Conferences

SecBarbie’s 5 Simple Rules for Black Hat / Defcon 2012

July 23, 2012

1. Don’t be a disrespectful! (this is a place for all of us to converge and share ideas/thoughts/research/make the world a little bit better!

2. It’s Vegas, know where you are traveling to! (It’s called SinCity for a reason… these conferences are not being held at Disney World! Be prepared for scantily clad women, and guys being ‘guys’ so-to-speak …. Even when the women are attendees of the con. *more about this below).

3. Remember that there is always a support system, if things are out of hand, look for a conference staff (Blackhat shirts, Goons, whomever). (People who work the conference know how to get you in touch with the right people to help!)

4. Don’t leave your drink anywhere! (This is common-sense for nightlife, but just needs to be said!)

5. ALWAYS be in control of yourself! (You ARE in control of your consumption, remember to know your limits… hydrate, and have fun!)

*In regards to ” guys being ‘guys’ so-to-speak …. Even when the women are attendees of the con” – I am not condoning disrespectful behavior, but some people in the community are just downright making it hard for others!

Disagree at-will, but here are my beefs:

  • Looking sexy isn’t a crime, nor is it an invitation for unwanted (UNWANTED DEFINED: advances in which people have already told you to chill out and/or grab-ass with people you do not have that type of relationship with!) advances.
  • One person’s opinion of inappropriate or appropriate is not the others!
  • There are some women who make it hard for all women (re: Sales women without scruples/class, scene wh*R3s, etc)!
  • Everyone in the hacker/security community are vastly different in tolerance levels/social graces/etc…. We cannot judge them all the same!

NOTE ABOUT RED-CARD ISSUE: I have done a few gender panels, and I agree that there needs to be change, but I fear that that this will make it into a game, and it is not going to solve anything. I submitted (with the help of a lot of females in the industry) Gender talks to quite a few major conferences and the conferences are not ready to discuss this yet. In my opinion, that is where it needs to start. It doesn’t need to be me, but it needs to be a voice of a cross-section of  women in the space to start the bigger conversation! Special thanks goes out to everyone on the #FAIL panel at Defcon, as they always try to help!

 

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