Diversifying TypeDrawers

Stephen ColesStephen Coles Posts: 711
edited August 2015 in TypeDrawers Announcements
I’m very pleased to see that over half of new TypeDrawers members over the last two weeks are women. Many are adding insightful posts, as well. This forum will only improve with increased diversity and I am grateful to these new members and those who invited them to participate. I hope the trend continues.

Please let me know how the management (official moderation team to be announced soon) can make TypeDrawers more welcoming and inclusive for women, minorities, and other groups who are typically underrepresented in discussion groups around type design, typography, and lettering. Thanks!
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Comments

  • 1. Not allow bluff manners and vulgar language from long time members anymore. 
  • Stephen ColesStephen Coles Posts: 711
    edited August 2015
    Can you elaborate? Privately is ok, if you prefer.
  • James PuckettJames Puckett Posts: 1,462
    So to bring women to Typedrawers we should treat their ears like delicate snowflakes that mighy crumble from the shock of impoliteness or an utterance of fuck? That seems rather sexist.
  • I always thought the forums at Television Without Pity had pretty good rules
  • Stephen ColesStephen Coles Posts: 711
    edited August 2015
    James, I don’t think it’s about swear words. We don’t censor simple cussing. Personal and antagonistic attacks are the kinds of things that could be categorized as unwelcoming. That’s probably covered in Rule 4, but I’d love to hear from the aforementioned groups if there are ways to be inclusive beyond what’s spelled out in those rules.
  • Dyana, yes, that’s pretty thorough. Maybe too thorough, in fact. I feel like rules are more likely to be read (and hence followed) if they are brief and succinct. I tried to cover behavior guidelines as concisely as possible in our Rules, but let me know if there’s something that should be more explicit.
  • Oh, you want me to name names, J_Montalbano?
  • Beyond naming names, it would be helpful if you link or describe the behavior you find objectionable. Flag it and call it out right here.
  • Yes please flag it!

  • Indra KupferschmidIndra Kupferschmid Posts: 246
    edited August 2015
    Also, J_Montalbano, what’s the deal with your new profile picture sporting the slogan “atypi should die”? Does that mean that ATypI members are also not welcome on this forum anymore?
  • Colonel BleepColonel Bleep Posts: 793
    edited August 2015
    When AtypI refunds my conference fee that they so far have refused to do when I could not attend the 2001 conference because of that little thing called the 911 attack on the WTC I will remove that slogan. Until then ATypI should die.
  • Alright, let’s not get off track. Everyone should be aware that flags from multiple users indicate a serious problem that is noticed by the management. You will receive a warning, and if the behavior continues, your account will be suspended. This is made clear in the rules, but I will be more attentive about warnings, and I hope others will be more attentive about flagging trollish or abusive posts.
  • IIRC Indra, you started that Troll flag thing when I posted that thing about Sweden and pirates. So own up.
  • Indra KupferschmidIndra Kupferschmid Posts: 246
    edited August 2015
    Ha, indeed I flagged you but I think not ungrounded, while you in return flag me for flagging or revenge sake. But whatever, as you’re weird bearing-grudges-big-time answer to my question about your profile pic shows, it is totally not worth my time discussing with you. 
  • Colonel BleepColonel Bleep Posts: 793
    edited August 2015
    FWIW, I lost family in the 911 attack, and for ATypI to refuse to refund my conference fee makes me sick and fills me full of rage and I will continue to hold a grudge against ATypI forever.

    I'm done. Enjoy the diversity.
  • John HudsonJohn Hudson Posts: 1,228
    [Off topic:

    James, have you written to Barbara Jarzyna, the current ATypI executive director about this? If you explain the history, you might get a more positive response from her than you did in 2001. At that time Barbara was organising the Unicode conferences, which is how I first met her. I was due to fly to California on the morning of 11 September for the Unicode conference, as were many other people who were unable to attend as a result of the closing of US airspace. Barbara refunded all of those people, even though it meant that her company made a loss on that conference. She may not be able to help you, since the original decision predates her involvement with ATypI — and ATypI's conference accounting is year-by-year —, but I am sure she would look into it with good faith.]
  • Was about to write the same proposal as JH offlist. If I were James I'd be upset. 
  • joeclarkjoeclark Posts: 109
    You’re an inch away from replicating the fatal mistakes of Typophile. Wing Chun and Glark of Television Without Pity are not remotely viable models to emulate. I speak as someone who tangled with the arbitrary rules of both sites. (I have been online for 23 years, and Wing Chun and Glark both lived in Toronto before they remedied the cardinal mistakes of their birth and became Americans.)

