[hackerspaces] hackerspace demographics

Nathaniel Bezanson myself at telcodata.us
Mon Jan 14 22:27:31 CET 2013

This piqued my curiosity. 
Since this post a few days ago, I've counted the people in the space, each night. It's funny, because on paper our membership is about 80% male, but if you look at the people who actually show up and participate, it's a lot more even -- roughly 60/40 most of the time. Our president, secretary, and treasurer all happen to be women. We get our share of contact requests from outsiders asking to interview or otherwise get in touch with female members, and the majority of these are met with baffled indifference.
Q: So, why do you write these strong female characters?A: Because you’re still asking me that question.-- Joss Whedon
We don't accept minors as members, but there are several who drag their parents to the space on a regular basis, and one who's informally planning his 18th-birthday-midnight membership signup. Of the folks in the space most often, the majority are in our twenties and thirties, but there's a substantial 55-plus contingent, and our oldest member (and one of the most active) is 70.
The thing about having children in the household is interesting, though, as that's one of our main member-drains -- new parents don't have time for hackerspaces! We've lost our last CEO and a handful of other formerly-very-active members, when the little ones arrived and their priorities changed. I can't imagine an outreach effort that would change that, nor should it!
So if you don't mind my asking, Katie, and I say this in honest curiosity, what would such a mission look like? 
Katie Bechtold  wrote:> "Over eight in ten (81%) are male with a median age of 44. Participants also report a high median household income of $106,000 and nearly three-quarters (73%) own their home or apartment. Most are married or living as married with nearly four in ten reporting children under the age of 17 living in the household."
> Wouldn't it be great to have a mission to bring some of the millions of people *outside* that demographic into this community?
> -- 
> Katie      http://about.me/katiebechtold                
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