Hi. This is an "English-first" post. I chose to write it in English first and then on my blog. A Portuguese version link will be released soon. Edit: You can find it here.
If you don't know me yet, I'm Ana Carolina (or just Lina), a Computer Science student from Brazil who loves writing about almost everything. That's why I have this blog (in Portuguese), a Twitter and had a Medium account.
Yes. Before I wrote this, I read some articles (including Medium-published ones) about people who also left the site. In Fatih Arslan's opinion, for example, we can't publish in our domains easily, the design is getting heavier, comments are seen as "blog posts" (which is TERRIBLE), et cetera. For Medium user Shiny Chang, the home page design is a mess. And for Thought Pills, it "kills the author".
My main point with this post, unfortunately, is to describe the nasty and irresponsible attitude with which the platform dealt with a post of one of my Twitter mutuals.
Recently, some of my Twitter following have been discussing a super-uncomfortable situation that happened with one of them: she has been attacked by someone who screamed at her during an "underground" event. Beyond the event organizers doing anything even to try to clean their public images, a group united themselves to attack her Medium post about the event by reporting it, and the platform decided to remove the post immediately, leaving the impression that she's wrong.
She tweeted, "I wrote it after spending days thinking about it because my goal is to conscientize. If I wanted to create a big mess, I would have made it differently. So, if they had the courage to speak their minds, why can't I?".
Minutes later, the post was deleted, which was pointed out by one of her followers and then posted by her here.
This time, the point is not to (just) disagree with sexist and herd behavior in general. Is to question: do I, as a woman, have freedom of speech on the platform? Can I feel safe doing it? Or should I restrain myself, as I do when I take an Uber and my driver is a man, or when I walk alone in a street? What about the "social journalism" idea of the platform?
I, without formal knowledge in journalism, just like the millions of other users out there, might think social journalism is interpreting social phenomena and writing about it to inform other people. This is a definition you might find with a simple Google search.
In this case, can I inform other girls about this attack as a form to prevent people I know to suffer the same? And if some people dislike my complaint, can they block my post from these people? And not only for them? Why? In my opinion, it should just fuel the debate about it, and by deleting the post, you're ending the debate. Isn't it (to debate information) the reason why Medium is still alive?
The same thing happens in all social media platforms, but they're not created to inform. They're created to socialize groups that have common interests. Even in them, people have to start accepting that not everybody has the same point of view and that is completely okay - unless this "opinion" turns into hate.
And she's not hating: she has arguments and ocular testimonials who can prove she was mistreated during the event. And this is a kind of sexist behavior which occurs the most often with girls in IT: being silenced and 'manterrupted'.
When I post here about my 100 days of code in 2019, it will be the official end to my Medium account, because they proved in which side of the war that we, women developers and technologists, have to fight every day.
Later the day of Clara's post, I searched for Medium alternatives, seeing that I liked the proposal of the platform, and I found DEV.to thanks to this girl. I hope that it does justice to the "social journalism" proposal, even if it is "just" for developers.