“Everybody will always look at you as a woman first and an engineer second. They will never be unbiased”. “I think this is the breast hack ever”. “How do you plan to balance your work life and personal life if you have kids in the future?”.
These are all comments you might think are too sexist or objectifying to be told in public, especially in the 21st century. But unfortunately, this is a small part of all the depreciatory and belittling treatments women in the tech industry face on a daily basis.
Silicon Valley’s essence of diversity, inclusion and disruptive…
Disclaimer: Some of the language and photos in this article may contain graphical depictions of violence and aggressive rhetoric.
Headset on. Fingers on the controller. Shoulders tense, eyes narrowed, while you maneuver yourself through a battlefield. Or a zombie apocalypse. Your teammates are with you, fighting beside you. Suddenly a notification pops up on the side of your screen, drawing your attention away from the main action for one second. The message reads “I hope your boyfriend beats you. Nah, you can’t get a boyfriend.” Your character gets shot, game over.
Gaming. For some, it is a welcome escape from daily struggles. For some, it is a hobby to pass the time or to enjoy with friends. For some, it means the freedom of going where you want to go and becoming who you want to be.
Globally, approximately 45% of those who consider themselves gamers for these or other reasons, are women. The experiences they have in gaming can however grossly differ from those of their male counterparts.
But before concentrating on and understanding sexual and gender harassment female gamers experience while gaming, we need to take a step back…
What does it mean to be a woman? Such a simple, yet such a hard question. Well, I have to get a little poetic here, because it is impossible to describe in plain words something as majestic and as magnificent, as womanhood.
Imagine you are making a chocolate fondant. You buy the ingredients, prepare the molds, whisk, stir, mix, beat, pour, mix and stir again. Divide the dough, heat the oven, leave, wait, wash equipment and plate up. Then eat, wash plates, regret last bite, go to the gym and dive into cardio.
Do you think you will ever be…
Sexual harassment isn’t just bad for business, causing losses in productivity, talent, and even financial means, it is also bad for humanity, threatening people’s human rights. Sexual harassment in the workplace violates the right to “just and favourable conditions of work,” contained in Article 23 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Although the fight to protect and promote this right has often been centred on fair and good physical conditions at work, i.e. …
Sexist advertisements portraying women and girls in degrading positions is a memory from the past left from the Mad Men era. Or so we might think. But truth be told, despite many improvements in female representation within the labour market, with more women holding top management and executive positions than ever before, gendered stereotypes against harming women still remain blatant in the 21st century.
Throughout our history, stereotypes about male and female characteristics have fomented the internalised normality of sexist behaviour by objectifying and hypersexualising women’s bodies. …
These words were written on a postcard to British suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst more than 100 years ago. The historical strive of women to enter democratic discourse and claim their rightful place on the political stage immediately gave rise to another movement: The strive to deter them from doing so, through discreditation, intimidation and violence.
Both struggles continue today.
As a woman studying International Relations, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has consistently shattered glass ceilings and shown me that anything is possible. AOC defeated a 10 term incumbent in New York City and went on to become the youngest woman ever to serve in the U.S. Congress.
“Basic differences between men and women in personal orientation to sexual behaviour explain the difference between men and women in attitudes towards sexual harassment” — Alison Konrad & Barbara Gutek
This statement might feel wrong to you. Maybe because it outlines inherent behavioural differences based on sex and gender. Maybe because it uses these divergences to differentiate a gendered view of sex. Maybe because it generates presumptions about gendered perceptions of sexual harassment.
And maybe that is because this statement was made 35 years ago. …
In a recent U.S. survey, 55% of male respondents were more concerned about false reports on sexual harassment than the present discrepancies in the gender pay gap.
This shows that the majority of concerns rather centre on false claims of harassment and/or abuse than towards women actually experiencing such degrading situations.
Zooming in to the official data in the United States, false reporting is statistically quite rare and low regardless of the type of crime committed. For sexual harassment cases, false reporting ranges from 2 to 10%, which is a lower rate to those for murder and kidnapping.