Website Tackles Verbal Manspreading

Cathy Deng noticed, as many women and some men do, that men often dominate conversations that should be freewheeling discussions in which everyone contributes equally.

Whether through socialization (a large part, no doubt) or disposition, both men and women have unconsciously accepted that it’s OK for men to do the verbal equivalent of “manspreading” on public transportation. That is to say: take up more room than should be socially acceptable, while women make themselves smaller, or quieter, to accommodate them.

So Deng created the website, Are Men Talking Too Much? It features two buttons (A Dude, Not A Dude) with timers, so you can time — and confirm — whether or not men are talking longer than women. There’s no feature, however, that allows you to tally up the number of men talking versus women during a meeting, which would be interesting to measure against how much they talked as well.

Nor does it have an “Girl, Interrupted” button, which would be amazing. Because we know that happens a lot.

More symbolically educational than practically useful, Are Men Talking Too Much? is an example of a few trends we’re following, including Simplexity, or strikingly elegant and simple designs to tackle basic problems as well as Tangible Intangible, taking the unseen or intangible and representing it physically.