 1 March 2015 (UTC)Reply

Offensive and Off-putting

A few years back I dabbled in editing on Wikipedia and Wikimedia. For a short time it was fun. I even discussed partnering with a local museum to gain access to their files and documentation for local history and permission to photograph artifacts to share and support existent and future articles. A series of unfortunate events then happened wherein when I asked for help I from the community I was pushed back. This opened my eyes and I started paying attention to more than just the historical details I was looking to add or improve. What I saw then was appalling.

I witnessed threats of bodily harm from users annoyed that someone had corrected their grammar in an article. I saw verbal warfare over trivial minutiae. I saw extreme bias, racism, sexism and bigotry. When I attempted to seek help within the system I was rebuffed, told I was just seeing what I wanted to see, or patted on the head and told it didn't matter. I struggled for another 6 months but found that the abuse I encountered and the juvenile locker room behaviors far outweighed the positive experiences, and so I left.

Over the ensuing years I've had people ask me to come back. I say I'll think about it and I'll poke around the site a bit. I'll read some discussions look through current policy and help options and inevitably decide the environment is too toxic to be around. Over the years I've had moments where I find a neat fact or take a nice photo of something that isn't represented and I'll have a bit of wistfulness to the days when I did have fun. Then, when I start to look my old password, I'll remember the dark side and turn away again.

I was pointed to this discussion presentation by a friend who wanted my opinion, but I choose to share that opinion with all. I have read the presentation page, the pages of the presenters and the talk pages of both. I am female. I am white and speak English. I am disabled. I am an avid reader. I have a keen interest in history. I am an amateur photographer. I was a sexually abused child. I am a domestic violence survivor. I am a mother.

I am disgusted and appalled. I do not at this moment have any regret for leaving the project. The need to state repeatedly that the title, the 'hook' is not meant to offend points directly at the fact that those who have chosen it know that it is offensive but choose to use it anyway. Which makes it even worse.

If you truly want to attempt to close the gender gap, please stop using a crowbar to widen it. 03:43, 1 March 2015 (UTC)Reply

It's not clear to me when you started reading these pages (could be 2 hours or 10 mins before your comment, probably somewhere in between). You may want to take a look at some of the changes in the last ~70 minutes if you haven't already seen them. e.g. the last thing on this page above what you wrote and changes to the main submission page. (more changes in progress still I think. ping Rosiestep in case she wants to comment too)
In any case, I'm sorry we haven't been more welcoming; if you do give us another chance I think you'll find at least some parts of the community (on and off wiki, e.g. the gendergap list) where people look out for eachother and work together and you won't have to fight these battles alone if you don't want to. --Jeremyb (talk) 04:24, 1 March 2015 (UTC)Reply


We are sorry if the title was offensive and off-putting to some. How to pick up more women... was meant to be an attention-grabbing title to talk about an important subject. The pun refers to picking up more articles about women to counter systemic bias in the content of Wikipedia. Both of us have created hundreds of articles to address this problem, so "picking up more women" means something quite different to us in that context, and that is why we supported it. The scope is not about women editors but about articles about women as should have been more clear possibly. This talk is not about the editor gender gap but about content systemic bias in Wikipedia. --Rosiestep (talk) 04:41, 1 March 2015 (UTC)Reply

Hiding your issues by renaming

I think that renaming this article is dishonest. The two editors thought it was funny, ignored people telling them otherwise, finally changed their minds... and now sweep the whole issue under their rugs by renaming the page. Repainting the kitchen if you can't stand the heat, or what? Ellin Beltz (talk) 17:40, 1 March 2015 (UTC)Reply

Please assume good faith. The editors asked for feedback since the proposal was submitted. The community gave feedback. The editors listened. The title was changed. The scope was clarified. We added alternate subtitles, including in foreign languages. In essence, the proposal became a crowd-sourced document because of the feedback loop. In my opinion -- and you are entitled to yours, of course -- it would be poor form to ask for feedback and then ignore it. And thank you for your feedback. --Rosiestep (talk) 19:04, 1 March 2015 (UTC)Reply