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Des Femmes Update July 2023
Upcoming IRL events, job opportunities, our mentorship program, and why we're so passionate about privacy tech
Sterling here again to say hello and welcome back to the Des Femmes newsletter!
Our first meetup of summer 2023, in New York City at the bitcoin-themed bar PubKey, was amazing. I wasn’t able to attend, but I look forward to meeting some of you myself in Europe later this year.
Speaking of IRL events, we have some details in this issue about our upcoming mentorship program, in addition to our community spotlight and job opportunities. But first, a word about privacy tech.
Why We’re So Passionate About Privacy Tech
Many believe that using a pseudonym or attempting to mask your identity means you have bad intentions. It’s true—there are plenty of bad actors out there who keep their identities hidden for heinous, unsavory reasons. You could even argue that anonymity has allowed an unnecessarily hostile environment to fester and thrive on the internet.
However, many (including myself) argue that privacy also protects us. Mia Valentine wrote about OPSEC risks and strategies for public personas in our 2021 issue of Des Femmes Magazine. Plus, for those who don’t live in stable democracies, privacy can truly be a matter of life or death.
Control of our privacy protects our sovereignty, which in turn protects our safety.
I was thinking about this recently while attending a conference (which happened to be DeFi and privacy-oriented). The main after party was ABBA-themed, and I decided to dress up a little bit.
And by a little bit, I mean a wig, make-up, and carefully curated outfit.
While I had told some people that I would be dressing on theme, no one seemed to really recognize me. No one approached me on their own, but once I initiated a conversation, most people immediately knew who I was.
I didn’t feel any different, and I didn’t think I looked that much different. But when I realized that people didn’t recognize me at all, I felt empowered. It was like I could revoke people’s access to me, block them even. I had complete control over who I interacted with.
This IRL experience of “blocking” people or switching myself to “private” was so, so liberating. It was like I could clearly separate my work self from my personal self.
For some, that separation between our public and private identities feels like a natural, inherent part of their profession (teachers, sex workers, therapists, etc). However, for most of us, we’ve chosen to share large portions of ourselves with both the internet and our real-world acquaintances, especially via social media platforms like Instagram.
It might be worth taking back some of those pieces and choosing social platforms like Nostr or Bluesky, where we can own our data and reduce affiliations with our legal names (if we want to).
How do you practice smart privacy? Do you use private messaging apps like Signal? Privacy-oriented browsers? Zeko-knowledge cryptocurrencies? Bitcoin privacy tools like mixers? We’d love to know and share your tips with the Des Femmes community!
We'd like to introduce you to Danielle Cleaver, a fan of the Des Femmes community since its inception. Over the past five years, she's been integral to her Bay Area community by creating safe, vibrant spaces for groups of all types. From writing workshops to interactive parties and community-building retreats - she designs experiences that foster inspiration and presence with a heart-centered and detail-oriented approach.
She has a triple virgo knack for organizing people around their passion for art and need for gathering, and uses her background in education and UX research program management to plan specialized events that flow and help attendees discover. She is currently freelancing as a project manager for several art festivals and open to consulting on your next endeavor (if you want to reach out, you can email her at email@example.com).
Thesis is looking for a Senior Creative Developer. They want someone with Typescript experience who can prototype quickly and efficiently, but also knows that done is better than perfect. A remote-first company, Thesis is a cryptocurrency venture studio that supports products and protocols in cryptocurrency and decentralized businesses enabling sovereignty and privacy. If you’re interested in applying, send your resume to leigh [at] desfemmesmagazine.com and we can connect you if it might be a good fit.
We also encourage any badass lady in the community who is looking for a job to upload her resume and skills to the Women in Blockchain career development portal.
Both Des Femmes and WiB have collectively achieved what was to us unimaginable: offered networking tools; sponsored travel, accommodation and tickets to conferences; written and published research pieces; presented career opportunities; offered educational resources; increased diversity in panels; made lots of new friends; and so much more.
Speaking of friends, wanna join our first IRL events in Europe in Q4 2023? If so, save the date for October 1-6 and keep reading.
2023 Mentorship Program
Later this year we’ll be expanding our network above and beyond, with our first IRL event in Europe from October 1-6, including our 2023 mentorship training program. There are only 6 more spaces left for women to participate in this year’s program. Let us know you’d like to join and offer a peer-led workshop (so far we’ve got offers for Nostr for beginners, Github for non-programmers, financial wellness, and dominatrix negotiation tactics for non-sex workers), by reserving your spot today!
We’ll be working remotely, together, with 4 hours a day of group activities a day, while the rest is free reign for whatever you want. This isn’t sponsored (yet!) and isn’t about profits either, as we’re transitioning away from the LLC to make our peer-led community events more sustainable. So every woman is paying her own way, $2,500 (to @desfemmesmag via Venmo or via our website). If you’re interested in more details, email leigh [at] desfemmesmagazine.com. We look forward to planning a once in a lifetime opportunity with you!
Until next time, stay curious!
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