Here Be A Giveaway: Tickets to the Lesbians Who Tech Summit For Three Entire Humans

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Oh yes, you read that title correctly. I love Lesbians Who Tech! They run monthly meet-ups for queer women who work in the technology industry (and for those adjacent as well!). They welcome strong, supportive allies. They are HUGE NERDS and it’s rad. I had the privilege of attending the first ever LWT Summit, lovingly squished into the historic Castro Theatre. It was awesome—so much information, and more queers in the tech industry per square inch than I knew existed.

Team Autostraddle will be there again this year (alas, without me—turns out graduate school is difficult) and you could join us!

Leanne Pittsford, co-founder of Lesbians Who Tech, is a wicked cool human and has offered to gift three Autostraddle readers free tickets to the Lesbians Who Tech Summit at the Castro Theatre from February 26th to March 1st! Check out the detailed itinerary for all the speakers, but highlights include: Kara Swisher asking Marc Benioff the tough questions! Megan Smith! A Hackathon full of queers! Hanging out at a special meet-up with Autostraddle writers and designers! Networking with all the people! Brunch!


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Here is what you need to know:

  1. The winners have to be able to get to San Francisco to attend the conference with their own resources.
  2. This is an inclusive space — if you don’t necessarily identify with the term lesbian (like me! I use the words gay, dyke or queer to describe myself), or don’t adhere to the gender binary, that’s totally cool. I promise, you belong here.
  3. If you’re just starting out in tech, that’s cool. If you’re an expert and have been in tech for a decade, that’s cool too. If you work in another field, but you do their tech that is also cool! There is so much to learn either way! There is so much more to tech than start-ups! So whether you work for one or you’re a freelancer, you belong here.
  4. I highly recommend doing the Hackathon even if you’ve never done one before. Shit. Gets. Done. It’s amazing to see and be a part of.

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Okay, so you’re like, but how do I win the tickets. Fair, reader, fair. Here is what you should do to win the tickets:

  1. Like Lesbians Who Tech on Facebook.
  2. Follow Lesbians Who Tech on Twitter.
  3. Comment below telling us why you want to go — is it because you feel like a lonely unicorn in your IT department full of men? Is it because you’ve been teaching yourself to code for the last year and you want to take it next level? Is it because you looked at the itinerary and you ABSOLUTELY MUST SEE Pia Carusone, Former Chief of Staff to Congresswoman Gabby Giffords? I mean, I can’t blame you for any of those reasons! Give us some more in the comments.

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How and when a winner will be determined:

At precisely 12pm EST on Thursday, February 12th, 2015, either I or an intern or a combination of the two of us will use a random number generator to pick our three lucky humans from the comments. As long as they’ve also liked and followed LWT, those three humans will join Team Autostraddle at LWT SF 2015!

All images of cats and technology were things I found on Shutterstock. Bless Shutterstock.

Update: Wow, Leanne Pittsford and Lesbians Who Tech loved everyone’s comments so much that they let us pick ten winners instead of three! She really wants everyone to experience the magic that is a ton of nerdy queer peeps! Congratulations to Liezl, Izzie, Georgina, Sara, Em, Melia, Andrea, Amy, Paige and Erin. You all have emails in your inbox as I type this—if you suspect that you are one of these humans, please check the email you used to register for your Autostraddle account (check your spam folder too, who knows, your email may hate me). Congratulations again and thanks to everyone who played our rando comment game!

Staff Writer for Autostraddle, Part-time Faculty at The New School (teaching digital storytelling), Managing Editor for Scholar & Feminist Online at Barnard Center for Research On Women. Follow me on Twitter @AEOsworth or on Instagram, also @AEOsworth.

A.E. has written 544 articles for us.

46 Comments

  1. I’m a writer/performer with a geeky passion for STEM – my work, whether in comedy, solo shows or collaborative performance, revolves around STEM. Now, I really, really want to meet my sisters in tech specifically, and learn more about them and what they do. I hope the random number generator picks me! 🙂

  2. I’ve been helping out my local LGBT community for several years now, and one way I contribute is by setting up websites (and other techy stuff) for various non-profit groups that need the help. I would LOVE to expand my skills beyond WordPress and basic HTML/CSS and network with other women in tech.

  3. OOoOooOoO yiissssssssss. I have had my eye on this event for a long time and I didn’t have the resources to go when I lived in Chicago, and as fate would have it, I live in the Bay Area now!

    I’m a developer that is very new to the Bay Area and I could really use the networking opportunities. I’m thankful to be in a work environment where diversity is welcome, but I’m really passionate about meeting with other humans that want to advocate for change in the tech industry.

