Yesterday Shakesville, one of my favorite sources of news and criticism, pointed me to an amusing online tool: the Gender Analyzer. This idiot website reads a website and somehow comes to a conclusion on the gender of the writer. Yesterday, it was 62% certain that I am a woman. Today it is even more certain (65%). Who knows what it will say when I update again?
I am unspeakably amused by this. Doubly so as the guy who that he can walk into a gay bar wearing a skirt, nails painted red, and more jewelry than anyone else there … and be mistaken for straight.
Now, the reality of the matter is somewhat more complicated than that. I am male bodied, and generally pass as cisgendered. I don’t actually identify as male, I just let people assume that when explaining that I’m third-gender/genderqueer in a magical-transgressive-shamanic-liminal-brainfuck sense is just way too much work … which, admittedly, is most of the time. In the simplest terms my gender identity is not so much “male” as “witch”. Of course that’s too much for most people to people to parse, let alone a program trained on a measly 2000 cherry-picked blogs.
Further, as Melissa points out, a legit AI experiment would explain more about the rubrics in play. As it is, it reads to me as some sort of bizarre internet gender-shaming devise. It’s also pretty damn clueless. For reference, as I was composing this digression I checked out how several of my favorite bloggers rate:
* Rufus Opus is “quite gender neutral” but also probably (52%) a woman. Which is odd, because he always struck me as fairly butch.
* Scylla rates almost identically (51%) to RO. Right this time, though only barely.
* The Wild Hunt is also identified correctly, though they’re only 65% sure.
* The Tiger Beatdown is probably a man, but also “quite gender neutral” … despite the majority of contributors to the front page being women.
* Deborah is also correctly identified, and they’re somehow much more certain about her (75%)
Food for thought, y’all.