Apply now for the Ally Skills Workshop at Wikimania 2015

People sitting in chairs looking interested

CC BY-SA Christopher Schwarzkopf (WMDE)

We are excited to announce an Ally Skills Workshop specifically for Wikipedia editors and administrators, to be held at Wikimania 2015 in Mexico City, on Thursday July 16 from 2pm to 5pm in Don Diego 3. This workshop will focus specifically on the skills useful to editors and administrators of Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects, including how to best use Wikipedia policies to support women (or advocate for changes in policies). (Learn more about the workshop here.) Attendance is free of charge to Wikimania attendees. Apply now as space is extremely limited!

This workshop is made possible by a grant funded by the Wikimedia Foundation and created and supported by dozens of Wikimedians. If this workshop goes well, the Ada Initiative will apply for a grant to train Wikimedians to teach the Ally Skills Workshop to other Wikimedians around the world, with a special emphasis on reaching Wikipedia admins. If a large number of Wikipedia admins learn how to better support women, we could have a significant impact on Wikipedia’s gender gap!

If you know someone who is attending Wikimania and would like to support women in Wikipedia better, please encourage them to apply now. (Sorry, travel scholarships for Wikimania are already closed.) We encourage women to attend the workshop, as it works best with 20-40% women attendees. Thank you for helping us spread the word!

Apply now by filling out the form below, or by clicking here. We will contact you within 2 weeks to let you know if your application has been accepted. We look forward to seeing you at the workshop!

AdaCamp Montreal report-out: “it was so exciting! I would totally go again if I can.”

AdaCamp is an unconference for women in open technology and culture and the people who support them. AdaCamp brings women together to build community, discuss issues women have in common across open technology and culture fields and find ways to address them. AdaCamp is organized by the Ada Initiative, a nonprofit devoted to increasing the participation and status of women in open technology and culture, which includes open source software, Wikipedia and related projects, fan culture and more.

94 people who identified as women attended AdaCamp Montreal, held over two days on April 13th and 14th 2015 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

“AdaCamp was a tremendous experience. The energy in the room as we found common cause, discovered a new perspective, learned a new skill — it was so exciting! I would totally go again if I can.” — Marianne

A huge thank you to all of our sponsors who made AdaCamp Montreal possible: Puppet LabsGoogle Montreal and Chrome, Ada Initiative donors, the Linux Foundation, Red Hat, Simple, Etsy, MongoDB, Plotly and Shopify.

Impact of AdaCamp Montreal

Our post-event survey (45% response rate) indicated that 95% of respondents had improved their professional networks and feel more part of a community of women in open technology and culture. 67% also felt that they gained a better understanding of the issues facing women in open technology and culture. 67% agreed that AdaCamp increased their commitment to participating in open technology and culture in the future. 63% of respondents agreed that their experience at AdaCamp will benefit their job performance. 91% of respondents would recommend AdaCamp to others.

An overwhelming number of survey respondents said the highlight of the event was meeting inspiring, respectful attendees and sharing knowledge and stories. Other noted highlights include opening the event with the Imposter Syndrome workshop, the session on avoiding burnout and the organizers’ emphasis on the Code of Conduct for the event.

About the attendees

While a majority of the attendees came from the United States and Canada, we also had attendees from Singapore, Poland, Albania, India, Argentina and Australia.

27% of survey respondents listed their race or ethnicity as something other than white or Caucasian. Professions ranged from programmer, software and web developers to data scientist, law student, librarian and TV/film producer.

Travel scholarships

To make AdaCamp more accessible to students, non-profit employees and to increase the diversity of our attendees, we offered eight travel scholarships to AdaCamp Montreal. One of these went to an attendee from Argentina, and the others went to AdaCampers from the US and Canada.

What we did

As with previous AdaCamps, AdaCamp Montreal was primarily structured as an unconference, with attendee-organized and facilitated sessions largely around issues facing women in open technology and culture. We continued to provide some plenary sessions to help orient attendees, and session organization to make the two days flow more smoothly. Additionally, these sessions were broken up by a scheduled lunch, lightning talks and ending with a closing session.

For most attendees, the first session of AdaCamp was an Impostor Syndrome workshop, sponsored by Red Hat. Women’s socialization is often less confident and competitive than men’s, and women are therefore especially vulnerable to Impostor Syndrome — the belief that one’s work is inferior and one’s achievements and recognition are fraudulent — in open technology and culture endeavors where public scrutiny of their work is routine. Thank you to Red Hat for supporting this session.

This was followed by attendee-organized sessions occurring in different rooms throughout the day. The topics ranged from avoiding burnout, Wikipedia’s gender gap, linguistics, tech-related gender based violence, an intro to feminist video game development and an exploration of independent publishing and zines.

