diversity now

deadbison  asked:

How did mites get so small?

We don’t know much about the early evolutionary history of mites – or the earliest arachnids in general. A few mite fossils are known from the Early Devonian (~410 mya), and there’s a possible Ordovician specimen, but they’re all already tiny.

They probably got so small simply because it provided some sort of evolutionary advantage to them. Since they seem to have originated as terrestrial animals at a time when complex plants and ecosystems were only just getting started on land, with limited food resources and habitats available, reduced size might have allowed mites to exploit niches that other arthropods weren’t already occupying.

And it obviously worked out really well for them, and they never needed to get particularly large ever again, because they’re now ridiculously diverse and are found pretty much everywhere on the planet.

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I’m sick of hearing the same sad excuse for the lack of diversity in gaming

  • Video game developers have a serious diversity problem — and the excuses aren’t going to cut it anymore.
  • A 2016 survey from the International Game Developers Association found that approximately 72% of people working in the game industry are men, and 75% are white.
  • As we’ve written previously, developers can begin tackling this problem by publishing diversity reports that show the demographic breakdown at each level of the company through hard data.
  • But because these reports don’t actually cause change in and of themselves, they’re just a first step.
  • The next step is the hard part: hiring more underrepresented groups — women, people of color, LGBTQ folks — and trying to make sure employees reflect the demographics of the world at large.
  • Convincing industry leaders to pursue that goal can be even more of a challenge. Over and over again, the refrain is the same: Diversity is at odds with quality. But it’s 2017, and that excuse doesn’t hold water. Read more (5/3/17)
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A few things need to be said:

A character with an ambiguous skin tone and/ or racial identity is not good representation, even if you headcanon them as a POC. The likelihood is that the writer also perceives this character as white. Stating white skin tone/ race is often unknowingly perceived as unnecessary, due to our (society’s) gross, internalised bias that the ‘default’ is white.

Do not give credit to an author for allowing their characters to be headcanoned as POC. A headcanon is something you or a group of people believe, but not necessarily the author. If the author wanted true representation, they would have downright and concretely stated their character’s skin colour/ race in the texts of their work. By all means, headcanon race, but just be wary about giving credit where credit is not due. No one deserves brownie points for doing a sloppy job.

Stating a character is “tanned” or “olive-toned” is also not good representation. These are often considered ambiguous terms because, first and foremost, white people can be tanned. Olive can work, but there is dispute over whether it is similar to using tan, so it’s generally not recommended to use it.

Please just plainly state your characters’ races every time, even if they’re white. If your character has brown skin, or is black, or Caucasian, just say it. When you do this for POC characters, their race becomes visible, which is good for representation. When you do this for a white character, it helps to remove the awful implication that “white is the default” for both yourself and the reader.

“Not only are there no happy endings…There aren’t even any endings.”

Every time I read American Gods by Neil Gaiman, I find more things to adore about this novel. I read it this time while traveling across the United States, and I have to say, something about reading this book in transit just makes sense. It makes even more sense reading it while soaring over America itself, gazing down on fields and hills, a New Jersey import who lives in Chicago, went to LA a week or so ago, and just left Florida. There is something so intensely American about this novel, and it wows me every time. From the smaller mythic chapters telling folk tales and stories of the people who brought their gods to America, to the gods themselves and their characters, this novel always gets me. This was my third time reading this novel, and I’m going to dig deep to highlight new things that I had forgotten, so solid warning: Spoilers ahead.

I will never get over the way that Neil Gaiman melds together the idea of the gods and the land, and gives them both their own power and will. Something that wows me that I often forget about the standalone is now astoundingly diverse it is without being appropriative, and how Gaiman incorporates so many cultures, a diverse range of characters, as well as a huge amount of humor without it becoming problematic. I think this novel could be a guidebook for authors who want to know how to write diverse stories and mythos respectfully. I forgot about so many fantastic characters that Gaiman pours himself into, from Samantha Black Crow to side characters that brim with energy and character themselves, like Whiskey Jack’s son or Bilquis. I also never noticed before the two mentions of Mr. Nancy’s son that point to Anansi Boys. Not to mention the wealth of research and knowledge that goes into the bottomless well of background characters and visions leading up to the battle. 

