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Woman live-tweets alleged sexist conversation between tech execs, Report
Woman live-tweets alleged sexist conversation between tech execs, Report

Woman live-tweets alleged sexist conversation between tech execs, Report

Lyndsay Kirkham, A freelance coder, was having lunch in downtown Toronto yesterday when she claimed she overheard some IBM executives discussing why they have concerns with hiring women.

“They were talking about how they weren’t going to be hiring any new women – specifically any young women – that they were only going to be hiring mature women, because young women get pregnant again and again and again.”

There was some “head-nodding and quiet yeses, she recalled.

“They then went on to talk about how women needed to take extra time in the summer because they needed to de-stress from the work, home stress, and how mature women were a better bet [for hiring] because they had already done their child-rearing.”

Kirkham tweeted the conversation live, and, she said, was overwhelmed with responses, including from some who wrote they’d seen or heard the same.

“I was shocked,” she told Galloway, “because I couldn’t believe they were so comfortable in their sexism that they were willing to have this conversation in public … It just underlined for me that while we’ve got female CEOs — Virginia (Rometty of IBM) Sheryl (Sandberg, COO of Facebook and co-author of Lean In) and Marissa (Mayer of Yahoo), this ethos is so pervasive.”

Agencies/Canadajournal

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    6 comments

    1. Were these men being dishonest? or just telling the truth?

      The bottom line is always the main focus..

    2. Wow! So I can sit there and tweet whatever I want and it will be taken at face value. This is pure heresy. Nothing like riling up people on Twitter without a single shred of actual evidence. If she recorded the conversation either with video and/or audio and they clearly state that they are indeed from IBM then ya fry them. If not it’s very suspicious.

    3. Why is the truth that shocking? I’ve seen that very situation play out time after time where I work. A young woman is hired, starts work, is brought up to speed, proves to be productive for a year or two – and then disappears on mat leave for a year. The company then has to scramble to find a replacement, train that replacement, bring that replacement up to speed, etc.

    4. christine ballone

      we are concerned about our privacy while someone sitting close to you records every word you’re saying, scary!!!

    5. Isn’t this more about “ageism” than sexism? They aren’t talking about not hiring women, they are talking about not hiring YOUNG women. Is that really sexism?

    6. The question is whether the facts support their statements or not. Yes, we have laws to prohibit discrimination in hiring, but the executives may have correctly identified a pattern that is affecting their ability to get their work done. Of course they’re gonna chat about it. As far as I know, it’s still illegal to take this into account when hiring.

      So: a bunch of executives with possibly incorrect information? Yes. A bunch of execs discussing illegal hiring strategies? Sure. But outrageous? Not really.

      I read some anti-fat thread a while back where a male commenter posted, “The best coworkers I ever had were obese blue-collar women.” (On a thread that talked about how obese people were lazy and incompetent.) It made me happy to read that.

      Let’s hope we’re making accurate assessments of our employees’ and coworkers’ efforts.

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