July Party — “With Courtesy and Respect: A Primer on Being Basically Decent Towards Trans People”

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In recent years, the transgender community has become increasingly visible, with singers, soldiers, journalists, game designers and more coming out as trans, and trans activists of all ages crusading for equal rights around the world. With numerous trans people involved in the geek and gaming communities, you may easily find yourself interacting with members of this diverse community as co-workers, employees and fans.
This month’s talk will offer a basic overview of transgender identity and a primer on preferred terminology (as well as a few words you should avoid like the plague) before explaining how you can help support your trans co-workers, how you can be the world’s best boss to trans employees, and how you can build trans-friendly and trans-inclusive games. We’ll also touch on games and blogs that can give you some insight into trans identity and the struggle trans people face every day before moving on to an extra-long Q&A to address any lingering questions.
Cassandra Lease has been a QA tester for five years, an active participant in the QUILTBAG and feminist communities for over a decade, a gamer for over twenty years and an unabashed geek since birth. Though she began her career as a freelance writer on tabletop games such as Kenzer & Company’s HackMaster, she’s spent the last few years in the video game industry, testing such titles as Dungeons & Dragons Online for Turbine/WB Games and Bioshock Infinite for Irrational Games. She’s organized the annual QUILTBAG Gamer Meetup during PAX East for three years running, and pulled together the Girls’ Meetup/Ladies’ Brunch during PAX East 2013. Her current projects include a queer supernatural romance novel entitled Fall and early conceptual work on a semi-autobiographical game tentatively called Have You Tried Not Being A Monster? Her thoughts on fandom, equal rights, gaming and more can be found on Twitter and on her blog, Diary of a Random Fangirl.
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