WNBR gender imbalance again

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    • #12029
      Ed
        • Wales, UK
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        @ed

        I’ve been seeing a few short videos from this year’s London WNBR. Several of them got over a thousand participants, which is great, but it looks like the gender imbalance towards men is as bad as ever if not worse.

        My local WNBR doesn’t take place until next month and I’m hoping to attend that, but I’m wondering if that will be as one-sided too?

        Are there any WNBRs in the world where naked women outnumber naked men? Maybe different local cultures have different views on nudity?

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      • #12037
        David
          • UK
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          @ibi2004

          Get rid of misogny and there wouldn’t be gender imbalance.

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          • #12038
            Ed
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              @ed

              Is there misogyny in WNBR?

              • #12039
                David
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                  @ibi2004

                  There’s misogny in the world.

                  During most wnbr rides there is misogny by photographers spectating mainly at the beginning as clothes come off.

                • #12042
                  Ed
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                    @ed

                    You are right, but also a little unkind in that.

                    Men are FAR more likely to be into photography (and therefore to have the intrusive, large-lensed cameras) than women. I don’t have the statistics to hand, but it’s something like 8 or 9 to 1. Men love naked women (which isn’t misogyny, it’s biology), but the sort of geeky men who have big cameras and are willing to travel to an event like that, are (in my experience over the years) likely to be less socially confident, less confident with women and almost certainly not getting as much sex as they would like. Most importantly, they often (but not always) lack the social skills/awareness or empathy to act as women usually prefer.

                    For some of them, WNBR is the only female nudity they are going to see in real life this year so they are desperate.

                    That doesn’t excuse the behaviour or make it any more tolerable but it’s also completely unrealistic to expect it to go away. My local one doesn’t allow cameras in the screened-off preparation area, which probably helps a little.

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                  • #13352
                    NudeNik
                      • Sussex, England
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                      @nudenik

                      I went on a number of WNBRs in London when we lived there and have returned for a few since. I usually went with the same small group of friends. We mostly went to the start point in Hyde Park. In earlier years people met up to get naked and body paint each other in an open part of the park. Later rides saw some screening off of the start area to allow a bit of privacy. Prior to that we’d witnessed an increasing number of ‘photographers’ behaving in a very intrusive manner, Some had expensive cameras with changable lenses but many had the smaller digital cameras and even  more just used their phones. About 99% of these photographers were male and many were young, possibly seeing their first public nuidty judging from their excitement levels.

                      My friends and I were all long time nudists, well experienced in both social and public nudism. We found the lack of respect too much, so it was likely to be much worse if you were young, female amd new to public nudity. Like many other riders we loved the opportunities to be naked in well known public places and to interact with onlookers and posed with and for them, But there was much more respect in the interactions with them than what we’d seen from the ‘photographers’ at the start. We spoke to other riders and found that they had similar thoughts to us.

                      We stopped going.

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                    • #13354
                      Ed
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                        @ed

                        It’s clearly a growing problem. It’s sad and something needs to be done, but I’m not sure what’s the best way to handle it.

                        Intrusive onlookers is one of the key reasons why I keep the location of experiment sessions a secret (and ask participants to maintain that secret so I can reuse locations in future).

                        I know a huge majority of professional photographers are men but that’s no excuse for the scenes you describe. Most men don’t get to see female nudity in real life so events like WNBR are like an intense attraction for them.

                  • #12103
                    Ed
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                      @ed

                      I’ve heard a couple of times that the WNBR organisers are working to fix the imbalance but nobody seems able to let me know what they are doing.

                      We could certainly use some pointers!

                       

                       

                       

                       

                       

                       

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                    • #12115
                      Ed
                        • Wales, UK
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                        @ed

                        Maybe it’s time to open another discussion here on how to attract more women to get involved?

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                        • #12118
                          Gary
                          Participant
                            • Cambridgeshire, UK
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                            @gary

                            The trouble is that you really need the women in the group to say what would help them be more active and/or not stop them taking part

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                            • #12126
                              Ed
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                                @ed

                                There have been women in the group over the years and some have offered extensive advice on the subject. Most of the changes to attract and keep female members have been suggested by female members.

                                Our most recent female member seems to have vanished without trace.

                                 

                                I get a similar problem with the Naked Experiments. Women are often very keen to take part but then don’t want to do it again. From what I’ve been told there’s no problem with the experiments, it’s just something they wanted to try out and now they have. No need to do it again. I suspect this community has the same effect.

                                There’s also the other thing that everytime a female member starts posting comments etc. a sizeable chunk of the male membership immediately sends “Friend” requests and starts private messaging.

