Binary Bitches: Keeping Open Source Open to Women

A session at SXSW Interactive 2012

Saturday 10th March, 2012

5:00pm to 6:00pm (CST)

Open source communities pride themselves on the premise of egalitarian communication where every voice is valued, heard and documented. Despite this noble goal, this panel discusses how women and their communication style might nevertheless result in their marginalization or deter them from participating in open source communities in the first place.
This dual presentation, moderated by a journalist, brings together two women with different perspectives and experiences working in open source communities. Together they will discuss how the marginalization of women in open source affects process and product outcomes, particularly with regard to design. We will also discuss strategies to improve participation in open source communities both from an industry and educational perspective. We look forward to starting a conversation about problems with, and solutions for, working in open source communities.
To make this dual conversation engaging and interactive, it will take questions from the crowd and ask for examples/testimonials from men and women about gendered communication in open source communities.
Have a comment, story or experience you would like to share with us before the panel? Email our moderator, Andrea Hickerson, andreahickerson21@gmail.com

About the speakers

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Andrea Hickerson

Asst Professor, Department of Comm, Rochester Institute of Technology

Andrea is an assistant professor of Journalism in the Department of Communication at Rochester Institute of Technology. She teaches class in journalism and new media. In 2010 she received a Knight grant to create a platform for crowd-sourced coverage of a live event using mobile phones. Andrea also conducts research on political and transnational communication. She moonlights as a blogger for the local paper.

This person is speaking at this event.
Xanthe Matychak

Lecturer, College of Business, Rochester Institute of Technology

Xanthe Matychak teaches design thinking in the Saunders College of Business and in the Innovation Center at the Rochester Institute of Technology. At present her students are working with the Global Village Construction Set, a set of open source blue prints for fifty farm tools. She is also working on a book project called 'Make Better Stuff: the rise of social business and distributed manufacturing.' She is a contributor the industrial design site Core77.com and her background is in fine art and industrial design.

This person is speaking at this event.
Mairin Duffy

Sr Interaction Designer, Red Hat Inc/Fedora Project

Máirín is an interaction designer with Red Hat who works on making free & open source software easier to use. She started with Linux in high school and since 2003 she has contributed to various open source projects, including Fedora and GNOME. An active advocate for increasing the diversity of free software users and contributors, Máirín has introduced kids to open source through various programs, participated in a number of women's groups in the open source community, and runs outreach programs through the Fedora design team to make it easier for designers and artists to get involved in open source.


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3 attendees

  • Andrea Hickerson
  • Mjumbe Poe
  • XantheMatychak

3 trackers

  • Mary Zhu
  • Juan Felipe Rincón
  • Ryan Freebern

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Time 5:00pm6:00pm CST

Date Sat 10th March 2012


Room 9ABC, Austin Convention Center

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