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Codebabes.com | Learn Coding and Web Development the Fun Way (codebabes.com)
54 points by choult on April 25, 2014 | hide | past | favorite | 64 comments

All: this post was killed by user flags. Although it seems like an elaborate troll, we've unkilled the post so those who find the discussion productive can continue it.

We're killing other posts from this domain as duplicates.

Please note, I am posting this with despair - it's little surprise that women are under-represented in our industry if this kind of thing can stand.

I know this is likely an unpopular opinion but here it goes: what the fuck does this have to do with under-representation in our industry?

There's medical-themed porn, school-themed porn and I'm sure someone in Japan has made at least one hacking-themed porn movie until now. That doesn't stop women from becoming doctors, going to school or hacking. There are striptease-themed news, too, and that doesn't prevent women going into television.

Is the site ridiculous and tasteless? Definitely. It's also not implying that women are lifeless beautiful objects who can't program any more than cheerleading implies that women are lifeless beautiful objects who suck at sports or strip clubs imply that women are lifeless beautiful objects who are only good at dancing. Would you also object to women at your favourite strip club wearing Tux bras?

Yeah, it's a piece of thrash, but also not more relevant to our industry than teasenews.com is to journalism.

The problem for me is that my wife is constantly trying to get into programming. The industry is already gender-biased enough. If she thinks that this is the kind of thing that programmers want - she's going to be turned off from continuing down that path.

Maybe your wife is much more intelligent than you think.

Maybe she is not an impressionable toddler and can laugh at both the ridiculousness of this site and your reaction to it.


Mine complained they don't have a version with male hotties, too. FML.

The big difference is this isn't programming-themed porn, but porn-themed programming education. The context within which someone wants to watch porn of any variety is rather different to that in which someone wants to learn how to program and stumbles across stuff like this.

Much like Teasenews is porn-themed journalism and Game of Thrones is a porn-themed entertainment. Bodies naked to various degrees are pretty much omnipresent today. Not necessarily a good thing, but it's not like you can step away from that horrible website and not walk into something comparable within five minutes.

> "I know this is likely an unpopular opinion but here it goes: what the fuck does this have to do with under-representation in our industry?"

I agree. Aren't woman underrepresented in most STEM jobs anyways? And overrepresented in other jobs like e.g. kindergarten teachers? Woman are just wired differently as men. And perhaps woman are also conditioned differently as men from a young age (girls get to play with dolls, boys with cars and legos). There could be an evolutionary reason for this, since ages ago most men were probably hunters while most woman likely tended to the children.

Of course sexism in tech is bad and we should try to reduce sexism wherever possible, but that's a different issue. I'm not sure we should try to push woman into technology (or fields like construction, etc...), just as I'm not sure we should try to push men into jobs where men are underrepresented.

Under-representation doesn't only have to do with "women being wired differently". See, even women who have studied STEM are more likely to drop out from STEM jobs - for a series of reasons, but sexism seems to be one of them, so it's not off-topic here.

By the way, I do think we should also support diversity in some jobs where men are underrepresented, like teaching - I was reading a psychiatrist explain how the "girlification of elementary school" can be damaging for boys. (http://www.esquire.com/features/drugging-of-the-american-boy...)

"Of course sexism in tech is bad and we should try to reduce sexism wherever possible, but that's a different issue."

i nominate for Best Mansplaining.

I never thought I'd live to see the day the word "mansplaining" is used on Hacker News unironically.

I don't know it's a matter of men and women being "wired differently" or not, what I'm implying is that seriously, this site, while tasteless and of questionable educational quality, is really no more sexist than your average TV commercial, shopping mall or bar. Not everything with boobs is sexist, ffs.

It's not, but should we also not protest those as well?

Do we not teach children wrong by showing we are displeased? That silence means their actions are acceptable. Perhaps not reward-worthy, but acceptable. Thus are you saying that the behaviors shown on TV, shopping malls, bars, that is how you want you, your friends, your children to be treated?

It's how my children are going to be treated this way by anyone who thinks that this kind of behaviour is acceptable. I'd much rather have my children think for themselves and know how to deal with people who behave in a way they think is unacceptable to them, than futilely protest against something that many people find absolutely fine.

As a logical thinking human being, if you are constantly being told you should go be a teacher, nurse, etc and then you end up in a field where you are told you do not belong. Where every day you have to wonder if the guy smiling creepily at you is listening to you or staring at your chest during scrum. Where you wonder if you should report the guy who would not let go of your hand when you and your coworkers went for drinks after work or if that would make them fire you for being a disruptive influence. Or maybe you should just not socialize with your coworkers.

