I no longer live in the same city as my fellow Yakking authors Daniel and Richard, but we communicate over IRC. As I write this, they're in a cafe, writing new articles together, and mentioned that the table next to them are having a fairly common type of discussion.

  • "blah blah men do xxxx"

  • "blah blah women expect yyyy"

Saying that kind of thing tends to indicate you're not appreciating the diversity of humanity. Indeed, you're de-humanising groups of people by treating them as identical, just because of a shared attribute, rather than as unique persons.

"blah blah some people do xxxx or expect yyyy" tends to be less discriminating and more accurate. It makes it evident that you at least try to see people as who they are, rather than judging them based on aspects of themselves they can't do anything about.

This is important when you participate in any kind of free software community, as well. Even in a software context, you should treat people as people, and treat them well. Without a diverse set of people, software is worse. More importantly, treating people well Doing The Right Thing, a bit like keeping one's code clean is DTRT.