Cielo Dock Sale runs through the 29th

‘Wheelwomen Switchboard’ is a new forum for women in biking

Posted by on March 18th, 2014 at 3:08 pm

A screengrab of the new Wheelwomen Switchboard.

A new online community for the women’s bicycling movement, launched by a local bike writer and built on a web startup by two Reed College alumni, seems to be off to a roaring start.

Created by Elly Blue, who is herself a sort of bicycle hub who has taken human form and lives in Portland, Wheelwomen Switchboard sorts its users’ posts into two categories: “asks” and “offers.” The Wheelwomen community has drawn more than 70 such posts in its first two weeks.

Posts include a query about the best bike route between North Portland and East Vancouver, discussion about the gender politics of an article about bike infrastructure in Cleveland, a request for advice about organizing the first World Naked Bike Ride in Buffalo, a bike-related internship in Seattle, and a scholarship opportunity for women who want to be bike mechanics.

“We weren’t sure it would take off, but it was huge,” writes Blue, a 2002 Reed graduate whose most recent book is Bikeonomics. “What it tells me is that the women’s biking movement is something a lot of people are eager to identify themselves as being part of, that these same people are hungry to connect with each other, and that a lot of the stuff they want to talk about is practical tips for everything from gear to routes to organizing movements and creating equitable spaces.”

Blue said she convinced her former classmates to let her test-drive the not-yet-public Switchboard system “after pestering them for a year or more.” So far, looks like good decisions all around.

Joining the community is free — though you do have to identify as female.

Email This Post Email This Post

NOTE: At BikePortland, we love your comments. We love them so much that we devote many hours every week to read them and make sure they are productive, inclusive, and supportive (heck, sometimes we even fix your typos!). That doesn't mean you can't disagree with someone. It means you must do it with tact and respect. This is our business and we do not tolerate mean commenters who add nothing of value to the discussion.

Unfortunately, we are not robots and we don't always catch everything. You can help by notifying us if you see inappropriate comments. Thanks! — Jonathan and Michael

  • Chelsea March 19, 2014 at 4:26 pm

    Sounds great! I look forward to checking it out.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

  • Elly March 19, 2014 at 4:40 pm

    Thanks for the write-up, Michael. And also huge thanks to Mara and Sean at http://switchboardhq.com for making this magic happen.

    Recommended Thumb up 0

- Daily bike news since 2005 -
BikePortland.org is a production of
PedalTown Media Inc.
321 SW 4th Ave, Ste. 401
Portland, OR 97204

Powered by WordPress. Theme by Clemens Orth.
Subscribe to RSS feed

Original images and content owned by Pedaltown Media, Inc. - Not to be used without permission.