                                Someone suggested (sorry, I can’t remember who) that we should ban men messaging women and that men should ONLY be allowed to reply. It’s probably a good solution, but the forum system doesn’t support that and if I set it as a site rule, it’s going to be hard to enforce.

                              • #12127
                                Ed
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                                  @ed

                                  That’s another advantage of the experiments. It’s totally anonymous and no-one can message you or send a friend request afterwards.

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                            • #12171
                              Ed
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                                @ed

                                I can see from the site stats that there are several ladies regularly visiting the site. If any of you have any suggestions that would improve the community for you or encourage you to take part, please let me know. If you prefer to remain anonymous to the rest of the community, you can private message me instead here.

                                Please give me some feedback!

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                                • #12227
                                  Ed
                                    • Wales, UK
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                                    @ed

                                    Well that hasn’t worked yet 🙁

                                • #12261
                                  Ed
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                                    @ed

                                    I just don’t know how to get female members to get more involved in the community. I am at a loss.

                                    • #12265
                                      Bamaswitch
                                        • Alabama, US
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                                        @bamaswitch

                                        Yeah. If you could get a few to participate, other women would feel more comfortable. I’m afraid the way men act in general, especially online, is a deterrent.

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                                        • #12266
                                          Ed
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                                            @ed

                                            Absolutely. There were many occasions when I’ve had to tell individual men to back off or stop contacting female members. On occasions I’ve banned people too. Of course, that’s where women let me know. If they don’t, I probably won’t be aware of it.

                                      • #12327
                                        David
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                                          @ibi2004

                                          I’m an admin of a naturist facebook site as well as a member of a fb group of other naturist/skinny group admins; its main activity is warning other naturist groups of predatory members.

                                          I can tell you that the majority of the complaints we all get are from inappropriate messaging from men to women. The second highest complaint is fake profiles that are mostly men pretending to be women.

                                          I think the best this website can do is be more equal in its library photos and blog videos.

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                                          • #12351
                                            Ed
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                                              @ed

                                              The men pretending to be women thing is mad. I’ve done many camchecks of “women” wanting to take part in the experiment sessions which have turned out to be men. It’s one of the two key reasons I insist on either meeting experiment participants or seeing them on camera before allowing them to attend an experiment session.

                                              One thing I’ve learned from hard experience is that if the blog videos don’t bias towards women, visitor counts collapse and the site dies quickly 🙁

                                              I’ve been told by a few women that photos/videos of naked men put them off staying on the site.

                                            • #12352
                                              Ed
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                                                @ed

                                                Inappropriate or (most commonly here) just busy messaging is a constant problem. One technique I’ve been told about but never tried, is to set up occasional trap accounts pretending to be female then issue warnings to all male members who inappropriately message it.

                                                It feels underhand but I guess it’s better than real female members being hassled by unwanted attention.

                                              • #13351
                                                NudeNik
                                                  • Sussex, England
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                                                  @nudenik

                                                  I’ve been a moderator/administrator on various nudist/naturist websites over the years, going back to the days of bulletin boards prior to the WWW. Getting female participation has always been much harder than that of men, much like it often is when you go to a UK nude beach there are many more nude men there.

                                                  Many of the female nudists/naturists that I know get fed up with the uninvited hassle they get from some men, so they only vist the beaches with partners and friends and are very low profile online.

                                                  Ed likes this

                                              • #12363
                                                Anonymous
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                                                  The proportion of self-posted photos that are male (very nearly all of them) probably roughly matches the proportion of active visitors who are male. It’s a bit of a catch-22. The quickest way for a woman to increase the proportion of female photos is for her to post some of herself, but will she do that when nearly all the other photos are male? I doubt it. I shouldn’t name names, and my memory isn’t that good in any case, but the two active female members I recall, both used photos of themselves to illustrate stories. One was the tale of her modelling her new fur coat, and nothing else, to her husband. The other (recent) one was enjoying doing a series of dares.

                                                  Is there a problem with photos that just say “look at me naked”? The only photo on this site that I’ve ever not wanted to see was just that. There was no context, just a naked photo with a caption telling people to look at it. I can see that kind of image could put people off, but also that different people will be put off by different kinds of photo.

                                                  Are women and men equally happy with photos that illustrate stories? I expect so, but I have no evidence either way. The art videos tell stories, and so do the stripgame/ forfeit/ dare ones like poor Maggie having to strip for her friends. On another site I visit sometimes, men and women, probably more women than men, post fully nude images to get some feedback on how their diet or health recovery or whatever is progressing. They almost always leave their heads off the shot, so it really does look like a request for feedback, not a “look at me naked!!!!” picture.

