will lap dance for code (NOT)

by Violet Blue on October 19, 2009


UPDATE 10.21.09: This image (and others in this post) were originally posted by cocakl with this Creative Commons license. Cockai has been emailed asking why they are no longer viewable. /UPDATE

Apparently female strippers and lap dancers entertained the presumably (presumptively) male, straight attendees of Taiwan’s Yahoo Open Hack Day (simonwillison.net). Wups! Which is all well and good if you’re a girl like me who likes getting lap dances from other girls, while stuffing a Yahoo-branded ball gag in the other half of me that is acutely irritated about the fact that women are like totally desirable at Hack Day if they’re (mild-flavored) sex entertainment. Yes, there have been go-go dancers at past Yahoo Open Hack Day Taiwan, but dudes — seriously. Get some male booty onstage to make the deal even. Because I’m all for hot chicks to get me in the mood to geek out. And AS IF the guys at Hack Day are all straight. Perhaps that’s the most disrespectful part. The gay guys were BORED.

It’s not shameful, just hilariously badly planned. And hey — what if the dancing babes were actually hackers? They’re probably not, but I know a good number of pin-ups, fetish models, porn stars and exotic dancers who hack and code. I love the flurry of flying assumptions and hypocrisy. I mostly love PR disasters around sexual prudery. I remember going with the Extra Action Marching Band when they played a private party for Yahoo — it was a filthy naughty performance, and it was done with tons of snark, and yeah — the dancing girls and boys in the dance team are all brilliant people when they’re in their clothes-on day jobs (Emmy award winners, etymologists, hackers, etc.). It added a dose of much-needed humanity, criticism, irony, prankiness and yes, sexuality to a crowd/event that seemed to desperately need it. Here’s the video from last year’s Yahoo Taiwan Hack Day event — what did everyone expect, anyway?

Update: the video below has been removed. The question is, was it because the user capitulated to individual, personal pressure, or YouTube? This was, by all accounts, a public event. You’ll also see that the Flicker images were up under a Creative Commons license, and now almost the entire set is unavailable. Don’t you wonder how this all went down? Flickr is owned by Yahoo, after all.

UPDATE 10.21.09: Houston, we have a video of the lap dances here.

Sexy belongs everywhere. Sexist lameness should get the bum rush. Know what I mean?

Here it’s obvious there’s a clash of cultures. There’s a middle ground. But — whatever. Bring on the Hack Day babes! Especially if they lead secretly brainy lives. Quick, while PR is flailing… [More images here.]


This image was posted by cocakl with this Creative Commons license.


This image was posted by cocakl with this Creative Commons license.


This image was posted by cocakl with this Creative Commons license.

Violet Blue

The London Times named Violet Blue "One of the 40 bloggers who really count" and Self Magazine named TinyNibbles one of the “Best Sex Resources for Women.” Blue is an autodidact and pundit on sex and technology, hacking and security, porn for women, privacy and bleeding-edge tech culture. She is a journalist for ZDNet, CBS News, CNET; she's an educator, speaker, crisis counselor, volunteer NGO trainer, and the author and editor of over 40 award-winning books.

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{ 5 comments }

1 cosimo March 5, 2010 at 8:37 am
2 casualencounters.com/blog October 21, 2009 at 2:11 pm

Yeah you really can’t run around assuming stuff, but have a heart. This kind of thing is pretty standard in the industry, and it beats the shit out of bowling and canapes for 95% of the attendees.

Gay dudes and women are used to putting up with it. Maybe throw in a token “flexible” or “gay for pay” dancer as a milksop?

3 Johnny Cocaine October 21, 2009 at 9:48 am

Hard to make an informed comment since the vid and pics don’t work, but this sounds like much ado about nothing. The people who hired the strippers probably had a set budget and decided to hire dancers that 95% of the audience would want to see. That doesn’t mean the gay and female minorities should be put out. If they played electronic music, should heavy metal fans complain? If all the dancers were Asian, should white guys complain?

I’m planning to put on a tech/geek event in a few months and was planning on female dancers for my 95% straight male audience, but here’s what I’ll do. I’ll take donations to also hire male dancers. If there’s enough interest and I make enough money, I’ll do it. Internet celebrity sex writers are welcome to contribute! In fact, I’ll call it “The Violet Fund”.

4 Cobrian October 21, 2009 at 7:37 am

Just as Yahoo! China will still give out personal information to the “Communist” government about dissidents, so will Yahoo! Taiwan enforce the “hetero only” -mentality still governing much of Taiwan. It’s a shame. I do challenge you to find us a hawt Taiwanese/Asian boy for tomorrow!

5 Laurabeth October 20, 2009 at 6:40 am

That video is private. :(

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