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  • Faust
    kitsch killer
    • Sep 2006
    • 37852

    Women's Section of the Forums

    Hi all,

    I've been asked quite a few times about doing an SZ equivalent for women. After a considerable discussion with some female members of the forums, we agreed that it's better not to make a separate website, but to open dedicated sections for women. So, I wanted to open this up for discussion with everyone here.

    Originally, I envisioned SZ as a forum for both sexes, but it organically has grown to be a men's forum, which is absolutely fine by me, since it's become a fantastic institution for discussing men's fashion. However, I've always thought that having men's and women's would enrich our ongoing conversation about fashion. I know that some women get discouraged in a male-dominated forums, so I propose to do the following:

    1. Make dedicated shopping/personal style and classifieds sections for women. I am not sure if designers and collections is worth splitting up as well. I would rather not.

    2. While I would encourage men and women posting in all sections, I will appoint to female moderators with full moderating powers. This is mostly to encourage idiots from making stupid comments.

    3. For the idiots: stupid comments include commenting in any way shape or form on female anatomy, as well as expressing desire to meet, date, have a cup of coffee and a walk on a moonlit beach.

    4. I am not sure how to handle the WAYWT. Do we continue with one thread, or make two threads?

    5. To make the front page less busy, I will fold in "Other Design," the least visited part of the forums, into "Culture"

    6. I would like to open the women's forums on September 1 in anticipation of the women's SS12 fashion season.

    Please discuss.
    Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

    StyleZeitgeist Magazine
  • xmattyx
    Member
    • Jan 2011
    • 32

    #2
    From the title, I was afraid that this Women's Section was a step toward ghettoization. But with the considerations you've listed, it seems like it will result in an expansion of resources and, hopefully, worthwhile members. I like the idea.

    Personally, and as a new member of the forum, I think WAYWT shouldn't be separated.

    Comment

    • Faust
      kitsch killer
      • Sep 2006
      • 37852

      #3
      Thanks, matty.

      That's all the responses I get? I guess I should throw in some Julius leather jackets.
      Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

      StyleZeitgeist Magazine

      Comment

      • syed
        Senior Member
        • Sep 2010
        • 564

        #4
        I really do wish there were more female posters, but I can understand that it can be daunting, and sometimes even a little off-putting given the paths certain topics can follow. I think it's a good idea having threads that have a clear womenswear focus, just to really help foster discussion in the same depth that is afforded menswear (perhaps if only by virtue of the number of guys posting). I don't think the designers thread needs to be split, provided the titles stay as clear as they have been with either men's or women's. I just hope it doesn't prevent overlap in discussions where it could actually be appropriate and interesting to approach it from either side of the sex divide (or, heck, slap bang in the middle).

        Oh and definitely keep WAYWT as one thread, it makes it all the more interesting and diverse.
        "Lots of people who think they are into fashion are actually just into shopping"

        Comment

        • Sombre
          Senior Member
          • Jan 2009
          • 1291

          #5
          To be honest, I'm leaning against the idea. I see its merits, but I'm afraid things may become like tFS, with far less interesting and thought-provoking discussion. I'm not saying women are superficial, but the female-centric forums I've seen have been that way. But I suppose SZ is an exception for men, so there's no reason it can't be for women.

          Also, I think it could lead to even greater segregation than we already have, where women would only post in the women's section, and men only in theirs.

          However, it's possible that female registration and posting will remain low until something like a women's section is implemented, so like I said, I see the merits of the proposal.
          An artist is not paid for his labor, but for his vision. - James Whistler

          Originally posted by BBSCCP
          I order 1 in every size, please, for every occasion

          Comment

          • interest1
            Senior Member
            • Nov 2008
            • 3351

            #6
            One can't help but appreciate the magnitude of potential irony should an all-male
            "panel of guest speakers" end up being the only ones contributing to this particular
            thread
            Ok, female perspective on its merry way.. . (lulz)
            .
            .
            sain't
            .