    Let’s make ghey robots YAAAAAYYYYYY

  4. * runs for the comment section *

    I’ve been a non-professional computer geek for 15 years — ever since we got AOL in the house and I discovered the wonderland that was GeoCities. I just recently decided to venture into the world of “contract website building” for lack of a better term. I have somehow tricked local nonprofits into paying me to set up and run their websites even though I have no degree or real experience. But apparently for some people, buying a domain, setting up video feeds, choosing a WordPress template, and installing plugins is worth paying someone else several dollars to do.

    Lesbians Who Tech sounds way intimidating for me, because I mostly have no idea what I’m doing and I’m just good at googling problems and following the steps. So I want to go even though it will freak me the f out. 🙂

  5. Ever since the first LWT summit i’ve wanted to go. Back when I was still a student waiting to enter the tech sphere. Now that I’m a fullgrown techie I think I could learn a lot of things that would help me grow and enable me to bring some knowledge back into my company.

  6. i just switched from medical IT to residential IT working with SQL databases, tables, queries, etc and believe it or not: I love it! It has been one of the best career decisions. At first I couldn’t comprehend why someone like me (social, outgoing, out of the shell person) would like a position that encompasses having your brain fried by a computer trying to figure out why I’m getting the result I’m getting in a query, but guess what? I do! Maybe I’m not a Lone Ranger and there’s many others like me…in a nutshell that’s the reason why I would like to attend the LWT conference

  7. I have been teaching myself, but there is sooooo much more to learn. Would love to expand my skills and knowledge and network with awesome human beings (i.e. fellow unicorns). Being around other queers who tech will be such a learning/amazing experience – and I will be able to take home so much!

  8. I am a mathematician finishing grad school and have been looking at entering the tech industry. I have some experience with coding but would love to network and learn as much as I can at this summit. If I could afford that price tag — I would be there in a heartbeat!

  9. It’s an amazing opportunity to attend a tech conference where I see my own reflection and don’t feel like an outsider. The agenda looks awesome and I would love to be a part of it!

  10. Ali! This is so exciting!

    After having the amazing chance to attend the first NYC LWT summit this past June (with you) my life has completely turned upside-down! I moved back to my home town of Berkeley, CA and have taken a break from working in the tech world to help with my family. I still am deeply interested in everything tech related and try to keep on top of relevant news by attending free events put on in the city and reading all of my favorite tech blogs (including this column). I am also currently on the job hunt for a new position and attending the SF LWT Summit would be an amazing learning and networking opportunity for me as I work to grow my community back in the Bay Area.

    Ah! I want to win this so badly 🙂 I also have been following LWT on fb and twitter forever so that is done!

    Good luck to everyone!

  11. Aaaaaahh! I want to win a ticket because I’m a procrastinator that can’t afford the procrastinator tickets AND airfare.

    I’m currently getting my MBA and I am really interested in networking with women who occupy both the lesbian and the tech space. When I worked in IT for the last 5 years, it was mostly white men. Business school is not much different (I have female classmates, but I mean also alumni that come back to speak—ALL. WHITE. MEN.)

    Recently, I was voted president of our chapter of National Association of Women MBAs, and their conference goodiebag included a magazine on cupcakes, and their networking event was a Little Black Dress Party. What kind of stuff is that?!

    I’m extremely interested in exploring and meeting more people at this intersection.

  12. I REALLY want to go to this event, and have serious FOMO every year when it comes up and I can’t afford to go. I am the founder and host of The Queer Public Podcast and to be blunt, my project can’t succeed without a big network of support like Lesbians Who Tech. We do stories on a theme and so each interview or conversation can take tens of hours to produce, record, transcribe, mix, edit, master, and share. Each episode can take upwards of 100 hours, I’m not kidding. And we do all this for FREE. As a start up, I need all the help I can get. I find myself always looking for people I can ask a quick question about web, or embedding sound or even just clean up some audio. Please send me to this event! Also — what an opportunity to talk to so many queers for the show!

  13. I just started teaching myself to code recently (so far, HTML & CSS via Codecademy) but I love it! I’m finishing my master’s in Library and Information Science and would love to have the opportunity to network with others passionate about education, technology, and where those fields are headed. Also, kittens!

  14. I’m an engineering student! I went to Grace Hopper last year and met so so so many amazing queer women who work in tech and I’ve never felt more comfortable and at home in my life. Also being in an all-ladies hackathon was AMAZING

  15. This is awesome! I was for a time a CS major, have a master’s in engineering and business, interned in IT, redid my parent’s business website and set up their online store, and am tiptoeing my way into more serious web development. This would be an awesome opportunity to take it to the next level and experience tech with a group of peers unlike all of the male-dominated classes and work experiences I have had. Pick me, random number generator! Pick me!

