I would like to add that the diversity scholarships have a multiplier
effect, beyond enabling some people to go to conferences.  I spent about a
year deliberating whether I was cool enough to be part of code4lib, and
whether I was willing to risk that it might be a gender-hostile space
(something that is, sadly, common enough that many women need to weigh this
risk before joining tech communities).  One of the big things that
convinced me that joining would be okay was the existence of these

Note that I have never *applied* for a code4lib diversity scholarship.  But
the fact that the community was, literally, willing to put its money where
its mouth is, was a powerful signal to me that I probably wouldn't have to
deal with rape jokes or groping or people assuming I'm dumb because I'm

(It turns out it's better than that, really.  It's not just that you all
aren't awful - you're actively excellent.  I would've settled for
technologically useful plus not-awful...this is better.)

Finances are a limiting factor on conference attendance for people of all
demographic groups, and I would endorse plans to surmount that.  But
finances *and other demographically-specific issues* are barriers to
conference attendance for members of minority groups.  In my mind the
code4lib diversity scholarships primarily address these other issues. A
major reason to have money on the table is that it proves to the world at
large - not just the recipient - that these efforts are credible and

Andromeda Yelton
LITA Board of Directors, Director-at-Large, 2013-2016

On Mon, Nov 25, 2013 at 2:35 PM, Nicholas Schiller <
[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> To respond to the question Mr. Eveland posed, I believe that cis men of
> Arab or North African decent or cis men who identify as multi-racial or
> multi-ethnic may be technically excluded by the specific phrasing of the
> diversity scholarship, given how the definitions are used by the US census
> bureau. (I would personally recommend people fitting those descriptions to
> apply anyway.) These are at least two groups who may not receive the career
> advantages and privilege accorded to white cis men (like myself), but may
> not qualify according to a strict reading of this particular assistance and
> award opportunity.
> Beyond that, I would like to specifically contradict the assumption that
> this is a zero sum game and assistance for traditionally under-served
> demographics hurts others. If I am reading the posting correctly, the funds
> for these awards comes from CLIR/DLF, vendors, and private donations. As
> others have pointed out, other avenues, not specifically tied to diversity
> or demographics, are available for those in need. This will make Code{4}Lib
> better for all. After all, given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow. By
> making efforts to specifically invite people who have not have felt welcome
> or been excluded in the past, this assistance is making a better Code{4}Lib
> for everyone.
> White cis men who have financial need have avenues, as others have
> referred to. Additionally, this scholarship is not the ONLY form of aid. No
> avenue for financial assistance has been taken away from white cis men.
> This is *new* aid that was not available in the past. Scholarships in the
> past have been given for staff from public libraries that use
> Evergreen/Koha. Those awards did not harm staff from academic libraries or
> public libraries that purchase commercial products. In precisely the same
> way, taking action to make the conference accessible to people not
> traditionally served by it does not harm anyone. Indeed, by making the
> community more welcoming, it strengthens the group and brings in more eyes
> to make the bugs even shallower.