I ask specifically for:

Salseros y Salseras

(male and female Salsa dancers, respectively)

It would be great to be able to address a mixed group of people with a single unifying word.

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    Neuter plural in Spanish is the same as masculine plural. It does not mean you are overlooking women or assimilating them into the male group. Nowadays a few forget this neutrality and try to forcefully correct it, but the norm remains and consensus overwhelmingly supports it. Instead, you have to disambiguate if you need to say they're only men: salseros/bailarines varones (or hombres.) Using both genders in plural in Spanish is a form of overcorrection, and thus a mistake, just like regularizing an irregular verb. – Rafael Aug 22 '17 at 12:29
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    If you don't want to use salseros or salser@s, you could say aficionados de la salsa (for a poster or announcement written in Spanish) or salsa aficionados (for a poster or announcement written in English). Technically it faces the same problem as salseros but I think since it is such a clear cognate with English, it would be a good work-around. – aparente001 Aug 23 '17 at 2:27

Spanish is not a great language when it comes to gender-neutral forms.

Technically, "salseros" is the grammatically gender-neutral plural form for both "salsero" and "salsera". However, being that it ends in -o, it is more identified with the male form and thus it is not seen as socially gender-neutral.

If you wanted to use a different word for whatever reason, you could use "bailarines de salsa" instead, which literally means "salsa dancers".

bailarín, na
1. adj. Que baila. Apl. a pers., u. t. c. s.
2. m. y f. Persona que ejercita o profesa el arte de bailar.

"Bailarines" can work better than "salseros" because it ends with an -e (seen by some as more neutral than the -o in "salseros").
This only works in plural, though, since the singular forms would still be male "bailarín" and female "bailarina".

Also, as mentioned by Gustavson, salsero has at least four additional meanings not related to salsa music, so maybe bailarines can be more clear too.

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    The plurals would be bailarines and bailarinas, so the thing doesn't work in plural either... – Paco Aug 22 '17 at 7:35
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    @Paco bailarines is the form used when you want to include both genders. Of course you can split it into male- and female-gendered plurals, but then how do you expect that to be gender-neutral? – walen Aug 22 '17 at 8:08
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    "bailarines de salsa" sounds perfect to me. "salsero/salsera", in countries where salsa is not so popular, will tend to be interpreted like this: Recipiente en el que se lleva la salsa para servirla (sauce or gravy boat) :) – Gustavson Aug 22 '17 at 11:04
  • @Gustavson Good point about "salsero, a" having different meanings in some countries. Mind if I add it to the answer? – walen Aug 22 '17 at 11:05
  • @walen Not at all. Please do. – Gustavson Aug 22 '17 at 11:48

Spanish does have a gender-neutral form for that, "salseros". Saying "salseros y salseras" should be avoided. (source).

La mención explícita del femenino solo se justifica cuando la oposición de sexos es relevante en el contexto: El desarrollo evolutivo es similar en los niños y las niñas de esa edad. La actual tendencia al desdoblamiento indiscriminado del sustantivo en su forma masculina y femenina va contra el principio de economía del lenguaje y se funda en razones extralingüísticas. Por tanto, deben evitarse estas repeticiones, que generan dificultades sintácticas y de concordancia, y complican innecesariamente la redacción y lectura de los textos.

It is unfortunate that there is no distinction between the male plural form and the gender-neutral plural form, but that is just the way Spanish is.

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    This is an ongoing debate in Spanish: is the plural ending in -os representative of both genders? Gramatically it is but more and more people are starting to say vascos y vascas. By the way, welcome to Spanish Language! We hope to see you around :) – fedorqui Aug 22 '17 at 10:43
  • It is indeed true that, as of today, the RAE advise against the duplication of words to show both genders. That's the reason I made a distinction between "grammatical" and "social" gender neutrality in my answer. Anyways, OP is asking for a (social) gender-neutral word that can be used precisely to avoid the duplicate form "salseros y salseras", which is exactly what the RAE recommends. – walen Aug 22 '17 at 11:00
  • @Hawkings: The issue is that most people here don't speak Spanish well enough to make that distinction. If they see only salseros, they might be under the impression that female dancers are being left out. – Spikee Aug 22 '17 at 12:35
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    @Spikee maybe the norm would change with time, as language tends to regularize. But it is currently part of the basics, so a good Spanish class should teach this early on :) – Rafael Aug 22 '17 at 13:27
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    @Rafael I'm a Spanish (language and culture) enthusiast, I'm all for Spanish classes :). – Spikee Aug 22 '17 at 14:09

In informal written Spanish, it has become common to use -@s as an ending meaning "-os or -as". So salser@s would be understood to be an intentionally gender-inclusive plural of salsero/-a.

Pronouncing that is another matter.

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    Note that this usage is discouraged, incorrect, and inconvenient: fundeu.es/recomendacion/arroba – Miguel Aug 22 '17 at 16:17
  • @Miguel, discouraged is a valid criticism, although it needs qualification (anything can be described as discouraged if you can find one person who discourages it), and although inconvenient isn't quite the right English word I understand what you mean. But incorrect is a category error: orthographic usage can be standard or non-standard, but it cannot be correct or incorrect. The fact that it is non-standard is flagged by the answer specifying "informal written Spanish". – Peter Taylor Aug 22 '17 at 23:12
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    orthographic usage (...) cannot be correct or incorrect I beg to differ. Unlike other languages, Spanish has an official governing body which periodically publishes and updates the ortographic rules for correctly using the language. Any usage not conforming to said rules is, by definition, incorrect. – walen Aug 23 '17 at 1:21
  • Now, about the use of "@" as gender-inclusive: "@" is not even a letter, so you can't use it to construct valid words (the only non-diacritic symbol that can appear in a Spanish word is the hyphen). Just like the character sequence "stoy sola 👍 vns a ksa?" is not Spanish (not even informal), "salser@s" is not Spanish either (yet). Besides: while it is true this use of @ has become known, actually using it is far from common. I even know a handful of people that think "@" is just a beautified "a" for the feminine, and are totally oblivious to the gender-inclusion thing. – walen Aug 23 '17 at 1:41
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    I must say that I'm finding this conversation very engaging. You make valid points, it's just that I don't agree with them. Maybe we can get a couple of new questions out of all this. – walen Aug 23 '17 at 7:43

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