I read in comments this week about how a recent attendee at Tim O’Reilly’s FOO camp was the originator of all the discussion about there not being enough women in tech conferences such as Tim’s camp. I was suprised, and yes, hurt to find out that it only takes about 6 months and 100 weblog posts or so to wipe out all I’ve written on this issue. It’s humbling to realize how easily you can be forgotten; humbling and clarifying because you realize that history in weblogging is fluid, and always being re-written; usually by the same proponents of how honest and decent this all is.
There’s been criticism of Wikipedia because the ‘facts’ can be rewritten so easily. True, but the history remains. Weblogging has no such way to track history. Either you have to join the race to continually push yourself to the top of the heap; or you have to just accept that this is the way it is, and move on to something else.
I also had to face this week the fact that my views are unwelcome in several weblogs and by several webloggers. It bothers me less to not be linked than to not be part of a discussion. To feel like I’m only one step above weblog spam to these people. Why am I no longer part of the discussions? Because I’m critical, sometimes strongly so. I use satire, I pick, I push, and yes, I don’t stop. Being a woman doesn’t always hurt, but it doesn’t always help, either.
I feel sad to be shut out from some (not all) of the discussions, because I really do like a good debate. But I’d feel stupid to continue trying to engage these folk, or to send any attention their way only to be disregarded as so much carpet lint.
I said in my Just Shelley weblog that if any of my new efforts stop being fun, I was going to abandon the effort. I’m not closing Bb Gun down, because there are still debates to be had with folks who aren’t afraid of such. But I can guarantee that I’m going to be spending one hell of a lot less of my time throwing words where they won’t stick.
As I wrote in comments, I realized that I sounded like a certain someone with my “po’me, no one remembers my greatness” talk. I have since slapped myself in the face, and feel much better.
There’s truth in what I’m writing here, but the truth extends beyond my own personal trials and tribulations.
Now: go look at my zoo photos in Just Shelley. There’s a baby elephant. A hairy baby elephant.