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#2347 - 08/04/13 01:34 PM Women are Geeks, Also.
Ms Regan Black Offline
www.MsReganBlack.com


Registered: 10/29/12
Posts: 814
Loc: New York City / Buffalo

This reminds me of when I managed a comic book / toy store. There were male customers who wouldn't come in on days I was there. Yes, some of them were afraid or intimidated by me, but there were way too many who figured I didn't know anything, simply due to my gender.

It is sad to see that not enough has changed since then. My thoughts are that women in geekdom, as in many other areas, are sexualized by the male group members instead of being personalized, as they do to other guys.

Nerds, what are your thoughts on the subject?

-MRB
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#2349 - 08/04/13 02:56 PM Re: Women are Geeks, Also. [Re: Ms Regan Black]
Soapy Offline


Registered: 02/04/13
Posts: 431
Loc: USA,USA
Not a nerd, but I got really into reading reddit.com for a months.....lots of nerds there. I got really into reading the subreddits (subforums) "AskWomen" and "AskMen"

Many women into comics,sci-fi,costumes and cons complained that the men into those things were hostile toward women being in those spaces.

A number of the women who authored those threads wrote that realizing who they are, they decided to pursue "Geek Men". They found them to be quite hostile about being approached from staring them down silently, to turning and walking away and even yelling at them to go away.

I would have thought men into those things would have been EAGER at ANY female attention given to them.

Someone eventually posted a link to an essay by a man like those guys. He said that seriously geeky guys like himself rationalized their sitution by telling themselves there was no point in trying to meet their social needs since other people were not interested in the same things they were interested in. When a woman comes into those spaces that rationalization can no longer be used as an excuse and they left having to see their fears and inadquacies.

As far as sexualization of female nerds go, my humble opinion is that women are responsible for that. I've seen many blogs and web sites created by self professed "Geek Girls" over the years that have logos with a cartoon picture of a woman with a pair of thick framed glasses in a cutesy pose or outfit. These days "nerd" is no longer a pejorative, but even a fashion thing for many young women who are not nerds, but call themselves that after dressing in the afforementioned thick glasses, pig tails, etc.

I think since the tech boom in the late 90s when many geeks became stinking rich and made other people rich the meaning of the words "geek"/"nerd" changed.

It used to a pejorative for a socially awkward, usually badly dressed person, who might be good at math. It seems from the 00s on it came to mean anyone who has a passionate interest in something. "Oh, I'm a wine geek". etc.




Edited by Soapy (08/04/13 03:03 PM)
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#2350 - 08/04/13 03:26 PM Re: Women are Geeks, Also. [Re: Soapy]
Ms Regan Black Offline
www.MsReganBlack.com


Registered: 10/29/12
Posts: 814
Loc: New York City / Buffalo

Hi, Soapy-

Agreed with the overuse of the word Geek. It has really lost all its meaning. (Shall I blame the end of Revenge of the Nerds? I'm a nerd. I'm a nerd.) Too often people use the the g-word when they mean aficionado or enthusiast.

There are indeed also some women who do feed into the sexualization. The sexy cosplay stuff is not at all helpful in this regard and is, in fact, simply annoying. What they are doing is not geeky at all, as feeding into a gender sterotype is the not geeky not the least bit geeky. Or sexy, either, for what it's worth.

Regards
-Ms Black
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#2354 - 08/04/13 07:37 PM Re: Women are Geeks, Also. [Re: Ms Regan Black]
Soapy Offline


Registered: 02/04/13
Posts: 431
Loc: USA,USA
What do you think makes a nerd or a geek a nerd or a geek?

We both agree simply being an extreme enthusiast about a subject is not enough.

My working definition combines being an extreme enthuisast, being enthusiastic about a subject most people are not commonly enthusiastic about ( math, comic books, sci-fi, et ) and being a socially awkward person.

What is your opinion?

