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Women In Comms

WiCipedia: Babies at Work, Raising Good Men & Kimmy Schmidt

This week in our WiCipedia roundup: How to raise good boys in the #MeToo era; Netflix lays on the startup jokes; babies on the Senate floor; and more.


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  • The newest season of Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX)'s Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt tackles sexual harassment, workplace discrimination and automation in a hilarious, lighthearted manner. The jokes are timely and cross oh-so-many lines as Kimmy works at a tech startup (as the only woman in the company and the lone HR employee), replete with emotionally unavailable men and a very sexually forward robot. While reviews have been mixed -- the references to #notallwomen and the "Innocence Broject" undoubtedly upset a few -- we loved the commentary about the male-to-female ratio at tech conferences, VR and nerdom. Any woman in tech will be able to relate. (See WiCipedia: Fashionable Coding & Netflix/SAS Lead Innovation Race.)

    C.H.E.R.Y.L., the 'Cybernetic Human Empathy Response Yuko/Lamp'

  • Taking your child to work might not be so out of the ordinary in your profession, but for Rebecca Slaughter, an FTC commissioner, bringing her eight-week-old baby to work is a first-of-its-kind event. The New York Times explains that Slaughter accepted the job on the agreement that her third child would be able to attend work with her. She told the NY Times, "I am tired. I don't feel superhuman. I feel like a mom who has a career about which she cares very much and a family about which she cares very much. And I'm trying to navigate the two." This news follows on the heels of Illinois Democratic Senator Tammy Duckworth bringing her newborn baby onto the Senate floor to cast a vote, CNN reports. This was -- amazingly -- the first time this had happened before, as a law was just passed to allow newborns of Senators onto the floor during votes. (See WiCipedia: Programmer Motivators, Affordable Childcare & All-Female Panels and GSMA Catches Flack for MWC Babygate .)

    Making Herstory

  • The recent #MeToo headlines have had many parents of young boys questioning how to raise little humans who believe in equality. An article in The New York Times spotlights how to do so. The problem is, it's not that simple; this is a societal problem, and goes way beyond what we tell our own children. Still, since we can't control everyone, here are psychologist and sex stereotyping expert Peter Glick's suggestions for raising boys who will grow up to be good people:

    1. Abandon chivalry: While this one might be surprising, "the idea that women should be cherished and put on pedestals fosters what's known as benevolent sexism, which subtly demeans women as fragile and less competent. It reinforces a sexual script in which a man takes charge while a woman remains passive," Glick says.

    2. Encourage empathy: Teach boys to understand how girls will feel if they are objectified or harassed.

    3. Swap chores: Gendered chores aren't doing anyone any good.

    4. Keep talking: Boys are taught to be strong and silent, but talking is the key to openness and confidence.

  • Comcast NBCUniversal LLC announced this week that it would be donating $100,000 to Latinas in Tech (LiT), a non-profit that, as its name suggests, aims to support Latinas working in tech, who make up only 2% of the workforce. The organization boasts more than 2,000 members and is based in Silicon Valley, though it has chapters in five other metro areas, a press release on Yahoo states. The donation will go towards growing the organization in membership and region, hosting more events and "empowering Latinas working in tech." (See WiC Leading Lights 2018 Finalists: Female Tech Pioneer of the Year and Comcast Contributes $100K to Latinas in Tech.)

  • A new podcast from Hart Energy focuses on women who work in the energy field, Oil and Gas Investor reports. The second in the series focuses on Melody Meyer, president of Melody Meyer Energy, and Regina Mayor, global and US energy sector leader for KPMG LLP, as they share their career experiences being one of very few women in their field -- Fortune reports that energy and oil/gas has the lowest male to female ratio of nearly any industry. Meyer and Mayor discuss their love of their work, how a military background prepared Mayor for workplace challenges, the bias they experience along the way and why there's such a great need for diversity in the workplace. You can listen to the full podcast here. (See WiCipedia: Breaking Biases & Squashing Self-Limiting Fear.)

    — Eryn Leavens, Special Features & Copy Editor, Light Reading

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