marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

This is an anonymous poll; no one's name or identity will be known to me. Anon commenting is also available if you wish to expand upon your answers.

If you're not familiar with the topic this poll explores, it's the pink tax. Poll creator identifies as a tomboyish-feeling but feminine-presenting cis female (nope, I'm not mixed up or anything, not at all) and welcomes answers from people of all gender identities.

Poll #17546 Using Men's vs. Women's Styling Products
This poll is anonymous.
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 10

Do you use the opposite gender's styling products?

View Answers

Yes, all the time
4 (40.0%)

Nope, never
0 (0.0%)

Yes, but only sometimes
4 (40.0%)

Hmmmm...I've considered it, but not yet
0 (0.0%)

What is a styling product (*ticking this will count as a No)
2 (20.0%)

If "Yes, all the time" to Question #1, which opposite gender styling products do you use?

View Answers

Shave cream (any kind)
2 (28.6%)

Soap
2 (28.6%)

Shampoo/conditioner
2 (28.6%)

Razors/razor blades/razor refills
5 (71.4%)

Deodorant/antiperspirant
3 (42.9%)

Perfume/cologne/body spray
2 (28.6%)

Body lotion/hand lotion (moisturizers)
1 (14.3%)

Facial care (astringents, face wash, toners, acne pads, etc.)
0 (0.0%)

Hair care (dyes, hair spray, mousse, waxes, pomades, gels, etc.)
0 (0.0%)

If "Yes, but only sometimes" to Question #1, why haven't you used the opposite gender's styling products more often?

View Answers

Tried, didn't like the formulation/effect/outcome/smell
0 (0.0%)

Didn't work as well as my gender identity's formulation
0 (0.0%)

Cost too much as compared to my gender identity's products
0 (0.0%)

I feel funny or don't want to be seen using stuff marketed to the opposite gender
0 (0.0%)

I haven't thought about it too much
3 (100.0%)

How do you feel about women's styling products costing more than men's?

View Answers

I think it's bs (I identify as a woman)
7 (70.0%)

I think it's bs (I identify as a man)
2 (20.0%)

I think it's bs (I identify as another or no gender)
1 (10.0%)

I think it's justfiied - women's products are formulated differently/use more expensive ingredients/make me feel more pampered (you may clarify in comments below)
0 (0.0%)

I haven't noticed a price difference
0 (0.0%)

I don't care about the price difference
0 (0.0%)

If you identify as a woman, does the fact that men's styling products cost less convince you to begin buying them?

View Answers

I'm aware of the price difference but don't plan on trying men's products to save money.
0 (0.0%)

I'm aware of the price difference, I just feel unsure about switching to using items made for men.
2 (28.6%)

I have already switched to using at least some men's products to save money (comment!).
5 (71.4%)

I am not other gender's products curious.
0 (0.0%)

Why do you think women's styling products cost more than men's? Is this fair? Why or why not?

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)
Poll #17242 Do you use a password manager? Why or why not? Which one do you use?
This poll is anonymous.
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 12

Do you use a password manager?

View Answers

Yes
8 (66.7%)

No
1 (8.3%)

Used to but don't anymore
1 (8.3%)

Would like to but haven't yet
0 (0.0%)

Does the password manager built into my browser count? (Yes, it does)
2 (16.7%)

Do I use a huh?
0 (0.0%)

If the answer to the last question was Yes or a password manager built into my browser, which one do you use?

View Answers

LastPass
7 (63.6%)

KeePass
0 (0.0%)

Dashlane
0 (0.0%)

Keeper
0 (0.0%)

Roboform
0 (0.0%)

1Password
1 (9.1%)

Another password manager (write-in name, below)
0 (0.0%)

A built-in password manager that comes with my browser (write-in browser name, below)
3 (27.3%)

If the name of the password manager you use is not listed above, you can write it in here.

If you answered No to the question about using a password manager, why do you not use one?

View Answers

They seem hard or confusing
1 (25.0%)

Too much work/mental overhead to set up and/or use
0 (0.0%)

I write down passwords and refer to a cheatsheet as needed
2 (50.0%)

I keep passwords in my head
0 (0.0%)

I use the same password(s) everywhere
0 (0.0%)

I use a *variation* of the same password(s) everywhere
0 (0.0%)

Some other reason or a combination of several above reasons (write-in, below)
1 (25.0%)

If you have some other reason for not using a password manager, you can write it in here and use the comment section for more space, if needed (anon comments are accepted; all comments are reviewed before publishing).

