Thursday, June 5, 2014

Atlassian, Maven, and Stupid Gender Jokes in Tech

Developer compares a plugin framework to his girlfriend, saying that it's "beautiful" but "it demands a lot of attention" and "interrupts [him] while [he's] working."

You would have made the same point by comparing it to your fancy show dog. Or without any cutesy metaphors at all.

Way to be classy and go for the low-hanging fruit of a joke there, Doklovic.

People who make jokes like this always baffle me: if your girlfriend is that much of a pain, or if your boyfriend is that much of an inept manchild, you're the one choosing to maintain a relationship with them. And if you think that every man or woman is going to behave in those ways, then please die alone without reproducing.

The jokes about women rustle my jimmies particularly (unsurprising, considering my ovary ownership), but I would be lying if I said I didn't die a little inside every time I see a pin like this on Pinterest:

Haha, it's funny because women are nagging harpies and men are clueless oafs!
But you know, let's not forget that the tech industry is still run by men and that jokes about women being annoying decorations contribute to a frigid culture that discourages them from joining, Which is a shame, because computer science is one of the fields where the gendered paygap is basically nonexistent.

I appreciate Atlassian's response to this and their stated commitment to doing better as a group.  They haven't outlined exactly how they plan to help Doklovic see the goof-up; I assume he has enough empathy and insight to realize just from this blowback alone why a joke about girlfriends being nothing more than pretty bimbos who keep men from getting stuff done was juvenile and inappropriate for an official presentation in a formal tech conference.

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