Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Internal Gender Wars

Dear Readers,

I hope you've been having a good summer. I'm obviously doing something (work and roller derby would be two good guesses, though I've gotten in some good summer playtime too), since I haven't been posting lately.

My lack of posting could also be the fact that I'm now dealing with a slight case of gender identity. This is something I never thought I'd personally have to consider--I've always been a female, always felt like a female, and have a pretty feminine name that doesn't lend itself to mixups.

However, the other week, I learned otherwise.

I'm blogging over at Avisian publications, this trade magazine group that covers identity and authentication, and biometrics, among other things--if you watch "Burn Notice," and Michael Weston talks about how difficult it is to break into some computer system because you have to have two forms of identity to be able to log into it, that's the kind of thing I'm writing about. For blogging, I generally rewrite press releases and recap news stories. It's interesting, though I'm still struggling to understand some of the technology and how it works.

The other week I had to recap a Washington Post story about fake IDs in which authorities are starting to be able to spot the fakes because they're absolutely perfect. A quote from one of the sources:
"About 89% of genuine driver's licenses don't comply with their own specifications 100%" --Steven Williams of Intellicheck

This led me to whip out my own driver's license, and guess what? The Commonwealth of Massachusetts thinks I'm a man.

Yep. The RMV messed up the gender when inputting my data onto my driver's license.

I've been in this state over a year now, shown my ID a fair amount, and no one's ever noticed. It makes me think that either people just understand that licenses can be inaccurate, or that at my age, all of this security is a bunch of whistles and bells. At least, I hope it is.....I've got to fly a lot this fall, and I don't really need airport security to stop me because of a mistake.

That said, I'm kind of excited to see what life is like as a man. Jill Jaracz: White Male in America. Get ready for the adventures, folks!

Your pal,

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