This week in our WiCipedia roundup: The New York Times creates a new diversity position; Instagram's COO advises 'get your foot in the door'; sexism scandals rile Hollywood and Sacramento; and more.
Interested in joining Women in Comms on our mission to champion change, empower women and redress the gender imbalance in the comms industry? Visit WiC online and get in touch to learn more about how you can become a member!
Also over at The New York Times, an article titled "Tech's Troubling New Trend: Diversity Is in Your Head" has been making waves. The article focuses on cognitive diversity and viewpoint diversity (vs. gender and racial diversity), which have popped up in recent documents, such as the Google Manifesto, and most recently, at an Apple event last week. Denise Young Smith, Apple's vice president of diversity and inclusion, said, "There can be 12 white, blue-eyed, blond men in a room and they're going to be diverse, too, because they're going to bring a different life experience and life perspective to the conversation," which sparked some outrage. In other words, if you have a group of employees with different views and opinions, there's no need for people who might look different from one another. You've already got yourself a diverse team! (See Google Fires Engineer Over Gender Manifesto.)
CBS News interviewed Instagram's chief operating officer, Marne Levine, about why women should go into tech careers. The addictive social media app just celebrated its seventh birthday and claims 800 million users. Levine says that despite recent criticisms about gendered tech company culture, the best way to fix this is for more women to enter the game. Levine also stressed that working for a tech company doesn't necessarily mean being in a technical role, and that getting in the door -- in whatever role you can find -- is often the first step to a dream job. (See Cisco's Centoni Shares Guiding Career Themes and Skillsoft Puts Women in Action to Improve Culture.)
Twitter Inc. is undergoing some changes in the next few weeks in terms of the way it screens content directed towards women, CNET explains. Announced the same day as the #WomenBoycottTwitter protest -- the result of actor Rose McGowan's statements about Harvey Weinstein -- Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey tweeted an announcement proclaiming the forthcoming changes. The article states: "Twitter will take a 'more aggressive stance' regarding its rules involving 'unwanted sexual advances, non-consensual nudity, hate symbols, violent groups and tweets that glorify violence,' Dorsey tweeted." Twitter also made a formal statement on the Weinstein scandal, and said, "Twitter is proud to empower and support the voices on our platform, especially those that speak truth to power ... We stand with the brave women and men who use Twitter to share their stories, and will work hard every day to improve our processes to protect those voices." (See WiCipedia: Twitter Threats, Diversity Hires & Oracle in Hot Seat.)
Given all of the news this week about mistreatment of women -- both in and out of the office confines -- this article from The Guardian really hit home for us. Titled "Men, you want to treat women better? Here's a list to start with," the article is made up of straightforward and no-holds-barred bulletpoints of what men should be doing differently to be, well, better. Some of our favorite work-related items are:
If you are asked to be on a panel/team and see that it's all men, say something. Maybe even refuse the spot!
Don't call women "crazy" in a professional setting.
Involve women in your creative projects, then let them have equal part in them.
This week in our WiC roundup: Girls in Tech makes biggest fundraising effort yet; Microsoft takes its Women in Cloud initiative on the road; women in developing countries pay the price for tech; and more.