Dealing With Harassment at American Astronomical Society

Keith's note: The issue of harassment - of all kinds - in all aspects of science - and elsewhere - is a pervasive, malignant issue that needs to be aggressively addressed - and eliminated - period. That said, how the space/astronomy community uses social media to address this issue needs a little more in the way of logic checks and community monitoring. I came across this tweet from an American Astronomical Society meeting attendee. The usually vocal Twitter crowd at AAS has been amazingly silent with regard to this tweet. This is the very first time in the 19.95 years of NASAWatch that profanity has ever appeared on this site. I hope it is the last time. Its use is the sign of a lazy mind, if nothing else. But in this case, it is news. Hence, I post it.

http://images.spaceref.com/news/2016/profane.jpg
And now Marshall Perrin from the Space Telescope Science Institute agrees with Danny Barringer's comments from #aas227. Harassment is a problem that has many sympathizers - both passive and agressive. This is insidious, folks.

And yes, there is a certain pot-kettle-black issue here on NASA Watch. I certainly push the envelope. But there is a clear line between commenting on someone's opinion - and commenting on the person - as a person. Using threatening, profane comments clearly crosses the line. What has been really astonishing is seeing the way that AAS members use Twitter to harass people - who raise issues about harassment. Eye opening. AAS needs to take a close look - at how they take a close look - at harassment.

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on January 7, 2016 11:57 PM.

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