One thing I gained a new appreciation for in this novel was the character of Shadow. He is big, and not dumb, and I remembered all that, but what I forgot is how nice he is. Shadow’s such a cinnamon roll of a character, and I forget that. He stands up for a waitress and believes in the good of people. At the Lakeside library book sale, he tries to find the book that’s least likely to be purchased, so that he can help the library out by buying it. He performs coin tricks for children. He is obligated to hold Odin’s vigil, but he never questions whether he should also hold Mad Sweeney’s. As Laura speaks with the cutting, too-open words of the already-dead, Shadow still refuses to tell her about her appearance or to not hold her hand, because he doesn’t want to hurt her still. When Shadow picks up bodies with the coroners, he carries them always in his arms. 

The scene between Shadow and Odin before his death is one of my absolute favorites (other favorite scenes include Samantha Black Crow’s protest kiss, the scene in which Shadow thinks snow into being, and Shadow’s long death scene). Odin recites to Shadow what he knows—the charms, in a long list. And it ends with that long scene where Shadow wonders what would have happened if he touched Odin’s hand, and wishes he had. And Odin’s twisting grift of the fiddle is so complicated and well done that even on the third re-read, I find myself forgetting about it until the moment Odin dies, and doubting myself on it until the moment Shadow says it out loud.

@neil-gaiman’s American Gods just gets better every time I read it, and I am cautiously thrilled and excited for the show coming out later this spring. 

“It doesn’t matter that you didn’t believe in us. We believed in you.”

I don’t know how to fully enjoy any of these moments without wondering if it’s the last.
—  Jay Asher, What Light
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I had a dream the other night I started another story on my blog, I’ve had a short story idea in my head for a long while so I am going to try and turn it into a small series, it’ll only last a month or two, a summer fling, but it’ll help when I need breaks or time with my Wedlia story. It’ll be lighted-hearted + more girls love as usual. :))

This is a WIP of the lead lady, an editor and an insomniac. [Unedited Photo]

Nonviolence often means amnesia, the suppression of a collective memory of struggle and all the experience and wisdom that comes with that memory. People who remember hundreds of years of struggle against authority cannot be tricked into a simple reform that promises to make things better by changing the election laws. People who remember hundreds of years of struggle know that what little they have, they won by fighting. They remember how to make barricades, how to assemble molotov cocktails, how to use guns, how to survive in clandestinity, how to protect themselves from infiltrators. Just as the reformists of Real Democracy Now ereased the true history of the uprising in Egypt, full of street battles and burnt police stations, they tried to erase the rich history of anticapitalist struggles in Spain. They tried to tell people who had spent their lives in the streets that the only way to win was to be peaceful because that’s what the television says.
—  Peter Gelderloos, The Failure of Nonviolence, page 132
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Gina Torres Calls Out ‘Systemic’ Prejudice In Hollywood (video)

And when you say the old way of thinking, thinking in what respect? Thinking in how people are casting tv shows or movies, thinking about where the money is going, where do you see the sort of biggest problem?

It’s systemic across all long lines. I mean, it starts at the very beginning. It starts with apprenticeship, quite frankly, with people who get into positions of power that need to bring in other people and diversify, not just the writers room, but diversify what’s happening behind the camera. And then you have the buyers, who like to think, or have been selling us this idea that diversity doesn’t sell - well I think we know that’s a lie. We pretty much put that away. And it goes into casting - and I have said this before: it’s not that you have to write something black or write something Latino – just write something and hire the actor. Bring all the actors in, not just white. Don’t just assume that because it’s not specifically white or black that a person of color can’t play that part, because that’s obscene and that’s absurd. There are so many gifted people out there of color. But everybody just has to decide that that’s what’s gonna happen.

Have you ever experienced someone directly stopping you from progressing or pursuing a role, because of your race or background?

Of course I have! [Laughs] Of course I have, absolutely! There are too many to count. I have been doing this for 25 years, and in that time span, there are way too many to count. And they’re very slick about it. They can’t really say that out loud, but you know what it is because they go “a different way.” And then you see it done, and you see what the different way was, each and every time. And it was the white way.

anonymous asked:

Dreamworks ddnt want book of life not disney. But disney i think did the weird dia de los muertos thing. Anyways also guillermo del toro and i think he is friends with the book of life guy i could be wrong and dumb but they said they said they look forward to Coco and dont really want ppl to create a versus thing that doesnt exist even though it looks that way. Sorry for confusion, i just dont want ppl to attack anyone. I understand why ppl are upset, i was too. Just wantd u 2 kno

Aight to clarify from further research:

  • Yes, it wasn’t Disney, but Dreamworks that turned away Gutierrez and The Book of Life script
  • But it was Disney that tried to trademark the day, and they immediately pulled back after the hate they got for it, claiming it was a huge mistake on their part
  • Both Gutierrez and Guillermo del toro wish the movie and its cast to do well with Coco, with Gutierrez cheering them as he knows a lot of friends working on it
  • Originally, when they first released info about it, Disney got a lot of hate bc their cast was (surprise) seemingly lacking of diversity, but they have now announced that they have a full Latinx cast, 
  • and have several cultural consultants (including the same critics that were fighting against Disney’s actions in trying to trademark the holiday.)

