And telling someone to “get over it” is just naive, bordering on willful ignorance. You can’t presume to know why someone doesn’t want to deal with sexual content. I hope you see that from my story because it’s the reason I’m telling it.
We need more professional events that are inclusive and inviting to those working to make the internet and the world a better place through web development. That’s EECI.
These events are few. They require sacrifice to get to, and the last thing we need is to have inadvertently created yet another place to fight about what is or isn’t offensive vs. how to change the world and make it better.
I’ve focused solely on my story versus all the various issues that dealing with sexual content brings up. We could just as easily talk about gender bias, inclusiveness, being family friendly (several of us plan on bringing our families next year), freedom of speech, and a host of others. I can’t possibly hope to address all the related issues, just give you insight into who I am.
I decided to tell my story because it’s our relationships that matter.
If you want a relationship with someone, you have to understand their story; not argue them to your side of an issue or tell them how wrong they are. I hope if nothing else, that’s what you take away here.
No matter your stance on any of the related issues, I’m telling you my story because you matter to me. Our company is strongly relational, and EECI has become a place where we gather to build those relationships within our community. Despite the #dildogate hulabaloo, I’m sure you’ve also seen a lot of love flowing in the post-EECI Twitter feed.
So, what do we do?
As someone who has tried to control everything in life and failed miserably at it (and damaged myself even further in process) I can tell you that censorship is not the answer.
As someone who has let just about anything into his life and been damaged by that, I know “anything goes” isn’t the answer either.
And finally, as someone with thirty years of healing to fall back on, I can tell you that the answer is this:
Respect each other.
It really can be as simple as that. We must focus on helping each other succeed in a way that is respectful to the unknown in each other’s lives.
So, that said, we won’t be “vetting presentations” for sexual or “offensive” content. But we will be implementing presenter guidelines that assume little, enable a lot, give power and flexibility, respects your “code”, and that ultimately help you succeed in a way that makes you smile.
This is my story, I hope it helps you tell yours.
Salvator | Leslie Camacho