What do you think makes you a geek, as opposed to merely being a women into goth and comic books?
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"Violent opining on a bdsm board has solved surprisingly few geopolitical issues."

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#2364 - 08/07/13 01:22 AM Re: Women are Geeks, Also. [Re: Ms Regan Black]
Mistress Jadis Offline



Registered: 11/07/12
Posts: 147
Loc: Sydney, Australia
The whole fake geek girl thing really gets my goat. Is it that difficult for the haters to imagine that women might be interested in geekery FOR THEIR OWN REASONS rather than to gain the precious, precious attention of geek boys? Seems rather narcissistic of the geek boys in question to assume that it's all about garnering their attention.
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#2368 - 08/07/13 04:51 AM Re: Women are Geeks, Also. [Re: Ms Regan Black]
Polyevolver Offline


Registered: 02/08/13
Posts: 56
Loc: Land of googled yahoovians

Tangential to whether geeks are more aware than nerds, or if the distinction is critical, intense interest in a topic shouldn't be grounds for austricizing, but that has not been my experience. This is not na´vetÚ on my part -- being bullied for years quickly turns you into a cynic, not an ideologue and it turns out the group is easily rattled by uniqueness, even when the group consists of conventionally unique members.

As a math and science fiction illiterate male that has worked on OS kernels and compilers all my life, I always felt excluded from a group that assumed I, by the nature of my vocation, was one of them, only to be met with confusion by the fraternity. This was brought into high relief in a linux kernel group I worked in a few years ago. These places are still very male dominated (sic) - very few women and even fewer artists. It was my job and I have had an intense interest in OS and hardware design, but it was a lonely place without the color and richness that I think smart, intense women (and artists) bring to an otherwise flat monoculture.

Or perhaps I just suck at being a proper male engineer

I think I just outted myself as an Artsie and engineers were trained to be hostile to Artsies as undergraduates and I was very nervous about that form of behavior too. It felt like bullying and I find that even geeks/nerds in sufficient quantity can resort to this behavior in forums, stores or the workplace.


My $C .02

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#2372 - 08/07/13 06:12 PM Re: Women are Geeks, Also. [Re: Mistress Jadis]
Soapy Offline


Registered: 02/04/13
Posts: 431
Loc: USA,USA
Not that I am in touch with those groups, but I haven't heard any accustions that female geeks/nerds are posing to get guys ( lets face it, a lot of those guys aren't desirable ). I've only seen posts on reddit from women saying that those guys don't want women in geek/nerd space. Their loss.
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"Violent opining on a bdsm board has solved surprisingly few geopolitical issues."

- Ms. Regan Black

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#2378 - 08/08/13 02:24 PM Re: Women are Geeks, Also. [Re: Ms Regan Black]
╔tienne Offline


Registered: 01/22/13
Posts: 250
Loc: San Diego, CA
People are so complicated.

A bit of anticipatory rejection.
A bit of sour grapes.
A bit of revenge.
A bit of frustrated male privilege.
A bit of the natural behavior of groups.
A bit of exacerbation by current gender norms (ie, the male is the pursuer--hence aggressor)

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#2379 - 08/08/13 09:16 PM Re: Women are Geeks, Also. [Re: Ms Regan Black]
Ms Regan Black Offline
www.MsReganBlack.com


Registered: 10/29/12
Posts: 814
Loc: New York City / Buffalo

Hi, all-

I've been swamped vanilla-wise (PS- congratulate me on my new job!), so I haven't responded yet to this awesome thread. Will have tons more to say hopefully over the weekend.

-MRB
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#2381 - 08/09/13 06:14 AM Re: Women are Geeks, Also. [Re: Ms Regan Black]
Soapy Offline


Registered: 02/04/13
Posts: 431
Loc: USA,USA
Congratulations On The New Job !!!! laugh


Edited by Soapy (08/09/13 06:15 AM)
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"Violent opining on a bdsm board has solved surprisingly few geopolitical issues."

- Ms. Regan Black

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