What are the main reasons for using a password manager? Again, you can use the comments instead of or in addition to this box.

Do you prefer one password manager over another? Again, you can use the comment section for more space.

Are password managers truly secure? Again, feel free to use the comment section, if needed.

Ticky?

View Answers

Yes
2 (28.6%)

No
1 (14.3%)

Are you asking to be tickled?
2 (28.6%)

Maybe!!!
1 (14.3%)

Tickies, ftw
4 (57.1%)

This poll should have more tickies
3 (42.9%)

There you go flouting convention again
0 (0.0%)

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

Just began a survey on Opinion Outpost where they ask for your gender (but most of their surveys, in all actuality, do). These ticky boxes read as follows:

  • Male
  • Female
  • Transgender

My mouth dropped open on the last one because OMG progress! Transgender people exist! They even get their own ticky box (in case anyone's wondering I'm fully in favor of LGBT rights so this was a big "wow" moment).

But then I thought about it and wondered if I was right to be happy about this so-called progressive move. Do transgender people want a ticky box that says "transgender"? Or do they just want to be the gender they think they are? This forced me to think about what would be the ideal set of ticky boxes for me - no matter what gender I think of myself as - though of course I started off thinking: "OK, so I'm transgender. Which labels do I want to see on these ticky boxes?"

Hmmmm. How 'bout'...

  • Man
  • Woman
  • Genderfluid

Because even if I'm transgender (disclosure: I'm not; second disclosure: I'm a straight woman) I've probably picked a main gender to be, and I've heard it said that only animals can truly be classified as male or female, so let's get some more humanistic-sounding gender names into the mix - ie., let's be a man or a woman. That's more human-sounding. And "genderfluid" as the next choice - not just because I can be cis but wake up sometimes in the morning feeling more male but because I can be transgender and still be genderfluid! There's just no calling these things!

So my question is, my ticky boxes or theirs? Who's closer to actually getting it right?

BONUS QUESTION: Build yourself the perfect set of ticky boxes in the comments below and I'll add any and all of them to this post - point being I not only want to pick the brains of anyone inclined to have this discussion with me, but I'm trying to expand my own in the process, so it's for a good cause!

Help me think outside the uh, ticky box?

ETA, 2-11 (and sorry for the delay, I'm pulling eight shifts at my jobs this week - but I'll still be happy to add more choices to this post as they come in): as promised, the perfect sets of ticky boxes - and other choices besides ticky boxes - from commenters below:

From [personal profile] andrewducker: "I'd go with some version of the latter. Because, yes, trans people generally want to be seen as the gender they're transitioning to." If Intersex/Genderqueer begins to represent more than 1% of the population, then they should also have ticky boxes, but in the meantime he thinks "a general "bucket" for that category, with a suitable name is probably a good thing".

From [personal profile] firecat: "Best option: No request to disclose gender.

Second best option: A text box instead of tickyboxes."
Ding ding ding, we have a winner! This, by far this, in my opinion.

"Third best option: Man, Woman, Transgender, Genderqueer, Agender, Other, Prefer Not To Answer. (Preferably with the option to tick more than one box.)"

From [personal profile] silveradept: The form should start with the sentence: "I identify as..." which I think is an excellent idea, while their more-perfect list ("That's a start, at least") looks like this:

  • Human
    • Man
    • Woman
    • Genderqueer
    • Genderfucked
    • Genderfluid
    • Two-Spirit
    • Bigender
    • Agender
  • Non-Human/Posthuman
    • Furry
    • Scaly
    • Feathery
    • Robot/Droid
    • Sentient Program
    • Cyber-organism (Cyborg)
    • Magical Construct (including Golems and Tulpas)

[personal profile] darkoshi spoke in favor of "transgender" as a ticky box option for "not male or female".

I know once someone has gender reassignment, using the gender they've come to physically represent becomes extremely important in showing respect for and recognition of their choice, so if it's misidentified or not identified, it can become a sore point that's hard to move past (which was the entire reason I wrote this post).

