BACH2014/Diversifying Hackerspaces

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  • How to start as an inclusive space and reach those not already in-the-know
  • Valuing accessibility as fundamental
  • Try creating a wheelchair-accessible path through your space with colored tape - eye-opening and important
  • Greeting newcomers warmly when they arrive , be welcoming
  • Experience to easily pick people who do not belong there: what are red flags for people who don't get it
  • One question is how to make it inclusive when they already come to the space, and another question is how to even get new people to come to the space
  • Connect to communities completely unconnected to the hackerspace, experience other communities and pay attention
  • Daily challenging racism and sexism
  • Avoid putting the labor on those who experience oppression to represent the issue and education around it - do that work yourself first, always ask if you wish to discuss the issue with someone and get consent that they want to engage with you on the topic
  • Offer beginner-level classes, intro activities for newbies, host parties
  • Soft touches to bring communities you would like to attract by creating tools and programming for them, instead of keeping default to happen
  • "Leaky pipeline" - there's no one point where people fail to represent themselves in the community - there's a possible leak at every point along the way of finding out about, coming for the first time, coming a second, etc
  • There are plenty of smart, powerful women in software, coworking spaces, etc but explicit invitations are needed to start creating bridges
  • Male can invite and come and become a bridge for a gap, where are women working - go to them
  • We are all brought up in this society and all have sexism and homophobia, and we have to actively be working on this
  • Cultures can become to drift, splits can happen - Noisebridge is trying by doing a reboot
  • One access point: political implications of hacking
  • Role models in the space - domino effect of feeling welcome and wanting to spread that feeling
  • Cultural immune system (ex; hard reboot)