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#1
whatchu guys tink bout dis

basically this guy who worked at google put out a memo saying "tech isn't sexist and here's why"

google "diversity" head puts out a memo saying "nuh uh."

guy is outed and fired
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#2
Bad for google, but they can do as they please. Their CEO's response was very cringey and doublespeak. Not a great look for them, but they're in between a rock and a hard place with their public image I suppose.

This is a realm where US labor laws are likely preventing companies from being more forward with their actual hiring practices and philosophies, whether good or bad.


"Every day I wonder how many things I am dead wrong about."
#3
smartphones are sexist
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#4
Do people still actually use Google in Current Year?
Searx.me and qwant.com are infinitely superior
.
#5
Google is free to do whatever they want here. Guy started rambling about physical differences in gender causing women to be inferior in engineering, etc and that's when he loses it.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#6
Quote by Fat Lard
Do people still actually use Google in Current Year?
Searx.me and qwant.com are infinitely superior

#7
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/2017/08/08/google-fires-employee-behind-anti-diversity-memo-perpetuating/ ?


(yuck telegraph)

he does kinda look like how I image most alt right reddit guys


also according to that it was 10 pages, tf kinda memo is 10 pages.


edit: was looking around for a non left/right biased reporting on it but that is a headache so I just went to ft and I gotta side with google here:

https://www.ft.com/content/99c4818e-7bf5-11e7-9108-edda0bcbc928

it was against their code of conduct. I can't imagine any respectable business/organisation that would allow that behaviour anyway.
O.K.

“There's never enough time to do all the nothing you want.”
~ Bill Watterson


O__o
#8
Quote by drdoom8793
le laughing green face rebuttal


Um, seriously? Google has been objectively bad with most reasonable search querries that mean anything, with a clear model they are pushing for (which wouldn't be as bad without the incredible pandering) beyond any standard search algorithm, buried in infinite shit-noise. You pleb.

Which of these do you think won one of their contests though?



.
Last edited by Fat Lard at Aug 8, 2017,
#10
It's like people trying to 'fix' physics courses because they have a tendency to be male dominated. If you bothered to interest enough people to do the right prerequisites to do a course/job then you'd have a larger pool of people applying to choose from and diversity should naturally improve. Doubt it actually would, live in hope though.

Edit: The dude they fired does seem like a dick though, tbf.
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The safest place was not her arms, but her eyes
Where she can't see you
For her gaze, it blisters;
Grey skin to cinders
Last edited by 剣 斧 血 at Aug 8, 2017,
#11
Quote by Xiaoxi
Guy started rambling about physical differences in gender causing women to be inferior in engineering, etc and that's when he loses it.
Really? Lol, I want to read it now, supposedly it's long winded.


"Every day I wonder how many things I am dead wrong about."
#12
Quote by Fat Lard

Come on dude. I know you're not so obtuse as to think most people don't use Google
Last edited by drdoom8793 at Aug 8, 2017,
#13
Quote by Xiaoxi
Google is free to do whatever they want here. Guy started rambling about physical differences in gender causing women to be inferior in engineering, etc and that's when he loses it.


yeah I skimmed his memo and some of it reasonable challenge against attitudes and policies but then it descends into some very silly conjecture that was just begging to get him fired, especially if he just started sending this around to everyone unsolicited.

I'm wary of anyone who makes regular use of "liberal" or "the Left" though
O.K.

“There's never enough time to do all the nothing you want.”
~ Bill Watterson


O__o
#15
no one search engine should have that much power
#19
Quote by 剣 斧 血
Doubt it actually would, live in hope though.


why tho

I'll never understand this leftist idea that diversity is self-justifying
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#20
Google has every right to fire him for the following reasons:

- violating pretty standard, common sense, code of conduct in a major corporation
- not vetting with the proper department and authority before sending out a company-wide email blast (this is fuckin corporate job 101, come on...)
- causing public disruption for a Fortune 10 company, forcing the CEO to cut his family vacation short to clean up after you

regardless of what's in the memo, that's more than enough reasons to terminate

...modes and scales are still useless.


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Last edited by Xiaoxi at Aug 8, 2017,
#21
i can't believe google oppressed some poor innocent douchebag who couldn't act like an adult at work
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I'm a moron tho apparently and everyone should listen to you oh wise pretentious one
#25
Just read the memo. Ten years ago that document would have beet totally uncontroversial, and so I argue, there wasn't a controversial word in it.
#26
Quote by StewieSwan
why tho

I'll never understand this leftist idea that diversity is self-justifying


Why doubt that having a larger pool of candidates would naturally increase diversity or why live in hope that it does?
It didn't take long to realise
The safest place was not her arms, but her eyes
Where she can't see you
For her gaze, it blisters;
Grey skin to cinders
#27
Quote by 剣 斧 血
Why doubt that having a larger pool of candidates would naturally increase diversity or why live in hope that it does?