The term "transgender" as a gender label is, quite frankly, not a gender label (so if someone does not identify as either gender, then I think there should be another name for that). If I have the terminology right, "transgender" is the name of what you did* (see note below) what you are after taking steps to more fully attain your chosen gender, not the name of which gender(s) you don't (or no longer) consider yourself to be.

*Edit, 2-11: based on my conversation with [personal profile] darkoshi below (I get a grammar lesson which apparently I needed!) I've attempted to to edit the last paragraph into something less incoherent than it was a minute ago. Sorry about that.

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

Via [personal profile] andrewducker there comes a quiz. As he states in his title, the results show he is a Communist Authoritarian Multilateralist Humanist Libertine. Now there's a mouthful. The comments to his post sport results from other users. Intrigued at how it could be that everyone on DW is a Communist or a Socialist (at least, so far!) I took the quiz because I know I'm not a Communist, so was I surprised by the results? You betcha...(yes, even if I cannot see Russia from my house...)

You are a: Communist Anti-Government Non-Interventionist Traditionalist (OK, didn't see that one coming...)


Collectivism score: 100%
Authoritarianism score: -33%
Internationalism score: -17%
Tribalism score: 0%
Liberalism score: -33%

At least they got the anti-government part right...but only partly. I'm anti- our current government, not anti-any (say, a similar but better) governmment.

Interestingly, I'm the only Dreamwidthian (again, so far) to get a tribalism score of 0% or better (everyone else is wading deep in negative tribal digits). Also, I consider myself kind of liberal and kind of conservative - a mixture of both but with a definite liberal slant - so where a Liberalism score of -33% came from is beyond me. I'd think it would be at least +70% or higher.

Lastly, communism does not equal socialism. I think they're mixing up various aspects of political philosophies as easily as some people mix up metaphors.

Also, I voted for Crist (and not because he switched parties: he could start fronting the People for Purple People Eaters Political Party and I'd probably vote for him, then, too - I've been in sort of an intellectual swoon over him ever since, acting as State AG in the mid-2000s, he sued the crap out of AOL just for being AOL. After that I didn't care if he was a Democrat, Republican, or flying purple people eater: I adored him). Y'all can see where that got me...Scott won by his usual 1% or so.

If more of my fellow FL Democrats had voted for Crist along with me (FL Democrats are like a shadow republic that only seems to rise in general elections, and even then many of them are nowhere to be found) then Crist would have won - our registered Dems outnumber our Repubs by a cool majority.

Now, if only we could find them...

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)
Poll #14023 How/when/how often do you post to Dreamwidth?
Open to: Registered Users, detailed results viewable to: Just the Poll Creator, participants: 7

How often do you make a post to Dreamwidth?

Once a day
0 (0.0%)

More than once a day
1 (14.3%)

Once a week
1 (14.3%)

More than once a week
2 (28.6%)

Once a month
1 (14.3%)

More than once a month
3 (42.9%)

Don't post that often
1 (14.3%)

Don't post at all, just here for the reading/comment-making
0 (0.0%)

How do you usually make a post to Dreamwidth?

Using DW's online editor
6 (85.7%)

With Windows Live Writer
0 (0.0%)

Using Microsoft Word
0 (0.0%)

By email
0 (0.0%)

Some other method (please describe in comments below)
2 (28.6%)

When do you most commonly make a post on Dreamwidth?

Early morning
0 (0.0%)

Mid-morning
0 (0.0%)

By midday
2 (28.6%)

Early afternoon
0 (0.0%)

Late afternoon/early evening
0 (0.0%)

Late evening
4 (57.1%)

In the wee wee wee hours
2 (28.6%)

A mixture of two or more of the time frames above
2 (28.6%)

What do you like best about posting on Dreamwidth?

The online editor
1 (16.7%)

The spellcheck
0 (0.0%)

The icon options
3 (50.0%)

The ability to preview posts
3 (50.0%)

The auto-save draft feature (which is disabled if you work offline and when you lose your connection to the Web)
2 (33.3%)

Mood icons/descriptions
0 (0.0%)

Music icons/descriptions
0 (0.0%)

Location icons/descriptions
0 (0.0%)

The tagging system
3 (50.0%)

Adding polls like this one to your journal
3 (50.0%)

The new Pretty URLs feature (http://www.dreamwidth.org/support/faqbrowse?faqid=266)
1 (16.7%)

All of the above (yay!)
0 (0.0%)

What do you like least about posting on Dreamwidth?

