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Re: Debian, lists and discrimination

On Sat, 7 Aug 2004, Matthew Palmer wrote:

> As to the barriers to involvement in Debian by women, it's pretty obvious
> that our gender participation ratio is decidedly different to that of the IT
> industry in general, let alone the general population.  I believe (although
> I'd find it harder to back up with real numbers) that our female / male
> participation ratio is also lower than participation in the wider OSS world.

"The IT industry" is awfully vague.  I question if you can make useful
conclusions based upon it.  I recently taught a perl class for working
professionals in which 60% of the students were female.  What does that
say about the IT industry?  The Perl community?  Nothing that's what.

A more apt comparison would be with other free operating system projects.
Let's see: FreeBSD has approximately 330 people with CVS commit
privileges. [1] I counted 5 identifiably female names.  That's 1.5 %.
Gentoo has approximately 250 developers [2] I counted 4 identifiably
female names.  That's 1.6%.  In contrast, the last time this subject came
up, I looked and Debian developers comprised approximately 1%.  (But
because, we are a bigger project, that's more actual women, 8 or 9 iirc.)
So we are slightly behind but by a statistically neglible amount.

[1] http://www.freebsd.org/doc/en_US.ISO8859-1/articles/contributors/staff-committers.html
[2] http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/devrel/roll-call/userinfo.xml

Jaldhar H. Vyas <jaldhar@debian.org>
La Salle Debain - http://www.braincells.com/debian/

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