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Thread: CDs in the computer tech field.

  1. #1
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    CDs in the computer tech field.

    Hey beautiful people! Question for those of you in the Computer tech field. Do you find it is more accepted to dress in the industry, or still pretty taboo. I am in my 2nd year of a computer science degree and have been wondering about what other people's experiences have been. Does your position allow you to telecommute and offer dressing freedom?
    Thanks!
    Hope all is well!
    - Still Choosing an "En Femme" Name

  2. #2
    Gold Member bridget thronton's Avatar
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    Telecommuting is not as common as you would think - a lot of the job is managing client expectations as well as working with other team members. Hard to do without occasional face to face contact. Most large companies seem to be more concerned with your skills than clothing - but I would not say they all embrace us with open arms.

  3. #3
    Martini Girl Katey888's Avatar
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    It'd be nice to think that things might be improving for us in some ways, but I somehow doubt that overall change is that rapid.. so I'll say what I always say about CD and jobs...

    Think very carefully about revealing your CD side to anyone, anyway in the work environment. While there might be some protection against discrimination in the workplace (depending on where in the world you are) there is absolutely zero protection against discrimination in people's minds, and particularly the minds of bigots and idiots... Sadly, a lot of them occupy positions of power in the workplace, and they can make someone's life hell and do it all without breaking any laws. I won't say it's necessarily widespread, but why risk reputation, credibility, prospects, livelihood, career, just to dress... unless you really need to, but that probably asks a different question.

    I've worked from home in my dressing gown, t-shirt and shorts; I've worked from hotel rooms dressed - unless you're video conferencing it doesn't make that much difference does it?

    Katey x
    "Put some lipstick on - Perfume your neck and slip your high heels on
    Rinse and curl your hair - Loosen your hips, and get a dress to wear"
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  4. #4
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    Bigger tech companies are going to be pretty tolerant of transgendered individuals. (A big chunk of the fortune 500). Smaller companies - it just varies from place to place.

    My job let's me telecommute, and I'd say tech is in general much more accepting of TG folks than any other industry.

  5. #5
    Platinum Member Beverley Sims's Avatar
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    The computer field is full of geeks, we are all too busy survuving to worry about others.

    It is dog eat dog,"And just don't step into my patch."

    We all get on though.
    Work on your elegance,
    and beauty will follow.

  6. #6
    Junior Member Robert's Avatar
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    I used to work with a software developer who wore hoop earrings, full make up, and a dress on occasions. Other times he would wear cargo pants and a tee shirt. We never knew what he would roll up wearing on any given day.

    He could cut code with the best of them, and was extremely clever and organised. After a short while it ceased to be an issue for the rest of the team. It did tend to freak out the new starters though.

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    Unless you work for a large corporation with one of those "open and affirming" policies (don't take those as gospel either), proceed carefully. It is hard enough job market out there (and only going to get worse in coming years), you don't want any read for someone to pass you over or fire you if they downsize. Bringing your crossdressing into a workplace is generally a bad idea, unless you feel you have to transition and such, because it is the kind of thing that can only hurt you.

    A word of advice: Though it does not have anything to do with dressing itself, it is a highly competitive field and as someone who was in your situation let me give you a little advice: Learn a marketable skill in addition to your studies so that if your IT career does not pan out you have something to fall back on. I REALLY learned this the hard way after my IT career didn't pan out in the long run. The job market is only going to get worse in the coming years, make sure you have other desirable skills you can put to work, even if you have to work for yourself for a while.

  8. #8
    Senior Member mikiSJ's Avatar
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    35 years ago I was applying for a job at HP (Palo Alto) and as I was being given the tour, I came across a very obvious guy in a dress. He (and I use that pronoun explicitly) didn't care about his appearance and neither did the rest of his group.

    I think you have to look at the region you are employed at versus the field. I doubt this guy would have found acceptance in Oklahoma, regardless of his skill set.
    When writing the next chapter in your life, start with a pencil and eraser - my first page as Miki is full of eraser marks.

  9. #9
    Breakin' social taboos TGMarla's Avatar
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    I'm a tech, and I even own my own company. My clients would be horrified if I showed up at their businesses crossdressed. As for remote support, well, I suppose one could dress as one pleased, but that's only if you're safely behind your computer in the comfort of your own home. I don't think this field is any more or less accepting of crossdressers as any other field. But I don't work much with other techs, nor do I work for a company that has any kind of rules regarding crossdressing. I did work for Gateway back in the day, and they were very relaxed when it came to transgender people.

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  10. #10
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    Tech companies tend to be more relaxed about this because transsexuals in particular are over represented in tech. You find a lot of us in tech. (You find a lot of us in the military too - but that's a different story!)

  11. #11
    Member freeindress's Avatar
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    I could CD at will when I was a phd student (later dropout), almost nobody complained. Things changed when I got a job in education
    It is probably unsafe to go to a job interview in drag unless you are already so famous and skilled that those who don't know your name can't afford your services

  12. #12
    AndreaSC/CD
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    Network Admin here...would dress if I could at work, but not acceptable. Small company with a CEO, I mean EEO, that is quick on the trigger to fire over looking at him the wrong way.
    Andrea SC
    Where are my heels?

  13. #13
    Gold Member bridget thronton's Avatar
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    A little off topic, but I am a little more optimistic about the job outlook for software developers. I teach computer science and software engineering in ABET accredited programs - my students have 3 to 5 job offers before they graduate with good companies and very good salaries (up $20k from 2012). If you love the field go for it LovelyGeek - the future looks pretty good.

  14. #14
    Senior Member MsVal's Avatar
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    My advice as one that has been in the IT field since 1971 is to abandon individuality of that nature until you are known to be incredibly talented.