                                                  I’ve sometimes posted naked photos of me here. I’ve normally done that to illustrate a story or to make some kind of point about something or to try to be amusing, but I must also have posted some simply because I was in the mood to be seen naked and couldn’t be bothered to find a live audience. Maybe that’s not a good enough reason to post.

                                                  And just while I’m here, when it comes to excessive or inappropriate messaging, do we actually need the facility at all? I used it once when someone was trying to arrange for me and him to do a “receive a delivery naked” dare together. It didn’t work out but it wasn’t a problem. I’ve had a few (very few) folks message me just to say hello, and that’s not a problem either. But neither of those was essential to keeping the community alive. Both conversations could have happened in public (except perhaps if we’d got as far as needing to swap email addresses). I don’t know what the “friend” facility is here for – I can’t think of a current use for it. Would the system support limiting messages to just friends? That way, a woman could ignore or decline friend requests and wouldn’t have to put up with any unwelcome or unpleasant text.

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                                                  • #12364
                                                    Ed
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                                                      @ed

                                                      The two important uses are help/advice requests. I get several of those per week.

                                                      Also I use PMs to contact people who are breaking rules and to let them know about Community Supporter status either starting or ending. It’s vital for me as most people don’t seem to get my e-mails these days.

                                                      Paul likes this

                                                      • #12365
                                                        Anonymous
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                                                          So could you limit it to “message an administrator”?

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                                                        • #12368
                                                          Ed
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                                                            @ed

                                                            The options are ON or OFF. There’s nothing in between.

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                                                          • #12379
                                                            Anonymous
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                                                              That’s a shame, if it’s effectively driving members away (or being used for that purpose), but it is what it is.

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                                                        • #12387
                                                          Anonymous
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                                                            • Ace Poster

                                                            I don’t know if this belongs here or in a different thread but it shows Florence Pugh (I’m not actually sure who she is) showing off a nice pink dress. Apparently lots of people are outraged that everyone can see her nipples. When I googled for images, most of them (not these, obviously) were pixellated. I wonder how much of the absence of women from naked events is the inevitability that morons will try to body-shame them.

                                                            If we’re allowed to see a funny side, this does remind me of a cartoon I posted here a long time ago of a woman who had gone to see the doctor suffering from pixellated nipple syndrome.

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                                                            • #12415
                                                              Ed
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                                                                @ed

                                                                Outrage and offence are interesting things. Outrage is a misused term which is used to the point of becoming meaningless. People frequently describe themselves as “outraged” when they are nowhere near that put out.

                                                                Offence I find weird because many people think there is some right to not be offended. Obviously, there isn’t. There are many things in life which offend me, but I’m not going to go around making a fuss and attempting to influence (or, worse, control) other people’s lives.

                                                                Anyone who is truly “outraged” by seeing nipples clearly needs help.

                                                                Paul likes this

                                                                • #12421
                                                                  Anonymous
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                                                                    No shortage of spluttering from the self-righteous public!!!

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                                                              • #12446
                                                                Ed
                                                                  • Wales, UK
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                                                                  @ed

                                                                  If the law was changed so that taking photos or video at WNBR events was illegal and there were enough Police officers present to enforce that, would the event still be worthwhile?

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                                                                • #12597
                                                                  Anonymous
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                                                                    This image (from wikimedia commons)  illustrates the problem very well.

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                                                                  • #12599
                                                                    Arthur
                                                                      • Long Island, New York, United States
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                                                                      @shynudedude83

                                                                      @Prof Green

                                                                      “This image (from wikimedia commons) illustrates the problem very well.”

                                                                      I’ll say, the look on her face is absolutely priceless! You could see the way she is looking and smirking she is probably thinking I was probably going to be one of many naked women here, and now she’s like I’m the only naked woman here and all of these guys have cameras and I am going to be all over the Internet later!

                                                                      I’ll admit in the opposite situation if I showed up at an event where I thought there would be mixed nudity and I was only the only guy there naked with a bunch of dressed women, yeah it would be hot, but good God would it be uncomfortable and I would be feeling really awkward if they were all standing there with cameras and I think that I would be afraid to show my face in public for a while after that!

                                                                      But it is worse to be the only naked woman around a bunch of flesh hungry guys. Women outnumbered a naked guy would be embarrassing and get lots of amused laughter from women, that woman with all those dressed guys must feel like meat on a plate! Women have a harder time getting over the reputation of being that naked chick than guys would being that naked dude.

