Tuesday Quick Post/Rage: Open-Source Boob Project, really? REALLY?!?

Bloodshot eyes and five hours sleep is what I’m running on so another quick post, there will be a return to lively and awake commentary on Thursday when I’m apt to actually be lively and awake.

Okay this will be a mini rage but, SWEET-FUCKIN’-JEBUS! What The Fuck! Open Source Boob Project, are you stupid? No really, are you this stupid?I admit that my interactions with most (not all) straight white men have not been the best, often because they seem completely unaware of their own privilege and quite happy to take advantage of it…but DAMN! This is some privileged BULLSHIT! This is disgusting! This the the illusion of endorsing open sexuality by opening up bodies that aren’t your own for touch! This is a way for you to get your rocks off groping womyn in public and pretending to be deep! This is enforcing the belief that womyn are public property!

Let me say it loud so that it might -might- penetrate your skull:


You don’t get to walk up to a stranger and just ask to touch their body! The question alone is a violation! You talk about how it was consensual and all that mess but can you not see the power dynamic if a womon is going down a hallway and a large group of people ask to touch her breasts! Can you not see any reason she might say yes even though she doesn’t want her body pawed and devalued to an object. I am so disgusted by this that I’m feeling physically nauseous right now. And those added little notes at the bottom do not take away from the peer pressure and male-gaze/female-object dichotomy you set up and validate and approve! Also it is a totally different dynamic for men to be “open-source” to womyn, than the other way around. Just look at the bulk of your post and the way it’s drenched with male privilege and objectification. That bullshit flip-the-script play is not only defensive but stupid and doesn’t take into account any power dynamic at all.

You know what I can’t even say anymore on this, here are some links:

Cynthia who first brought this to my attention.

James Nicoll, the link is here almost entirely for the title of the post which says it all: Welcome to the Harlan Ellison Memorial Personal Boundaries Club

Mswyrr takes him to task here in the comments

Tablesaw breaks down his language and the saturation of the male gaze here

ETA: More Links

springheel_jack’s – open source male assholes: on the bullshit defenses and the ignorance of privilege and power dynamics that go into such things.

kate_nepveu – On asking to touch the breasts of a stranger: on fear, trust and pressure

rachelmanija – A proposal to crush the button-enabled sexual harassment proposal: an action plan should this be going down at a Con you intend to attend

Badberbag has two great posts on this idiocy, a fabulous rant at her livejournal: The Open Source Groper Project and a longer post at Feminist SF – The Blog: The Internets work how they’re supposed to with some links I missed and where she talks about her anger over the use of “open source” in this fashion among other things.

Just ugh, I swear WisCon can not get here fast enough and yes this kind of bullshit is exactly why WisCon has been the only F/SF con I’ve attended.


15 responses to “Tuesday Quick Post/Rage: Open-Source Boob Project, really? REALLY?!?

  1. Pingback: The Internets work how they’re supposed to at Feminist SF - The Blog!

  2. Yay!! Naamen as usual you blow me away with your kick ass blogging!

    I went into it here, with a bunch more link love!


  3. Thanks for this. You said it all.

  4. I say we go up to men at cons and ask if we can touch their nipples.


    Also- on short memory, did you see Feministe’s insta-forgetfullness of the whole debacle 2 weeks ago? Stupid white men can burn, but I expect so much better from women who are supposed to be down for anti-oppression.


  5. badgerbag – Great post! both the one at Feminist SF and the one on livejournal! I’m adding links to both posts to the this entry. And thanks for the love.

  6. Kate – Thank you for that. I was so sleep deprived and angry I was unsure I was being completely coherent.

  7. bankuei-
    Seriously! In my sleepy state I was convinced it was a nightmare as I was reading the post.

    I just made a post about Feministe’s short term memory although there’s at least now a update that acknowledges the problems with making that post at this time. It just makes me a little angry (and sad) that she didn’t think about the problems on her own and that it had to be brought to her attention in the comments.

  8. Pingback: “Open Source Boob Project”: Around the blogs at Hoyden About Town

  9. I’m agog at this whole thing, that some weaselguy would suggest that it’s *really* doing women [!] a Big Favour. How stupid does he think we are? How twistedly stupid is *he*??

    Here I was, contemplating re-entering the Con scene, when some jerk comes along and reminds me out loud of why I fled it in the first goddamned place.


    Just when I thought it was safe to go back in the water,….

  10. R. – Yeah his thought that he was helping women in some way was particularly annoying and infuriating. Anyone who thinks that it’s helpful for women when a groups of strangers approach and ask to touch her breasts? Has some issues I really don’t want to think about.

    As for the Con scene I heartily recommend WisCon if you can make it, the foremost Feminist F/SF convention and a whole lot of fun with less triggering moments.

  11. His claim that it empowers a woman to give consent has the same stench as “It’s for your own good,” and “I know what’s best for you.”

    How patronising.

    What he needs is some big, burly man from the Bear Community, one who’s twice his size and upper body strength, to express intense, leering, drooling, zombie-like interest in a bit of cuppage. Or more.

    How safe would a ‘red button’ make him feel from that kind of attention?

  12. R. –
    “It’s for your own good,” and “I know what’s best for you.”

    You’re right he sounds exactly like some father figure patronizingly telling someone they “know what’s best” and that “this is actually good for them” and yes he “understands the implications” and “it’s actually liberating” but in reality the fact that he had the nerve to even suggest such a thing and to put it into effect at Penguicon shows that – No, he really doesn’t get it on a deep, deep level.

  13. Pingback: Elephant, Cork, Monkey,… « mindful meanderings

  14. By the end of the evening, women were coming up to us. “My breasts,” they asked shyly, having heard about the project. “Are they… are they good enough to be touched?” And lo, we showed them how beautiful their bodies were without turning it into something tawdry.

    I emailed SDCon about this. No response. When I emailed again, I got a notification of “exceeding the email queue.”


  15. YN-
    Just that quote sent a shiver up my spine. It’s so patronizing and “To Catch a Predator”.

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