I wasn’t able to go to TAM 10 this past summer, but Dr. Pamela Gay‘s talk was one of the ones everyone seemed to be talking about on Twitter. After watching it, it’s east to see why:
There are two separate parts worth listening to (though the whole thing is pretty good):
At 11:40, she talks about Internet trolls and the abundance of people who love to complain without offering anything of substance in turn.
That should be a new rule on the Internet: If you don’t like what someone else is doing, complain all you want, but you have to make an alternative suggestion along the way.
Don’t like the phrasing on a billboard? Offer a better one.
Don’t want to sign a petition because it’s “useless”? Ok, but tell me what you’re doing instead or your complaint will carry little weight.
Less complaining. More doing.
Also, at 26:00, Dr. Gay talks about personal instances when she was sexually harassed at conferences. Not flirtation, not something that could be misinterpreted, but actual, physical harassment. If nothing else, listen to those last ten minutes to get a better understanding of what women have to deal with, not just at our own conferences, but damn near everywhere. Powerful stuff.