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                                                                    • #12601
                                                                      David
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                                                                        @ibi2004

                                                                        There was at least 50 nude women at london wnbr 2016.

                                                                         

                                                                        But that photo sadly is reflective. Blokes just not understanding boundaries.

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                                                                        • #12604
                                                                          Ed
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                                                                            @ed

                                                                            The problem there is also that we’re never going to change that. Men are visually stimulated, we like naked women and there will always be a (minority I believe) who won’t miss an opportunity to photograph women without their clothes.

                                                                             

                                                                            The only solution I can see is to hold the event in private but that instant defeats the object of it.

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                                                                            • #12607
                                                                              Anonymous
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                                                                                Not the whole event, but they could screen off a changing area so that individual naked participants didn’t have to run a gauntlet of male photographers on their own. Cycling as part of a group, even a small group, must be a much safer experience than having to squeeze through a mob of photographers to get to the start line or away from the finish line.

                                                                                Like so many naked activities, it would be great as fiction or an experiment or a dare or a forfeit but not great if that’s not why you’re there. In the photo, she presumably went there to protest or celebrate body freedom or whatever, but – from her face – she didn’t go there to be ogled at such close quarters.

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                                                                              • #12608
                                                                                Ed
                                                                                  • Wales, UK
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                                                                                  @ed

                                                                                  The Cardiff WNBR has certainly recently screened off the start point (I don’t know how long that’s been done). I assumed they all did to give participants somewhere to undress.

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                                                                            • #12697
                                                                              Ed
                                                                                • Wales, UK
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                                                                                @ed

                                                                                Does having a screened-off enclosure for participants to undress encourage more women to take part?

                                                                                Paul likes this

                                                                                • #12699
                                                                                  David
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                                                                                    @ibi2004

                                                                                    Screened area: It creates a safe space.

                                                                                    Does it encourage more women to take part? Marginally, because they have had to decide to arrive first. Perhaps the screened area gives them confidence to wear less or at some starts makes them decide to wear more or not bother.

                                                                                    It’s what they are seeing on the internet and media for the other 364 days a year that makes up their mind to arrive at the start.

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                                                                                • #12700
                                                                                  Arthur
                                                                                    • Long Island, New York, United States
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                                                                                    @shynudedude83

                                                                                    I don’t see how a changing area would affect attendance at a naked event. If the whole idea is to get naked simply being able to change without being seen doesn’t make you any less naked once you have already changed!

                                                                                    Paul likes this

                                                                                    • #12701
                                                                                      David
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                                                                                        @ibi2004

                                                                                        A high proportion of women at wnbr aren’t nude, on one ride i was on,  more than 3/4 weren’t.

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                                                                                      • #12702
                                                                                        Ed
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                                                                                          @ed

                                                                                          You are MUCH more of a target for photos while stationary and undressing than you are on a moving bike.

                                                                                          I know a lot of women object to crowds of men photographing them up close while they are undressing or getting bodypainted.

                                                                                          Paul likes this

                                                                                      • #12704
                                                                                        Arthur
                                                                                          • Long Island, New York, United States
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                                                                                          @shynudedude83

                                                                                          @Ed

                                                                                          “You are MUCH more of a target for photos while stationary and undressing than you are on a moving bike.

                                                                                          I know a lot of women object to crowds of men photographing them up close while they are undressing or getting bodypainted.”

                                                                                          A good point, in motion on a bike you can’t really get a real close up and personal look.

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                                                                                        • #12716
                                                                                          nude4funtoo
                                                                                            • Canada
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                                                                                            @keithandrew

                                                                                            where I live the bike ride was mainly male as well, tho a few females…this is Edmonton Alberta Canada…they gather in a park, paint themselves up, put slogans on their bikes, and then they’re off for the ride

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                                                                                            • #12720
                                                                                              Ed
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                                                                                                @ed

                                                                                                Seems it’s a very common feature of WNBRs around the world.

                                                                                            • #14058
                                                                                              Matt
                                                                                                • Wales
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                                                                                                @kermie74

                                                                                                Last years Cardiff WNBR was 99% men, I think one woman, maybe two were naked with a couple more topless. A few women participated clothed which was great that they at least came along. Atmosphere was mostly great apart from the hoard of voyeurs outside the gathering compound where we all disrobed, felt a little like being an exhibit in a zoo. I had a great time once I got over the nervousness of being naked in front of a city of people, must be worse for women when the balance is at least 100 to 1 against.