why think diversity is a self-justifying good

There is zero evidence that a software team made of 2 black guys, 2 asian women, 2 white guys, and 2 latino gays performs any better than a team of 8 of the same general demographics
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Last edited by StewieSwan at Aug 8, 2017,
#28
Quote by drdoom8793
Come on dude. I know you're not so obtuse as to think most people don't use Google
I think he just likes feeling superior over all thinks popular, which would be fine if he weren't constantly trying to put everyone down for it.
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Just barreling dogs and barking trains
Another year lost to the blue line
#30
Commentary on the letter:

Despite what the public response seems to have been, I've gotten many†personal messages
from fellow Googlers expressing their gratitude for bringing up these very important issues
which they agree with but would never have the courage to say or defend because of our
shaming culture and the possibility of being fired. This needs to change


Seems he was right

Xiaoxi is kind of right in saying that Google has the right to fire him, but that doesn't mean it's the right thing to do. IMO, if your company policies go political/philosophical, then you should allow discussion inside your own company about those policies. At least if, you know, you want to be a good company that benefits both itself, its users and the world.

Any company can become such "echochamber"; make proposals and push forward political viewpoints and fire and shutdown anybody inside the company that says otherwise (in any shape or form), it's in their right, just as it's in the right of the employees to quit if they don't like that. But again, it doesn't mean it's right. Just like everything is achieved with public shaming nowadays, one would think that the company itself should be socially shamed if they did such a thing, but it seems such actions are actually praised in society. That's bad.

On average, men and women biologically differ in many ways. These differences aren’t just
socially constructed because:
● They’re universal across human cultures
● They often have clear biological causes and links to prenatal testosterone
● Biological males that were castrated at birth and raised as females often still identify
and act like males
● The underlying traits are highly heritable
● They’re exactly what we would predict from an evolutionary psychology perspective
Note, I’m not saying that all men differ from all women in the following ways or that these
differences are “just.” I’m simply stating that the distribution of preferences and abilities of men
and women differ in part due to biological causes and that these differences may explain why
we don’t see equal representation of women in tech and leadership. Many of these differences
are small and there’s significant overlap between men and women, so you can’t say anything
about an individual given these population level distributions.


For being labelled as "sexist", that seems pretty reasonable.

Women, on average, have more:
...
● Extraversion expressed as gregariousness rather than assertiveness. Also, higher
agreeableness.


That'd also be social and not entirely biological/psychological tho.

Men’s higher drive for status
We always ask why we don't see women in top leadership positions, but we never ask why we
see so many men in these jobs. These positions often require long, stressful hours that may not
be worth it if you want a balanced and fulfilling life.
Status is the primary metric that men are judged on4, pushing many men into these higher
paying, less satisfying jobs for the status that they entail. Note, the same forces that lead men
into high pay/high stress jobs in tech and leadership cause men to take undesirable and
dangerous jobs like coal mining, garbage collection, and firefighting, and suffer 93% of
work-related deaths.


Doesn't seem to be anything wrong with this at first glance. The "progressive" viewpoint would say that "status is the primary metric that men are judged on" is cultural, and it leading to lots of problems for men (high stress, suicide, shitty jobs, etc), as well as problems for women (being conditioned out of those jobs, facing scrutiny and a lot of pressure if they ever were to get into those jobs, etc) is a problem in itself. But carry on

The harm of Google’s biases
I strongly believe in gender and racial diversity, and I think we should strive for more. However,
to achieve a more equal gender and race representation, Google has created several
discriminatory practices:
● Programs, mentoring, and classes only for people with a certain gender or race5
● A high priority queue and special treatment for “diversity” candidates
● Hiring practices which can effectively lower the bar for “diversity” candidates by
decreasing the false negative rate
● Reconsidering any set of people if it’s not “diverse” enough, but not showing that same
scrutiny in the reverse direction (clear confirmation bias)
● Setting org level OKRs for increased representation which can incentivize illegal
discrimination

These practices are based on false assumptions generated by our biases and can actually
increase race and gender tensions. We’re told by senior leadership that what we’re doing is
both the morally and economically correct thing


If Google effectively has those practices, then I agree.

My concrete suggestions are to:
* List of suggestions


Don't see anything outright wrong with them, and I in fact agree with many/most. Don't really agree with "De-emphasize empathy" and some for instance ... but not in a "This guy should burn in hell" way


Don't see the controversy in here, it's just another viewpoint presented by the author as rationally as he can. It may be true or it may be false, but to find that out you need to engage with it constructively in an appropriate setting, just like everything else. I read it and I get the feeling the author is progressive and against sexism/discrimination, and also values rationality and thinks critically.

Why was he fired again?
#31
PC gone mad

REEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
#32
Quote by Xiaoxi
Google has every right to fire him for the following reasons:

- violating pretty standard, common sense, code of conduct in a major corporation


What did he say that violated code of conduct? Is it in the nature of his communication (i.e it being a memo sent to everybody), or in the content? E.g if he presented all of his content in a meeting behind closed doors with a select few people, would it still be ba breach of code of conduct?

