Gawd. Not This Again.

by Little Miss Attila on October 26, 2009

Seen and not heard? Good luck, guys.

The biannual “why aren’t there more woman bloggers?” question has arisen once more. Me? I dunno why I didn’t make it to Western CPAC: My excuses are what they are. For one thing, I’m working way more than full-time, and I’m trying to cut back on travel. I don’t go out of town more than every couple of months, and my petro-fieldtrips count, as I see it. Many of those take place in California, within driving distance, but a night away from home is a night away from home. It’s a necessary evil, but an evil.

So, no: I wasn’t at Western CPAC; I go to the real CPAC every year. If I have time, I’ll go to the YAF cconference this fall and see if I can get Stacy McCain to buy me that martini he still owes me.

Having dispensed with that “note from my mother for travel missed,” there’s a real concern here that Melissa addresses in a pretty thoughtful treatment of a perennial subject:

The Internet still feels like the Wild West. There are some safe homesteads—social media, for example. Consider: On Facebook, a woman can decide who[m] she wants to connect with and who[m] she wants to keep out. On Twitter, a woman who feels wrongly attacked can block the attacker. (Meghan McCain, the mad blocker, comes to mind. She takes even mild criticism as a block-worthy offense.)

When it comes the arena of ideas, the women who blog are not typical women. Over and over, the women who blog are tougher. Like the shotgun-wielding Western expansionists of yore, women bloggers take shots and can shoot back.

Women bloggers are often sexualized and insulted. One famous incident with Kathy Sierra involved photoshop and personal information. Kathy quit, something I urged her not to do. She is now, though, on Twitter and I believe she blogs anonymously to spare herself the insulting misery. Michelle Malkin, Amanda Carpenter, and just about every conservative woman blogger, including me, has endured horrible personal, violent and sexual insults—very often from “enlightened” male liberal commenters and bloggers.

Most women simply do not want to put up with this garbage. They feel threatened and they worry about their safety and the safety of their children. Michelle Malkin had to actually move after her personal information was plastered on the web. She is a mother. She has children. There are nutjobs out there and in this business, there is a very real risk to personal safety. It’s something guys just don’t have to deal with as much.

In addition, women often don’t like the intellectual jousting. Part of it is gender wiring. Men see verbal sparring as a testosterone-fueled challenge. Women see degraded communication and hostility. When they put an idea out there, it seems aggressive when someone rips the point of view to shreds. And, it is aggressive.

Yeah, well: I’m an arguer from birth. When you can pry my nose out of my book (or my laptop, these days). But some people, you know . . . they choose the better part. *

{ 3 trackbacks }

Stix Blog ver 4.0 » Blog Archive » Marine Team Daily Roundup
October 28, 2009 at 5:44 am
Cassy Fiano » Poor little female bloggers, Part Two
October 28, 2009 at 7:47 am
Poor Little Female Bloggers, Part Two : Stop The ACLU
October 28, 2009 at 7:50 am

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Foxfier October 27, 2009 at 2:48 pm

They feel threatened and they worry about their safety and the safety of their children.

I go by Foxfier partly to keep my siblings from getting hassled easily, and partly because my name is so common that “Foxfier” is actually better for holding me accountable for my actions, since I’ve used it for the last 15 or so years. (Back in high school I did a full-name search, and found over two hundred active addresses for first, middle and last matching– none of whom were me. Not exactly John Smith, but close enough.)
So far as I know, there’s only two or three others who go by that particular misspelling, and they don’t blog. (One’s a Korean gamer, as best I can tell….)

I notice blogging tends to attract a lot of introverts who have strong opinions, especially those who aren’t especially gifted speakers (be it because of a speech impediment or because of a less-quick tongue) or who feel uncomfortable in large social situations.
I know studies of Asperger’s have found that boys are much more likely to have warning signs of Asperger’s, which would tend to cover the above group. So perhaps the format of blogging is simply more attractive to a personality type that is more common in men?


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