EppsNet Archive: LinkedIn

Tech Gender Bias: Men Not as Concerned

24 Oct 2017 /

According to LinkedIn:

Despite a string of revelations that women in tech face considerable headwinds — from persistent gender-based pay gaps (per Bloomberg), to limited VC funding for female-led startups (per Fortune), to sexual harassment (per The New York Times) — just 29% of men say that discrimination is a major problem in the industry, according to data from Pew. In fact, some 32% of men claim that it’s not a problem at all.

Everything I read about gender discrimination in tech starts out by assuming it’s a real problem and that all reasonable people agree that it’s a real problem.

Even the supposedly objective LinkedIn blurb above tells us that 29% of men “say” that discrimination is a major problem, while 32% of men “claim” that it’s not a problem at all, “despite a string of revelations blah blah blah . . .”

I’ve worked in tech for 30 years . . . I say it’s not a problem but I’m open to an evidence-based argument that I’m wrong. (NB: “If you can’t see it, then you’re part of the problem” is not an evidence-based argument.)

 

Some possible evidence for gender discrimination:

Gender

Just look at the numbers. It’s a male-dominated industry.

Agreed, but that’s not prima facie evidence of discrimination.

I worked with a nursing organization for five years. Nursing, you may have noticed, is a female-dominated profession. During that time, I never heard one person mention gender bias in nursing. Never. In five years.

Most schoolteachers are women, most therapists are women, most social workers, most MFC counselors . . . I could go on with this but I think we both get the point: Have you ever heard anything about gender bias in any female-dominated profession? I haven’t.

Gender imbalance is not evidence of discrimination. Men and women are different and they choose to do different things. More women choose to be nurses and social workers and more men choose to be programmers.

Limited VC funding for female-led startups

VCs would love to fund more female-led startups, but again, men and women choose to do different things and more men choose to do startups.

Note that there doesn’t seem to be a shortage of women starting small businesses, but more men choose to pitch VC-funded startups.

Gender-based pay gaps

Gender-based pay gaps are not specific to the tech industry.

Sexual harassment

Sexual harassment is not specific to the tech industry.

Online harassment

If you think online harassment is limited to women, you haven’t spent much time online. Standards of discourse are nonexistent. Civility is almost non-existent.

Jump on Twitter for a few minutes and see how people talk to each other.

I’ve been interacting with people on the web for a couple of decades . . . some of the things people have said to me . . . it’s beyond upsetting . . . you can feel the blood draining out of your face as you’re reading it. It’s not limited to women.

Women are passed over for raises, promotions, plum projects, etc.

Yes . . . so are men. What’s your hypothesis? Men are passed over because they’re undeserving, while women are passed over just because they’re women?

 

TL;DR -> Women are capable of making decisions for themselves. For the most part, they choose to do things other than work in tech and do startups. So what?

Thus spoke The Programmer


Tech Gender Bias: Men Not as Concerned

22 Oct 2017 /

According to LinkedIn:

Despite a string of revelations that women in tech face considerable headwinds — from persistent gender-based pay gaps (per Bloomberg), to limited VC funding for female-led startups (per Fortune), to sexual harassment (per The New York Times) — just 29% of men say that discrimination is a major problem in the industry, according to data from Pew. In fact, some 32% of men claim that it’s not a problem at all.

Here’s why I claim that it’s not a problem: Women are capable of making decisions for themselves. For the most part, they choose to do things other than work in tech and do startups. So what? (Pay gaps and harassment are not tech-specific, obviously.)

Thus spoke The Programmer.


AP Computer Science Revisited

6 Feb 2017 /

I got a LinkedIn invitation today from a student I taught in an AP Computer Science class a couple of years ago.

She’s now a computer science major at UCSB. Several of the kids from that class are now in college as computer science majors. Some of them would have been computer science majors anyway, without the class — they came in already having programming interest and experience — but this young lady was not in that group.

She was quiet in class but when I worked with her one on one, she asked a lot of questions. She asked them quietly but she asked. And when I told her to do something a certain way she always asked why.

She only has four connections at this time so I appreciate her thinking of me. 🙂

LinkedIn


More People I’m Sick Unto Death Of

8 Nov 2015 /
At the movies
  • People who advise you to “embrace failure.” Probably good advice, but if I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it ten thousand times. We get it: Embrace Failure. Let’s move on already. Extra demerits: You have opinions on other completely played-out topics like management vs. leadership and how to optimize your LinkedIn profile.
  • People who say “Can I put you on hold for a moment?” and then immediately put me on hold without giving me a chance to sigh ostentatiously and say “If you must.”
  • Full-grown adults who tell you how sexually attracted they are to an actor or actress in a movie. Extra demerits: You invent your own fawning vocabulary with words like “droolworthy.” Your ability to be sexually aroused by a fantasy on a movie screen doesn’t enhance my opinion of you at all. Try maintaining a relationship in real life with someone who’s no more attractive than you are, lover boy (or girl).

I Think We Are Kidding Ourselves

7 Sep 2015 /

More people have ascended bodily into heaven than shipped great software on time.Jim McCarthy

Ascension

On the other hand, the number of people on LinkedIn claiming to have a demonstrated ability to lead software projects to successful completion, on time and on budget, as well as the number of companies seeking to hire such people, is infinite.

Thus spoke The Programmer.


Bonified?

9 Mar 2015 /

From LinkedIn:

Decision Engineering is emerging as a new profession. | LinkedIn


How to Not Cry at Work

24 Jul 2014 /
Top LinkedIn posts

The most read post on LinkedIn today is “How To Not Cry At Work” with (as I write this) 241,549 views.