On Sunday, the round-table sessions moved towards topics ranging from nonprofit/community fundraising 101, intro to information science, anarchist and anti-capitalist approaches to open culture and working collectively/cooperatively in tech. The afternoon focused on skill-sharing and creation, which included a Wikipedia edit-a-thon, a robot workshop, Cryptoparty skills share and Code of Conduct creation, adoption and enforcement.

Lightning talks were held on both days of the main track. Any AdaCamper that wanted to share their knowledge, experience or passion—on a topic either in open technology and culture or not—was given the stage for 90 seconds. Among the twenty lightning talk topics, AdaCampers talked about linguistics as open source, a statistical snapshot of the women of Montreal, introversion, and recovering from losing one’s voice.

“I am surprised how much I got out of this event. The Ada Initiative brings a holistic approach to a lot of things that affect women in open tech and culture, and attending sessions on everything from workplace survival to info/tech skills to feminist issues made AdaCamp unique. The range of interests and skills among the participants meant that in pretty much every setting something interesting was going to happen.” — Sharon Hackett

Social events

On the evening of Sunday April 12, Google hosted an AdaCamp reception at their Montreal office featuring women employees working for Google locally. Thank you to Irmgard van der Krift and the Google Montreal office for their lovely reception.

Following the tradition established at many previous AdaCamps, instead of a large social event on Monday night, attendees had dinner in small groups at restaurants around Montreal. Attendees were invited to host dinners on behalf of their employers. Thank you to Automattic and Appian and their representatives for hosting dinners.

Reports from AdaCampers

“I highly recommend AdaCamp and unconferences. It was an empowering experience that gave me confidence in my work and myself. If you have the opportunity to go, do it.” — Allison Levine

Several AdaCampers wrote publicly about their experiences at the event. You can read some of those blogs posts here:

AdaCampers also wrote about talks they gave and sessions they ran:

Eva Blue’s extensive photography of the event can be viewed in her AdaCamp Montreal Flickr album.

Thank you!

Thank you to all of the AdaCamp Montreal attendees and AdaCamp sponsors for giving us the support we needed to run this event and make it what it is. You are what makes AdaCamp a success!


Thank you again to the AdaCamp 2015 platinum sponsors Puppet Labs and Google Montreal and Chrome; and gold sponsors The Linux Foundation and Red Hat.

Growing the Ally Skills Workshop: WisCon Train-the-trainers report-out

A woman explains while a man listens

Ally Skills Workshop discussion

The Ally Skills Workshop is spreading! We taught ten more people to teach the Ally Skills Workshop at WisCon in May 2015, thanks to the generous support of Ada Initiative donors. The Ally Skills Workshop teaches men simple, everyday ways to support women in their workplaces. Over 2500 people have attended some form of the workshop and the Ada Initiative has directly trained over 35 people to teach it!

Ten students attended the train-the-trainers, coming from variety of fields including library technology, science fiction and fantasy fandom, and paleoecology. The class started with an example Ally Skills Workshop, which was followed by reviewing the facilitator’s guide in depth. In the afternoon, each student chose a scenario and led the discussion, choosing whether or not they wanted feedback on their work. We ended with a half-hour Q&A session where everyone got to ask their questions and make suggestions.

If you are interested in an Ally Skills Workshop at your workplace or organization, or want to learn more about teaching a workshop yourself, contact us at contact@adainitiative.org for more information.

Thank you again to WisCon, the world’s premier feminist science fiction convention, for graciously hosting us and providing space and equipment for the workshop!

Crystal Huff leaving the Ada Initiative

We are sad to announce that Crystal Huff is moving on from executive director of the Ada Initiative, effective today. We are grateful for the energy and enthusiasm Crystal brought to the job, and wish her the best in all her future endeavors!

While the Ada Initiative board of directors decides the organization’s next steps, Valerie Aurora will serve as interim Executive Director. We are looking forward to running three more AdaCamps and teaching many more Ally Skills Workshops and Impostor Syndrome Trainings in 2015. Thank you to all our supporters who make this work possible!

Ada Initiative welcomes Amelia Greenhall and Andrea Horbinski to our board of directors

The Ada Initiative’s governing board of directors, responsible for running our organization, welcomes our new directors Amelia Greenhall and Andrea Horbinski. Amelia and Andrea are existing members of our advisors group, and both bring us officer experience from other non-profits.

Photo of Amelia Greenhall

Amelia Greenhall is the Chief Creative Officer of Magic Vibes Corporation. She’s also the cofounder and Executive Director of Double Union, a non-profit feminist community workshop, and she publishes the Open Review Quarterly literary journal.

