The structure and interpretation of linkspam (24 December 2013)

  • The Characteristics of Sexual Harassment Policies at Fan Conventions | Nicole Stark, University of Central Florida (Dec 2013): “This study uses content analysis to evaluate a sample of 288 fan convention websites. These conventions took place within the United States from March to November 2013. The analysis was used to determine how common sexual harassment policies are and their characteristics. This study examined both frequencies and descriptions of codes of conduct, including promoted and prohibited rules, sanctions, reporting guidelines, and the existence of a sexual harassment or general harassment policy. Less than half of the sample contained any behavioral policy at all. Those behavioral policies that were present were found to be generally informal, unstructured, and devoid of a sexual harassment policy. However, many policies contained rules that could be used in the prevention of sexual harassment. These rules, when made clear and recognizable, may work as effective policy in informal spaces.” See also this summary by Jim Hines.
  • Warner Bros. Animation Takes Issue with Girls Watching their Programs | The Mary Sue (20 Dec 2013): “Paul Dini: “They’re all for the boys, we do not want the girls! I mean, I’ve heard executives say this, you know, not where I am but at other places, saying like, ‘We do not want girls watching these shows.” When Smith pointed out that was a strange move because, well, women are 51% of the population, Dini said, “They don’t buy toys. The girls buy different toys.” […]  Kevin Smith: “‘Oh, girls don’t read comics, girls aren’t into comics.’ It’s all self-fulfilling prophecies. They just make it that way, by going like, ‘I can’t sell ’em a toy, what’s the point?'”
  • Why Marketers Fear The Female Geek | How Not To Suck At Game Design (21 Dec 2013): “There is this story making the rounds where Paul Dini on a podcast explains why execs do not want female viewers for their super hero shows.  the gist of it is basically ‘Girls do not buy our merchandise.’ Sounds horrible right? People are shocked! Yeah, well, it’s worse then you think. Here is the reasoning, that drive execs and marketers to pro-actively exclude women from their audiences and to pro-actively encourage a culture in which women do not feel welcome. […] Yes, excluding people based on demographic data makes sense to a lot of people in marketing. It’s considered a best practice and it actually is a pretty reliable way of increasing profit margins. And it is the least risky way of doing business. Spend your money where you get the most in return.”
  • The Women I’ve Backed | Resolute Ventures (16 Dec 2013): “The tech world surely has a ways to go to achieve gender equality, but I’m here to tell you there are some awesome founders out there right now who happen to be women.   Hopefully, the abundance of high caliber women founders will lead to more gender-neutrality in VC investing.  It has for me.  Without any agenda to back women, during the first two years of my current fund I’ve had the privilege of backing 11 women founders, and I’d stack this group of entrepreneurs up against just about any in the business.  Here is who they are.”
  • Objectifying Media: Their Effect on Gender Role Norms and Sexual Harassment of Women | Psychology of Women Quarterly (16 Dec 2013): “Across two studies, we investigated the hypothesis that exposure to objectifying television in which women are shown as sexual objects increases the likelihood of harassing conduct. […] Study 1 showed that men exposed to objectifying TV reported greater proclivity to engage in sexual coercion and manifested more gender-harassing behavior than participants in the other conditions. Study 2 further demonstrated that exposure to objectifying TV increased participants’ conformity to masculine gender role norms, which, in turn, mediated the relation between experimental condition and gender harassment. Together, the two studies suggest that media content plays a central role in activating harassment-related social norms, which in turn encourage or inhibit harassing conduct.”
  • Feminism and Programming Languages | HASTAC (26 Nov 2013): “I [Arielle Schlesinger] am currently exploring feminist critiques of logic in hopes of outlining a working framework for the creation of a feminist programming language. In the mean time, I wrote another blog titled A Feminist && A Programmer explaining why I am interesting in this line of research.”

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