Foreword: this is not a just-for-ranting-blog but it seems News flying around these days are just “rant fodder” :(
TL;DR: I am ashamed of being a man. Please read on if you want to help.
You probably have heard of
#GamerGate in several threads, all over Facebook and Twitter (for example ).
There is also the @SeriousPony story floating around, illustrated by this post by Kathy helself.
Both stories are unrelated and linked together: both speak about harassment. Harassment of women more precisely.
In one case, it is a part of the gaming crowd going berserk against women that do serious gaming (like they like to think they do) or even some who do write games (See this, Brianna’s story and here).
In the other, it is part of the InfoSec crowd doing the same, verbally if not physically abusing women that speak up. Trying to push women away from this industry. Just look how Kevin Mitnick threathened to call Randi’s boss and make her lose her job. Of course, being the courageous individual he is, he deleted the tweets afterward (sorry, the Internet does not forget).
That has to stop. This is insane.
These guys are organizing harassment on GitHub & Gitorious, posting guidelines on how not to appear abusive and so on. They are spending time planning among themselves harassing women just because they feel threatened somehow by them.
There are quite a large number of stereotypes surrounding gamers (even worse than the ones about “hackers” in InfoSec) and the gaming industry (there are numerous examples of this industry building games with sexist images and behaviour) but these last weeks it is going way way further.
There is even a WP page on this albeit probably slightly obsolete by now.
I stand with these women. This is not and will never be acceptable behaviour.
If you, as a man, are not helping these women, then you are part of the problem. This is about taking sides yes, there is no neutral position here.
Harassment is bad, period.
On men too (see Lennart Poettering post originally on Google groups). I do not like him and the way he has been pushing Systemd in Linux distributions BUT behaviour toward him is NOT acceptable either.