[Noisebridge-discuss] Trimmed off the board list

Naomi Most pnaomi at gmail.com
Thu Mar 27 21:22:05 UTC 2014


I am -- quite transparently, I hope -- focusing on the "procedural game".

This "active board" thing is in its infancy.  We only just decided at
the ONE meeting we have had so far, what the rules of engagement and
proper process were.

Were we supposed to have gotten it right on the first try?  No.

Could I have imagined that the insanity that transpired this first
week would ever take place?  Hell no.

So I have made several proposals within the board -- who has
*acknowledged the problem* I might add! and has assented to doing a
different thing! -- to prevent this specific type of shit, where a
board member is systematically excluded from an important discussion
and then there's a Drive-By Bureaucracy event.

I doubt it needs to be said, but Al is focusing on the "substantive"
game when serious mistakes were made in the process of producing the
substance.  That is why I am going out of my way to point it out.  I'm
not going to stand in the way of hypothetical discussions of the
substance, but I'll be damned if I'm going to let those discussions
implicitly assent to the misbegotten process.

In sum, it BOGGLES THE MIND why this infant board is so confident in
its existence as a board that it's willing to immediately rewrite how
Noisebridge works within 2 weeks of its first and only meeting.

--Naomi


On Thu, Mar 27, 2014 at 2:02 PM, Dennis Gentry <dennis.gentry at gmail.com> wrote:
> This all reminds me of a giant crazy game of Nomic.
>
> Nomic is a game in which changing the rules is a move. In that respect it
> differs from almost every other game. The primary activity of Nomic is
> proposing changes in the rules, debating the wisdom of changing them in that
> way, voting on the changes, deciding what can and cannot be done afterwards,
> and doing it. Even this core of the game, of course, can be changed.
>
>
> In particular, some people seem to be playing a procedural game, and some
> people seem to be trying to play a substantive game.
>
> Another facet of Nomic is the way in which the implementation of the rules
> affects the way the game itself works. [In] ThermodyNomic. . . rule changes
> were carefully considered before implementation, and rules were rarely
> introduced which provide loopholes for the players to exploit. B Nomic, by
> contrast, was . . . described as "the equivalent of throwing logical hand
> grenades."
>
> This is . . . the differentiation between "procedural" games, where the aim
> (acknowledged or otherwise) is to tie the entire ruleset into a paradoxical
> condition. . ., and "substantive" games, which try to avoid paradox, and
> reward winning by achieving certain goals, such as attaining a given number
> of points.
>
> Does anyone believe (or acknowledge) that they are playing a procedural
> game?  I think a substantive game is more likely to improve our world.
>
>
>
>
> On Thu, Mar 27, 2014 at 1:45 PM, Al Sweigart <asweigart at gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>> Here's the thing. Rachel can say this when talking about Praveen: "Praveen
>> is an example of a tech dude who makes lots of efforts to support women n
>> queers in his work. I suppose he's not a writer, which is a shame, since I
>> think he's less likely to code sexism into his work because he is actively,
>> regularly, and publicly engaged in self-examination around these issues, and
>> makes clear and visible efforts to own his mistakes."
>>
>> ...obviously referring to the programming books for kids I write. Now if I
>> say "Rachel is saying I'm a tech dude who doesn't support women, whose books
>> have coded sexism, and doesn't make efforts to own his mistakes", Rachel
>> will respond with "I didn't say anything about you Al, I was just saying
>> Praveen was less likely to do those things."
>>
>> But when I say, "Again, I am sincere when I want to hear out people who
>> disagree with me. It can be easy to read sarcasm or insincerity into text,
>> so I'm saying that as plainly as possible. I am not paying "lip service". I
>> have my own views and will probably disagree with you, but I don't want
>> anyone to confuse "I disagree with you" with "you can't speak, shut up"."
>> Rachel turns that into "Al has called me confused." and uses it against me
>> as an example of my coded sexist language.
>>
>>
>> On Thu, Mar 27, 2014 at 1:13 PM, rachel lyra hospodar
>> <rachelyra at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>
>>> Thanks for bringing this up, Ari. I haven't explored the concepts behind
>>> this too much on-list, but I will take a little time to now.
>>>
>>> When existing in a sexist society, we are all grounded in sexist
>>> brainwashing.  I don't think that Al is necessarily intentionally sexist,
>>>
>>> But his behavior furthers my belief that we must not simply seek to brand
>>> creepy creepers with a scarlet C and consider the problem solved. 'Ending'
>>> sexism is far more complex than that. Deconstructing problems that are
>>> embedded in the social matrix from whence we all spring necessitates
>>> examining the ways that they are embedded in each of us.
>>>
>>> He has called me confused, and Naomi angry.
>>>
>>> This is not a way to have a productive discussion that furthers the cause
>>> of equality among the sexes, from a context of a society which paints women
>>> with legitimate concerns as confused and angry.
>>>
