Women In Comms

WiCipedia: Debugging the Gap, GE's Gender Pledge & #ShePersisted

This week in our WiCipedia roundup: A new documentary about women who code comes to Netflix; GE's lofty goals; Elizabeth Warren stands for all women; and more.

Women in Comms will be hosting its first networking breakfast and panel discussion on Wednesday, March 22, in Denver, Colo., ahead of day two of the Cable Next-Gen Technologies & Strategies conference. Register here and join us!

  • General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) broke news this week that it will be the next company to level the playing field when it comes to gender. Business Insider details GE's plans to employ 20,000 female employees in technical roles by 2020. Though the company currently employs only 18% female technical staff members, it has also vowed to create an entry-level technical staff composed of 50% female employees. These seem to be lofty and fast-acting goals given the company's current gender breakdown, but the C-suite appears committed to the diversity goals. GE Chief Economist Marco Annunziata said in a statement: "Unless we bring more women into technology and manufacturing, there will be a significant negative economic impact on the sector. This is a problem for business[es] to actively address." If women aren't involved, the bottom line suffers. (See Ericsson CMO: Diversity Is Critical to Transformation.)

  • There are lots of new films coming to Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) this month, but we're most excited about Code: Debugging the Gender Gap. Bustle describes the timely movie as, "A documentary focusing on the lack of women and minorities working in the field of software engineering. More important than ever." From the history of women's involvement in tech to the current state of affairs, Code is required watching for women in tech and anyone who supports the rise of women in tech. You can watch the trailer below and view the full documentary on Netflix on February 13. (See WiCipedia: After-School Coding, Salary Probing & Pro-Parenthood Companies.)

  • While summer internship programs can be a good résumé booster for young adults in college, and returnships are an option for grown-ups who have taken time off work for a variety of reasons, what's in between? #BuiltByGirls, the non-profit for girls with Michelle Obama as a spokesperson, has just introduced a year-long program called Wave. Fast Company quotes Tory Marlin, director of marketing and partnerships for #BuiltByGirls: "The idea is long-term through the platform to build a pipeline of young women interested in technology, and pull together the best tech advisors in the country, to provide their expertise to the next generation of tech leaders." Wave pairs 150 girls with three tech mentors, hoping to "change the 'boy's club' of tech, and help qualified young women enter the workforce." (See WiCipedia: Girl Bosses, Returnships & 'Women Don't Require Fixing'.)

  • It's been difficult to escape politics in the past few months, as it seems the current political headlines affect every demographic and industry. This week, The New York Times posted an op-ed detailing Senator Elizabeth Warren's experience being silenced by a group of male senators and comparing it to the experience of the everywoman. The NY Times states: "Senator Mitch McConnell's condescending defense of the vote to silence Senator Warren prompted the creation of a social media meme and new rallying cry: 'She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted.'" This new slogan has been called "The history of progress for women, summed up in 11 words" by Planned Parenthood's Cecil Richards, and is something that many of us can sympathize with and revolt against. (See A Women in Comms Glossary and WiCipedia: Gendered Job Descriptions, Glass Cliffs & Gaslighting.)


  • Remember Iceland's annual Women's Day Off? The US may soon be following suit. Organizers of the recent Women's March are in talks to put together "A Day Without A Woman," The Huffington Post reports. The event, which does not have a date yet, is intended to be a general work and home strike for women in all industries, and anticipates 20,000 participants. "If 20,000 women pledge, it's a show of force. If 20,000 women say, 'I'm not going to work today,' people are going to feel that. They're going to feel that in the work place and they're going to feel it at home," says Paulina Davis, vice chair of the New York chapter of the feminist group National Women's Liberation. The announcement has already made major social media and news outlet waves, and though many endorse the idea, FOX News has a different stance with its "A day without overly privileged leftist women is a great idea" article. (See WiCipedia: Icelandic Inequality, Diminishing WiT & Presidential Impact.)

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

  • Kelsey Ziser 2/10/2017 | 10:03:17 AM
    Rosie the Riveter moment "Code: Debugging the Gender Gap" looks excellent, can't wait to see it! I liked how one interviewee called this a "Rosie the Riveter" moment; well said!

    I love the idea of "Built by Girls," what a great opportunity for young girls, and it's wonderful to hear that there's a mentorship component. I hope these girls are encouraged by the success of their tech mentors to hone their tech skills and learn how to persist in pursuing their career goals even if their peers challenge their abilities.

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