                                                                                                 

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                                                                                                • #14096
                                                                                                  Ed
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                                                                                                    @ed

                                                                                                    I suspect one problem is if male attention of the female participants puts them off, the male:female ratio shifts towards male. This makes the remaining females less likely to keep taking part, moving it even more towards male only.

                                                                                                    Ultimately, WNBR events end up all male. Does that reduce the popularity of the event? I think it must. I was going to spectate the event last year but it landed awkwardly for me. If there had been a decent proportion of women attending, I would probably have made the extra effort to fit it in but, as it was, I didn’t.

                                                                                                    I suspect WNBR UK should:

                                                                                                    • Organise some coach-loads of female regulars and take them to each event to bolster numbers. It would help encourage local women to take part.
                                                                                                    • Seal off the undressing zone to the public, or maybe keep a female-only one? It seems to be the biggest problem area when it comes to unwanted attention. Riding a bike gives some privacy (not least because you are moving) but standing there taking off your clothes in front of dozens of cameras takes a LOT more guts.
                                                                                                    • This idea of people who don’t want to be photographed carrying a sign stating that they should not be photographed is ridiculous. Amongst participants, it could work, but with the general public in town centres watching, it’s completely unrealistic and totally unpoliceable. I think it gives female participants a false impression of “safety”.
                                                                                                    • Talk to British Naturism (maybe they already do?). I’m sure they could help with the presentation and possibly get more of their members to take part too.

                                                                                                    Matt likes this

                                                                                                    • #14097
                                                                                                      David
                                                                                                        • UK
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                                                                                                        @ibi2004

                                                                                                        Lots here.

                                                                                                         

                                                                                                        It’s attention during and before the ride that stops many, but also its how women are treated day to day everyday in the real world that stops them joining in.

                                                                                                        Wnbr uk has no central body. It’s a mish mash of individual groups and people who organise individual rides.

                                                                                                        There is no budget for coaches, only london wnbr asks for donations and funds.

                                                                                                         

                                                                                                        Its looking like every uk ride will have a sealed off area this year.

                                                                                                        There are bn members tgat are also organisers, but remember body positivity is only one of the three aims. The other two are cyclist safety and stop oil dependency.

                                                                                                         

                                                                                                        Also remember bn membership accounts for less than 0.02% of ‘naturists’ in the uk.

                                                                                                         

                                                                                                      • #14098
                                                                                                        Ed
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                                                                                                          @ed

                                                                                                          I know BN membership doesn’t cover the majority of naturists (Last I heard it was 1.6%), but I don’t know of a larger body that could give advice or help.

                                                                                                          On the subject of cycle safety, I wish someone would get some safety advice into those Deliveroo etc. riders. Around here almost none of them use lights at night, they routinely ride the wrong way up one-way streets, ignore traffic lights, across pavements, through areas that say no bicycles etc. They give the rest of cyclists a bad name.

                                                                                                           

                                                                                                    • #14099
                                                                                                      Ed
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                                                                                                        @ed

                                                                                                        So, essentially, when fewer women take part in events like the Tiger Streaks and WNBR, it focuses attention on those who remain. That makes the experience worse for them so they are more likely to give up so we’ve got stuck in a vicious circle. I don’t see any way to retrain the whole of the population of a city in any meaningful timescale, so the whole thing becomes a lost cause.

                                                                                                        You can blame it on all sorts of things, BUT I don’t know how to fix it. It’s a reasonably good parallel to this community.

                                                                                                        To make the site cover its running costs, I need visitors. I know from experience that female nudity attracts MUCH more interest than male nudity. Visitor retention is much higher if there is a larger proportion of female nudity on show.

                                                                                                        The experiments are still the most successful of this community but so far they have remained private as I haven’t found a group who are willing to be photographed or videoed.

                                                                                                        Matt likes this

                                                                                                      • #14100
                                                                                                        Snooks
                                                                                                          • UK
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                                                                                                          @keithsnook

                                                                                                          Do they still do the Tiger Streak at LZS?

                                                                                                          • #14101
                                                                                                            Ed
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                                                                                                              @ed

                                                                                                              I’ve no idea. I only know the one they did a few times at Bristol Zoo. They were closed for a couple of years while they moved to a new location, and I haven’t checked since.

                                                                                                          • #14102
                                                                                                            David
                                                                                                              • UK
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                                                                                                              @ibi2004

                                                                                                              Streak for tigers has stopped.

                                                                                                               

                                                                                                              The main wnbrs are going from strength to strength in size.

                                                                                                               

                                                                                                              The imbalance will never be fixed.

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