>>> Is it possible for women to be legitimately confused and angry?
>>> Absolutely. Is it legitimate for someone with whom they disagree to dismiss
>>> their concerns using this language? Well I don't think it furthers the cause
>>> of equality. If anyone has a goal of reducing sexism they must look within
>>> themselves first and outside second. Confused and angry are to hysterical as
>>> thug is to n*****r. (Ref. Richard Sherman debacle, more information
>>> available upon request)
>>>
>>> If you want I can share some anecdotes of times when I have been
>>> unintentionally sexist in running a construction crew. The realizations that
>>> those experiences led me to fifteen years ago are a deeply embedded part of
>>> my world understanding to this day.
>>>
>>> And why yes, I do think fifteen years of deep examination of my own
>>> unintended and internalized sexism gives me a solid platform from which to
>>> ignore anyone who tells me I am confused simply because I disagree with
>>> them.
>>>
>>> I will actually take a moment to say here that Praveen is an example of a
>>> tech dude who makes lots of efforts to support women n queers in his work. I
>>> suppose he's not a writer, which is a shame, since I think he's less likely
>>> to code sexism into his work because he is actively, regularly, and publicly
>>> engaged in self-examination around these issues, and makes clear and visible
>>> efforts to own his mistakes.
>>>
>>> What a concept.
>>>
>>> R.
>>>
>>> On Mar 27, 2014 6:21 AM, "Ari Lacenski" <alacenski at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>
>>>> The most painful thing about this thread is watching Rachel insinuate
>>>> that Al's disagreement and rhetoric are grounded in his supposed sexism.
>>>>
>>>> Rachel, the dick jokes are totally unnecessary. I know of no male tech
>>>> writer who makes more of an effort to support women-'n-queers in his work.
>>>> Can you possibly move on?
>>>>
>>>> Ari
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> On Wed, Mar 26, 2014 at 4:29 PM, rachel lyra hospodar
>>>> <rachelyra at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>
>>>>> Let's be crystal clear - I am not confused.
>>>>>
>>>>> I have not confused 'I disagree with you' with anything else.
>>>>>
>>>>> I am trying to communicate with you that many people hear your stance
>>>>> as 'your disagreements are irrelevant'.
>>>>>
>>>>> If my tone is valid then yours is too, I see no way around it. I am
>>>>> scrupulously polite in a precise correlation to whether I find myself in a
>>>>> space where I feel scrupulously respected.
>>>>>
>>>>> Perhaps instead of telling me how you do respect me, you might listen
>>>>> to some advice on how to behave respectfully. I know, I haven't been
>>>>> behaving perfectly.  It is an attempt to demonstrate to you the precise
>>>>> impact of your historic behavior of same nature.
>>>>>
>>>>> We can continue to have a dick jousting contest around whose opinion is
>>>>> more valid but I have to warn you - i am a cyborg. mine is a strap on that I
>>>>> researched heavily and had to wade through a great deal of bigotry to get,
>>>>> so it will probably outlast yours.
>>>>>
>>>>> Yes, that was a metaphor. No, it was not scrupulously respectful. The
>>>>> fire metaphor was, but you didn't even respond to it so I am trying
>>>>> different tactics to Hack You. I want to install this Empathy Module but I
>>>>> can't find the slot. I'll just leave it on the table here, feel free to ask
>>>>> for documentation if you decide you want to use it.
>>>>>
>>>>> R.
>>>>>
>>>>> On Mar 26, 2014 1:06 PM, "Al Sweigart" <asweigart at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>>
>>>>>> It was mostly the "Father Al" cracks. Maybe I should just lighten up
>>>>>> though, but that and the other stuff kind of stung.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> Just to reassure you Rachel, I am well aware of the bullshit that
>>>>>> women who speak up have to put up with. I'm not trying to tone police you,
>>>>>> but when I say your words hurt me I'm telling you how you've made me feel
>>>>>> and that I take you just as seriously whether or not you are mocking me, so
>>>>>> please don't go the mocking route.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> Again, I am sincere when I want to hear out people who disagree with
>>>>>> me. It can be easy to read sarcasm or insincerity into text, so I'm saying
>>>>>> that as plainly as possible. I am not paying "lip service". I have my own
>>>>>> views and will probably disagree with you, but I don't want anyone to
>>>>>> confuse "I disagree with you" with "you can't speak, shut up".
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>> On Wed, Mar 26, 2014 at 3:35 PM, rachel lyra hospodar
>>>>>> <rachelyra at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> It's mean spirited to say I respect you even though I completely
>>>>>>> disagree with everything you are doing, and you categorically dismiss all
>>>>>>> concerns while paying them lip service?
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> It's sarcastic for me to describe things as I see them? How else will
>>>>>>> we reach an understanding if you do not seek to understand my point of view?
>>>>>>> I seek to understand yours as well.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> My research indicates there is no way to discuss difficult topics
>>>>>>> without seeming to be difficult to someone who disagrees with you. Without
