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Re: Questions and comments regarding Debian Women

Hi Marga and DW,

On Mon, Apr 18, 2011 at 19:54, Margarita Manterola <marga@debian.org> wrote:

I've noticed that you've been packaging for Debian during 2009/2010, and
thus I'd like your opinion on certain matters regarding Debian Women.

I intend to do some more packaging in the near future (just to let you know that I am still interested :) ).

The Debian Women project aims to get more women to participate in the
Debian Project.  Not only with packages, but with any aspect that helps
improve the distribution.

When the DW project was started in 2004, it led to quite a number of women
starting packaging and eventually becoming Debian Developers.  Since 2008,
however, we've suffered from a smaller number of new contributors and a
total lack of new Developers.

Nowadays, Debian can give DD status to other types of contributors, not
only packagers, but translators, documentators, press, administration, and
anybody who's deeply involved in Debian, regarless of packaging.  However,
we only have one woman in the process of becoming a non-packaging DD.

In the earlier life of Debian it was much easier to become a DD. Also I didn' t know about that possibility to be a non-packaging DD. My goal in the future is to became a DD, but there is still a lot of work to be done on my side before that to happen.

All in all, many of the DW project feel that we are failing to get more
women to participate in Debian and thus, it would be nice to get more
opinions on the matter, in order to find something to do to make this

Unfortunately, I live in the country (Serbia) where people are generally not very interested in voluntary work for the reasons that do not have place here to be mentioned. Also, free software is not very popular here, mostly because most people have never heard of it, not because they don' t want to use it. My friends and I are coming on the DebConf, but I am the only woman in the group. I am trying to convince some of my girl friends to try Debian, but so far nothing.
I think we should make at least one BoF at DebConf  about women in Debian, and maybe an open lecture for women on the Debian Day or maybe some other day during the DebConf. I could speak with Local DebConf Team about this, if we agree on this. Maybe we can make some posters for them to advertise that event additionally. I think that personal contact is the best for attracting new people/women.

If you have the time, it'd be great if you could tell me, from your point
of view, why are women not joining Debian nowadays, and what could be done
from the DW project to help more women collaborate with Debian.

You are also welcome to make these comments in the DW mailing list [1], or
I can forward your mail at your request, if you wish so.

[1]: http://lists.debian.org/debian-women/

Thanks for taking the time to read (and hopefully answer) this.



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