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Sexual Discrimination in IT?

By Stephy ·
I just read a disturbing thread, actually in fact a slanderous post, the subject of which is a friend of mine who worked extemely hard for the past 6 years and is achieving awesome results in her job as a Sales manager for a well known web host.
You can view the post here:
http://digg.com/tech_news/Hosting_Glamour_Girl_MySpace_Page_Upsetting_Customer_s_Marriages#c2719520
I for one was kind of hoping this sort of thing went with the dinosaurs and that women were equally respected in the realm of IT.

I have worked as a systems administrator for a number of years now and have always been treated with the respect I afford to others.
Should this sort of attitude still be going on today?
I would value your comments.

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not always an easy case to win

by jdclyde In reply to You may have a legal case

I know dirctly of a case where 12 people got "laid off". Each one was a woman or minority. Each one was replaced by a man who generally had half the qualifications.

The 12 went to court.

Two years later, they lost their case.

My mother was one of the people that got canned and was head of the administrative computers on a local campus at the time.

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Let it go

by lnchome In reply to Sexual Discrimination in ...

most people have a myspace account, she is doing nothing that should be held over her head. If she can do the job, then let her. For get her myspace account and you should get back to work!

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Respect is earned...

by bfelts In reply to Sexual Discrimination in ...

All the posts from the people that have worked with Amy suggest she is outstanding at her work. This earns her due respect in her professional life. Her personal life is up to her. In addition, Amy should not be disrespected due to her appearance. The guy(s) disrespecting her in the original post, they obviously have enough personal problems to last a lifetime.
<br> <br>
Side observation: Amy's MySpace page has a picture with her wearing what appears to be an M/C (Motorcycle Club) supporter shirt. I'd love to see these guys run their mouths in front of Amy and <i> any </i> of her friends in <i> any </i> M/C. Something tells me this would be a quick cure for the abusive disrespect they were tossing her way.

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yea, ok. From my experience in it

by DanLM In reply to Sexual Discrimination in ...

Some of the smartest people that I have worked with in IT were women. My previous IT manager was a lady that started out as bank Teller. She moved up the ladder, then moved to the state of Pennsylvania. Where she continued to work her way up. Want to know why she succeeded? She got the job done, and she got the job done right. She was good.
They passed her up for that IT position once, and hired a man for the position. That man almost ruined the IT department, he ruined our hard earned reputation for excellence and ended up getting outside people reviewing us with a fine tooth comb. Who did they call on in the end, the person they should have in the first place. The lady I am talking about.
She did not get that position because of being some type of token woman in management, she got that position because she deserved it.
Right now, I think she wishes she was a grunt again because of all the political bull crap that goes with government. But, that's a different thing.
Women can and do succeed in IT when they have the skill's, and they deserve to.
I hope you kick butt, and take names in your IT profession. And I hope you go back to that original post, and ask the poster who is further in their career. You or them?

Dan

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My take

by JamesRL In reply to Sexual Discrimination in ...

If this woman is as succesful as she her website states - making $250,000 a year before the age of thirty, then clearly she has achieved a great success. That doesn't mean she can't and wont have some problems with discrimination, but obviously it hasn't stopped her from a meteoric rise.


Personally I wouldn't mix myspace and work the way she has. But I am from a different generation and work in a conservative multi billion dollar firm. I think this has as much to do with her age and her looks as her sex.

We have women in leadership roles in all areas - sales, implementation, support.


James

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Stephy: This is not sexual discrimination...

by TechExec2 In reply to Sexual Discrimination in ...

Stephy: This is not sexual discrimination or harassment by the poster on digg.com. It is simply rude, crude behavior.

What I find puzzling is why you connected this boorish digg.com post with sexual discrimination in the IT workplace. They're not the same. I think what you're really getting at is men's attitudes and behavior toward women in general. Well, you can't stop some dogs from barking. There will always be some rude, crude males. But, I think today's IT workplace is mostly, but not entirely, free of sexual discrimination and harassment.


ABOUT AMY

On her MySpace page, Amy is not dressed in a business suit. She is dressed in a way that shows off her very attractive body. The text contains a direct soliciation to sign up for web hosting service at her company. So, she is using her personality and sexuality to sell.

She is a lady, it was done tastefully, and it is COMPLETELY fine if it is HER choice. And, it does not in any way justify rude and crude behavior like on digg.com. She is not "asking for it" (not THAT anyway). On the other hand, were she dressed in a business suit, that digg.com guy probably never would have posted. And, it would not work as well to help her attract business to her company.

You ladies cannot have it both ways! But, you should never have to tolerate rude, crude, humiliating behavior, no matter how you dress. There should NEVER be sexual discrimination or harassment in the workplace. And, there are a LOT of us men who think that way.


SAME FOR THE MEN

Fabio (http://www.fabioifc.com/) might be the greatest computer programmer ever (it could happen...stay with me). But, he has chosen to use his good looks as a model. He should not complain if some women think of him as a sexual object and approach him that way, so long as it is not rude and crude.


SO...

I think you need to chill a little about this. You're smart and successful. There will ALWAYS be some guys like the one on digg.com, but they are all LOSERS (you know that guy is, right?). And, living well is the best revenge! Accordingto Amy's MySpace page, she already is.

I hope this post is helpful to you.


P.S. Check out the movie "Disclosure" (Michael Douglas and Demi Moore).

edited for spelling

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Yes I could have worded it better.

by Stephy In reply to Stephy: This is not sexua ...