If you are an intelligent human being who could go do and learn whatever you wanted, which was why you went, fuck conformity, I'm going to program and did it, why would you stay in an environment where you feel unsafe, objectified, and unwanted?

And at the end of the day, if another human being tells you that your actions make them feel unsafe, objectified, and unwanted, why is your reaction to tell them to leave?

Have you considered that perhaps there are girls who do not like playing with dolls? Who wanted the legos and Knex, who their parents had to threaten to keep them from taking apart the television and wanted a soldering iron instead of Barbies. That the very girls who ignore the conditioning you mentioned who make it regardless of social pressures when they realize that you, their peers, will continue to think they do not belong and they will have to fight your mentality for the rest of their lives, that you would rather believe that they simply can't hack it so you can justify the job distribution, why should they have to endure the perpetual questioning, lewd comments, uncomfortable stares, and stress? Why as fellow human beings would you ask that of anyone?

It’s just… what can you even say? Someone not only thought this was a good idea (which is bad enough) but then went ahead and actually built it.

And even worse - will most likely make money from it.

100% agree. This is offensive and sexist. I'm a man and I'm offended, and can only imagine how women must find it.

And porn degrades women right?

Why are you offended? Do you really think this is a serious website? maybe the next Codecademy.

On a lighter note, its really funny how you think "women must find it" offensive, but not for a single second you even thought that same statement is really really sexist.

ps: About the website, on my scale between love it and hate it, its in the "who gives a f*?" category. Daytime television if full of this cheesy type of stuff.

> And porn degrades women right?


> On a lighter note, its really funny how you think "women must find it" offensive, but not for a single second you even thought that same statement is really really sexist.

I am aware, I spent 10 minutes before posting trying to find a way to phrase it without sounding like that. Either I removed it entirely and sounded without empathy, or I left it in and sounded patronising. What would be an improved way to say it? I'm listening and I would like to learn.

> What would be an improved way to say it?

Not say it. Don't just assume you know the experience of the Other because you read some Tumblr blogs.

You can just say it's offensive. Qualifying it with your gender is the opposite of what you want to do.

you're what? 14?

seriously... it's time for all little boys to grow the fk up.

I am a man. I find it offensive, too. To everyone else: sure sex sells in plenty of areas of society. It doesn't need to be in technical training.

I find it offensive as well. But people are entitled to their free speech, so jabbering on about it is pretty much pointless. But if you like decency enforced by fiat, you could always move to Russia or NK...

Even I felt the same. How insensitive people have become!

I am not going to speak for everyone. Porn isn't inherently bad, although the porn industry has a tendency to be incredibly manipulative and harmful to women.

This, however, is technical training. This says that programmers are people who want to look at models who are dressed like some board-driven abstract costume aimed to give straight 14 year olds get an erection. It says that programmers are male, and "men like babes", so therefore, men might want this.

This is harmful to our culture. This is harmful to women programmers, who now have further proof that they don't 'belong' here, that programming is 'for' them. This devalues what people think of me, and what I consider to be my craft.

This is C- misogynist garbage aimed at my community, and I don't fucking appreciate it.

It's definitely tasteless, but for once, despite the theme, it has little to do with our industry, and actually very little with sexism unless you take the radical view that women should never be portrait in such a way.

There's a fundamental difference between exploiting one aspect of women and bringing that exploitation where it doesn't belong or basing your entire attitude towards women on that one aspect.

This is just soft porn under a domain name that ends with "babes.com". Most of us are okay with the existence of such things (and that's an understatement), and somebody was bound to exploit this predominantly mail target audience.

It's just too bad it's now being associated with our industry when we really don't need that shit.

But please don't make this part of the narrative around the very real problem of sexism in our industry. This is just a red herring, and maybe just a troll.

It has to be a joke, right? The video on the subscription page sounds like a total parody of an elevator pitch: https://codebabes.com/user/register?destination=subscription .. "leveraging sexual desire" .. having a woman take off an item of clothing each time you pass a quiz? If this had come out April 1st, it would have easily passed as a creative April Fools joke.

The PHP Virgin QUIZ is full of wrong answers!

1. To run PHP code it needs to be processed by a web server. They say TRUE. The answer is FALSE. - php-cli is used a lot (composer/phpunit/etc...)

2. If you inspect the source of a web page, will you ever see the PHP code? They Say YES. The Answer is FALSE - I mean maybe if you enable phps (php source) in your web server, but in most usage never.

4.In the following code snippet, 'print' is what? <?php print("Hello beautiful world!"); ?> They say it s a variable. That might be true given that a variable can be a closure function, but the real answer is a function!


