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Can we all please try and inhibit segregation amongst people due to race, gender or sexual persuasion?

21 replies

anidea · 22/02/2010 17:14


We have recently been in contact with Olivia Vandyk of mumsnet regarding the practises and values of this website.
Here follows a transcript of that conversation, see what you think:

On 21 Feb 2010, at 08:54, James Wallace wrote:


My girlfriend and I recently heard about your website and we are interested in your tag line "By parents for parents", when the site is called 'mumsnet'.

We think a title such as this propagates a stereotypical view that women are the main parents, and can't quite believe that anyone would think this as acceptable.

We think we as a society have grown beyond the point where such stereotypes are applicable and we hope we have passed the point where they are acceptable.

We look forward to your response.

Yours sincerely,

James Wallace and Tania Pieri

On 22 Feb 2010, at 09:21, Olivia Vandyk wrote:

Hi there

Thanks for your comments. We hope Mumsnet isn't exclusive to mums and indeed we know we have plenty of dads who log on and contribute. If it doesn't sound too pompous we think the concept of "mumming/mothering" goes beyond gender so don't feel mumsnet is too exclusive. We did think of calling the site but it just sounded so hideous.

While the majority of our posters are women, we do have Dadsnet specifically for men to chat here

But folks won't be surprised or bothered by having a male joining in anywhere on the site.

We also have a section for same-sex parents here

Hope this clears up any concerns. Welcome to Mumsnet - do let us know if there's anything else with which we can help
Best wishes

On 22 Feb 2010, at 12:04, James Wallace wrote:

Dear Olivia,

Thank you very much for the response. We're glad to hear that men can and do join in with discussions on mumsnet, but we are somewhat disappointed that there is an apparent need to have separate areas of the sites for dads and gay parents. Every caring parent has one individual goal - doing everything they can to promote the welfare and happiness of their child or children; so why not all work together, talk together, support each other and help promote understanding between different groups whether they are of different gender or different sexual persuasion. These categorisations are irrelevant we believe amongst a community of parents.

We can see that there are definite differences between the sexes in terms of the fact that women are the only gender that get pregnant and have the choice to breastfeed. However, whatever discussions are had between women on the topics of pregnancy or breastfeeding, it would be useful for all parents to join in the conversations so that they may better understand the situation and the difficulties and joys of the process.

We hope you are well and having a happy day,

James and Tania

On 22 Feb 2010, at 12:10, Olivia Vandyk wrote:

Hi James and Tania
I'm having quite a happy day, though the snow is dampening my spirits somewhat as it complicates all manner of the day's logistics!

Thanks so much for your reply.

Your points below actually sound like a great starting point for a a Mumsnet discussion.
The best place to ask for strategies and tips is our Talk board.
You can post and debate this with our users and see what they think.

Our Talk board is where we get all of our hints and ideas on how to handle issues - you'll be in good hands.
One pointer though, as you're a new poster you may want to avoid posting this in our "am I being unreasonable?" topic to start off with as this is our feistiest area which encourages people to be particularly forthright in their replies.
Again, do get back to us if we can help further.
Best wishes

On 22 Feb 2010, at 12:25, James Wallace wrote:

Okay, thank you for the reply, we will post on the site shortly.

OP posts:
southeastastra · 22/02/2010 17:17

why are you just posting this op and now joining in with the conversation - if it matters to you so much?

Lulumaam · 22/02/2010 17:19

andidea, please can you read the thread you started on this very topic this morning, rather than spamming the board>
there is a really interesting thread all about why MN is the way it is, i suggest you read it before bandying about terms such as segregation

it is the height of rudeness to come on to a site you are not familiar with and criticise it and demand it changes to suit your idea of what it should be

shonaspurtle · 22/02/2010 17:19

Hark at me posting on Dadsnet. And me with two X chromasomes and all.

See, see I'm inhibiting segregation.

GhoulsAreLoud · 22/02/2010 17:19

Why have you posted this thread again? And not responded to the one you posted earlier.

The Dad's have access to the other thread too you see, the segregation is all in your heads(s)!

GhoulsAreLoud · 22/02/2010 17:20

Oops stray apostophe, apols.

Flightattendant · 22/02/2010 17:21

Oh not a bloody gain/

frogetyfrog · 22/02/2010 17:22

eh? This is pooping up everywhere. I am very confused ...! Do you not realise that everybody can see every thread? No segregation see.

StewieGriffinsMom · 22/02/2010 17:23

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn

WineBeforePearls · 22/02/2010 17:23

Christ they're everywhere.

I do think you need to get out more.

PixieOnaLeaf · 22/02/2010 17:23

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn

posieparker · 22/02/2010 17:24

where's the first thread?

frogetyfrog · 22/02/2010 17:25

This is getting really confusing. I think I need a glass of red.

StewieGriffinsMom · 22/02/2010 17:26

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn

ScreaminEagle · 22/02/2010 17:29

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn

probono · 22/02/2010 17:30

are you nuts? go and do something useful

TeaOneSugar · 22/02/2010 17:50

How about we all report these threads and see how they feel about exclusion.

LesbianMummy1 · 22/02/2010 21:35

take it these are our posters they obviously have nothing better to do.

They remind me of my neighbours who have excluded themselves from most residents in our road for being petty about so many things.

Have posted on all four threads they started but obviously should only stay on gay/lesbian parents cause of their imagined segregation

nighbynight · 22/02/2010 21:45

This could be some bizarre art project, stirring on mn. We may find our posts printed in candy coloured letters a foot high around some East End gallery next month.

You cant help admiring a woman who can do the splits in mid air like that but
shes got a 26 inch waist according to her CV
I had one of those once.

LesbianMummy1 · 22/02/2010 22:11

nighbynight I love the idea of LesbianMummy1 in foot high lettering hope it's pink and purple to match my eyes

chipmonkey · 22/02/2010 23:05

It's not difficult.

A.n.y.o.n.e c.a.n p.o.s.t a.n.y.w.h.e.r.e


Kevlarhead · 23/02/2010 20:31

"We have recently been in contact with Olivia Vandyk of mumsnet regarding the practises and values of this website.
Here follows a transcript of that conversation, see what you think:"


Here's what I think; you are clueless.

(Stick that in your foot high pink neon lettering and smoke it...)

Look at me. Are you watching? Good. I am a man, a male man, one with a Y chromosome and everything. I come on this site, and have done for many years, because I like to gawp, and make flippant comments, and occasionally make serious ones as well.
To suggest that I'm somehow confined to a teeny segregated areas of the site suggest you really don't get it. Although, going by your website, you don't get the internet at all.

Tania love, if you want people to read your contact page, don't put up a 500K+ .jpg of yourself. It slows everything down, and makes me irritated with the inconsiderate designer, i.e. you.

For that matter, go and take a web design course, or get someone to do it for you. Your website uses a number of large image files (discriminating against those with low bandwidth or slow connections) and as I'm seeing no evidence of design for web accessibilty standards, means you're discriminating against users of your websites who may be visually impaired, or suffer from other disabilities.

Incidentally, repeating your own name over and over again (as you do on your homepage; black text on black background? Not very subtle) will not get you further up the google pagerank, and merely discriminates against those using a screen reader (e.g. Blind or dyslexic users). FFS, I thought these sorts of stupid tricks died out with the dotcom crash.

In summary; mote, eye, beam. Fill in the blanks.

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