Techies Are Having A Sad That People Won’t Just Call Them ‘Almighty Creators’ Instead
Oh hello, tech people who have in no fashion ever been historically oppressed as a group for being tech people! Were you feeling left out of any discussion of entrenched racism or sexism or classism or anti-GLBT things because they weren’t about you? Then why not start being super sad about the shorthand term people use for referring to your demographic?
At the local micro-roasteries – Sightglass, Fourbarrel and Blue Bottle Coffee – not one of the many young people camped out with espressos and laptops wanted to be called a techie.
Dan Gailey, a 30-year-old tech entrepreneur who was recently working at Four Barrel, said he didn’t identify as a “techie” – and thinks it’s actually a pretty rude term.
“If you use the word ‘techie,’ we know you’re not in tech,” said the Mission District resident. “A lot of negative terms like that – yuppie, hipster – are outsider terms. We don’t call each other techies – at all, ever.”
The preferred terms, he said, are “hackers,” “makers” or “coders.”
We’re trying to figure out how to start unpacking the stupid whininess here, but you guys it is really hard to do so. Is it the snotty “if you use this term, we know you’re not one of us” statement that is sort of mebbe a little bit at odds for any cry for acceptance? Is it the “please call us what we want to be called: gods, lords, and rulers” nonsense? This is a trick question because none of those things are as dumb as this thing:
[Tech venture capital guy Enrique Landa] felt the word “techie” fit into a long history of words used by natives to describe immigrant groups.
“Whenever you get a mass migration of a new wave of people, you get a negative connotation from the people who were there before – like Mexicans in the Mission. The new wave always gets a bad rap.”
Comparing tech immigrants to the Mexican immigrants may be hard – Twitter’s IPO just made an estimated 1,600 new millionaires – but, for Landa, the term “techie” connotes “unwanted newcomer” in much the same way as racial slurs.
Listen. While we here at Happy generally decry the privilege/oppression sweepstakes discussion because comparing historical oppression and who had it worse is a dumb exercise, we need to make an important exception to this rule and say SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP YOU NONSENSE PEOPLE. Getting called a name that is used, perhaps somewhat derisively, to denote a group of people who are reviled mainly for swarming the coffee shops and driving up rent costs is not exactly take to the lunch counters and storm the barricades level stuff. But we do have much meaner things we are now prepared to call you, most of which verge into slurs about the size of your brain being inversely proportionate to the size of your ego.
Aww, you know what? We’re probably being too hard on these nitwits. Everyone wants to claim their own name. For example: we no longer wish to be called “bloggers” because that term denotes an unshaven cheetos-eating basement-dwelling keyboard-pounding schmuck, but we are so much more than that! For example, we are not unshaven! And we dwell in a small office right outside the bedroom. And we enjoy Doritos far more, so suck it, stereotypes. Besides, we never call ourselves a term as gauche as “bloggers.” We prefer “e-wordsmiths” because that really gets at the heart of our amazing craft. We will also accept “lords of the new church” because it reflects what powerful thought-leadering we are doing. We’re also going to reclaim “citizen journalist” which is a term everyone now hates to be called even though internet e-wordsmith gods invented that term to describe ourselves. Please start simultaneously worshipping us and sympathizing with our terrible marginalization immediately.