A Bit More on OSB
“So, you’re saying you’re for the Open Source Boob project? Really?”
Well. I’m for the idea of demystifying breasts to young men who fetishize them to the extent of not being able to process the fact there is an actual person that they are part of, yes. My understanding of the project was that this was a component of the thing, although I fully admit that inasmuch as my knowledge came after the fact and based on what I remember being told about it at lunch, it may have been at variance with how it was envisioned by the participants, or how it was otherwise reported. How I saw it, however, was that if some women wanted to attempt to mitigate mammary hyperfocus in socially underdeveloped male geeks via this sort of offer, I was fine with that and wished them luck with it.
Would it be something I would suggest as a way to address this particular issue? Not particularly, since generally I neither wish to intimately touch nor be intimately touched by strangers, breast-bearing or no, and I’m not entirely sure the attempted procedure would (how to put this politely) work as desired in all cases. Do I think it’s an idea that is widely portable to different contexts? Really, no. But if women wanted to try it in an environment where they themselves felt comfortable, well, okay, fine. You kids have fun with it. As I said, I think my understanding of the concept and its goals was different from other folks.
I also think it mattered who I first heard about it from. I first heard about it after the fact, and in person, from a woman who participated in it and had fun with it, who thought it went well, and was generally happy about the whole thing. Most everyone else on Teh Internets heard about it from The Ferrett. In real life, the Ferrett is a perfectly pleasant, albeit clearly unfiltered, sort of guy; I had a breakfast with a group that included him and his wife at Penguicon and had fun talking with him, not about open source boobs, but who would win in battle: a bear or a shark (I went with the shark). Sadly for The Ferret, in the entry in which he wrote about OSB, he comes across as generally skeevetastic, especially if you don’t know him; the people who don’t know him constitutes most of Teh Internets. The Ferrett now has to live with the mess. That’s his online karma. He does seem to accept it.
My point is, however, that me hearing about it in person from an enthusiastic female participant rather than from a guy writing about it on the ‘Net gave me a different starting point on it than most people got: a female positive one rather than male skeevetastic one. Your mileage may vary on this, of course. Nevertheless, I toss it out there for your consideration.