Monday, September 29, 2014

Reponse to CP#1

I just read the article "Exposing Hidden Bias at Google" by Farhad Manjoo and I have to say it was incredibly eye-opening. This article was written on September 24th, 2014 which is literally just five days ago. FIVE DAYS AGO. Why are men still discriminating against women? Why aren't all humans totally equal yet? We should not be having these kinds of issues at this day and age. We should not have had these issues to begin with!

Before reading this, I didn't know there was so much bias against women in the tech industry. I just always believed men and women were equal and that the idea that women are second to men was ancient history but that's clearly not the case.

I'm surprised to hear that Google and Apple in particular don't have much female representation.I wouldn't expect Google and Apple, who are basically the faces of technological advancement, to have such a "medieval" mind set.

Although I believe that the bias tech companies had (and still kind of have) against women is unfair, I do understand what they mean when they say that biases are "...pervasive and hidden, a deep-set part of the culture ...". Women have been treated as weak and mindless beings since the beginning of time so I guess that, in a way, it does make sense for men to have this subconscious discriminatory attitude towards females but I don't understand why bigotry ever needed to exist in the first place. Discriminating against a particular race or gender or ANYTHING seems pretty useless and why anyone would put someone else down just because of what they are is beyond me.

I'm glad Google is taking these steps to put an end to a prejudice that should never have come to be  but I don't think this subconscious bias will be completely eliminated...not right away anyway. "Everyone is a little bit racist or sexist....people do the worst stuff without meaning to, or even recognizing that they're being influenced by their preferences." and that's the sad truth. There's always going to be people who think their opinions are facts and the only way to change that is to educate them which is going to take an obviously huge amount of time.

"Suddenly you go from being completely oblivious to going, 'Oh my god, it's everywhere," which is mostly how my generation is. We, for the most part, realize the discrimination that exists in the world and are aware of how wrong it is. The first step to solving a problem is realizing there is one which is what Google, and many other organizations are doing, but there are still many steps remaining until we reach a solution and many generations to go to achieve this goal.


  1. I disagree with your statement, " We should not have these kind of problems at this day and age" because honestly, we have been working towards an equal environment. Throughout history, mankind have been heading towards the right path.. And I beleive that we've been progressing pretty fast. I'd like to add that people discriminate for useful reasons. Maybe the segregation of genders are a good thing because, in reality, woman are weaker. Strength and mentally. Although they're multiple of examples countering my argument, people need to realize that discrimination isn't always a bad thing. I agree with your statement that everyone is a little bit bias because I haven't seen a person that isn't. People maybe be bias in different ways, but they're not all bad.

    1. Women are weaker both in strength and mentally? I will agree with strength on an average scale, but mentally? Why?

  2. I agree with you completely. Women are just as capable as men in many ways. Yes we have differences physically that cause us to be the "weaker sex," but in many ways we have proven ourselves as very capable human beings. Something I found out recently that I feel relates to this topic is that the women to men ratio of pay is different. "In 2013, female full-time workers made only 78 cents for every dollar earned by men, a gender wage gap of 22 percent," (according to and I've heard this as well on the radio. It's interesting that not only females are not treated as equals but are paid less too. I liked when you said, "This article was written on September 24th, 2014 which is literally just five days ago. FIVE DAYS AGO," because it is a baffling thought. The Women's rights movement began in 1848 (according to and even though the main course of events are through 1920, we are still facing many issues today; even in places as simple as work. Bottom line is, yes we are still making improvements but like you said we are still a long ways away from accomplishing equality in the workplace.

  3. A common misconception that many of the students posting on their blogs seem to have is that bias is the only reason there aren't as many women as men in the tech industry. Quite simply put, this is not the case. Though I am an advocate for equal rights, I also try to see things from every point of view. Yes, there is a large gap between the number of men and the number of women in the tech industry, however there is also a much greater number of men applying for these jobs in the first place, which will most definitely cause the percentages and statistics to skew a bit. I don't believe the biggest issue here is bias within the companies themselves, I think the issue is that there is a very small number of women that want to try and enter these "male-dominated industries" to begin with.

  4. After reading your article and the comments, I've come to agree with what Brendan is trying to say. There are a lot more factors out there than bias when it comes to deciding the workforce. I just read a statistic that in 2008, out of three million registered nurses, only seven percent of those are male. Maybe the reason as to why there's a small workforce of women in tech companies is because they prefer other careers.

  5. I very much agree with your post on how women are pushed down and portrayed as useless. My favorite point was probably your comment, "I wouldn't expect Google and Apple, who are basically the faces of technological advancement, to have such a 'medieval' mind set." The way you said it makes it seem very illogical and contradictory, and the comparison made for a strong point.

    While I do agree with the point that Brendan made, I'd like to add on to this.
    A big reason why there is such a large disparity in the numbers of women versus men applying into the tech industry is because of gender roles. Women are traditionally raised to pursue more "feminine" jobs, such as hair stylist or nurse. On the other hand, men are raised to follow more "masculine" jobs, such as professional sports player or any math-heavy job. Math and science in our society are usually seen as subjects not for women, but for men instead. Women and men may prefer other careers based on how they were raised to think, and on how much they were affected by gender roles growing up. All in all though, due to the prevalence of such gender roles in our society, perpetuated by everything from children's toys to career advisory classes, they may be a huge factor in why there are not so many women applying into the tech field as men.