The CSS Virgin Quiz includes a question about Justin Timberlake and this True/False assertion: "The Big Lebowski is the perfect movie."

I suspect all the quizzes are jokes or proof-of-concept placeholders.

So... almost every quiz is bugged and says correct answers are wrong.

And then there's

> Which of the following will increment a the variable 'x' by one? * x++ * x+1 * x+=1 * All of the above

False. print is a language construct


+1 - oddly enough, my first thought in reading someone's report on the 'incorrectness' of their answers, and yet, adding to the misinformation.

Hint: any php 'function' that can be called without parens, is a language construct. Some of our favorite impostor 'functions' in php: echo, unset, isset, die, include, require

Female developer here! I feel like this has to be click bait, right? No one is seriously positing this site as a serious way to learn to code. Right?

"So how did you get into development, Mr. Job Candidate?"

"It all started when I successfully completed every fap session at Codebabes.com..."

I suppose it might give one a leg up if they were applying for a job as webmaster for a porn site.

RIP your inbox...haha jk. Seriously though, this thing sucks...

This is surely satire? I refuse to believe that they're actually doing this seriously.

I love the part where they teach about how ints and floats are primitives in JS. And that the answer to "In programming lingo what word means to put two things together?" is "Love" (after the first video).

This is why we can't have nice things...

It's hard to believe that anyone in this industry - after everything that's gone down in recent years - would be ignorant enough to create this.

There's a direct link in "Our Philosophy" to http://programming-motherfucker.com/ (which also seems terribly misguided) but I really hope - for Zed's sake - that he's not involved in this idiotic project.

I guess they're winning though, if they got on the front page of HN.

> It's hard to believe that anyone in this industry - after everything that's gone down in recent years - would be ignorant enough to create this.

It's very easy to believe that someone with knowledge of this industry would believe that there is an audience for this, and its not surprising that someone in this industry would think that profiting from targeting such an audience is a good (for them) thing to do.

There's nothing about either the technical or business side of this industry that should give any reason to think that, whatever they might know factually, people in this industry in any capacity are somehow especially more socially responsible (as opposed to narrowly self-interested) than the rest of the population.

Even if you believe that people in our industry are unusually intelligent on average, there's no reason to think there's a particularly strong correlation between intelligence and any particular moral orientation (though, for some reason, people seem to want to believe that "intelligent" implies "shares my values".)

It's actually not that hard to believe that, out of tens of thousands of people (or more?) world-wide with the capability to build something like this, there's at least one person who actually would do it. That's the problem with trolling - one person can offend thousands of people at a time!

The first CSS video says "the property and value are separated by a colon (which she pronounces "colin") as the head of some guy shows up in that position, then the narrator says "no, not that Colin". I don't recognize the guy, but I'm really bad at recognizing celebrities. Who is that face, and is he somebody who would be well-recognized in the UK?

Direct link to the relevant video snippet: http://youtu.be/HFmaW5WYxe0?t=1m1s

FYI: Its a Drupal7 site hosted on new jersey linode so they can't really be php haters - maybe self-haterz. Using TypeKit. Sophisticated enough to include a custom server header and a California specific Privacy Policy but a UK one (although it could be copied). Video by Wistia.


Server The Codebabes server

-- Traceroute --

8 router3-fmt.linode.com ( 14.891 ms 9.519 ms 14.410 ms

9 li679-236.members.linode.com ( 10.002 ms 9.691 ms 9.229 ms



As an industry are we incapable of learning anything from our past fuckups?

Oh dear. Not again.

I can't believe this is actually upsetting people.... it's just a softcore porn site that's coding themed. That's it.

Some of the answers in the quizzes are deliberately wrong... interesting, purposely making it frustrating so people subscribe to skip.

What the fuck? Do we really need this?

This site and I share a very strong link.

Apparently neither of us consider PHP to be programming.

Any idea who is behind this? Cause definitly this is made for making money.

This is the definition of (s)exploitation.

Apologies for reacting without reading clearly.

I'd suggest reading my comment first:


Many apologies. I sat through a conversation last night, the gist of which was, 'Women are not exploited by the tech industry'.

I didn't turn on my brain, and reacted. I'm sorry, Choult. Thanks for directing my attention to your comment.

Hey, that's alright - right reaction, wrong target!

Thanks for being understanding. I'm going to have to reign in that impulse to shoot the messenger.

Did you even read his comment; that is the first text block beneath the comment box? Here it is in case you get lost:

Please note, I am posting this with despair - it's little surprise that women are under-represented in our industry if this kind of thing can stand.

See choult's comment - no reason to attribute the site to the poster.

Oh no

They're just disrupting the established programming education institutions. Why all the hand-wringing?

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