Janet Mock at Google

I should probably do a bit more trans stuff than usual here as there is supposedly an International Trans Day of Visibility on March 31st. Thankfully, rather than have to write anything myself, I can always rely on Janet Mock be to doing something awesome somewhere that I can point you at.

The video below is of Janet’s recent appearance on the Google campus. I’m hugely impressed that she rates highly enough to be invited to speak there. It is a great interview too. It lasts just under 40 minutes.

I’d like to add a few brief comments on the question Janet was asked about not being obviously trans (which is what that young man was asking, even if he was polite enough not to do so quite so baldly). Like Janet, I don’t feel the need to go around telling everyone I meet that I’m trans. They can find out easily enough if they want to. I don’t go around telling people that I’m Welsh, or a science fiction reader, either. Partly that’s because those things aren’t relevant to most of my day-to-day interactions with people. But also, the general public’s knowledge of trans folk is shockingly poor, and most of it nonsense they have picked up from the media. It isn’t something you would volunteer, believe me. Sometimes you need a rest from having to educate people.

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3 Responses to Janet Mock at Google

  1. Tom Galloway says:

    In fairness, Google has a *lot* of people speak on campus or at a satellite office. Offhand, it looks like the @Google speaker series (originally just Authors@Google) is up to over 1500 YouTube videos of such talks. If a Googler, or group of same, want to invite someone to speak and things can be worked out, there’d generally need to be a significant reason for them *not* to get an invite via working with the @Google folk. At least that’s how it was when I was part of the program, and I’ve heard no reason to think it’s different.

    Also, the Gayglers group, which I believe includes trans folk (again, things may have changed since I left) was pretty active and has done a number of invites in association with @Google.

    Anyway, not trying to knock down the value of Mock speaking there, just to point out that from my experience with @Google, her being invited and speaking strikes me as standard for the program, not anything unusual or noteworthy from its perspective.

    • Cheryl says:

      It may seem standard for you, Tom, but I can’t imagine any large company in the UK doing that sort of thing.

      • Tom Galloway says:

        Well, there have been at least a few talks at Google London, but yeah, it’s unusual in the larger sense. I’d say part of it evolved from Google’s early cachet such that random celebrity types would just stop by to take a look at the place.

        And I have to admit it’s the only place I’ve worked where the CEO grabbed me in the cafe to invite me to have lunch with Al Gore (he wanted to lunch with random Googlers. OK, I can be random) or I’ve gotten a phone call from an author tour escort asking if I could show Salman Rushdie around the place that evening. On the other hand, my current workplace is the only one where the elevator I was in opened up and (on separate occasions) Seth Rogan and Patrick Stewart were waiting for it.

        For a fairly full selection of famous folk at the Googleplex, see my friend Meng’s photo galleries at https://plus.google.com/photos/116358482624154197444/albums?banner=pwa ; for some reason it became common practice to make sure just about every celebrity type visiting the ‘Plex had their picture taken with Meng, who when this all started was just an engineer, albeit a fairly early in the company one (he’s since become an NYT best-selling author in his own right for Search Inside Yourself, a book about practicing mindfulness and meditation).

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