Reading your message I really got angry. The use of high tech
computers as yet another medium for pornography infuriates me anyway, but
the fact that this is going on in your workplace, on company (or university)
owned computers is really upsetting.
I was wondering as I read your letter if perhaps your colleague's
behavior might count as sexual harrassment of some form? Do you have an
advocate on campus who you could discuss this problem with, to get good
sound advice particular to your environment? In any case, it surely shouldn't
go on, and in the least your advisor should issue a statement of the kind
I guess what also bothered me about your story is the idea that TWO
guys in one (presumably relatively small) working group are engaged in such
activities. One likes to think that most men are not into pornography, esp.
in the workplace, but perhaps I am being terribly optomistic.
In any case, I am sure at least a few rules and codes of ethics have
been violated -- and certainly your comfort and trust has been violated! --
so I hope you will seek the advice and assistant of the appropriate powers.
On our campus, I would go to the Office of Women's Affairs. Do you have
such an office?
Good luck, and don't feel guilty about your anger. You are being
very sensible, and your feelings of distress are totally justified.
-- Alice Dreger (grad., history of science & medicine,
Indiana University, Bloomington)