            Comment

            • Faust
              kitsch killer
              • Sep 2006
              • 37852

              #7
              Merz, what do you think the majority of men buy clothes for? Same shit, different toilet. SZ is for the elite, always was.
              Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

              StyleZeitgeist Magazine

              Comment

              • Faust
                kitsch killer
                • Sep 2006
                • 37852

                #8
                You are missing the point, which is to give female members an arena where they can discuss fashion comfortably. You don't have to read it - just double-click the X next to that forum section and be done.
                Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

                StyleZeitgeist Magazine

                Comment

                • MetroBulotDodo
                  Senior Member
                  • Oct 2010
                  • 1312

                  #9
                  Hi E -

                  I do think that adding (a) dedicated section(s) is a far better idea than opening up a separate site. I would, however, suggest less segregation that what was proposed and limit the separation only insofar as areas where women could use this resource differently. For example, the cultural sections, in my opinion, should remain as they are - as one since we are exposed to, whereas areas relating to consumption, that is, shopping/personal style/sizing questions/perfume (though, personally, I wear Avignon)/good finds (? I don't know if women search/research as obsessively when making purchases)/and even affiliate boutiques deserve their own space.

                  I would not like the designers space to change as I am interested in the opinions of both sexes on all collections - it seems to me that there is great interest in womens collections from men. To me, that's not only heartening but welcoming, too.

                  Opening a small area dedicated to women might even encourage women's only retailers to participate as affiliate boutiques. I know that I would certainly love news from the several women's only stockists that many of us use.

                  If I could forsee any structural weakness of SZ that could discourage women, I think usability issues - in particular, that women have to wade through quite a lot of content before finding something that is directed specifically to them: the fact of the matter remains. Some of us may wear unisex clothing, but physiology dictates that in certain ways, women are simply going to consume differently.

                  I have little concern that the readership of SZ will change - the same self-selection that has always been at work to create the current readership of SZ will continue to do its job where women are concerned. I would like to see improvements that will allow a woman, who is interested in topics relating to how she spends her money, wander through the site more efficiently and effectively.

                  Having a woman moderator - or two - I think would be a great improvement, even if only for the symbolic aspect. Having an entirely male moderated panel screams, "this is for men." Symbols are not for nothing. If a new member wanders in and sees a woman moderator, it will signal immediately that she is welcome, too.

                  Glad this is happening,

                  MBD
                  "To articulate what is past does not mean to recognize 'how it really was.'
                  It means to take control of a memory, as it flashes in a moment of danger."

                  -Walter Benjamin. Thesis VI, Theses on the Philosophy of History
                  My rarities and quotidian garments for sale thread. My tumblr and eBay page.

                  Comment

                  • MetroBulotDodo
                    Senior Member
                    • Oct 2010
                    • 1312

                    #10
                    Originally posted by merz
                    how would it bring anyone new? or make someone more comfortable posting there? or make someone less likely to leave?..
                    Q - let me give you a specific scenario: a woman searches for an item using a search engine. She is brought in via classifieds or archives. She looks in the discussion areas and sees that they are dominated by men talking about men's clothing issues. She is led to believe that SZ is not intended for her.

                    Now in the alternative scenario, she goes to the main forum and sees that there is an area dealing with women's shopping. She stays.

                    I certainly don't want to be ghettoized where culture is concerned. Nonetheless, I'd prefer to use the women's bathroom when it's available. Why? Because, frankly, it's cleaner - an analogy that is not entirely out of place in this conversation, in my opinion. (As someone who uses single-men's use bathrooms on the reg., I can attest to this fact first hand.)

                    MBD
                    "To articulate what is past does not mean to recognize 'how it really was.'
                    It means to take control of a memory, as it flashes in a moment of danger."

                    -Walter Benjamin. Thesis VI, Theses on the Philosophy of History
                    My rarities and quotidian garments for sale thread. My tumblr and eBay page.

                    Comment

                    • GlassOrganelle
                      Senior Member
                      • Aug 2011
                      • 139

                      #11
                      As a female I would be a lot more comfortable posting if I knew there were threads where I could discuss things more relevant to me. I lurk most of the time, partly because I'm a noob and partly because I don't have much experience in men's fashion and wouldn't want to say something stupid or obvious, I find the menswear discussions quite interesting so I doubt I'd stop reading it. I don't think introducing more places for women would ruin the whole dynamic of the forums, just streamline and open up a few more avenues for discussion. Splitting up the classifieds and shopping threads seems pretty efficient, logical, and not unreasonable.

                      To the person who thought that opening a women's section would push this forum in the direction of tFS, I don't agree. There's already a high standard here that seems to be upheld pretty well (most of the time ). The females on this forum, active or lurking, are here for a reason. If they want an easy and less in depth place to post, they can post on tFS, or wherever.

                      I also agree it's a good idea to keep the WAYWT thread together. I really like looking at what you dudes are wearing, but I also would like to see what the girls are wearing as well.



