Superseding "Gender"

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linguoboy
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Superseding "Gender"

Postby linguoboy » 2015-09-21, 20:25

Could the Gender field in the user information be replaced with something less ideological and more directly useful, namely "Preferred Pronouns"? The only reason I really need to know what gender someone identifies as is in order to choose whether to refer back to them as "she" or "he" or default to "they".
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby vijayjohn » 2015-09-21, 23:28

linguoboy wrote:Could the Gender field in the user information be replaced with something less ideological and more directly useful, namely "Preferred Pronouns"? The only reason I really need to know what gender someone identifies as is in order to choose whether to refer back to them as "she" or "he"

Or "it." I've definitely seen at least one user who preferred that pronoun.

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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby Lauren » 2015-09-21, 23:57

Well, yes, it would be pretty easy to replace the "Gender" field with a Preferred Pronouns field. But then again, you don't need to know someone's pronouns, you can simply use "they" if they haven't told you. That goes for IRL as well as on the forums.
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby linguoboy » 2015-09-22, 1:40

Lauren wrote:Well, yes, it would be pretty easy to replace the "Gender" field with a Preferred Pronouns field. But then again, you don't need to know someone's pronouns, you can simply use "they" if they haven't told you. That goes for IRL as well as on the forums.

You can, but I'd rather use the forms they prefer, and it's troublesome to ask everyone individually and then try to remember their answer when the time comes (especially if they post rarely).
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby Levike » 2015-09-22, 5:12

How about we just leave it out?

No gender and no "prefered pronoun" field.

Is it an important piece of information for a forum? I think not.
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby vijayjohn » 2015-09-22, 5:14

Levike wrote:Is it an important piece of information

Yes.

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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby Levike » 2015-09-22, 5:15

vijayjohn wrote:
Levike wrote:Is it an important piece of information

Yes.

You're here to talk about languages. Why do you want to know that about the person you're talking to?

Why do you care if I'm a boy or a girl or whatever?
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby vijayjohn » 2015-09-22, 5:24

Levike wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:
Levike wrote:Is it an important piece of information

Yes.

You're here to talk about languages. Why do you want to know that about the person you're talking to?

Why do you care if I'm a boy or a girl or whatever?

So I know which pronouns to use to refer to you.

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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby Yasna » 2015-09-22, 5:40

I'd rather just get rid of the gender field period rather than replace it with a pronoun field.
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby vijayjohn » 2015-09-22, 5:55

How much more circular could this thread possibly be?

"Can we specify pronouns instead of gender?"
"Well, you don't need to specify either 'cause you can use 'they'."
"Yeah, but I want to use the right pronouns."
"But you don't need either."
"Yeah you do."
"Why?"
"To use the right pronouns."
"Well, I'd rather not have either."

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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby md0 » 2015-09-22, 6:06

My input will simply be, leave 'unspecified' an option.
It's not always desirable to give the complete breakdown of our identities to social media websites (http://www.robot-hugs.com/other-two/).
Personally I automate to 'they' until a social interaction allows me to find out their preferred pronouns.
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby Levike » 2015-09-22, 7:15

If I came to this website and saw a field called "preferred pronoun" my first though would certainly be:
"Do they mean like if they can address me formally or informally?".

I would most probably need more explanation as to what they're asking me.
So let's not make this forum so complicated that people need an instruction book to use it.

My final opinion: Either have a "gender" field that people can fill if they wish to or no field at all.
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby Патрислав Андреевич » 2015-09-22, 8:54

How is this any less ideological? If anything, it's more. :?

Right now you can but don't have to fill out the gender field (you can leave it unspecified.) So it can be mapped like so: male - he, female - she, unspecified - they (until they inform you.) There's no philosophy.

If anything, that could be another field in addition to gender, but I don't see it used extensively, and IMO it'd be pretty useless. But getting rid of the gender field is stupid - it's not obligatory after all.

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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby Osias » 2015-09-22, 11:33

For a language forum, this thread is a lot English-centric.
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby loqu » 2015-09-22, 14:46

Osias wrote:For a language forum, this thread is a lot English-centric.

The 'preferred pronouns' initiative can be applicable for Spanish as well, or I'd say for every gendered language.

I'm all for linguoboy's proposal.
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby Osias » 2015-09-22, 16:37

loqu wrote:
Osias wrote:For a language forum, this thread is a lot English-centric.

The 'preferred pronouns' initiative can be applicable for Spanish as well, or I'd say for every gendered language.
But other words are affected, like nouns, adjectives, etc. And the name for this is... gender.
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby linguoboy » 2015-09-22, 16:58

Osias wrote:
loqu wrote:
Osias wrote:For a language forum, this thread is a lot English-centric.

The 'preferred pronouns' initiative can be applicable for Spanish as well, or I'd say for every gendered language.
But other words are affected, like nouns, adjectives, etc. And the name for this is... gender.

Won't the form of agreement be obvious from the pronouns? If someone says they prefer "she/ela", why would you assume anything but feminine agreement for nouns and adjectives? But it doesn't work the other way, at least not in English, since there are more than two possibilities. (I don't know how many other languages have epicene pronouns in actual use.)
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby Levike » 2015-09-22, 17:00

Could we make a poll?

1. Keep it as it is, with a "Gender" field.

2. Or have a "Preferred pronoun" field.
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby Osias » 2015-09-22, 17:02

linguoboy wrote:If someone says they prefer "she/ela", why would you assume anything but feminine agreement for nouns and adjectives? But it doesn't work the other way, at least not in English, since there are more than two possibilities.


Maybe "prefered grammatical gender"?
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Re: Superseding "Gender"

Postby linguoboy » 2015-09-22, 17:04

Osias wrote:
linguoboy wrote:If someone says they prefer "she/ela", why would you assume anything but feminine agreement for nouns and adjectives? But it doesn't work the other way, at least not in English, since there are more than two possibilities.

Maybe "prefered grammatical gender"?

Same problem. How would you express this for someone who prefers "hir", for instance, or "they"?
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