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General Chat Thread, Why the ...girl thing? in General; Just curious as to why female members of this and other sites are eager to identify themseleves as such. The ...
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    Why the ...girl thing?

    Just curious as to why female members of this and other sites are eager to identify themseleves as such. The received wisdom was that the anonimity of the Internet was meant to allow greater participation as appearances wouldn't matter.

    I suppose the counter argument would be that by reminding the boys that there is a female presence they're more likely to remember to behave themselves


    Hey it's Sunday afternoon and things on eduGHeek have just been too placid of late.

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    Why the girl thing?

    Well for me on this site, it's about opposing the standard stereotype that all IT geeks are nerdy blokes with thick-rimmed glasses and unkempt hair.

    When I tell anyone what I do for a living, I get: "oooh, but you're a girl!". Yes, I am - well spotted!

    Women make up about 10% of the IT Profession and although there are more women being appointed into the roles, I personally find it very odd that people are still amazed that I do a 'typically male' job. When attending interviews, I get asked how I will deal with working in a 'male environment'.

    Outside of the IT Profession, it's common (but becoming less so nowadays) to think that women aren't interested in IT and technology... I'm willing to bet that in most houses, the men spend more time online than the women. I guess that we women are keen to show that we do have this interest in IT and therefore feel the need to identify ourselves to everyone to prove that we're just as able to use a computer too!!

    On this site... I guess we identify ourselves here because it's a well known thing that women's brains work differently to men's (scientific fact, like!)... and I wonder in some way if identifying ourselves as so hopefully reminds you that when we do have a problem, it's sometimes because we just haven't thought the answers out the same way... etc.

    As for getting the men to 'remember to behave themselves', that really doesn't bother me (I'm almost as bad as some men can be )

    Would you not want to know if women were lurking then?!



    [disclaimer: this is a hungover ramble. I apologise if it doesn't quite make sense...]

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    the fact that you are both 'hungover' and 'ramble' makes perfect sense to us men...which is to say, you are doing a fine job

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by indiegirl
    It's about opposing the standard stereotype that all IT geeks are nerdy blokes with thick-rimmed glasses and unkempt hair.
    Is there anything wrong with being a nerdy bloke, with thick rimmed glasses and unkempt hair ? I hope not I've been cultivating this look for years now :-)

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    i love my thick-rimmed glasses and my unkempt hair! people always comment on both - such a horrible trait is envy

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    Oh, I have nothing against said look... in fact I'm honing a girlgeek thing myself

    I'm sure you know what I mean though. Mention the words "Information Technology" and everyone automatically assumes one thing about the person - *that* geek look

    [hangover is subsiding... it is nearly 5pm, after all...]

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    I recently listed to a very interesting podcast from O'Reily (Distributing the Future IIRC) about the partcipation of women in the world of computing (particularly open source projects but I guess it applies to other areas too).

    There appears to be a strong feeling that many people (read men) are unwilling to embrace the roles of women within computing.

    The podcast also went on to explain how women were being encouraged to participate in projects and showed how the lessons learnt from this helped both male and female newbies.

    Just as a note, I'm all for the fairer sex joining us in the world of the geek

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    Thick-rimmed glasses and unkempt hair? "The IT Crowd", anyone?

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    I agree with indiegirl - it is ALL about opposing standard stereotypes. I have been in the electronics and/or computing world for about 25 years, and although there are more of us than there were, there still aren't many! (so actually, a lot of you are joining ME in the world of the geek!)
    I am very proud of what I do, and proud of being female as well, so am happy to identify myself as such!
    I don't think that Edugeek people actually want to be anonymous, and if there are any that do, I want to ask....Why, what are you hiding?!

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    ITWITCH: Maybe some people don't want to be identified on here by their employers or users, if that's the kind of anonymity you were meaning.

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by indiegirl
    I personally find it very odd that people are still amazed that I do a 'typically male' job. When attending interviews, I get asked how I will deal with working in a 'male environment'.
    That's funny, I (as a bloke) was interviewed for Senior Technician at a girls High School a couple of weeks back and was asked how I would cope in a predominantly female environment!!

    My answer obviously wasn't completely convincing, as I didn't get the job

    Seriously, though, it must be hard for females to get on in IT, and it is a real shame. Although the industry is male-orientated, there is no reason for it to be so, and I think we should all work hard to try and overcome that idea - especially in education where it is important to encourage all students to have the opinion that they can choose any profession they wish and not feel limited to roles traditionally associated with their gender.

    Chris

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    interesting that in the 70's and 80's the majority of system admins were women that had been seconded from the typing pool. The geeks at the top were still mostly male programmers but I'm not sure how the styereotpye came about.

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    Interesting thread...

    But then take teaching and this is seen as female dominated with large amount of teachers being women.

    I think when it comes to it just depends on what job attracts you but problem ict has as it seen as male dominated role females are least likely to join.


    Russell

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    More things I wanted to add (as if I haven't rambled enough already)... as you can tell, I find this subject very interesting.

    I don't find teaching as a female-dominated role at all. Certainly, for me, teaching makes me think of very old-school professors cloaked up - after all, many, many moons ago learning was something that boys were encouraged to do, and women not so. Maybe my experience of secondary schools leads me to think this, but I find teaching a very balanced profession indeed. This may have shifted over the years, certainly.. and for me - primary schools are certainly more female-oriented places. It's to do with the nuture thing we women (supposedly) harbour.

    One of my previous employers arranged their IT section into very gender-specific roles: the women were the 'helpdesk' and manning the phones, organising problem records, assigning jobs, etc... and the males were the programmers and those doing the physical problem resolution. When I joined the male-side of the team (the first girl to do so), their first comment was: "I hope she's happy lugging PCs around the place". Needless to say, they'd built up quite a rapport as a team of blokeys, and weren't very welcoming to me. Needless to say I didn't fit in there and when I left it was more of a relief than anything. I've since found out that my old team leader (also female) has moved into HR because she didn't enjoy the IT environment...

    And why I identify myself as I do... my username's an old one from my university days. I guess that one day I'll no longer be able to get away with this 'girl' tag (how old can you get before no longer being a 'girl'?!!?!)... so something less gender-specific will come into use. I guess that as a young, naiive 17yr old, I needed a name that described me.. and my musical tastes + feminine status = indiegirl. Teehee.

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    Re: Why the ...girl thing?

    Ok ... time to own up ... I'll stop being anonymous now ...

    I am actually female and have been sending out my brother to all the events where people think they have seen me.

    My real name is Mandy and I love being a Geek.

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