Woman smiling

Andrea Horbinski is a PhD candidate in history and new media at UC Berkeley. She is Secretary of the Board of the Organization for Transformative Works and the co-chair of Wiscon 40 in 2016.

The Ada Initiative also welcomes Sue Gardner back to the board of directors. Sue originally served as a director from 2011 until April 2014 and returns in 2015. Together, Amelia, Andrea and Sue comprise our officers in 2015; Amelia as President, Andrea as Secretary and Sue as Treasurer. They join continuing directors Rachel Chalmers, Mary Gardiner, Alicia Gibb, and Marina Zhurakhinskaya on the board for 2015.

This board transition is a significant milestone for the Ada Initiative, as one of our outgoing directors is Valerie Aurora, Ada Initiative co-founder, who served as both Executive Director and Board President from 2011 to 2015. We’re excited as an organization to be in a position to move beyond being governed by our founders! As announced in March, while she’s stepping down from her positions at the head of the organization, Valerie continues on our staff as the Director of Training under new Executive Director Crystal Huff. Our other co-founder, Mary Gardiner, remains as a board member and staff member. Mary intends to retire from the board in 2016.

We also thank our other outgoing directors, Sumana Harihareswara (2014–2015) and Caroline Simard (2012–2015) for their hard work on behalf of the Ada Initiative during their terms, and wish them good luck with their many other projects.

Register now! Ally Skills Workshop at OpenStack Summit 2015

Do you think diversity in open source is important? Would you like to be part of changing the culture of open source to be more welcoming to women, newcomers, and people in marginalized groups? You can help by attending the Ally Skills Workshop at the OpenStack Summit 2015 on Monday May 18th, 2015 from 2pm until 5pm in room 1/2/3 in the East Building at the Vancouver Convention Centre in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Register now!

A woman explains while a man listens

Ally Skills Workshop discussion

The Ally Skills Workshop teaches men how to support women in their workplaces and communities, by effectively speaking up when they see sexism, creating discussions that allow more voices to be heard, and learning how to prevent sexism and unwelcoming behavior in the first place. The changes that reduce sexism also make communities more welcoming, productive, and creative.

This workshop is provided free of charge to OpenStack Summit attendees, thanks to the generosity of the OpenStack Foundation. We are looking forward to a great workshop, based on the enthusiastic support of the OpenStack community during our 2014 fundraising drive! The Ada Initiative’s Executive Director Crystal Huff and Director of Training Valerie Aurora will also be joining the Women of OpenStack networking events at the OpenStack Summit.

Attendance at the Ally Skills Workshop is free but limited, with applications open to all registered OpenStack attendees. Register now to have the best chance to attend via this Google form (or scroll down to fill out the embedded form on this page). We welcome participants of all genders – the best workshops have at least 20% women and genderqueer folks. We will send you an email letting you know whether your application was accepted. Sign up now!

Recommendations

Here are a few things people have said after attending other Ally Skills Workshops:

We’ve run the [Ally Skills Workshop] 4 times and the impact has been fantastic. This workshop has been the catalyst for many ‘a­ha’ moments. People who understood bias exists in a very logical way, were able to see, through the conversation with peers about the very relevant scenarios, and connect emotionally with the impact bias has on the colleagues they respect and interact with daily.” – Anonymous participant

I’ve already witnessed a couple of incidents where coworkers who attended the workshop corrected themselves after saying something that could be misconstrued.” – Anonymous participant

Bring the Ally Skills Workshop to your organization

Would you like an Ally Skills Workshop at your workplace, conference, non-profit, or university? Email us at contact@adainitiative.org for more information on customizing the workshop for your organization, pricing, and scheduling.

Apply now for the Ally Skills Workshop Train-the-Trainers at WisCon 2015

A woman explains while a man listens

Ally Skills Workshop discussion

Do you think diversity in tech and geek communities is important? Would you like to be part of changing the culture to be more welcoming to women, newcomers, and marginalized people? Are you excited by the idea of teaching men how to be better allies to women in your community? Do you enjoy challenging and fast-paced discussion about intersectional feminism? Then the Ally Skills Workshop Train-the-Trainers is for you!

Our popular Ally Skills Workshop teaches men how to support women in simple, everyday ways in a 2-3 hour workshop focused around small discussion groups. Thanks to the incredible generosity of the Ada Initiative’s supporters, we are able to teach up to 15 people how to lead this workshop at WisCon 2015 in Madison, Wisconsin, USA on May 21st, 2015.

