No big surprises-no actual discussion at Techie/Activist happy hour

You might want to read this before you continue:

Tech workers, activists clash at happy hour

The best part of this article on the San Francisco Chronicle’s web site today is that the heckling from the protesters is interspersed with the quotes of speakers.

Assuming it’s an accurate representation of the meeting one thing stands out. The activists seemed to be voicing concerns about the effects of gentrification on entire communities. However, most of the self-identified tech workers¬†either¬†spoke about a) how it wasn’t their personal fault or b) their own personal guilt at living in the city. They did not, it seems, offer solutions or arguments countering the claims of the protesters that it was their fault as a collective phenomenon.

I’ve tended to find many of the bay area activists I’ve met (especially in Berkeley and SF) to be both a little overlydramatic about their causes (regardless of how worthy I think the cause is) and generally more interested in hearing their own voice than in finding solutions. But here it sounds like ideas were being offered by some protesters and met with a shrug by some of the tech “representatives”. Maybe it was just very poorly moderated. Perhaps not surprisingly, it seems like people in both camps had very different agendas. Justified or not, if your only reaction to a structural problem you are at least vaguely a part of is “It’s not me!”. There’s not a whole lot to discuss.