                      "- male members would not be prohibited from viewing or participating in that discussion, so how does it give more comfort than the existing besides having in large type 'women's forum' above as header and the ability to advertise it as such?"


                      I don't think the problem is that the guys are intimidating as such. But posting something about women's fashion in the threads right now seems unnatural and possibly off topic. That's just how I feel, so maybe that's not the general female consensus. After females get more comfortable posting in the women's section, they might feel more comfortable to post in things relevant to the males. Also, I'm sure the majority of threads will still apply to both genders.

                      Comment

                      • Nikov
                        Senior Member
                        • Nov 2008
                        • 385

                        #12
                        I think it's a matter of perception. I agree with merz that there is nothing intrinsically male about the shopping and personal style thread. No reason, for example, why men and women can't both use the Good Finds or the Yes/No thread. That being said, SZ is perceived as a male forum by pretty much everybody, especially the new members and the onlookers thinking about joining. So I can understand if there is some hesitation from the women when it comes to posting in male dominated areas. If we have a female section, I would have the same hesitation posting over there because I don't know much about women's fashion. Have no idea what constitutes a Good Find for women, for example. But it won't stop me from reading and joining in on a philosophical debate if it pops up. In the end, I feel that a separate section for women, although it may appear redundant, will do a lot towards breaking the perception that this is a male only forum, and overall that is a good thing.

                        Comment

                        • genevieveryoko
                          Senior Member
                          • Sep 2009
                          • 868

                          #13
                          Originally posted by Eternal
                          Half of the clothing discussed here or even more is unisex or work for both sexes.

                          It's not always feminine or masculine, it's just clothes.
                          um, no?
                          at least not what I wear

                          and just because something is unisex, does not mean it won't have feminine or masculine qualities

                          Faust I am 100% for your plan

                          maybe though, to avoid "ghettoization" keep both the women's and the men's "shopping and personal style threads" limited to the more shopping related topics (sizing, good finds, arrivals, etc.), and the "deep discussions" (your style philosphy, etc.) can find a new home somewhere in a section that's for everyone. perhaps we could call this section "personal style", and it can house the waywt.

                          the point of all this, I think, is to make this a more useful and productive place for women, not just to institute some sort of feel-good "safe space", or balkanization, or whatever

                          nikov: it's a bit tiresome to search through pages and pages of good finds when maybe 1 post out of 40 is actually for women

                          mbd: well said
                          Last edited by genevieveryoko; 08-27-2011, 03:08 AM.
                          http://genevievelarson.tumblr.com/

                          Comment

                          • Nikov
                            Senior Member
                            • Nov 2008
                            • 385

                            #14
                            Originally posted by Eternal
                            Half of the clothing discussed here or even more is unisex or work for both sexes.

                            It's not always feminine or masculine, it's just clothes. Most julius work just as good for women as it does for men. Why create a women's section then? Because some of them don't like the way SZ is today and dominated by primal men? I would really know why these women who are "suitable" for SZ, or "potential customers" of SZ don't want to post today.
                            Well, because I think Faust very much wants to increase female membership. And it is clear (at least to me) that that will not change if we continue to do nothing. A separate section may not be the best solution, but I think it's a step in the right direction.

                            Originally posted by Eternal
                            I agree with Sombre and Merz. Another forum for women not named Stylezeitgeist might be better. It's like they want what the men of SZ created, but they don't want the men.
                            No, I think they just want to be part of a forum where they won't feel alienated.

                            Originally posted by genevieveryoko View Post

                            nikov: it's a bit tiresome to search through pages and pages of good finds when maybe 1 post out of 40 is actually for women
                            not sure if I was clear enough, but I am in favor of creating a separate shopping section for women, with its own Good Finds thread and everything.

                            Comment

                            • rider
                              eyes of the world
                              • Jun 2009
                              • 1560

                              #15
                              e's plan is obviously well thought out and indeed timely. this board maintains a high standard of mature conversation [most of the time ] and i think a "female" section will enrich the character of sz nicely.

                              as a woman on this board i have learned so much about men's garments and other martian territory that i never knew existed, although at times, the tone is very intimidating, its been an ungarnished peek into engaging, often gritty conversation from a mens point of view. now its your turn to perhaps have a glimpse into the corners of our closets. we might just surprise you with what drives our id and why we choose what we do. ...and the age old question, ravish or ravage?

                              Comment

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