Women In Comms

WiCipedia: Feminist Internet, Young Tycoons & Blind Spots

This week in our WiCipedia roundup: Uber keeps sticking its head in the mud; Forbes 40 Under 40 list; how the Internet could be feminist-friendly; and more.

Join Women in Comms for a breakfast workshop and networking at the NFV & Carrier SDN event in Denver on September 26. The workshop is open to all women and men in the telecommunications, STEM and IT fields -- communications service providers get in free!

  • Fortune's latest 40 Under 40 list was released this past week, and to our surprise, nearly half of the included superstars were women. To be precise, 18 women made the list, which spans all industries. From the tech sector, CIO Dive reports that Vimeo's Anjali Sud and Affectiva's Rana el Kaliouby made the cut, among others. Forbes posted a related article this week stating that women will lead the way with the next super-successful companies. With mega-mogul Kylie Jenner -- who somehow didn't make the list -- slated to become the world's youngest billionaire, women are certainly on their way to the top. (See WiCipedia: Richest Women in Tech & Next-Level Hacker Sexism.)

    You Think Makeup Is Silly?
    Kylie Jenner's bankroll might tell you otherwise. (Source: Forbes)
    Kylie Jenner's bankroll might tell you otherwise.
    (Source: Forbes)

  • The Internet we use day in and day out is by and large created with men in mind. So what if there were an alternate version? One where women felt safe to express themselves without fear of harassment or threat? Say hello to the Feminist Internet. The Evening Standard reports that Dr. Charlotte Webb (we really want to believe this is her real name), chief leopard (definitely real title) at Feminist Internet, and her team want to "challenge the status quo" that we all begrudgingly rely on. Currently, one fifth of women in the UK have experienced sexual or physical abuse online, and the group aims to change this by altering the marketing we see, the smart devices pitched to us and the abusive language that's filtered out before you get a notification. Not exactly an easy feat, but one that we are interested to see evolve. (See WiCipedia: Are Fembots a Boon or Bane for WiT?)

  • Uber just can't get out of its own way. The ride-hailing company was hit with additional gender discrimination charges earlier this month, CNET explains. Newish CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has his plate full with a list of existing lawsuits already, "But Uber's problems around diversity have continued. A former female engineer sued the company in May alleging sexual harassment. And last week, the company's head of human resources, Liane Hornsey, resigned amid allegations of racial discrimination," the article states. Additionally, just a week ago, Uber's COO, Barney Harford, "was accused of making insensitive comments about women and people of color." He will now be working with a coach to address his "blind spots" while staying on at Uber. So much for a clean slate! (See WiCipedia: Uber Hires New Diversity Exec & AI Comes for Jobs and Uber Does Housekeeping Amongst CEO Strategizing.)

  • You've heard it before and we fear we'll be hearing it for the foreseeable future: how we work is changing, and if you want a job in the future, you better adapt. Alley Watch put together a primer specifically for women in tech who are prepared to fight off the coming robot/zombie apocalypse with gusto, and compiled the five key traits needed to win the war. They include:

    • Problem solving
    • Adaptability (Ed note: we told you...)
    • Digital and technical skills
    • Creativity
    • Entrepreneurial skills

    So go on, girl, get your Skillshare on. (See Women & Robots.)

  • What's one way to ensure that exclusionary, outdated doctrines don't rule the roost for generations to come? Scrap 'em. Inc. reports that Andreessen Horowitz did just that when they realized that one of their rules about who can and cannot become a partner at the VC firm was outmoded. Previously, a prospective partner had to have been a founder or CEO of a tech startup, which left them with a board full of middle-aged white men. Connie Chan, who started at the firm as an analyst in 2011 -- not a CEO or founder -- is breaking the mold by joining as a general partner. She is only the second woman to become part of the firm's leadership group, though we hope the first of many to come. (See WiCipedia: Female Founders Find Funding & Automotive Careers for Women.)

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

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