I’m still going to keep an open mind about the film overall, since its not set to come it till late November so there might be more that we still not know of. But I’m also gonna still be open to anything that critics bring up too since Disney’s history is…well. A lot.

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival was great but also very dichotomous? Seeing the amazing work was inspiring; realizing how much even “successful” people are struggling was not.  Let me try to summarize the big things I took away from TCAF:

  1. Comics and Games are actually very good, and you can see that as soon as you create a space outside the influence of WB/Disney/AAA/&c 
  2. Comics and Games are queer as hell, see above. In fact, it feels like the field is incredibly diverse right now? 
  3. Most of the people creating the indie stuff you love have day/part time jobs, because patreon/ad revenue (ha ha ha) don’t pay enough 
  4. The web is increasingly hostile to small creators as FB, Twitter, Tumblr & Reddit design their systems to bury unsponsored content and bury or simply blacklist outright external links. These sites want everything to be sponsored, and hosted on THEIR servers. (Reminder: if you’re reblogging my articles, thank you for doing so because you are literally the only way my stuff is getting seen by anyone at this point. Tumblr blacklists external links now.)
  5. The fandom spaces that should be supporting this diverse work are actually a maelstrom of doxxing, identity policing, callouts, &c. 

So in summary, comics and games have a flood of diverse experimental creators who go unsupported by the market, government, or fans. I don’t know how to quite square how dire yet how inspiring/hopeful this is simultaneously. But that’s life in 2017 generally I guess.

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Leaked email details the diversity initiative Apple’s board urged the company to reject

  • During Apple’s shareholder meeting on Tuesday, the group will decide the fate of a proposal pushing for an “accelerated recruitment policy” to diversify the company’s board of directors and senior management.
  • This is the second straight year investors floated the proposal.
  • It comes at a time when Apple, like many other tech giants, is taking big steps toward more equal representation within the company.
  • But thanks to Apple’s own leaders, it’s not likely this proposal will pass.
  • Apple’s board — a group dominated by white men — have pushed the company to reject the initiative, one that would diversify its also predominantly white male leadership team.
  • Furthermore, a shareholder’s email obtained by Mic reveals that Apple has not responded to a request from an investor to work toward an agreement on the initiative. Read more (2/23/17 8:00 AM)

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i loved girl meets world as much as the next disney-channel-watching-teenager.

i know they didn’t get to show all thee things that could’ve been done with gmw. i know they were restricted from many things they wanted to do. i know the show could’ve went much farther than it did. i know that. we all know that.

but what many gmw fans have been preaching is how they wanted more representation, more diversity, and now we have it with andi mack. we have a cast that’s predominantly poc, interracial marriage, a plot line about an issue that’s seldom spoken about on disney, and a boy who practically melts while talking to another boy (and will very likely end up being very gay/bi/pan/anything but straight really).

it’s about middle schoolers–and you can’t say it’s “too young a demographic,” because that’s how we started with gmw–just middle school kids who are represented as just that, and going through life one step at a time, tackling different conflicts that come up. the twist is needed. it’s refreshing, and can be very real for some kids who may feel out of place for being in a situation like that. it’s a nice way to show that there are people out there like them, and that these things can happen, and that they’re not alone, and that they are valid.

boycotting this show because it’s not a continuation of gmw makes me sick, and confused. when’s the last time you’ve seen a show on disney channel centered around an asian-american family? when was the last time you’ve seen on disney the story of a girl who was raised to believe her real mother was her sister? correct me if i’m wrong, but this is what disney needs, especially after losing a show like gmw that was unable to reach its full potential.

the acting is pretty good, the cast is goddamn adorable, it’s created by THE terri minsky, the amazing woman who was responsible for the awesome show lizzie mcguire. plus it’s got less restrictions, way less than gmw had.

this doesn’t mean this show will ever be gmw. no show will ever be gmw, and i don’t think it would be fair to even compare the two shows just yet, if at all. but i know for a fact that rowan and corey and sabrina and amir would want you guys to give this show a chance (dare i say especially sabrina, since she sings the damn theme song), because it’s change, but it’s a good change, and it deserves to be given a fighting chance.

we can’t do this if people don’t put the pettiness aside, and give this show a chance. this show is important.