>>>>>>> using humor it comes off angry, with humor it comes off sarcastic.  This is
>>>>>>> the abyss at the bottom of Tone Argument Canyon... there is categorically no
>>>>>>> appropriate way to disagree while female (kind of like driving while black)
>>>>>>> without being an Obnoxious Strident Person.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> This is why it is so important to construct decision making systems
>>>>>>> that accommodate the fact that people disagree, rather than to attempt to
>>>>>>> create a space where nobody disagrees - I call that an echo chamber.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> R.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> On Mar 26, 2014 11:59 AM, "Al Sweigart" <asweigart at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> Rachel, do you think your mean-spirited sarcasm is inviting to
>>>>>>>> dialog? Are you interested in having a dialog?
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> On Wed, Mar 26, 2014 at 2:40 PM, rachel lyra hospodar
>>>>>>>> <rachelyra at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> I wonder, Al, if you have any thoughts on the ideological tension
>>>>>>>>> between your statements 'community buy in is key' and 'not everyone will be
>>>>>>>>> completely satisfied'
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> One thing 100 percent consensus neatly solves is taking the
>>>>>>>>> factionalism out of who gets to have their way. Everyone does, not just
>>>>>>>>> whoever is in power.
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> You are clearly delineating that you are in power here, Al. Is your
>>>>>>>>> goal to use your power to get your way? From my point of view, that is what
>>>>>>>>> you are trying to do here. This could be out of ignorance, blindness,
>>>>>>>>> stubbornness, or a willfull belief that Father Al knows best.
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> You'll forgive me for finding the most hope in believing you to be,
>>>>>>>>> in this case, ignorant and stubborn.... since I sure don't believe in a
>>>>>>>>> paternalistic approach to life. I don't think Father Al knows best. I do
>>>>>>>>> respect you for trying, but call me crazy optimistic for hoping for you to
>>>>>>>>> grow, change.  Maybe you should try putting up signs for meth like you did
>>>>>>>>> for graffiti... that worked, right?
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> I gotta take a break now, kids, I just admitted in public to
>>>>>>>>> respecting Al.
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> R.
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> On Mar 26, 2014 11:30 AM, "Al Sweigart" <asweigart at gmail.com>
>>>>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>> Madelynn and Tom articulated this better last night at the
>>>>>>>>>> meeting, but I want to reiterate for people just following the list that
>>>>>>>>>> these changes are not out of nowhere. We have been talking with individuals
>>>>>>>>>> about how to fix Noisebridge's problems well before the election. Community
>>>>>>>>>> buy-in is key. I don't want to dismiss the election results out of hand;
>>>>>>>>>> it's not fair to the members who voted after being told the board would take
>>>>>>>>>> an active hand at space improvements. This also doesn't mean the board is
>>>>>>>>>> accountable to no one, but it does mean that not everyone will be completely
>>>>>>>>>> satisfied with decisions being made (just like any group of people).
>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>> On Wed, Mar 26, 2014 at 2:16 PM, rachel lyra hospodar
>>>>>>>>>> <rachelyra at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>> I would like to apologize, it appears I was mistaken. It seems
>>>>>>>>>>> that the list was not trimmed, but that discussion of these fundamental
>>>>>>>>>>> changes did not take place online any place I am able to find, follow, or
>>>>>>>>>>> see, as a former board member, council member, member member, throbbing
>>>>>>>>>>> gristle member.
>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>> Community buy in for shifts is really key, people. The bigger the
>>>>>>>>>>> shift the more important this piece of the puzzle is.
>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>> It's never too late to work towards consensus.
>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>> R.
>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>> On Mar 26, 2014 6:08 AM, "rachel lyra hospodar"
>>>>>>>>>>> <rachelyra at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>>> I think it's interesting that sometime in the last month or so,
>>>>>>>>>>>> someone has for the first time since i was added in 2010, gone through the
>>>>>>>>>>>> board email list and trimmed out former board members.
>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>>>>>>>>> Noisebridge-discuss mailing list
>>>>>>>>>>> Noisebridge-discuss at lists.noisebridge.net
>>>>>>>>>>> https://www.noisebridge.net/mailman/listinfo/noisebridge-discuss
>>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>>> Noisebridge-discuss mailing list
>>>>> Noisebridge-discuss at lists.noisebridge.net
>>>>> https://www.noisebridge.net/mailman/listinfo/noisebridge-discuss
>>>>>
>>>>
>>>
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>>> https://www.noisebridge.net/mailman/listinfo/noisebridge-discuss
>>>
>>
>>
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-- 
Naomi Theora Most
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