Facets: Issue 41

August 5, 2017

Are Women Allowed on the Moon? What if they’re Black? And Disabled? Or Deaf?

Mike Mongo
It’s really okay that the first person to walk on the Moon was a man and that he was white. It is tolerable but definitely less okay that the second person was also male and white. It wrong that the next ten people were all also men who are white.

Of the (so far) twelve people who have been to the moon, all are white men. Mongo, the strategic director of Starship Congress, shows us that the way we pursued the moon was wrong— but not unfixable. To get space exploration right and have everyone invests in its success, we must all have a place in the space future—next time we go to the moon, let's send people, not just the male, white, abled, and wealthy.

Women in Games Need to Talk about Class (and Part II)

Marijam Did
We need to urgently demonstrate support and appreciation for all the people that currently allow this industry to exist, often sacrificing their lives.

Using the European Women in Games Conference as an example, Did illustrates how “corporate feminism” manifests, and undermines inclusion efforts. Foxconn, the company responsible for Apple products, the PlayStation and the Xbox, has had at least twenty suicides occur at its plants, but these voices and faces are forgotten, even at events for minorities. Our efforts are only worthwhile when they include everyone; not just those ones who earn the most money.

Holding the door open: Thoughts on building a diverse team at Reddit

Nick Caldwell
to make Reddit a home for everyone in the world, we have to start by making our office a better reflection of the world.

As Reddit’s VP of Engineering, Caldwell wants everyone to find a home on the platform, and takes pride in building a diverse, inclusive team. He acknowledges Reddit’s difficult history as well as the fact that they aren’t there yet, but also underlines the importance of action, not just “awareness.” To that end, he outlines what Reddit’s done to build and protect a diverse engineering team (including hiring into leadership roles), and evaluates the outcomes of those efforts.

On the Design of Women's Spaces

Kat Marchán
Words matter, and they’re particularly strong in the queer/trans/non-binary community. The blunt truth is this: you have to let go of the label for the sake of the group you’re trying to serve.

Marchán’s piece is about labels. It’s about the words we use when we create spaces for women and underrepresented folks, what those words mean, and how they align with the kinds of spaces we intend to create. It is about the consequences of saying one thing, and meaning another— we must be aware of those consequences, and Marchán gives us a place to start.

Cracking Open the Gender Dialogue: What I Want the Men (and Women) of Tech to Know

Tracy Lawrence
I don’t genuinely know why these investors acted in ways that seem so disgusting to me. I don’t know what fuels this behaviour. But I want to.

As the CEO & co-founder of Chewse, Lawrence is familiar with the VCs involved in the recent scandal. Her primary reaction is loneliness, and her first step is to encourage us to listen: the fallout only matters if we take the time to not just continue outing more perpetrators, but truly learn and understand what is happening, and why. To begin speaking, sharing how we feel, and doing the difficult thing— building a new normal.

And speaking of VC...

I want to highlight the black women in venture. We are here and the numbers are growing.

Startups, VC groups, conference organisers, don’t say you can’t find them. Sydney Thomas, Associate at Precursor Ventures, has a list of Black women in VC.

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