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[dupe] Outraged by the Google Diversity Memo? I Want You to Think About It (nautil.us)
27 points by dnetesn 10 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 15 comments




I disagree. Debating this memo is like debating about crime statistics every time a black person gets shot by the cops. There are people that understand the role social forces play in inequality, and there are those that don't know and don't want to know. In the past 4 years, through Black Lives Matter and GamerGate, I've never seen anyone's opinion changed through debate. There's no bridging the two sides. I think it's genetic or something ¯\_(ツ)_/¯


I've thought this EXACT thing and told friends privately the same. I thought it too incendiary to draw a parallel here though.

Also, the article seems to think missing out some weak-ass graph and a link to wikipedia as irrefutable proof that this guy knows what he's talking about and everyone is out to misconstrue his words. Nope.

I'll tell you some bias he makes no mention of. The bias of having Disney princess for girls before they're born. Of being bought pink and told they're pretty not clever. Then getting dolls as presents instead of practical problem solving toys. The shoes and clothes bought that aren't practical for climbing trees or exploring. Then watching every Hollywood film about men while pathetic women characters look savvy and get "rescued" like the fairytales they were told when they were little.

After all this, even if the adverts of scantily clad girls in both boys and girls magazines haven't dissuaded them a career in science. Perhaps they study and perhaps they do so well as to get a job at google. Where they will be surrounded by a good many male asshole engineers (it's likely because I'm a male software guy and have seen no shortage). They persist anyway. Then some male privileged white lad who's a Princeton graduate pops up and says they're neurotic. Wants to talk bias in an open way? Nope

He's missed the point. He wants to talk about the very few who've travelled that unlikely journey made all they way to Google despite the obvious barriers that were in place before they were born.


> Also, the article seems to think missing out some weak-ass graph and a link to wikipedia as irrefutable proof that this guy knows what he's talking about and everyone is out to misconstrue his words. Nope.

You do realise that this is what people making the opposite arguments do, right?

> I'll tell you some bias he makes no mention of. The bias of having Disney princess for girls before they're born. Of being bought pink and told they're pretty not clever. Then getting dolls as presents instead of practical problem solving toys. The shoes and clothes bought that aren't practical for climbing trees or exploring. Then watching every Hollywood film about men while pathetic women characters look savvy and get "rescued" like the fairytales they were told when they were little.

What about times before TV existed? what about countries where computers and games weren't marketed?

> After all this, even if the adverts of scantily clad girls in both boys and girls magazines haven't dissuaded them a career in science. Perhaps they study and perhaps they do so well as to get a job at google. Where they will be surrounded by a good many male asshole engineers (it's likely because I'm a male software guy and have seen no shortage). They persist anyway.

Most software engineers where nerds and there was a huge societal pressure against nerds, that didn't stop nerdy boys from doing what the want to do.

> Then some male privileged white lad

If it's a poor black women from the ghetto making the same argument, does it make the argument better?

> Wants to talk bias in an open way? Nope

If you dare say that: it's not only women that have issues in life or that we don't live in a patriarchy, people label you as fascist, sexist, racist etc. Want to talk about double standards in an open way? Nope.

> He's missed the point. He wants to talk about the very few who've travelled that unlikely journey made all they way to Google despite the obvious barriers that were in place before they were born.

Are you implying that only women have barriers?


> Also, the article seems to think missing out some weak-ass graph and a link to wikipedia as irrefutable proof that this guy knows what he's talking about and everyone is out to misconstrue his words. Nope.

You do realise that this is what people making the opposite arguments do, right?

> I'll tell you some bias he makes no mention of. The bias of having Disney princess for girls before they're born. Of being bought pink and told they're pretty not clever. Then getting dolls as presents instead of practical problem solving toys. The shoes and clothes bought that aren't practical for climbing trees or exploring. Then watching every Hollywood film about men while pathetic women characters look savvy and get "rescued" like the fairytales they were told when they were little.

What about times before TV existed? what about countries where computers and games weren't marketed?

> After all this, even if the adverts of scantily clad girls in both boys and girls magazines haven't dissuaded them a career in science. Perhaps they study and perhaps they do so well as to get a job at google. Where they will be surrounded by a good many male asshole engineers (it's likely because I'm a male software guy and have seen no shortage). They persist anyway.

Most software engineers where nerds and there was a huge societal pressure against nerds, that didn't stop nerdy boys from doing what the want to do.

> Then some male privileged white lad

If it's a poor black women from the ghetto making the same argument, does it make the argument better?

> Wants to talk bias in an open way? Nope

If you dare say that: it's not only women that have issues in life or that we don't live in a patriarchy, people label you as fascist, sexist, racist etc. Want to talk about double standards in an open way? Nope.

> He's missed the point. He wants to talk about the very few who've travelled that unlikely journey made all they way to Google despite the obvious barriers that were in place before they were born.

Are you implying that only women have barriers?


While I agree that these discussions can be toxic, I do think you're being a bit too pessimistic.

Many people, myself included, stay on the sideline with many discussions because we either don't feel strongly about them, or because we don't have opinions we're wed to.

While there are probably more effective ways to effect changes in thinking, even the 'toxic' discussions have often caused me to either change my mind on an issue, or at the very least develop a better understanding about it (or why I should care in the first place).


> Debating this memo is like debating about crime statistics every time a black person gets shot by the cops. There are people that understand the role social forces play in inequality, and there are those that don't know and don't want to know.

If I understood you correctly:

fewer women in tech -> sexism

black man getting shot by police -> racism

If these are true then:

fewer women in jail -> ????

white women getting shot by black policemen -> ????

You can convince me, if you manage to explain this to me.


I've seen plenty of opinions changed through conversation, but very few through yelling. Unfortunately it seems like the only form of debate anyone is interested is who can yell the loudest.


>But however imperfect his attempt, he was fired, in short, for thinking on his own.

I agree with this sentiment. I also agree that google had a right to fire him for it. There was a time when I thought that google wasn't the kind of company to fire people for their ideas. Now I know otherwise.


I thought the sentiment of the memo was already basically laid out here: https://www.amazon.com/Men-are-Mars-Women-Venus/dp/006123205...


The best essay I've seen on the subject is here: http://slatestarcodex.com/2017/08/07/contra-grant-on-exagger... it's a lot better than the original memo.


Fuel to the fire...

Here's a neuroscientist explaining to Google the congenital differences between the female and male brains:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lu_uGr1ZOn4



The one that says one shouldn’t expect employees in all professions to reflect the demographics of the whole population?

That doesn't outrage me but then that isn't what the memo said.


As this guy's ongoing reaction verifies (His twitter handle is "@fired4truth"), a manifesto is a "here's why I'm right" rather than a "let's talk about this." This guy has no intention of having an open dialogue.

Trying to circulate a 10-page manifesto explaining how management doesn't understand what they're doing is going to get you fired just about anywhere.




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