jewelfox: A portrait of a female anthropomorphic fox, with a pink jewelled pendant and a cute overbite. (Default)
Via the Geek Feminism blog, git has a serious bug.

For those reading this who aren't technically-inclined, git (named after Linus Torvalds) is like an ongoing archive of savegames for your programming, except that it also has features that let multiple people work on it at once. It's fiendishly hard to use and easy to break, and those qualities by themselves help to create a culture of complacent experts and frustrated novices. I personally feel that the time savings at the top are erased by the loss of contributions from people who are discouraged from ever learning it.

But besides that, everything you write in git is tied to your name. And it won't let you change it retroactively:
If you change the author, it’s treated as an entirely new commit. Anyone who has grabbed a copy of your original commit and made subsequent changes on top of it finds themselves orphaned from the history of the project. To use a crude analogy, it’s like you rip the trunk of a tree out, while the branches are magically left hanging in the air, connected to nothing and isolated.
This is an example of cismale privilege at work, where by "privilege" I mean "you guys don't have to worry about this." Most guys don't change their names when they get married, and most cisgender people don't think about changing their names, or what it'd be like to need to for safety- or identity-related reasons. Cisguys comprise most of the experts who wrote git and who use it on a day-to-day basis, so this apparently never came up.

The result: People are excluded from Free Software projects without anyone making a conscious decision to exclude them.

That point is extremely important to keep in mind. My intent doesn't matter when it comes to behaviours that exclude other people, any more than it matters when it comes to writing executable code. Blaming the people my actions exclude, or who point out that my actions exclude someone else, is no more productive than blaming the compiler. Instead, I need to educate myself by listening to marginalized others, and by going out of my way to include them. It's only fair, since they didn't choose to be marginalized. It's also the only way I'll know what I and my projects are missing.

(As on the Geek Feminism blog, comments will be moderated for 'splaining or other forms of derailing.)

Also, about

I appear to have been blocked from posting notices to If I had to guess, I would say it was because of the most recent notices I posted (which contain some strong language).

The Terms of Service don't contain any rules against swearing, or even cursing at itself, which I did after becoming frustrated with my inability to block trolls on it. I wasn't warned or given notice, and an email I sent to received no response, so I don't know exactly what kind of speech the site admins will ban people for. But while I don't have the spoons to check on it myself, I'm pretty sure that the trolls who believe that I don't have a right to my identity or spirituality (one of whom also swore at me) weren't banned and never will be.

I've looked into Google+ as an alternative, but found its restrictions on pseudonyms and identities problematic. I am currently considering setting up a personal site as a Tumblr style linkblog. If I do, I will probably syndicate its content on Twitter and Google+, and here on Dreamwidth and Planet GNOME as applicable.
jewelfox: A portrait of a female anthropomorphic fox, with a pink jewelled pendant and a cute overbite. (Default)
In the comments on my entry about not being safe for minority identities, founder Evan Prodromou reported that there is a feature for deleting your account, on the profile settings page and at

In a quick follow-up, he said that the first bug I reported (where you continue to get email notifications of @mentions from people you block) has been fixed, and that the bugfix has been deployed on all and servers.

There's no word yet on when the second bug, where you can't block someone sending you messages from a remote server, will be fixed. This bug is critical to the safety of people facing harassment for any reason, as's federated design allows anyone to roll their own server and continue harassing a person with no way to block them.

A determined stalker or troll will only be temporarily deterred by even legal action, as numerous cases have shown. But most are not willing to expend that much effort to ruin somebody's life, and blocking mechanisms are essential for people who face the possibility of identity- or relationship-based harassment. I hope that and all other federated social networks will take this into account in design; Dreamwidth already does, although I had trouble blocking an OpenID account with an unusual syntax once and I may have to ask for help about that.
jewelfox: A portrait of a female anthropomorphic fox, with a pink jewelled pendant and a cute overbite. (Default) is a "popular" microblogging service based on the software. It's like Twitter except that it's federated and open-source, and has various extra features.

Unfortunately, current bugs make unusable for anyone of a minority identity, who faces the possibility of harassment within that space:
  1. If you block someone, you continue to receive email notifications of messages sent to you by them, even though they do not show up in your home timeline.

  2. There is no way to block someone from a remote server.

  3. There is no built-in functionality to delete an account which becomes compromised by stalkers or other hostile incursions.
I am open to being educated about how I'm mistaken about any of these, but for the time being I've sent an email to requesting the deletion of my account. I don't have the emotional energy to defend myself against people who want me to disappear. Their freedom to bully me does not take precedence over my freedom to feel safe and accepted.
jewelfox: A portrait of a female anthropomorphic fox, with a pink jewelled pendant and a cute overbite. (Default)
[personal profile] ausbatlyssavirus has a pretty good post on how there don't seem to be a lot and there need to be more:
I thought that I had to be a tomboy to some extent to be someone like Merida (from Brave), who stands up for herself and what she believes in. ...

If I wasn't, then whatever struggles I have - internal and external - weren't hard enough, and I needed to toughen up.

It's just that I haven't seen any stories about people like me struggling with their identity, growing up, and their conflicts.
I posted on about it, and so far I've gotten Spirited Away and magical girl anime as suggestions. Anyone else?
jewelfox: A portrait of a female anthropomorphic fox, with a pink jewelled pendant and a cute overbite. (Default)
There's this thing called that I was finally able to create my new account on, and it's sorta like Twitter except two things:
  1. It lets you create groups that are like private #hashtags, and you use !groupname to post to them, and you can even set them to be private and have new members approved and the group owner can kick people out and block them from posting to it.

  2. It's federated and open-source, so if you want you can start your own server (it's just plain PHP IIRC) and then! And then people on your server can talk to people on other servers, and even join groups on other servers and post to them.
Also they don't try to spam you with like "sponsored tweets" and "you should totally follow these people" and other stuff you can't get the heck off your dashboard. Also also, you can sign up using your Dreamwidth account as an OpenID.

I just started an otherkin group there, that uses !otherkin or !kin as its group tags, and it's set to public for right now but I can make it private if needed, and can kick trolls if they pop up anyway.

Oh, they ask you to tag yourself when you create your account, and each of those tags becomes a list of posts with that tag that people can subscribe to. Like, if people just want my wordcount updates they could subscribe to a story tag or something like that.

Edit: More stuff I just now discovered. You can apparently set your stream to mirror stuff you post elsewhere, like your Tumblr or Dreamwidth blogs, and you can also set it to crosspost to Twitter automatically. You can also post bookmarks there, and it can import your Delicious bookmarks.

What do you all think?

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~ Fox | Gem | Rei ~

We tell stories, paint minis, collect identity words, and share them all with our readers. If something we write helps you, let us know.

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