Over the past few years, there has been a widespread, noticeable uptick in articles and conversations about diversity. To both continue that trend and help further its goals of improving the life- and work experiences for millions of people, Double Union and One Web For All (which I am a part of) are organizing a weekend hackathon in San Francisco, February 1+2.
During this weekend, people will form project groups and put together a series of resources, sites and apps that address and counter many systemic issues people are facing every day, such as exclusive work cultures, hostile online communities, and more. These resources will support anyone interested in working towards a better, more inclusive world.
Why we’re doing this
Whether we’re talking about conference speaker rosters, entrepreneurship and founder diversity, or other topics along those lines, diversity is a hot topic. And rightly so: we live in a society full of systems that predominantly favor (straight) white men, which means that anyone not belonging to that group is at high risk of experiencing one or more systemic discriminations in their lives. These range from minor nuisances to daily barrages of threats, hatred and vitriol; from lacking opportunities afforded others, to not even getting some basic respect as a human being.
The tides are turning, because more and more people are speaking out about the injustices that they are subjected to on a regular basis. This leads to raised awareness and increases sensitivity, compassion and empathy among the vast majority of people, who are perhaps indifferent to social justice activism movements, but are simply good people who weren’t yet aware that some of their actions or behaviors were experienced much more negatively than intended.
One Web For All aims to speed up the process with effective communication and centralized resources, giving people a starting point for learning about and dealing with these issues. This hackathon event will kick off these efforts, and does so precisely in the spirit of OWFA: for everyone, by everyone. People of all stripes are coming together to work on these projects, making this one of the most intersectional and diverse events I have ever had the honor to be a part of.
Projects such as: iOS apps that let you enjoy social media with sophisticated tools and features built in to diminish and prevent online harassment; materials for businesses, organizations and community leaders to understand the benefits of diversity, and how to foster it positively and effectively; websites that break down myths and misconceptions about disenfranchised demographics, feminism, social justice, and more. You can find a preliminary list on the hackathon website.
Lastly, I want to thank our sponsors thus far:
- New Relic, who are sponsoring the location for the event.
- Tonx Coffee, who are providing coffee beans to keep us all well-caffeinated,
- Typekit, whose rich typography makes us look good.
If you or your company is interested in sponsoring, please email us; we are still looking for more sponsors. You’ll be promoted to a diverse crowd of designers, developers, writers and more, as well as supporting diversity in tech and helping make a fantastic event possible.
For anyone interested in attending: tickets are free, with optional paid tickets supporting Double Union. See you there!