In the workshop, you will learn both how to teach the workshop and the reasoning behind the structure of the workshop, which will help you design other ways to fight sexism in your community. All the workshop materials are licensed CC BY-SA and are reusable and modifiable for any purpose, so you can teach the workshop without getting permission from or paying a fee to anyone. By learning how to facilitate this workshop yourself, you can help combat sexism on an even larger scale!

WisconThe Train-the-Trainers workshop will be held Thursday, May 21st, 2015 from 10:00am to 5:00pm in the Madison Concourse Hotel. Lunch break (on your own) will be from 12:00pm – 1:30pm, and we will provide gluten-free and vegan afternoon snacks. The workshop is free of charge to attendees and open to everyone. While you do not need to be registered for WisCon to attend, we strongly encourage all participants in the Train-the-Trainers workshop to purchase a WisCon membership, which begin as low as $15 for a non-attending membership. We could not hold this workshop without the support and organization provided by WisCon, the world’s leading feminist science fiction convention.

We have limited space for 15 participants in the Train-the-Trainers workshop at WisCon 2015, and attendance is on a first-come, first-serve basis. Applications are now open, and we encourage people of all genders to attend. In order to support participants of all genders without calling unwanted attention to their gender expression, we will ask all workshop participants to wear a name tag with their name and pronouns on it. We will turn down applications from people with a history of harassing behavior.

If you would like to attend, please apply here. We will email you within 5 business days to let you know of your acceptance. Thank you for being part of supporting women in open technology and culture!

Note: We are aware of the ongoing conversation about harassment within the WisCon community and support the people working to make WisCon a safer and more supportive organization and event. We are excited about WisCon’s new anti-abuse policies and procedures and are glad to be part of the on-going movement to make science fiction and fantasy fandom more welcoming and inclusive.

Welcome to Google Montreal and Chrome, Platinum AdaCamp sponsor for 2015!

Google logo
The Ada Initiative welcomes our second Platinum sponsor of AdaCamp in 2015: Google Montreal and Chrome!

Google thrives on open source projects, like Chromium and Android, that are used by millions of people. We want those projects to be meaningful for the people who use them, so we need to include diverse perspectives in the community that builds them. We’re committed to bringing together people—in our workforce, our industry, and on the web—who have a broad range of attributes, experiences, and points of view. We believe our differences make us stronger, and produce better, more innovative work,” says Mark Larson, Engineering Director, Chrome. “Google is proud to support the work the Ada Initiative does: they help all open tech projects broaden the set of people who have a say in what we’re building.”

Google is the only sponsor who has supported every AdaCamp to date. In addition to the support of the Chrome team for the second year, AdaCamps in 2015 are supported by Google Montreal, who will host our AdaCamp Montreal reception on Sunday April 12. Thank you Google Montreal!

Note: We are deeply interested in the recent allegations of sexual harassment by a Google employee. After careful evaluation on our part, we believe that Google’s sponsorship of AdaCamp is compatible with our sponsorship policy at this time, and we welcome them as an AdaCamp sponsor. We support every Googler working for a welcoming and positive workplace.

About AdaCamp

Two women smiling

CC-BY-SA Adam Novak

AdaCamp is a conference dedicated to increasing women’s participation in open technology and culture: open source software, Wikipedia-related projects, open data, open geo, library technology, fan fiction, remix culture, and more. AdaCamp brings women together over two days to build community, share skills, discuss problems with open tech/culture communities that affect women, and find ways to address them.

AdaCamp is the world’s only event focusing on women in open technology and culture, and is a project of the Ada Initiative, a non-profit supporting women in open technology and culture. Both are named after Countess Ada Lovelace, the first computer programmer. The first AdaCamp of 2015 will be held in Montreal on April 13–14, followed by events in New Zealand and in the San Francisco Bay Area. Follow Ada Initiative announcements to learn about AdaCamps near you!

Sponsorship

Your organization has the opportunity to sponsor AdaCamps in 2015 and reach women leaders in open technology and culture in three countries. Contact us at sponsors@adainitiative.org for more information about becoming a sponsor.


Thank you to the AdaCamp 2015 platinum sponsors Puppet Labs and Google Montreal and Chrome; and gold sponsors The Linux Foundation and Red Hat.

Welcome to new AdaCamp 2015 sponsors: Linux Foundation, Red Hat, Simple, and Etsy

The Ada Initiative is pleased to welcome our first Gold sponsors of AdaCamp in 2015: The Linux Foundation and Red Hat!

Linux Foundation

The Linux Foundation is the primary non-profit supporting the Linux community, including the Linux kernel, Linux conferences, and the Linux ecosystem overall. The Linux Foundation is a long-term supporter of the Ada Initiative’s work to make Linux more welcoming to women. This is the fourth year in a row that they have supported AdaCamp and we thank them for their renewed support.