    In any job, not just IT, until you become established *AND* have a reputation that speaks good of you, it's wise to be the generic worker in a plain brown wrapper. Keep your head down and blend in with your colleagues. You realize that along the path to becoming established and respected you WILL make mistakes and you WILL have problems. It's to your great disadvantage to be easily identifiable when they happen.

    Best wishes
    MsVal

  15. #15
    Member KaceyR's Avatar
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    Pretty much most has already been said.
    Myself I work IT (networking and support) but for a major retailer (so non-IT base in business).
    Their rules as I've read it is that there's provisions for transgendered as far as for handling those that are changing,etc.
    But they don't consider just CDing as part of that allowance.

    Basically, one did a full MtF transition in my building 2-3 years ago.
    While I don't know on the specifics of parts in the process of her change, what was allowed when, what was told when to the company,etc. But later when she was legally name/identity changed, an announcement was done to everyone (thru email) explaining her change and the work policies.. Explaining her legal name change and such.

    But CDing from a corporate view, is a murky grey area.. They can accept more and handle things once you're "legally" changed in some way (name, surgeries proven thru doctors,etc) but for just general expression or gender investigation it's not there yet.
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  16. #16
    Junior Member Kristina_nolagirl's Avatar
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    Friend of mine works in tech for a large company in downtown SF as an engineer. She is able to work from wherever and frequently goes to the library dressed! Lol. We have talked about her going into the office and she claims that she could with no issues and knows of 2 people who are transitioning at her company. She has no plans to transition so I don't think she plans on ever going in dressed but I think it's great that there are people transitioning there with no problems.

    I think the demand for engineers in the valley is so great right now, if you have talent most big companies don't care how their non- customer facing employees dress.
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  17. #17
    Girl from the Eagles Nest reb.femme's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kristina_nolagirl View Post
    .............I think the demand for engineers in the valley is so great right now, if you have talent most big companies don't care how their non- customer facing employees dress.
    I'm just checking out my passport and applying for my visa now.......at least we'll get to see if they want an old, crossdressing Limey! I'll give them 3 prejudices to consider .

    I work for a very large international company but as others have said, company policy may be all PC but many of the employees are less so. I'm a network support tech but I don't consider any of my colleagues as people I would out myself to. Proven in a couple of conversations I've had with them. Keep it under your hat and live your life without issue in your own time.

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  18. #18
    Blondes Have More Fun Jennifer Kelly's Avatar
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    I work in IT but as a desktop support tech. Those jobs are getting harder and harder to find, so unless I was going to transition (no desire for that currently), I would keep Jennifer out of the workplace. If you can work remotely it might be different, but unless you're going to transition or you're just that damn good at your job, I'd advise against going into the office or a client site dressed.

  19. #19
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    I used to be an It network engineer for Telstra (Australia equivalent of AT&T). There was a TG person who decided to come to work dressed. He (she) ended up commiting suicide.
    Since I have no intention of going down that track Im going to keep quiet at work and would recommend anyone considering coming out at work to do the same whatever career you are in.
    Its so nice to live in a fantasy world (internet land) and talk and believe we are women but you would be very lucky if your work would agree and accept our fantasy world. Im not talking about legal requirements just everyday peoples reactions...We live in a sad sad world....
    Last edited by Ellie52; 02-27-2014 at 07:25 AM.

  20. #20
    Just a touch of class Lynn Marie's Avatar
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    Big companies have HR departments that feel the need to write company policies on just about every scenario known to man, woman, and anything in between. It's mostly just BS! All the same prejudices and expectations are still there, just kept a little below the surface so they will simply appear equal opportunity.

  21. #21
    Gender adventurer JamieG's Avatar
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    I think tech companies are likely to be more forward thinking. Bell Labs had a Lesbian/Gay group and mailing list in the early 80s. However, trans always lags a bit. Lynn Conway was fired from IBM in 1968 for being transexual. But she went on to later be an Associate Dean of Engineering at U. Michigan. I am not out where I work, but that is more by choice than necessity. I wouldn't be fired, but I don't want people to treat my family differently.

  22. #22
    Member devida's Avatar
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    I do all my own coding and I've never worked for an IT company, though I've done some consulting and freelance so I kinda know the field and have known plenty of people in the industry. My impression was always that programmers were completely uninterested in anything except your programming chops, that there were more kinky people in IT than anywhere else, and that most companies would allow you to work in a gorilla suit if you were a facile enough code monkey. If it increased your productivity they would encourage it. Of course there are idiots who think that so called moral values trump productivity but in this kind of business they really don't last long. Just learn how to be a fast, flexible, and clever programmer and nobody will care if you come dressed as a Mardi Gras Indian or Marilyn Monroe with a blown up skirt as long as you make the firm money.

  23. #23
    Member LadyInRed's Avatar
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    a lot of it will depend on who you work with, the company you work for, and whether or not you are client facing.
    i'm a code monkey myself and while my company would have no problems with it my current clients wouldn't either, my direct team lead is a little closed minded and has caused problems for people she has issues with in the past, (lgbt person) and because it was all kept within the legal guidelines of the company, they could do nothing about it.
    i know of other clients in my company that would have serious problems if they found out how i dress under my jeans.
    so really it's a really clear "it depends"
    Jamie Dee

  24. #24
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    As mentioned by others, some of it has to do with the company you're working with, but it's also dependent on the industry. Some industries foster the close minded thinking, and as a result, quite a bit of hostility can arise. I still remember when I was out in a factory at one point a few years back, and seeing an intern getting razzed harshly about his pierced ear (of all things).

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