- not vetting with the proper department and authority before sending out a company-wide email blast (this is fuckin corporate job 101, come on...)


I'd agree with this. However, I'm not sure how much he actually could have done by trying to "vet it with the proper department". If his assessment is correct and problem is systemic inside Google in an authoritarian way, then presenting such opinion to his immediate superior would cause his memo/opinion to be ignored, while also getting him fired.

If Google doesn't provide the environment for the above (forcing this guy to publish this to everybody for it to be noticed), then IMO it's a problem with Google. Yes, by doing this Google may have the right to terminate him (at least in the sense that they wouldn't face legal consequences), but doesn't mean Google is free of problems and that the responsibility of this whole situation falls on the shoulders of the author alone.

- causing public disruption for a Fortune 10 company, forcing the CEO to cut his family vacation short to clean up after you


The one that made the memo public was Gizmodo, not the author. Why should the author be responsible for "public disruption" if he didn't make it public? He only sent it to Google employees internally, what's wrong with that? If you want to make someone responsible for "public disruption" then blame Gizmodo (I believe it was Gizmodo who published it, though they say it also was on Google+, but I don't know if it was public or just internal).
Last edited by gonzaw at Aug 9, 2017,
#34
As far as I can tell he made the mistake of positing that men and women are different.
#35
Google's CEO letter:

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.


Breakdown:

However, portions of the memo violate our Code of Conduct and cross the line by advancing harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace


I don't get that impression from reading it. In fact, I believe the dude is a progressive and is against sexism and discrimination and is trying really hard to make that clear and is trying really hard to not be misunderstood.

To suggest a group of our colleagues have traits that make them less biologically suited to that work is offensive and not OK


Well, the dude says:

Note, I’m not saying that all men differ from all women in the following ways or that these
differences are “just.” I’m simply stating that the distribution of preferences and abilities of men
and women differ in part due to biological causes and that these differences may explain why
we don’t see equal representation of women in tech and leadership. Many of these differences
are small and there’s significant overlap between men and women, so you can’t say anything
about an individual given these population level distributions


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.”


I think the dude made a mistake in not making his above point much clearer. IMO Pichai's is correct, where it makes sense that the memo would give that impression and make women feel that way, but it didn't seem to actually be the intent of the memo.
What the memo makes others feel is important, it is important to address that and mediate between all parties so the conflict is resolved. On the other hand, to attribute something to the memo that is not there, solely based on accidental consequences, is dishonest.
I see why Google would terminate him based on this (the consequences of the memo in the workplace) .... but I still don't think it's the right choice. The main problem of the dude is the authoritarianism and misguided policies, so him presenting the memo in this way is understandable. That "authoritarianism" and condemnation of dissenting viewpoints should be viewed first, so the above type of communication (i.e a memo being sent to everybody) doesn't happen and these types of discussions happen more organically inside the organization

If I was in charge I'd handle it internally, identifying the actual problem addressed and try to open up ways for people to communicate these type of viewpoints without fear. I'd talk with the author directly for more explanations and reasoning, and I'd hold an internal event/meeting for discussion about this subject, both on the points the author presented, as well as how that memo impacted others at the workplace. Mediation, understanding, safeness, inclusiveness and progress should be the goals here, and I don't see how firing the dude achieves those (in fact, firing someone should be a last resort in a company from my point of view, at least in one with good management/HR)
#36
Basically, I can see myself making those same exact points he made (and I'm the "super liberal/progressive" guy in this forum apparently). If I directly experienced those problems he mentioned at Google (the "affirmative action" policies, and more), I also would want to have a venue inside the company to make my opinion heard and for discussion to be had.
If the above can't be had, then there is a problem with the company, and, well, I also wouldn't see much problem leaving said company (be it from termination or resignation). However, I would certainly be very much annoyed at being called "anti-diversity" and sexist and whatever by everybody, as well as having the letter be made public
#37
The CEO unsurprisingly fired him not for releasing the memo, but for the contents of the memo itself, which he apparently forgot to make actual arguments against, probably because the unscientific axiom of those arguments is that men and women are not different. What a bad culture Silicon Valley is cultivating.
#38
Quote by kalypto
no one search engine should have that much power

Clock's ticking, I just count the hours?
#39
Quote by StewieSwan
There is zero evidence that a software team made of 2 black guys, 2 asian women, 2 white guys, and 2 latino gays performs any better than a team of 8 of the same general demographics

Maybe not in your oddly specific scenario, but there is definitely evidence that suggests workplace diversity is positively correlated with productivity and improves the bottom line.
Free Ali
#40
Quote by chrismendiola
Maybe not in your oddly specific scenario, but there is definitely evidence that suggests workplace diversity is positively correlated with productivity and improves the bottom line.



False
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