Monica Rogati’s “Techdel Test”: A Bechdel Test for tech conferences

Data scientist Monica Rogati won the internet with this recent tweet.

If you’re not familiar with what’s often called the Bechdel Test (or the Bechdel-Wallace Test), it’s an idea that appeared in Alison Bechdel’s comic Dykes to Watch Out For, and it points out a major problem of representation of women in popular fiction:

bechdel test full comic

Click the comic to see it at full size.

As in the comic, the Bechdel Test is typically applied to movies (although you can apply it to any popular fiction medium). It’s been observed that if passing the test were a requirement, many Oscar nominees would be disqualified. If the Techdel test were mandatory for tech conferences, we may have to cancel a lot of plane and hotel reservations.

If you’d like to know about which movies pass and fail the Bechdel Test, there’s a site for you:

All right, tech conference organizers: you know what your next challenge is!

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