I wanted to bring this to everybody's attention since it is an item of some great concern to many people.
There's a new LJ beta that should go live on Feb 3rd (though I've already seen this particular change is already on the current "live" version of the site). One of the many things that they're doing is re-arranging the sign-up page. As we saw a month or so ago, they're moving "gender" from page 3 up to the first page and it is now a box that has to be checked. The gender options used to be:
the new version, for whatever reason (though I suppose it might have to do with being coded in Russia and then translated) has the third option now listed as "it's personal". If you had "other/unspecified" selected, that now reads "it's personal". I don't know why they changed that.
While I'm very glad there's a third option (both Facebook and MySpace only let you choose between Male or Female) for a myriad of reasons I don't think "it's personal" is as comprehensive or useful as "other/unspecified" -- as it suggests that someone is withholding information rather than not having the proper box to check. "other/unspecified" suggests we may find more in someone's bio, "it's personal" doesn't. We live in a world where small differences in words can carry great meaning that is often hidden, though nonetheless real. I'm not sure if this is a translation error, an oversight, or a sincere attempt to improve the language but I'd like to get some feedback that I can share with LJ about how this third option should be worded before things get finalized.
Third gender option should be worded
If you have comments or suggestions, please post them here, I'll make sure that they're brought to the attention of the LJ staff.
I'll post shortly about the progress LJ has made on the requests I made when I ran for the advisory board.
Please repost/share as you see fit, especially with communities/people who have a vested interest.
Your user rep,
Thanks to basiatione for bringing this to my attention.