  16. Hello! I have only graduated college less than a year ago but I work in the digital department at one of the largest children’s publisher in the country. I have been learning more code and I also design for fun. I want to become more involved and increase knowledge. Since moving to Brooklyn, NY, I have felt submerged in the culture but I would love to visit San Francisco (a place I hope to live one day) and meet other women in tech. I never expanded my interest when I was younger as it was less common for women where I am from. I just didn’t feel like I could be good enough at it. But I am find myself in a geeky tizzy every time I learn something new, read an article, have a conversation with someone else in the digital world, etc. Thank you for extending the chance for this opportunity!

  17. I was supposed to attend last year but I was ill. This year I really want to make it!

    I’m one of four female identified people in my programming class. There are thirty males. We had eight females, but four dropped in the first two weeks. Also the teacher didn’t mention any women in his section on the history of code when in fact women have done a lot of significant things in coding.

  18. I’m a queer person of color that has had experience being the only women in class, on to work and conferences that do do not include women. I am really interested in what is being offered. And hopefully be surrounded by like minded women.

  19. I’d love to win a ticket. I’m a queer woman of color who has worked in tech since I started learning BASIC at the age of 14. I live in the Castro walking distance from the event and two of my friends are going including one who is a speaker. Good luck everybody!

  20. I’m so. pumped. at the prospect of going to the summit! I just moved to the bay to work at a tech company and would love the opportunity to mingle with fellow queers and learn more about the wide diversity of career tracks within the larger tech umbrella. Hope I’m the lucky random number!

  21. Sweet, I didn’t know this was going on. I’ve been trying to get tickets to CAPWIC, here in Virginia. I’ve never been to any sort of conference before, and as a Junior CS student, so between school and life it’s a little difficult to get both the time and the money to get out to one.

    Just want to put my name in the hat.

  22. I would LOVE to attend this summit. I just started a master’s program in human-computer interaction five weeks ago– the first step in my career change to tech. Attending the LWT summit would be a fantastically inspiring start.

    I live in Chicago, and I don’t have the resources to afford airfare and a ticket on my own. In the event you choose me, I’m excited for a chance to connect with other queer women in tech, to see presentations on all sorts of projects people are working on and the challenges they’ve faced/tackled (I’d like to be introduced to more visions of what a “career in tech” can mean, outside of the things that brought me in in the first place — talks on music tech! mobile health tech! I want to learn so much more.), to brainstorm on the problems existing in the current state of the industry, and to find resources and advice on public speaking, branding myself, and the like.

    As a tech newbie I’d undoubtedly be intimated, but super excited nonetheless! My fingers are crossed!

  23. I literally *just* bought my ticket with your 25% discount (Thanks!) And… would love to meet you guys in person! As an Aussie living in China this chance doesn’t come around every day 😉
    Yay for LWT! Yay for Autostraddle!
    😀

  24. I’m a software and electronics artist, game developer and wearable tech researcher living in Toronto, ON.

    I’m lucky enough to be in San Fransisco to go to GDC this year, with a convoy from Dames Making Games Toronto, and would love to be able to catch Lesbians who tech in the same trip. It would serve nicely as a buffer before storming GDC as part of their attempt to diversify the conference.

    I’ve been working in technology, programming video games and creating experimental wearable tech/art which aims to expand ideas of body, and would love the opportunity to find collaborators and inspiration I can bring back to my various communities in Toronto.

  25. I am looking to make a big shift in careers, and I think tech is fundamental to current operations in every aspect of creativity and business. I want to go to this tech conference because I want to learn about all the possibilities that our community is working within, see what sectors haven’t been tapped into and why, and to learn from the mistakes of those that have made significant progress. And, since I live in southern California, I would like to get connected with folks in SF wherein we could possibly have a summit or conference for the community down here. Good luck to everyone! Cheers!

  26. Last summer I taught high school women computer science, in hopes that I will work for them in the future. They’re main feedback is that they wish I were more outwardly confident. I am trying to convince my peers that we can use tech for liberation, to support community-led action. But since I’m surrounded by people with easy access to funding who want to use top-down ‘solutions’ that suck up money & silence people, I’m feeling lonely and I need some inspiration! So I would love some inspiration for my next group of students, my peers, and myself 🙂 I created a Twitter account just for this so LWT has 100% of my following weight 🙂

  27. I would love to take my design and development skills to the next level. This would give me an opportunity to network and learn from brilliant individuals.

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