Speaker's Wiki

Thayvian added this:

  • The Speaker's Wiki has mostly women, is searchable by topic / tag, for use by conf organizers to find women in tech, medicine, science, design, sociology, anthropology, etc.

I really hate what's happened to that site, and consequently, I think that it's a poor place to point people.

Some examples:

  • Spam:
    • the main page, at the bottom, has links advertising wedding dresses and fake degrees
    • Oh dear: take a look at the tags on Russel Roy's page. And no, I'm not just referring to his expertise in "man of the year tributes" and/or "stag parties".
  • Out of date:
    • The wiki's statistics were last updated about 2.5 years ago.
    • Looking at the revision history for any page shows the change date as month & day—but not what year. In some cases, the page was last changed several years ago, but you can't tell for sure.
  • Confusing:
  • Unhelpful:
    • Let's say I see Kathy Sierra's listing. Great, I think—I know she's doing public speaking again (she kicked ass at SxSW 2009, btw), so I want to contact her. Whoops: there's no contact info on that page.
    • Okay, I look to see who's edited the page and when, thinking that maybe Kathy has a user page there with contact info. Nope, she didn't create it and she's never edited it. Given that I know she hates her Wikipedia page, I wonder if she knows she has this one?
    • The tags on Kathy's page are: "softwaredevelopment", "gaming", "artificial intelligence", "opensource", and "computer-baesd learning" (sic)—none of which she speaks about.
    • It's not just Kathy; the same goes for Gina Bianchini, Window Snyder, Tara Hunt (which does have contact information, but it's three years old and no longer works), Kim Polese, Denise Caruso, and so on...
    • Looking further, Phill Wolff's page also doesn't have contact information (and no bio, either) and, but damn, he's got a lot of tags.
  • General:
    • There's no criteria for inclusion; it's a completely open wiki. So the top link on the speakr page is that of Holland Wilde, who describes himself as an American living in Canada and a grad student in Australia (still trying to figure that one out...)

  • In closing:
    • My #1 gripe is that in order to get any gigs from the wiki, you have to put your contact info in plain text on your page. Unsurprisngly, I've found that most women don't like to do that.
    • Liz, I see that you did plenty of work on that wiki (while you were at SocialText?), and I am not criticizing any of what you did. I just think that unattended wikis are catnip to spammers.
    • Yes, I did mention much of this to the creators, way back when it started. They didn't accept my offer to volunteer doing housekeeping.
    • I think that wiki is dormant/comatose, and given that GeekSpeakr exists, that's okay by me.

That's my 2¢—anyone else got an opinion about keeping the link in? Dorismith 06:55, October 1, 2009 (UTC)