By: Allison Mankin
Date: July 6, 2016
During nearly every IETF meeting since 1993, an informal gathering of women participants, the Systers, has taken place. We chose the name Systers as an answer to the late Anita Borg’s call for women in computer systems to support and celebrate each other.
In 2013 and 2014, gifts by Comcast, EMC, and Verisign Labs established a lunch fund for the gathering. For most of the participants, the Systers gathering is a chance to catch up with friends across all areas of the IETF, to employ an informal mentoring and information gathering forum, and to encourage each other in a largely male-dominated field.
The Systers IETF list, firstname.lastname@example.org, offers this kind of support before and after the face-to-face meetings. The list is for Systers involved in IETF topics—both technical and specific to women. Traffic is typically light with some discussions, but mostly for organizing per meeting gatherings. The list is open to any woman interested in the IETF, whether she participates only by mail or also in person.
If you are interested in learning more about the Systers or contributing to our fund, please contact email@example.com.