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Saturday, January 22, 2011

Women science bloggers: Some thoughts

Robin Lloyd explains in “Woman science bloggers discuss pros and cons of online exposure” (Jan 18, 2011),
Blogging and other Web activities have allowed members of many marginalized communities to open previously locked media doors. But women still rely more on back channels and ask for less help than men do in the digital realm. This tendency and other issues of concern for women bloggers were discussed Sunday at the ScienceOnline2011 conference in Durham, N.C., primarily in a session called "Perils of blogging as a woman under a real name."
Huh?
Experiences varied among attendees on whether blogging under a real name did indeed present perils. Miriam Goldstein (@oystersgarter), a doctoral student at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and blogger at Deep-Sea News says she has never had a negative experience. But stories surfaced regarding inappropriate comments by male readers. And one attendee voiced concerns about being emailed by a reader who said he was near her campus and about to stop by her office. Christie Wilcox (@NerdyChristie), a doctoral student at the University of Hawaii-Manoa who blogs at Observations of Nerd, said she only received nasty comments when she blogged on the science of make-up—and the anger came from women. Tribalism takes many forms.
Well, if you have dealt with minor Darwinists, as I have, and are not one of their companions, you get to hear how some of them talk about women. But God or nature or the guardian angel of marriages - or somebody or other anyway - invented a back browser button and a delete key.

I guess the big time Darwinists approve of all that stuff. I've never heard of them telling those dudes to smarten up, or slide their keesters to the low class boozehole down the road. I once had a problem with a guy who professed support for ID who behaved like that, but I heard vaguely that he had his can kicked six ways to Sunday over it. Nothing to do with me.

Actually, we had a problem with Darwinmouth here in Canada, but a smart blogger chick discovered and publicized the guy's true name. Worked wonders. (= One reason I don't like avatars is ... )

About real names: I blog under my real name. Yes. Can we get past that? (After all, if I had to consult the police station down the street about a truly difficult person, what is the first thing they would ask me?) I kind of miss the days when writers insisted on their byline.

I can't relate to all the questions raised in the article because they involve concerns about tenure or promotion tracks that elude a career freelance hack like me. But this gets better:
The entire concept of a woman science blogger overturns various long-held assumptions about science and gender.
Shoot, the first blogging software hit the market in 1999. How long-held a prejudice can it be? I don't doubt the first woman on a tractor pulling a plough overturned lots of things ...

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