Skip to main content

View Diary: An awful waste of space (238 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  Yesterday my RSS feed popped up a message on (5+ / 0-)

    the Microsoft Gazelle browser, so I decided to take a look.  It went to CNET, where I don't go very often these days.

    At the end of the article, a blurb about the reporter mentioned:

    During her years at CNET News, Ina Fried has changed beats several times, changed genders once . . .

    which I found interesting - mostly due to your diaries, Robyn.  I immediately wondered how well her outward change was accepted by peers in the journalist arena and general I/T industry.

    So, I looked up her history a bit to see if it offered clues, and found at type of attack you've easily made us sensitive to understanding and even expecting:

    Ina Fried, the veteran technology reporter and a regular source of good Microsoft dish, is very open about her status as a transgender woman — her CNET blog is titled "Beyond Binary." She knows she's female. But some users of Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia any bigot can edit, aren't convinced. An anonymous Wikipedia user in Knoxville, Tenn. however, refuses to accept hers as the last word on the subject, and has been changing pronouns from "she" to "he" on Fried's listing with repeated edits in the last six weeks.

    She showed perseverance and clear, fair-minded communications in attempting to resolve the bigotry issue, it seemed.  Which again reminded me of you.

    Further on her acceptance by those in her industry:

    . . .

    As she recalls her on-the-job gender transition, Fried says her peers in the technology realm, true to form, expressed some curiosity, but not much else. Her experience at the San Francisco CNET office makes it seem that she was as likely to encounter transphobia there as she would be to find a co-worker banging away on a Commodore 64.

    . . .

    ''One of my big concerns was that my gender would become the story. As journalists, we don't want to become the story. But I was able to go back to doing my job. My gender hasn't been an issue.

    This sounded like folks I work with in the same industry on the tech side, generally.

    But, this piece of history reminded me of how you've described sometimes having trouble getting even gay/lesbian groups to accept transgender folks in their organizations or efforts:

    . . .

    She remembers the NLGJA (National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association) national convention coming to San Francisco in 2000, coinciding with a budding effort on her part to begin marrying these two important parts of her persona: transgender woman and journalist.

    "It wasn't the most positive experience," she says of her initial NLGJA orientation. "'Transgender' was still pretty unheard of. The organization wasn't all that advanced when it came to transgender members. I went away not really feeling terribly supported. I stayed away until I transitioned at work."

    . . .

    "When I came back [to NLGJA] in 2003 or 2004, I had made up my mind that the organization should be there for other transgender journalists, whether [NLGJA] was ready or not. But in the years I'd been away, other people had been doing good work. [Past President] Steven Petro had made transgender inclusion much more important. I was pleasantly surprised and instantly got involved."

    Not a fully concluded story, but a positive one, for a change.

    "So, please stay where you are. Don't move and don't panic. Don't take off your shoes! Jobs is on the way."

    by wader on Fri Jul 10, 2009 at 09:00:12 PM PDT

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site