A lot’s happened in the few days since my keynote at OSCON and I think it’s time I did a round-up of women-in-open-source-related stuff from the conference itself and the not-quite-a-week since.
Some wins for the conference:
- Gina Blaber from O’Reilly tells me that female attendance is up, and it looked that way to me. I’d guess around 5%, which of course is still kind of appalling, but I think a bit higher than last year.
- Proportion of female speakers is up to 8.9% (from 8.36% last year). That’s just based on actual numbers of people, not the talks they gave; it might be a smidge higher based on number of talks. A small improvement, but any improvement is good at this point.
- I noticed a couple of instances where people had modified their slides to remove content that might make some attendees feel marginalised or uncomfortable, and a couple of references to Aimonetti’s CouchDB talk that show that people are more aware of the issue of sexualised presentations than before.
- Between CLS and OSCON itself, there were a number of BoFs, discussions, and events around women in open source, which were good opportunities for people to talk about the issues or just get to know other people who care.
And since the conference:
- Randal Schwartz of Stonehenge Consulting has apologised for hiring booth babes and/or sexily-dressed entertainment for events at OSCON, and promised not to do so in the future.
- Some conferences I know of are talking about creating a code of conduct to make it clear what is and isn’t appropriate behaviour for attendees, speakers, and vendors. (I’ll wait for them to announce themselves publicly, as it’s all been going on in private email.) Nat Torkington and I have been working on this cut-and-paste set of guidelines for any other events that might like to do likewise.
- The Python community is starting to discuss diversity, and has started up a mailing list for the purpose. One CPAN author has also committed to including a diversity statement in all his modules.
There are a bunch of discussion threads going on in various places. Here are a few that I know of:
- O’Reilly Radar — 200+ comments and going strong. A fairly heated discussion, but with some good reading if you dig down.
- LWN.net — requires a login to post comments.
- Aahz’s blog
- Brian Aker talking about applications to the Drizzle project
If you join in on any of the above threads, please try to maintain civility.
Now, I have an actual dayjob I need to get to.