TechExe2,

Yes I agree and perhaps in retrospect I should have worded the title differently.
I read through all the replies here and found the comments extremely interesting, I guess we all have differing opinions on this as I would expect.
The general opinion however is that the poster was not only wrong but most likely also feels socially and professionally inadequate.
This was a slur on a personal friend of mine on both a personal and professional level.
When we go out for meals and drinks etc she dresses down and in fact much prefers tee shirt and jeans to "provocative" wear.

bfelts had it right there, we do have many friends who are members of an "M/C" club and this is reflected in the dress code somewhat.

I noticed PublishingGal made some awesome and witty comments in her blog Women unsuited for management?
I enjoyed that, thanks Gal :)

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A few (dissenting?) points...

by shardeth-15902278 In reply to Sexual Discrimination in ...

Okay, since everybody else is pretty much being cooperative, I guess I will be the voice of dissent here (not sure dissent is really the right word to use, but it will do for now). Not really emotionally tied to most of these points, just random thoughts I had that might elicit some interesting discussion...
1. If Amy does't want people commenting on her cleavage, she probably shouldn't post a picture of it, particularly not on myspace, whose primary demographic is College, and HighShool age kids.
2. What does IT have to do with this? Isn't she getting jabbed for marketing tactics, just because she works in the tech sector, doesn't make this IT.
3. Amy IS actually using Sex to sell, though perhaps she is not aware of it, or purposefully doing it. Any time a business transaction occurs, sexual attraction can play a role. So, although the schmuck was being crass, vulgar, and juvenile, it was a valid point, or at least a typical junior-highschool joke("tee-hee! she has boobies!").
4. What is more pathetic, that some doofus made a crass, drunken-frat-boy comment, or that so many people are giving it so much attention?
4. Other comments were made about gender discrimination in IT, with regards to payscale, no doubt based on statistics. However, I know of a number of cases where the same issue exists, only in the reverse. I wonder if it is not a gender issue, but rather an economics issue (ie The employer is going to try and hire you for the lowest price he/she can, in order to improve the bottom line. Ironically, Women who are conviced that there is gender inequality create a self-fulfilling prophecy in effect, by expecting to be underpaid).

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"shardeth" makes some excellent points...

by TechExec2 In reply to A few (dissenting?) point ...

"shardeth" makes some excellent points, although I don't agree with ALL of the wording. :-)

All of this reaction and "coverage" of the digg.com guy's post on TR and a number of other websites is FEEDING this kind of behavior. It should be more than obvious that the major purpose of the digg.com guy's post is to provoke a reaction.

So...he "won". He is probably REALLY enjoying all of this attention.

Rude and crude people like the digg.com poster should be largely ignored by everyone, especially by the smart successful women. You've got a lot of support there, ladies.

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I met Amy

by eshepoker In reply to "shardeth" makes some exc ...

I was reading the referenced thread over at WHT and I was hesitant to post my opinion because the majority of members can be quite aggressive over there.

I think it has been said in many different ways that women in IT are outstanding and to succeed and earn respect in this industry you must have the required skills and work ethics or you will not survive. It is not about gender.

However some of these moronic men are making it about gender and my first thoughts when reading all of this were for Amy over at Lunarpages and how she must be feeling. I was fortunate to meet her recently at HostingCon in July and I was impressed as ****. Admittedly the Australian accent made my knees weak but it went beyond that. She was witty, charming, warm and friendly and she KNEW what she was talking about. I was able to hold a real and intellectual conversation with her and it went beyond the usual pleasantries when people first meet. She was dynamic, incredibly well educated and her knowledge of IT and web hosting was so broad we discussed everything from advertising and online marketing to server types, DDOS attacks, backend solutions, SEO, staff recruitment, company operations and we even debated Linux VS Windows. (She is a Linux girl through and through if you are interested and she was dressed in business attire) One thing that left an inspiring impression with me was how she met the owners of Lunarpages resulting in her moving to California and the hardships she endured over the last 12 years that bought her to where she is today.

I don?t recall ever meeting anyone who left such a positive energy with me and I floated away feeling giddy like a 16 year old school boy because she not only genuinely listened and acknowledged what I had to say, I felt smart and like I mattered. Out of respect for her privacy I will not go into detail on her personal journey and how she came to be involved with LunarPages but I will say this. If I had a tenth of the strength, fortitude and courage she had I would be a better man for it.

The MySpace profile is constantly referenced but how old is the profile? Some of you are suggesting her success is due to her sexuality. If you bothered to read her blog, you would see that her online experiences and her major successes began back in Australia SIX years ago. She recently moved to California and the MySpace page went up only months ago. Her success cannot be attributed to that page nor her sex appeal. Has anyone ever considered she is an ethical and private person and as Stephy said she prefers to wear tshirts and jeans? Is it possible these photos are that of a model to spare her privacy and protect her from the crazies we all know spend time online obsessing? Web hosting industry people know the real answer and regardless when you meet her in person, she is beautiful INSIDE and OUT!

How can the success and credible reputation of LunarPages be accredited to a MySpace page? Is their esteemed reputation the result of one woman and her sexuality that would only have come into play since she moved here and the MySpace page became live? I highly doubt that young teens are buying their dedicated and business solutions in droves because of some pretty photos.

The digg and her blog contained posts from Vice Presidents at Coffeecup stating their business dealings were never in person. I know this to be true because when she was at HostingCon she was days off flying to a conference where she would meet them for the first time (the deal was already sealed at this stage). She writes articles for well known organizations and magazines and the level of her activity on the community forums at LunarPages is outstanding. The girl never sleeps! Can you really claim this kind of influence and success from some cleavage shots on a MySpace page? The thread the whole dig started from on their forums was a JOKE. A comment by a man who is STILL happily married and has already responded CONFIRMING the inaccurate dig article.

Read her blog and meet the real woman. You will laugh and gain an insight into who Amy really is and why she is so successful and loved by her customers, her associates and her peers (and me).

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