Monday, May 23, 2011

From Snarky Truth to Reasoned Explanation: Gender Discrimination in the Tech Industry

I haven't followed all the reference links, but Faruk AteĊŸ' From Snarky Truth to Reasoned Explanation is well worth the read about discrimination against women in technology in particular, but really in general. An excerpt:

"What we ultimately want is Formal equality: a world in which race, gender, ethnicity, orientation and religious beliefs do not affect the opportunities and treatment of any individual. Unfortunately, the only people who think we live in such a world (or work in an industry that enjoys Formal equality) are a certain class of people who have enjoyed privileges their entire lives. Many women, if you care to respectfully listen to them, will readily assure you that we do not live in such a world—or industry—at all."

One of the small things men in tech do, and probably everywhere, is refer to a group of their co-workers as guys when it includes women. I've been guilty of this in the past, a bad habit I finally broke a few years ago, and I've always believed in Formal equality for women. To any women that experienced my use of this term, please accept my apology. If you find yourself doing this, figure out how to eradicate this verbal tic from your speech.