The second most read post — and a very distant second with 101,906 views — is “It’s time to stop using recruiting agencies.”

That can’t be good. What does it say about the American workplace that the most pressing issue is how to avoid crying?


I Wuz Homeshooled

31 Jul 2013 /

Via LinkedIn:

Homeshooler


LinkedIn Recommendation

2 Dec 2012 /

This is the character of the man: so intent upon enlightening the eager that he forgets his hunger, and so happy in doing so, that he forgets the bitterness of his lot and does not realize that old age is at hand.


Visualizing Social Networks

27 Oct 2012 /

I’m taking a Social Network Analysis class on Coursera. These weren’t assignments for the class (well, the Facebook one sort of was), just some experiments I wanted to share.

Facebook

You can use netvizz to download a gdf file of your Facebook network, i.e., all of your Facebook friends and all of the connections between them.

You can then use your favorite graph analysis software (I used Gephi, which is open-source and free) to look for patterns.

My Facebook network is in the image below. Of the four main clusters, two consist of co-workers, one is family and one is people I know from roller hockey.

Facebook network

Click image to enlarge

Twitter

This is the network of people I follow on Twitter. I used NodeXL (a free, open-source template for Excel) to download and lay out the data.

Twitter Network

Click image to enlarge

I labeled the nodes in this one. With a few exceptions, the light blue nodes are people I follow because I think they’re funny, the light green nodes are related to sports and/or USC, the dark green nodes are people of professional interest, the red nodes are former colleagues, and the dark blue nodes are everyone else.

The size of the node indicates number of tweets, i.e., larger nodes tweet more than smaller nodes.

LinkedIn

My LinkedIn network is a little bigger than my Facebook or Twitter. The green, yellow, blue, purple and orange clusters are co-workers and recruiters. The gray nodes at the top are people with whom I share one or more professional interests. You can see that they split out into multiple sub-groups.

LinkedIn network

Click image to enlarge

I used the LinkedIn Maps application to generate the graphic.

Summary

These are small-world networks and I had a good idea in advance about who was connected to who and why.

The value of tools like this is in applying them to “real world” networks. In the absence of analytical tools to extract patterns from raw data, large, complex networks just look like giant hairballs.

To give you an idea, this image shows what my Facebook network looks like in Gephi before applying a layout algorithm,

Facebook hairball

Click image to enlarge


IT Recruiters

15 Oct 2012 /
Shoe Salesman

I’ve worked with some great IT recruiters but they’re the exception, not the rule.

I spent a lot of time on LinkedIn recently as part of a job search, and it doesn’t make you feel good about IT as a serious profession when you see how many IT recruiters are former waitresses, bartenders, shoe salesmen . . . honorable professions, but not likely to give a person a good understanding of technology and the people who work with it.

Here’s a sample phone conversation I had with a recruiter:

“First question,” the recruiter says. “Do you have any experience with software development? Because that’s key for this position.”

“Uh, that’s all I’ve done for 25 years. Are you looking at my résumé?”

“Yes, but I don’t see anything about software development.”

“Are you sure it’s my résumé?”

“Yeah . . . I don’t see anything that specifically says software development.”

I’m speechless because this is clearly impossible.

“Hang on,” I say, “I’m going to bring up a copy of my résumé here. Okay, let’s make sure we’re looking at the same thing.

Developing and maintaining a portfolio of enterprise web applications on ASP.NET. That’s software development.

Designing and implementing business-critical web services in .NET environment. That’s software development.

Design and implementation of multiple concurrent ASP.NET projects on high-volume customer-facing websites. That’s software development.

“Granted, we haven’t seen the word ‘software’ followed by the word ‘development’ but that’s what all of this is, right?”

(I may as well stipulate here that IT practitioners are a pretty bad bunch themselves when it comes to lacking appropriate skills for their work.)


I’ve Got a Little List

22 Apr 2012 /
Koko

From the LinkedIn profile of a linguistically challenged IT manager:

High-Level Strategic Planner and Executioner


Bad is Good

2 Dec 2009 /

I saw a guy I used to work with on LinkedIn today . . .

The thing I remember most about him is that he believed it was bad luck to wish good fortune on someone. For example, if you said to him “Have a good day,” he believed that would in fact cause him to have a bad day.

When I worked with him, if I saw him as I was leaving the office, I’d say “Have a crummy evening.” And he’d say, “Thank you.”

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Twitter: 2009-11-07

7 Nov 2009 /

Free Advice for Women Considering an IT Career

27 May 2009 /

I’d just finished reading another tiresome “why oh why aren’t there more women in IT?” article when I found a former colleague on LinkedIn . . . he lists his job title as “Analyst, Software Quality Assurnace.”

Would you hire him as a QA guy? I wouldn’t, and that’s even before I saw how he misspelled “Assurance.”

The IT “profession” is chock full of idiots like this. Why anyone thinks women are missing out on something if they don’t work in IT is a total mystery.

If I had a daughter, I would tell her to be a meeting planner or a flight attendant . . .

Thus spoke The Programmer.


An Absolute Pleasure

18 Apr 2009 /

I’m reading a recommendation on LinkedIn, written by a person I know for another person I know.

Unbeknownst to the vast majority of people who’ll read the recommendation, these two people used to date each other. I know I’m a bad person but I can’t help mentally adding “…in bed” to the end of each sentence.

Try it:

Cleopatra is an absolute pleasure to work with. While working together, I found her to be a consummate professional. Clearly, her keen attention to detail is without equal. . . .

You get the idea . . .

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LinkedIn Meta

28 Jan 2009 /

If you’re not on LinkedIn this isn’t going to be funny but I got this email today from my brother:

I’m going through a social media epiphany…so “I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn.” 🙂