No integrated picture service/photo insertion/photo viewer (yet, but it's in the works)
3 (42.9%)

No save-as-draft feature (yet, but it's in the works)
5 (71.4%)

Auto-save does not work without connectivity
1 (14.3%)

Spellcheck on DW is still mostly like, 'Say what?" You just spelled EVERYTHING wrong?
1 (14.3%)

How long your post takes to pulbish
0 (0.0%)

How long it takes to find and revise a previous post
1 (14.3%)

Something about the tagging system
0 (0.0%)

Something about the icon system
0 (0.0%)

Something about the Mood/Location/Music system
0 (0.0%)

Something about the Polls feature
0 (0.0%)

Something other than what's mentioned here (please describe in comments below)
0 (0.0%)

All of the above (uh, *really*?)
0 (0.0%)

What is the *one* feature you would add to Dreamwidth or change about Dreamwidth if you could?

Why am I asking you all of these questions?

MM, you're a paid minion for Dreamwidth.
0 (0.0%)

MM, you're an *un*paid minion for Dreamwidth.
0 (0.0%)

MM, you're just like, sooo nosy.
1 (16.7%)

MM, you want to compare how others use Dreamwidth to how you use it. (ding ding ding we have a winner)
5 (83.3%)

MM, you're just bored. (This is also quite likely!)
4 (66.7%)

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

Under a friends-lock in one of my online friend's DWs a debate rages (89 comments and counting; I only got pulled in over a side issue) over how one should react when people hit the Kudos button (in particular, on AO3) on stories but don't leave you any comments.

The scene looks like this: you visit AO3 and gleefully read Harry Potter and His Hairy Horny Toads or some such shit and you either 1) like it well enough, 2) love it, or 3) will marry the person who wrote it and have their babies so you hit the Kudos button and glory be, you move on your way.

Whoops! Some people have a problem with this!

Even worse, other people have an even bigger problem with some people having a problem with it!

This is where it gets see-saw dizzying: Say YOU, as in "you", the person reading this, wrote the story Harry Potter and His Hairy Horny Toads (a froggy free-for-all, sure to be one of AO3's greatest hits). You know it's a hit because while it's been out for just a few days, and both of those on the weekend, a notoriously slow online time, it's already got 33 Kudos and you see links for it dropped in AO3 forums and even in DW peep's entries. You're like, "Go me, man."

But! The goddamned story, to date, has gotten just one comment. The next day, it has two comments - and 11 more Kudos. But both comments are pretty much shit, like, "This was great, man, thanks!". So you write another story; it doesn't get as many Kudos, but hell, it still gets twelve on its first day - along with zero comments forever. You keep writing and the pattern keeps repeating. You see stories on AO3 that get less Kudos than your least popular story to date has gotten yet you see those same stories get tons, just tons more comments than yours do.

WTF?

Rather than assume you've failed as a writer you get a bit fussed with your audience and rant that you'd rather get no Kudos at all than get Kudos but no comments. Because Kudos aren't feedback to you, they're drive-by shootings of either deeply felt or else superficial emotion and you can't tell which by looking, that's for sure, nor can you tell, by looking, what anyone likes about your story, nor can you tell why the fuck anyone's even reading it if they can't be bothered to leave a comment after leaving a Kudo and before moving along. Does that make sense? It sure does to me.

Good points, Harry Potter and The Hairy Horny Toads author.

Now you get some major backlash for preferring comments to Kudos. People are going off about it, which you know because your friend is really confused by it and says so, and one of the discussions that springs from her confusion somehow becomes about the idea that people who post fiction have no right, not ever, to control the conversation that comes out of it. I really flipped my lid when I saw this. I replied, in part, that a writer has the right to control any and every conversation that comes out of their writing:

You have a right to control the conversations that flow from your online writing (see Seth Godin). You have the right to 1) receive comments, 2) screen them, 3) disable comments altogether, 4) read and delete them on sight, 5) receive only kudos, 6) receive only comments, 7) receive kudos and comments, and so on, just pick your flavor. I write it. You read it on my terms, because if you don't then I don't have to write it at all.

