Addendum to “TU Wien needs feminism”

This post is related to the one I published two days ago, especially the first paragraph.

I received a lot of feedback regarding the whole post, mainly “WTF are they thinking?”. But also, especially regarding the first paragraph, I got a lot of stories that told the same thing: The question “Are you sure you want to study Informatics? There’s a lot of maths courses to be passed during those studies.” had been asked a lot of people, and seemingly male future students, too.

So I guess this is the right time to talk about communication.

The issue here is that what was said might have been meant as a piece of advice, or a possibility of filtering out people who thought Informatics was about MS Word.

But the magic of communication is in how to send a message, how to make sure that the person adressed does understand the meaning.

And that’s the problem.

Let’s say you bring me chocolate cake. I like cake, so that’s a good start. I taste it, and I think you made a good cake, though my boyfriend’s chocolate cake is even better. Yes, indeed, my boyfriend makes cake!

Now, I could tell you “Wow, that’s a great cake you made, though my boyfriend’s is better.”. Or I tell you “My boyfriend makes better cake”. Or I tell you “That’s a great cake!”

So, I’ll give TU Wien this: Putting this question into the obligatory interview that basically kicks off your time at University is pretty uncool. And not giving a fuck about how this might be interpreted by students is rather stupid.

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