    Further, I dispute the premise of the discussion. I don’t see why “women, minorities, and other groups who are typically underrepresented in discussion groups around type design” are a priority when anyone can “discuss” type design at will, often under pseudonym. I assume “minorities” means “racial minorities” and not, say, persons with disabilities. I know gay and/or nonwhite and/or female type designers, and have met several graphic designers with significant physical disabilities, but, while the gay/nonwhite/female designers are going strong, I never hear from the disabled ones. Who really needs help? Isn’t that a core discussion that is overlooked here?

    Do we even need this kind of metaconversation? If so, why must it be limited to classic liberal concerns like race and sex? But isn’t this a very big kettle of worms that simply does not need to be opened?

    Isn’t Coles’ posting really another way of saying, yet again, that women face some kind of barrier in type design? But do they? The typeface doesn’t know you’re a girl. If the suggestion is that typeface-discussion forums are unwelcome to women and minorities, how do you prove that to anyone’s satisfaction? (“I’m angry and I’m offended by this comment and I don’t like this guy’s style in general” does not amount to “proving” anything.)

    Typophile closed up shop, which might have been deserved. (But rendering its archives unavailable is a disgrace.) When it comes to “discussion groups around type,” TypeDrawers is it at the moment. And it barely gets any use. Clamp down on misbehaviour that seems not to be happening in the first place and what ultimately will become of TypeDrawers? Isn’t Typophile a cautionary tale?

    Generally speaking, sites that call themselves “discussion forums” resist dissent, especially disagreement with foundational principles that are, when examined, weakly formed or contradictory. TypeDrawers is not MetaFilter, which at least has some taste for variance via its MetaTalk forum. (Though longtime participants there – I am user 250 – know there are real limits to what can be questioned.)

    I don’t think the comment-flagging system, as presently implemented, is of any use for limiting “abuse,” to the extent it even exists.

    Everyone thinks Coles is a great guy except for those who do not. (Mustn’t break consensus.) Now he has the keys to this place and has explicitly threatened to ban people. (Mustn’t break consensus.) Just this comment in its entirety is enough to get someone banned. Isn’t it?
  • @John Hudson  and
    @Dave Crossland 
    I've pursued this as recently as two years ago through Eben Sorkin. He asked if I wanted to offer a discount on my font products to ATypI members. I informed him of my issue and said I would be happy to offer a discount when my 2001 conference fee was refunded. I was told in no uncertain terms that a refund was not forthcoming.

  • Stephen ColesStephen Coles Posts: 711
    edited August 2015
    Everyone thinks Coles is a great guy except for those who do not. (Mustn’t break consensus.) Now he has the keys to this place and has explicitly threatened to ban people.
    Joe, don’t worry, I am fully aware of how you feel about me, and you have already made it clear to others in previous discussions. Fortunately, it’s not very relevant, because I will not be the sole arbiter of suspension and banning. These and other major decisions will be made by a committee of moderators.

    I don’t think the comment-flagging system, as presently implemented, is of any use for limiting “abuse,” to the extent it even exists.

    It’s the only system we have and I think it works well enough. I am open to hearing other ideas.

  • Joe: Yes, Typophile is a cautionary tale—but about insufficient moderation, not too much.
  • Dave CrosslandDave Crossland Posts: 817
    edited August 2015
    It’s the only system we have and I think it works well enough. I am open to hearing other ideas.
    Can we see who has the most flags for each kind of flag?
  • I feel as if no one has clearly articulated the grievances we're being asked to redress. Are there individuals involved with type design who believe their participation here is not welcome because of their gender, race, nationality, or ethnicity? Stephen, has anyone said this? 
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