If we had ever thought that engineering and such genius plans were totally preaching equality among genders, well we were wrong, the influx of the males in the software engineering path has created quite a dent among both genders. Yesterday though something more unpleasant occurred at one of the most famous and biggest Tech giant, Google.
It is no surprise that Indians have made quite the mark on Google premises, but that’s not the case when it comes to gender equality thoughts. When an anti-diversity manifesto went viral inside the company, resulting in infuriated employees. Written by a senior Google executive James Damore, the 10-page long document argued that ‘the representation gap between men and women in software engineering persists because of biological differences between the two sexes’.
The document that was titled, ‘Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber’, created an absolute chaos over the absurd claims on the basis gender and biological spheres, calling out the Senior official’s statement outrageous although put quite a dent on the Tech giant’s initiatives towards gender diversity.
This anti-diversity manifesto created an opinion that Google should halt its initiatives solely aimed at increasing its gender as well as racial diversity within the company, instead it should focus on “ideological diversity” as according to Motherboard.
But in a night’s time, it seems the story has taken a twist, as Google has fired James Damore on the accounts of disrupting the company’s initiatives towards gender diversity and for claiming that males are more biologically suited for jobs in the Tech industry than females.
Damore confirmed the news to Bloomberg saying he was fired because “PERPETUATING GENDER STEREOTYPES.” And that he is, “CURRENTLY EXPLORING ALL POSSIBLE LEGAL REMEDIES.”
Other reports do prove it that, he had submitted a charge to the U.S. National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) against the upper management board, to curb his freedom of speech and shame him into silence.
In answer to the whole matter, Google CEO, Sundar Pichai, has given out a letter that specifically speaks to the company’s cause and beliefs as well as creates awareness among others about how the memo is ‘NOT OK’ in a Google blog post.
“This has been a very difficult time. I wanted to provide an update on the memo that was circulated over this past week.
First, let me say that we strongly support the right of Googlers to express themselves, and much of what was in that memo is fair to debate, regardless of whether a vast majority of Googlers disagree with it. However, portions of the memo violate our Code of Conduct and cross the line by advancing harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace. Our job is to build great products for users that make a difference in their lives. To suggest a group of our colleagues have traits that make them less biologically suited to that work is offensive and not OK. It is contrary to our basic values and our Code of Conduct, which expects “each Googler to do their utmost to create a workplace culture that is free of harassment, intimidation, bias and unlawful discrimination.”
The memo has clearly impacted our co-workers, some of whom are hurting and feel judged based on their gender. Our co-workers shouldn’t have to worry that each time they open their mouths to speak in a meeting, they have to prove that they are not like the memo states, being “agreeable” rather than “assertive,” showing a “lower stress tolerance,” or being “neurotic.”
At the same time, there are co-workers who are questioning whether they can safely express their views in the workplace (especially those with a minority viewpoint). They too feel under threat, and that is also not OK. People must feel free to express dissent. So to be clear again, many points raised in the memo—such as the portions criticizing Google’s trainings, questioning the role of ideology in the workplace, and debating whether programs for women and underserved groups are sufficiently open to all—are important topics. The author had a right to express their views on those topics—we encourage an environment in which people can do this and it remains our policy to not take action against anyone for prompting these discussions.
The past few days have been very difficult for many at the company, and we need to find a way to debate issues on which we might disagree—while doing so in line with our Code of Conduct. I’d encourage each of you to make an effort over the coming days to reach out to those who might have different perspectives from your own. I will be doing the same.
I have been on work related travel in Africa and Europe the past couple of weeks and had just started my family vacation here this week. I have decided to return tomorrow as clearly there’s a lot more to discuss as a group—including how we create a more inclusive environment for all.”
Everyone is entitled to their own opinions about everything, but creating dents and gaps in the society at large, through the misuse of such right is unjust.