(The basic working assumption here is, I not only get to not like how you say it, I also get to not let you say it the way you want to say it or to say it at all, if how you choose to say it discomfits me on any level that might hold back, mess with, dilute, or end such productivity on my end now or in the future).

OK. I get that seeing only Kudos and no comments is upsetting some writers because they never get any feedback they can sink their teeth into, but to my mind telling people not to leave Kudos at all if they don't intend to comment charges straight into Goldilocks territory, and whining like that really does annoy the shit out of me. So I tried to give a balanced reply that somehow expresses these thoughts while respecting that the author still has a valid complaint:

Oh. And I'm not on the Kudo Complainer's side in this. That person sounds like a whiny you know what and I don't like whiny you know whats. But by the same token, I don't like people complaining about other people complaining about how their feedback is received. A lot of feedback can fuel or else completely end or at least stultify future creativity and how it affects each writer is an intensely personal matter. So I guess what I'm saying is just let them whine if they want.

This person then tries to cover their obvious blunder by saying that if a story gets posted within an author's own space then of course they have a right to control the discussion duh, but these crazed, wicked authors are overrunning and shutting down forum discussions and that's one big fucking Oh Noes. Right. Let's stop the presses: this same person posted the comment that started our exchange, and nowhere did she mention authors who want to stop people from leaving Kudos if they won't also leave comments overrunning and "shutting down", however you do that, forum discussions. No one else interrupted to mention such a thing, either. So I was like *jaw drops*..."That was clever off-topic...erm..."

This person (I keep saying "this person" because they've named "theirself" after a large, gender-neutral vehicle and I don't do the "hir" thing because I don't know what that is) goes on to flounce around about the "reader-writer handshake agreement", then adds that "my right to express my opinion on a story is not trumped by the author's right to shut me up". Saying, "I'd prefer you not leave a Kudo if you're not leaving a comment" is like putting duct tape over someone's mouth now, who knew? Given my limited knowledge of how the "etiquette" works that this person goes on to mention only in passing, maybe they've got a point.

But then this person goes on to say that if someone tells them not to leave Kudos, then they're not going to read that person's writing anymore because obviously their opinion isn't welcome. Ah! The online equivalent of a temper tantrum. The minute I get the, "I will just wander off, and no I won't be back" treatment I'm reminded of the time my mom wouldn't give me a cookie so I packed my bag and ran away. When I was just 10. I got as far as the highway in front of the house, then I got scared, got over it and got my ass back home, all within the same hour.

My mom laughed until she almost cried. And I don't blame her for it. Now.

Thinking this was a really high-falutin' reaction to, "Just don't leave me any Kudos", I replied (massively cut for length, emphasis added after-the-fact):

She (merely assuming "she" in this instance) is sort of mad that people hit the Like button to avoid exerting themselves any further. I totally get that. [...] She has a very specific complaint: "Yes, you guys seem to like my post but if you won't tell me what resonated for you or even that you're glad to read it then what am I doing this for?"

[...] Getting only Likes and few if any comments is obviously a dealbreaker for this particular author; it either dulls or perhaps kills her drive and enthusiasm for her form of writing altogether. Though it sounds a bit whiny to me, it's a huge issue for her. I respect that, despite the Goldilocks nature of her complaint. That's why I say just let her whine, it's a valid point in her mind, and that's all that really matters. What we think isn't relevant at all. Not to her.

Well.

At this point this person is too busy re-directing my words to make them look like they're targeted at her personally (and no one else) to really give a crap what I'm saying Re: authors who want you to take your no-comments Kudos and shove them up your ass. My hunch is confirmed when she replies, "I appreciate the discussion, MM, but these points seem mutually exclusive of each other: 'Yes, you guys seem to like my post but if you won't tell me what resonated for you or even that you're glad to read it then what am I doing this for?' and 'What we think isn't relevant at all. Not to her.'"

This person goes on to say that if how we leave feedback matters to an author, then of course what we think about that author asking us to stop with the Kudos also matters to them. And that if it doesn't matter to them then they can't have it both ways, you feelin' me now? Yes, I think my head exploded three times just reading that.