Red HatRed Hat is the world’s leading provider of open source software solutions, using a community-powered approach to develop reliable and high-performing cloud, Linux, middleware, storage, and virtualization technologies. The company has more than 7,100regular, full-time associates and 80 offices in 38 countries. About 25% of Red Hat associates work remotely, and Red Hat has job opportunities around the globe. In addition to being a four-time AdaCamp sponsor, Red Hat is sponsoring the Impostor Syndrome training that will be offered at each AdaCamp in 2015.

The Ada Initiative also welcomes Bronze sponsors Simple and Etsy as supporters of AdaCamp in 2015:

simple-small-applications-whitebg

Simple‘s about making managing your personal finances effortless; it is a bank that offers all-electronic consumer banking services integrated with budgeting and savings tools. The bank, headquartered in Portland, Oregon, was founded in 2009 and partners with Bancorp Bank, an FDIC insured bank, to hold account funds.

Etsy

Etsy is a marketplace where people around the world connect, both online and offline, to make, sell and buy unique goods. Discover handmade items, vintage goods and craft supplies you can’t find anywhere else. Etsy is committed to promoting diversity in the workplace and is proud to be a B Corporation for their adherence to rigorous social and environmental standards. Etsy Engineering is also the authors of Code as Craft, a blog dedicated to writing about their craft and their collective experience building and running Etsy, the world’s most vibrant handmade marketplace.

Thank you to our four new sponsors for their support of women in open technology and culture!

About AdaCamp

Two women smiling

CC-BY-SA Adam Novak

AdaCamp is a conference dedicated to increasing women’s participation in open technology and culture: open source software, Wikipedia-related projects, open data, open geo, library technology, fan fiction, remix culture, and more. AdaCamp brings women together over two days to build community, share skills, discuss problems with open tech/culture communities that affect women, and find ways to address them.

AdaCamp is the world’s only event focusing on women in open technology and culture, and is a project of the Ada Initiative, a non-profit supporting women in open technology and culture. Both are named after Countess Ada Lovelace, the first computer programmer. The first AdaCamp of 2015 will be held in Montreal on April 13–14, followed by events in New Zealand and in the San Francisco Bay Area. Follow Ada Initiative announcements to learn about AdaCamps near you!

Sponsorship

Your organization has the opportunity to sponsor AdaCamps in 2015 and reach women leaders in open technology and culture in three countries. Contact us at sponsors@adainitiative.org for more information about becoming a sponsor.


Thank you to the AdaCamp 2015 platinum sponsor Puppet Labs and gold sponsors The Linux Foundation and Red Hat.

Welcome to Puppet Labs, our first Platinum AdaCamp sponsor for 2015!

Puppet Labs logo

The Ada Initiative is thrilled to welcome our first Platinum sponsor of AdaCamp in 2015: Puppet Labs! Puppet Labs is a leader in IT automation. Their software helps sysadmins automate configuration and management of machines and the software running on them.

“Ada Initiative’s mission of encouraging women to be involved with open source technology is helping to create better technology — and a better tech culture. This mission aligns with our commitment to increasing diversity and access for all, throughout the tech community. We’re proud to be Platinum sponsors of the Ada Initiative’s four AdaCamps this year.” – Luke Kanies, founder and CEO of Puppet Labs.

For our part, the Ada Initiative is proud to welcome Puppet Labs as a sponsor of AdaCamp for the third year running; their support of AdaCamp and of women in open technology and culture is crucial to our mission to change the culture for the better.

About AdaCamp

Two women smiling

CC-BY-SA Adam Novak

AdaCamp is a conference dedicated to increasing women’s participation in open technology and culture: open source software, Wikipedia-related projects, open data, open geo, library technology, fan fiction, remix culture, and more. AdaCamp brings women together over two days to build community, share skills, discuss problems with open tech/culture communities that affect women, and find ways to address them.

AdaCamp is the world’s only event focusing on women in open technology and culture, and is a project of the Ada Initiative, a non-profit supporting women in open technology and culture. Both are named after Countess Ada Lovelace, the first computer programmer. The first AdaCamp of 2015 will be held in Montreal on April 13–14, followed by events in New Zealand and in the San Francisco Bay Area. Follow Ada Initiative announcements to learn about AdaCamps near you!

Sponsorship

Your organization has the opportunity to sponsor AdaCamps in 2015 and reach women leaders in open technology and culture in three countries. Contact us at sponsors@adainitiative.org for more information about becoming a sponsor.


Thank you to the AdaCamp 2015 platinum sponsor Puppet Labs.