XY in Tech

Is That a Gadget in Your Pocket? Objectifying 25 Male Tech Writers

Sluttin' it up at CES.

News of the first annual Objectify a Male Tech Writer Day swept across the web this morning following an article penned by one of the event’s founders, gaming and social media reporter Leigh Alexander. “From booth babes to harassment, snide comments to double standards, women have often had a hard time feeling comfortable around the tech industry,” she wrote. In order to demonstrate “the absurdity of objectifying people you claim to agree with or support intellectually,” she’s encouraging female tech writers to give gendered compliments or make sexist proclamations to men about their work.

Though the actual Objectify a Male Tech Writer Day isn’t until February 1st, Betabeat–comprised primarily of female writers–could hardly contain ourselves. Here are 25 gendered comments for 25 of our favorite male tech writers. Read More

Technical Difficulties

Twitter Outage Caused by ‘Cascaded Bug’ and Not by Influx of GIF Avatars, as We First Suspected

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Twitter has been in and out, in and out for the past three hours, and the company finally has an explanation, albeit limited to 140 characters: “Today’s outage is due to a cascaded bug in one of our infrastructure components. We’ll provide updated information soon.” At first, we suspected this BuzzFeed service piece, which explains how to make any animated GIF your Twitter avatar.

Twitter’s policy explicitly prohibits animated GIF avatars, probably to avoid having the site go all Myspace on everybody or maybe because pulsing and looping hurts Larry T. Bird’s tiny brain. The site started experiencing issues the day after the great GIF invasion. Did the GIFs had anything to do with it? Twitter declined to say, instead forwarding on the above tweet. There goes that theory.

Crowd Power

Indiegogo Campaign for Bullied Bus Monitor Karen Klein Quickly Gives Way to Self-Promotion

Video

Ms. Klein (Photo: Pulse2)

On June 19th, just before a heat wave clutched New York in its punishing grip, a YouTube user named CapitalTrigga uploaded a video to YouTube entitled “Making the Bus Monitor Cry.” The video shows a gaggle of middle schoolers from Greece, New York hurling vicious insults at a senior citizen bus monitor named Karen Klein, who is forced to don her sunglasses to hide the fact that she’s crying. The cruelty drags on for a painful 10 minutes and 9 seconds. Anyone who was bullied as a kid will certainly find it difficult to watch.

The local school district quickly moved into damage control mode and held a press conference about the video, but several enterprising Internet denizens decided to take matters into their own hands. A Ukranian nutritionist named Max Sidorov started an Indiegogo campaign with a goal of $5,000 for Ms. Klein to help raise money for a much-needed vacation following the incident. As of this writing, the campaign had raised over $175,000. Read More