For the record, neither lintilla
nor I are American. And lintilla
, feel free to jump in :)
I think comparing 'guys' and 'ladies' is a bit apples and oranges. Firstly because of the terms themselves - 'women' and 'ladies' are a lot
more strongly gendered than 'guys', which as you say is often used pretty much neutrally when referring to groups of people. Personally I would be ecstatic if it became as normal to address a mixed group of people as 'ladies' as it is to use 'guys'! But as it is, they're not really equivalents.
Secondly is what you've said - that there are by far more women than men or other non-female identified people in menstrual_cups
. We're a community about menstrual products. No one, when addressing menstrual_cups
, actually thinks they are addressing a cosy boy's club - they're pretty evidently using the word in a way that does include women. Whereas using terms like 'girls' and 'ladies' when addressing the whole community very much gives the impression of a women-only space. So the term 'guys' doesn't really exclude people in the same way 'ladies' does.
It's a very nuanced/contextual thing. If I was running a community where it was plausible that people had actually erroneously assumed that everyone in it would be male, e.g. one about computer programming, I might well want to ensure that even slightly male-gendered words weren't used, to keep female community members visible. In menstrual_cups
though, I don't think the use of the term 'guys' puts women off participating or makes them feel unwelcome or forgotten, the way 'ladies' does for trans and genderqueer people.
I hope that makes sense?
I do think the fact that 'guys' is used both as a gender neutral term and as a male-gendered one is an important feminist language debate, relating to how in most contexts 'male' is the default gender, how it's seen as insulting to be feminised, etc. It's a topic I'm very interested in. But it's not something I personally feel is an inclusivity issue in menstrual_cups
All that said, if you have objections to the word 'guys', you are more than welcome to bring them up when posters use it. So long as you do it in a polite way, which I'm sure you would.
BTW I just wandered over to your profile, and Thinkpad high-five! I have three :D