[openstack-dev] [tc][election] Question for candidates: How do you think we can make our community more inclusive?

Colleen Murphy colleen at gazlene.net
Sun Oct 15 09:38:47 UTC 2017

On Fri, Oct 13, 2017 at 2:45 PM, Flavio Percoco <flavio at redhat.com> wrote:

> Greetings,
> Some of you, TC candidates, expressed concerns about diversity and
> inclusiveness
> (or inclusivity, depending on your taste) in your candidacy. I believe
> this is a
> broad, and some times ill-used, topic so, I'd like to know, from y'all,
> how you
> think we could make our community more inclusive. What areas would you
> improve
> first?
> Thank you,
> Flavio
> --
> @flaper87
> Flavio Percoco
> First, we need more data. We need a better gender study that doesn't rely
on first-name analysis and takes into account non-binary contributors. We
need data on who is participating from which country (I'm reasonably sure
this exists but I haven't found it published), what language they speak,
whether they are participating in IRC meetings and why or why not (time
zone problems? language barriers?). We need data on contribution by

A major problem in the tech world is not just attracting underrepresented
contributors, but retaining them. They leave their communities or careers
because of bias problems. To my knowledge, that doesn't happen in
OpenStack, but just because I can't see it doesn't mean it's not there. A
long-term study of participation by underrepresented demographics will help
us answer this and fix it if necessary.

We do already know that we need to attract a more diverse contributor base.
To do that, we need to expand and support outreach programs, especially
things like Outreachy. It might not be a bad idea to start an
OpenStack-specific Outreachy-type thing. We need to offer more mentors to
the program so that we can support more interns.

We need to be friendlier to new people. You might have no idea how much a
negative interaction on your first patch or your first question in IRC can
frame your opinion of a community. A new person can't help but wonder if
they are being treated that way because they have a feminine IRC nick or
because their English wasn't good. I certainly think no one here tries to
be unfriendly but I'm sure we could all do better to keep it in mind. I
think Feilong's point about being publicly shamed for making a language and
culture mistake is especially unfriendly and an example of something we can
do better at.

Thanks for the great question.

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