This question https://workplace.stackexchange.com/questions/31300/inspirational-transgender-people-in-the-field-of-technology has been put on hold as off topic, however it may be salvageable and does not really fit into any of the other SE sites.

According to the mod who closed it, the question is:

  1. Not about the workplace itself but the tech field
  2. Likely to generate lots of short/link answers when we strive for complete answers
  3. May be too opinion-based

So how do we want to handle this as a community?

1 Answer 1


First, let me start by saying that questions about transgender-related problems in the workplace would definitely be something I'd love to see our community help with. Solving problems in the workplace, especially the long-tail hard problems, is something we're good at doing, and it's why we're here.

No problem to solve

However, in this case, there's really no problem to solve. The post is essentially just asking us to compile a list of some known transgendered people in the tech industry. On Stack Exchange, the Q&A format works best when there are practical, everyday problems that lead to answers that teach, not just tell. This leads to answers that are ranked based on what the best solution is.

In this case, I don't see how we can really help with this using Q&A tools. Putting together a list of people in technology would actually be something more fit for a wiki, like Wikipedia or something similar to the Geek Feminism Wiki hosted on Wikia.com. Perhaps finding a home there, or creating another resource on Wikia would be the way to go. I'd suggest starting with wiki platforms in mind, since those resources are more tailored to hosting this type of list-based content.

Once that's done, if someone were to have a specific, real problem involving transgender issues in the workplace, and the question can be reasonably scoped to where there is a definitive question with a clear goal, then I encourage that person to ask it here, because answering clear questions about problems faced is what we do best.

Dig deeper for the real problem

With that said, when I see questions asking for lists, I can't help but think there's a problem hiding underneath the surface, a problem the asker isn't telling us about. So in this case, I suggest countering these polling questions with questions of your own in the comments, such as one or more of the following questions:

  • Can you tell us what are you hoping to have this person mentor you on?
  • What's making you ask a question about who the successful transgendered techies are?
  • Is there a problem you're facing that you can't solve without a mentor? How will this person help you?

Hopefully, one of the above clarifying questions might uncover the problem the person is trying to solve. If we find what that problem is by teasing it out of them, we can ask that person to edit the question to focus on that problem instead, so that our experts can help in more ways than just being a substitute for a search engine.

If you or anyone else is able to find the problem and need help editing, I encourage you to jump into our chat room, as we have some people who hang out in that room who are excellent editors. Hope this helps!

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