Soooo...they wrap up with various thoughts like, "If I don't get any comments or kudos on something I publish, I don't blame my readers, I blame my lack of skill or ability to engage. Maybe it just fell flat or I needed another edit. It's not their fault, it's my fault" and, "I don't understand why you feel the writer is more important than the reader. By reading their story I'm opening myself up to an author, and giving them permission to play with my emotions. I should be allowed to express my reaction, whether negative or positive." and the even more resounding, "Feedback isn't part of the creative process, it's part of the sharing process."

Oh. My. God. What?

Let me address one thought at a time to keep things fairly straight.

"If I don't get any comments or kudos on something I publish, I don't blame my readers, I blame my lack of skill or ability to engage. [...] It's not their fault, it's my fault." Bullshit. Just bullshit. To limit myself to examples I can find right here on DW, I'm subscribed to at least three people who should be swamped with comments on just about every post they make but one currently has few subscribers and the other two are barely on anyone's radar, but of the three, two are fairly good writers and one is Great as in Classic Material. I don't know why the fuck you're all not reading him. Having almost no subscribers, he gets few comments yet each post he puts out not only doesn't need editing to make it "engage" or "show [more] skill" but is of better quality than most of the writing I see. I don't feel it's his fault that he doesn't get more comments. And I don't feel it's anyone else's fault for not leaving him some. That it's pretty quiet over by him is simply a fact. Not everyone gets the recognition they deserve. Sounds unfair, but holy fuck, either way, it's still true.

"I don't understand why you feel the writer is more important than the reader." OK, that's an easy one: because it doesn't require too much effort to attach your eyes to a page and use your mind to absorb the words on it, but it costs the author some serious effort to make sure you come away from what you see on that page happy. The effort they put into what you find to be a good piece of writing trumps the effort you put into reading it. The author sacrificed something on one or more levels to make sure their story spoke to you. That deserves both your recognition and some credit for time served. Neither is required, but either would be nice. You'll never spend as much time leaving a two or three line comment to thank the author and/or tell them what you liked about their story as they did writing the story that you just read.

"By reading their story I'm opening myself up to an author, and giving them permission to play with my emotions." But by the same token, authors open themselves up to share their stories and emotions with you. While they can toy with how we feel as we read along, we can toy with them even more by not respecting how they feel, period. This is not just a symbiotic relationship but one in which power is tilted in favor of the reader: while an author can't change how we'll react to their writing, we can change how an author will react to writing more of the same in the future. We can stoke the writer with our enthusiasm or dampen their craving for future storytelling by criticizing or panning what we see from them now or even change the author's mind about writing altogether by not playing by his or her rules.

"I should be allowed to express my reaction, whether negative or positive." And you are allowed! That's the damndest thing about this: you are not just allowed but even encouraged by some authors to express your reaction, not just in passing but in detail; you are welcomed to leave Kudos along with your comments (but to please not just leave Kudos) yet it's the very "detail" part of this equation that has you sweeping your skirts up, to use a turn of speech from about a hundred years ago, and exiting stage left. I just find that...inexplicable.

"Feedback isn't part of the creative process, it's part of the sharing process." No, it's part of both processes. If feedback didn't determine not only what I write but how I feel about writing it, comments would've always been closed on every blog I own. In fact, I've been so disgusted with feedback, both the lack of it and various forms it took, that I've reacted to it over the years by: 1) closing comments altogether, 2) dropping every single person on my friends list at once to avoid showing favoritism to the handful of people who either didn't piss me off or else shoot me down or shut me out of what they were saying about my writing and 3) deleting blogs of mine whose feedback lacked in quantity and/or quality. I have also been known to beg people to go away already. En masse.

All that, over nothing more than how people chose to comment and what they chose to say when they did, combined with how often they didn't comment but chose some other form of action in place of an honest conversation with me, such as making posts I was locked out of, mysteriously unsubscribing over a topic I'm 99.9% sure pressed some buttons, and so on. If feedback isn't part of my creative process then someone needs to tell me why not, because it certainly seems to have influenced the hell out of mine over the years.

And I'm sure it influences many other writer's zest for their own creative writing, as well.