Geek Feminism Wiki

FWIW: I refuse to attend Penguicon ever again mainly because of the Open Source Boob incident and, especially, the fall out from it. I have heard from attendees that it was NOT very limited, that it was an actual problem, and many random women were "approached" by people who took things way too far. But what really put me over the edge was this past year ['10] when one of their guest of honors was "the Ferrett" -- one of the people who staunchly defended the Open Source Boob thing, implied that the complaining women had their own issues, and then gave a back-handed apology when many women pointed out what a sexist he was being. The rest of the reason I refuse to attend is because -- note the name? It's supposed to be half technical conference, except the number of technical talks has decreased in the past few years, and they get a lot of no-show technical speakers because they don't bother to notify speakers until a few weeks before the event. I spoke at Penguicon '08 and was treated horridly. Note that there have been very few female 'technical' speakers at Penguicon, Catherine and I being exceptions.

Mizmoose 01:21, June 3, 2010 (UTC)

OSBP and The Ferrett at Penguicon

The Ferrett was never a Guest of Honor at Penguicon - one year he was a "nifty", which was how they referred to panelists who received a free badge in compensation for coming when they otherwise would not, of which there are usually twenty to thirty. Penguicon Wiki - Guests of Honor

The Ferrett spoke out of turn - the OSBP (and the pins) were created by a woman who locked down her livejournal after being attacked online after the event.  The people participating were around a dozen people (mostly women) who knew each other.  Every one of them was horrified by the way he interpreted the events and his call to do this in other circumstances.  I was one of those people, and I would never have participated in the type of thing he described, which was ... just gross, to be frank.

Penguicon is considered an adult's convention, with no programming planned for teenagers or youth, and a track of "18 and over" late night paneling.  The people participating were in their 30's and 40's with children of their own, and no interest in letting random strangers take part.

Penguicon in 2014

For Penguicon 2014, half of the Guests of Honor are women, 6 of 8 of the con committee are women, 2 of 6 of the board members are women, and many of the panelists, including in the tech department, are women.

Their tech programming has increased along with the rest as they have made improvements to their logistics - for 2014, their programming was finalized a few months before the convention, and the schedule largely set in stone one month beforehand. Penguicon 2014 - programming

In the years since OSBP, penguicon has solidified its code of conduct, and there are frequent posts in their Facebook group from staff members reminding people about consent and referencing consent issues in fandom.

Some of the panels for 2014's Penguicon include:

  • Why is Fandom so Damn Pale and Male?
  • The Basics of Consent
  • War on Cooties: Bringing Nerd Men and Women to the Same Gameboard
  • Engineers Guide to Self Defense
  • How to Respect your Transgender Peers
  • LGBTQA* – An Alphabet Soup Q&A
  • Creating Safe Spaces

Creating Safe Spaces includes three women (two cis, one transgendered) as well as the Con Chair, Head of Operations and Head of Communications who are there to listen to the panelists and audience discuss how to make fandom, the tech industry, and the larger communities safer physically and emotionally for marginalized people. Ath0 (talk) 17:43, April 15, 2014 (UTC)