Excellent summary posts
Lisa Stone's post setting the context for the debate
One issue came up over the fact that women don't network. Well, that's bullshit. Actually, women are traditionally the maintainers of domestic social networks. They tend to network more than men. The gender difference concerns the style of networking. Men are more likely to gather many weak ties; women tend to work hard to maintain strong ties. Each have their value. But when it comes to technology like Technorati, there is a validation of weak ties over strong ties. Or more actually, there's an assumption that all ties are created equal, which inadvertently validates the weak ties over the strong ties.
My argument here is that we need to pay attention to the network structures. If folks are angry about their position in some purported hierarchy, they need to understand how the hierarchy works. And then change it. I'm not interested in having separate networks; i'm interested in making certain that people understand the gender bias they build into the network and that it represents a diversity of perspectives, is flexible to deal with a diversity of social structures.
After 45 minutes of intense anger and frustration from many audience speakers in the room toward Technorati link counts and top 100, I suggested we create a community based algorithm, based on more complex social relationships than links. It's something I've been working on for few months, trying to frame, about what this problem is and how we might solve it.
The first session was a debate about "playing by the rules" which refers to the inbound link count rules, where A-listers who've been around for a long time have so many links, and get the most attention and credibility due to the Technorati Top 100 list.
I pointed out to them that 4 or so years ago.. when there were only 100k blogs, that a relatively small group of people all linked to each other in blogrolls, and so those blogroll links are sometimes old and the networks dense, for A listers, and yet, Technorati doesn't do anything to express a blogroll link that is years old from a current blogroll link. They simply scrape the front page of a blog, and treat all links, old or new blogroll links, and current post links, as the same and then count them, for their rankings.
Halley Suitt's post about how gender differences affect conference environment/culture.
Wee Hours' analysis of gender differences between the visual stream out of flickr for Blogher versus Gnomedex
Charlene Li's take on the why A-List matter
Jay Rosen's notes
Words from the three organizers:
Jory's inside the blogher conference post