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BMC Libraries Appreciate Gender Diversity

Amophrast's picture

So I was taking a survey sent out by BMC's library services, and I just wanted to publicly appreciate their acknowledgement of gender diversity.

"What is your gender?" Three choices (can't pick two at the same time): female, male, other.

Google/Google Plus has a similar option. Fetlife has the plethora mentioned in my last webpaper. Not everywhere else is so great, such as Facebook. You can only choose between male and female, and when you do, even if you choose not to display it on your profile, it limits your options in terms of relationships. For example, one of my friends wanted to list me as her uncle or grandfather when I was listed as female on my profile. Facebook wouldn't let me--it only let me use female-gendered words (or at least, words Facebook has judged to be "female") such as aunt, grandmother, etc. So I changed my sex to male--at least, digitally. While this came up from a rather silly instance, there are very real people who constantly encounter very real discrimination such as this.

Other BS I found a while back:

Facebook Statistics about males/females (using gender symbols). For the statistic about being in a relationship, they use a mercury symbol and a venus symbol linked together

Uhhhh I dunno if you noticed, Facebook, but most of my Facebook friends are from BMC. Most of them don't like that the idea of a relationship is symbolized by two heteronormative gendered symbols being linked together. (I could go on--erases trans* existenced, the mercury symbol gets to remain "upright" while the venus symbol is tilted, hanging off the stationary/stable male symbol).

And somewhere, someone is thinking I am overreacting.


Anne Dalke's picture

on othering

I filled out the same survey form, and also noted the expanded range of options. And now next I'd like to see a spectrum that doesn't "other" anyone!

Amophrast's picture

Good point, Anne. I wonder

Good point, Anne. I wonder what the best way to phrase that would be? "None of the above," "not applicable"? Why was it important for the context of the survey to know sex OR gender anyway? Is this supposed to affect the way we use resources and experience libraries?