I was just catching up on some reading and stumbled on the whole Adria Richards thing
on Pharyngula (not sure I fully agree with all of that), and then remembered this thread (sorry, I didn't listen to the YouTube thing the guy was
too annoying for my ears).
Interesting incident there. I have to say I think I agree with most
, although I definitely do strongly disagree with using Twitter as a medium to "name and shame" such a minor example of inappropriate humour (even if you agree that such humour is part of a wider sexist culture - though to me it just seemed like puns. But hey, I am not a woman working in a male environment). I agree that using Twitter might have been the quickest and easiest way of reporting behaviour that violated the conference rules which it apparently did (rather than say, relying on email which might not have been checked in good time to have the guys pulled aside and disciplined), but I don't think publicly identifying those people by posting their picture to your Twitter account is a particularly fair or reasonable response. After all, she had to show staff where they were sitting despite
posting their faces on the internet, so that seems like a completely unnecessary and unfair step, and maybe even just a publicity gaining one. Her tweet would have been equally effective without using their faces. Nobody would have lost their jobs. The Twitter troll reaction would have been much less disgusting, I imagine. Posting the identity of somebody who is effectively having a private conversation, or thinks they are, would have been proportionate if they had been making rape jokes or something. Obviously not the case here.
I think those guys were in the wrong. But only a little bit. As much as crushing bad things like sexism (or the byproducts of it like inappropriate jokes in professional environments) might require some harsh tactics, I think this world really sucks if every questionable or childish or irrational thing we ever do, write, or say, is captured and posted on the internet for scrutiny.