Frequently Asked Questions about Genderfork

Q: What’s Genderfork?

A: Genderfork is a supportive community for the expression of identities across the gender spectrum. Our primary space,, is a blog that offers images, thoughts, identities, and conversations from gender variant people and their extended communities. We also curate a special feed of anonymous thoughts just for Twitter, and we have a wildly active fan page on Facebook. Lately, we’ve also been branching out in to Tumblr.

Q: Who’s behind this?

A: The site was founded in 2007 by Sarah Dopp, a genderqueer woman in San Francisco who likes to build websites. In late 2008, she started inviting members of the community to help manage the content. Today, the site is entirely volunteer-run (though Sarah still helps with the big picture stuff). You can meet these amazing volunteers over here.

Q: Why do you make me feel so warm and fuzzy?

A: Because that’s what we’re going for. We are a supportive, celebratory project that’s out to shine a big spotlight on how freaking lovable everyone is. One of the ways we do this is the “Mom Test.” If we’re pretty sure that Sarah Dopp’s mom would be at least somewhat comfortable with a piece of content, then we figure it’s probably okay for the rest of the world, too. (Sarah, by the way, has an awesome mom.)

Q: Where’s all this content coming from?

A: Most of our content is sent to us by members of the community. We offer easy ways to submit thoughts, profiles, recommendations, questions, and photos directly through our website. We also find a lot of our photos on Flickr, and we pull videos from places like YouTube.

Q: You said you were blogging one of my Flickr photos, but I haven’t seen it posted yet. Where is it?

A: It usually takes 3-6 weeks for a photo to show up on our site after we’ve decided to blog it. We should also mention that occasionally we decide not to run a photo at the last minute. There are many possible reasons for this, so if you’re really curious about yours, you can ask us.

Q: You contacted me on Flickr, and I don’t want my photo blogged. What should I do?

A: Oh, shoot, we’re sorry about that. Fortunately, there’s no need to panic — it will probably be weeks before it shows up on our site. Just tell us right away that you don’t want it up there, and we’ll take it out of the system. You can either send a Flickr message to the volunteer who left you the comment, or you can email us: editor at genderfork dot com. Please include a link to your Flickr photo so we can find it in our records quickly. (And again, sorry, we didn’t mean to scare you.)

If you want to stop people from blogging your photos in general, you should go to your Flickr Account Privacy Settings page and change the “Who can blog your stuff” setting. You have the power to make that “Blog This” button (which is what we use) disappear.

Q: You blogged one of my things! I’m so excited! How can I get you to blog more of my stuff?

A: Yay, we’re glad you like us! One of the points we’re trying to make here is that there are tons of us… and one of the downsides of making that point is that we really only want to represent you once (although sometimes we do slip up and show people more than once — it’s not on purpose). We hope you’re still proud of the piece we picked.

You can become a familiar member of our community by leaving frequent comments under a recognizable name (be sure to set up a Gravatar so your photo shows up, too).

Q: I submitted something to you directly awhile ago, and I haven’t seen it on the site. Why not? Did you reject it?

A: We loved it! And we love you! And your submission is hanging out in a carefully organized pile of Stuff We Want to Blog. The only problem is that this pile is frighteningly large. There are a lot of you sending us stuff. Way more than we expected. We talk a little more about this over here.

Please think of us as an interesting publication with a lively discussion attached to it — not as a social networking site. When you submit something, you’re just offering it up to us as a possibility. If you have something that you absolutely need to get out into the world right away, we recommend putting it in a comment, or using other spaces on the Internet that are much better for instant gratification. Thanks for understanding this.

Q: Why don’t I see more [insert group here] represented on your site?

A: This is the hardest part of our work, and we know we’re not doing a perfect job. We try to show a diverse mix of genders, ages, ethnicities, body types, classes, styles, cultures, and anything else we can think of, but we’re also limited by what material is sent to us, and what’s on the copyright-friendly resources we pull photos and videos from. If you’re seeing an under-abundance of something you care about, the best thing you can do is go find it, and send it to us as a recommendation. We guarantee you that someone else who reads the site will be very, very grateful.

Q: I’m still learning all this new gender lingo. Can you create a glossary to help me out so I don’t say the wrong thing?

A: I’m not sure if this is comforting or scary, but the truth is: so are we. We can’t commit to a set of words and definitions because they still seem to change every day — and differently, depending on what city or culture you’re in. We recommend listening to the language other people are using, and then speaking carefully, and with respect. Always care more about the people than the words, and you’ll be fine.

Q: What are your commenting policies?

A: It’s pretty simple: “Be nice.” We consider ourselves a welcoming doorway into the rich world of gender variance. As a result, we don’t let discussions to turn into heated debates, and we minimize our criticisms of one another. (There’s plenty of room for all that elsewhere on the Internet.) And we sure as heck don’t allow any hatred.

If you see a comment or discussion that’s not very nice, please don’t respond to it. Just email sarah at genderfork dot com so we can cool it off or take it down. Thanks!

Q: This whole “loving ourselves” thing is nice and all, but I’m ready to move on to more serious conversations. What’s the best way to do that?

A: Awesome! We’ve started a list of some of our favorite other resources on our site sidebar. You might also want to revisit all the things our community has recommended for some more gems. There’s plenty of stuff that our world still needs, so if you decide to start something new, do come back and tell us about it. And please keep in touch!

Q: I have more questions. Where should I send them?

A: Send them to sarah at genderfork dot com, and she’ll try to help.

Thank you for being here!

Okay, take me back to the beautiful stuff »