Are you serious, bro? and other questions

Reddit cofounder Alexis Ohanian is totes disappointed with the vitriol and abuse hurled at Adria Richards on Reddit.

Aren’t we better than this? … I’m talking about how many (otherwise reasonable-seeming) people I saw who were comfortable and self-righteous in calling a woman a bitch/cunt/etc from their Twitter, Hacker News, or, yes, reddit account.

Question:  Mr Ohanian, have you been to Reddit recently?  Because then you might have a better-informed opinion about the “otherwise reasonable-seeming” people who dominate it.  And distribute child porn on it.


Telecom spokesman Andrew Pirie is being totes straight-up with us about job cuts:

Pirie said the bulk of the cuts were likely to be redundancies.

“We are not sugar-coating the fact that it is not easy for anyone who loses their job,” he said.

Question:  Mr Pirie, do you understand what “sugar-coating” means?  Because in our present economic situation, I’m pretty sure saying losing your job “is not easy” is kinda the definition of it.


And, topically, the port town of Lyttelton has “won the battle” against “big brothels” (like Big Pharma, only sexier and non-existent):

Timothy Bartlett, speaking on behalf of parents in Lyttelton, said if a commercial brothel was established in the township it would have a detrimental impact on the community.

Lyttelton was no longer a “seedy, working-class port town”.

Question:  Mr Bartlett, do you think sex workers spring fully-formed from the ground if you sow sexy dragon’s teeth on it?  Sex workers are parents in Lyttelton.  And so are a lot of their clientele.


  1. MJ

    Lyttelton was no longer a “seedy, working-class port town”.

    Sorry, but…


  2. Mr Wainscotting

    “Timothy Bartlett, speaking on behalf of parents…”

    Is that on behalf of ALL parents? Just the ones he spoke to? Or is he talking out of his moralising arse?

    • QoT

      Oh, all parents. Because everyone must think the same way as him, because he’s just got good old common sense on his side.

      Well, maybe SOME parents don’t agree with everything Timothy says, but they’re obviously deviants, probably on benefits, and hate traditional family values, so their opinions can’t count.

  3. dan

    Ok so people said lots of bad things to/about Adria and that was not nice.. but, she was a total (im struggling to find a non-gendered insult here) nasty person to publicly condem people for making dick jokes amongst themselves.

    I mean, I have seen some horribly sexist stuff in the IT industry but if I cant make jokes about the word dongle then.. i dont know

    • QoT

      Well, you know, given the options between letting people feel comfortable in an industry which constantly laments the lack of diversity amongst its professionals, or you being able to make jokes about your dick, I’m glad you’ve decided that jokes about dicks take priority. Because you know, they’re just jokes, right? It’s not like constantly signalling the importance of masculinity via insisting on the right to mention typically-male genitalia could make anyone feel unwelcome, could it?

      It’s weird, though, because sometimes when I try to reverse this and greet a mixed-gender group by saying “Hey girls”, sometimes the guys totally take it soooooooooo over-the-top! LOL!

      All Adria Richards did was send a tweet saying “this isn’t cool”. The conference organisers dealt with it. This only became a drama because a company unaffiliated with Adria Richards decided to make it a super-huge deal. Also, they were not making dick jokes “amongst themselves”, they were in a room full of people who had not chosen to be participants in their awesome “LOL PENISES ARE THE BEST” conversation.

      The fact you struggle to find non-gendered insults might be a clue that you’re not as awesome as you want to think you are.

      • dan

        People can feel uncomfortable for any of a multitude of reasons, I dont accept that all of them are equal or that I or anyone else necessarily should be responsible for ensuring nobody is ever offended.

        You are right, if the non-Adria company hadnt fired their guy then it probably just would have resolved itself within all involved. Posting their photo and publicly shaming on a high traffic twit account is over the top in my opinion though, and Adrias whole “I had to do it for the children” stuff is wearysome. Oh and I dont know how you get from “haha, big dongle” to “penises are the best” (are they being sexist because they did not also mention plug holes)???

        >The fact you struggle to find non-gendered insults might be a clue that you’re not as awesome as you want to think you are.

        Maybe.. you feeling the need to imply my arrogance might be limiting your awesome factor too

        • QoT

          Wow, you’re really invested in Not Getting It, aren’t you? This isn’t an implication, this is a statement: you’re arrogant, you’re privileged, and you’re an asshole.

          I’m so sorry you find it “wearysome” [sic] for a woman of colour to be concerned about her industry continuing to be a hostile environment to oppressed groups. I’m so sorry you’re simply incapable of going a day without talking about your cock, or even considering the impact your public utterances might have on people. I’m so sorry you don’t think I’m awesome. And I’m really, really sorry that readers of my blog will, in future, be deprived of your totally original totally unsexist totally not-defending-male-privilege comments.

        • dan

          [QoT: dan’s comment is here preserved for posterity, as yet another illustration of a dude complaining because he literally cannot comprehend a world where he doesn’t get to make all the off-colour dick jokes he wants to, where his point of view isn’t the only one under consideration, and where societal views on race and gender actually have serious impacts on people’s lives. Those playing any kind of privileged dude whining drinking game may wish to dilute their beverage.]

          Well ok, so you obviously dont care much about offending me (which is fine), You still havents made the case why I should be burdened with anyone elses worries though. Also how do you determine that I am privileged (because I might enjoy a dick joke? Or because I am tempted to use the word bitch?).

          I am not sure why Adrias skin color or gender has any importance, or where you get the idea that I need to talk about cocks all the time. I simply think the kind of sterile world where any infantile joke is misconstrued for the foundation of chains of oppression is gonna suck.

          I like your work too, I just disagree on some points of view