If the geek can't accept an open and frank discussion of gender issues in tech, then Slashdot has no future.
An open and frank discussion is very very welcome.
Where do we get one?
Because the framework of teh discussion, the one we are presented with, is me in IT are sexist pigs.
It's the equivalent of going up to someonje and calling them a vile name, and then when they get angry, saying "See? See? All the proof you need that I am right!"
There is no frank and open discussion because the problem is already "solved" no other possibility is allowed.
So here is the problem as I have read it.
Young girls have the eexact same passion for STEM careers as young boys.
But society forces young girls into other careers by abusing them with things like Barbie dolls, Dongle jokes, fat shaming, and using a playmate model's face as a subject for image processing. Now re-read that and see if it makes any sense to you. If it wasn't given as exact examples of why women don't go into STEM.
And the men are terrible sexist, harassing pigs.
Okay - there is the framework Those are what chase women who have a passion for STEM away from it. And it is the fault of males 100 percent.
Now if we were having an open and frank discussion, I would be allowed to ask questions.
Here they are.
Does none of these issues exist outside of STEM?
Many young women go into business. If those issues I stated keep women out of STEM - how does the fact that many business employ escorts, women whose job it is to entertain out of town guests. And when I mean entertain, I mean go to dinner, have a nice evening and then hop between the sheets, for some in-depth entertainment.
Having worked in IT, I know of no women who are employed to have sex with men. I know if I was female, I'd go apeshit crazy over that. I know my wife who worked in the business world, encountered some very personal and very intensively real sexual harassment. Oddly enough, instead of running away, she ended up destroying the guy in question.
Next question is - have these career choices that women are not chased away from not ever have any situation in which the woman or young lady was made uncomfortable? That would be a pretty charmed existence indeed. If the worst thing I ever had to listen to was two women telling dongle jokes, well first I'd laughh - I cannot imagine I would ever try to get them fired.
Now I would like to ask a positive question - Why now are fields such as veterinarian rapidly becoming the sole province of women? Is there something that can be learned from the overwhelming success the field has had in attracting women that can be learned?
Next in this discussion, I wouldn't even be considered competent to address these issues, but I have a long history of working to recruit young ladies into STEM careers. We did a lot of recruiting, and a lot of work with young ladies to try to get them interested. The results? almost zero. Most young ladies wanted to be lawyers, next up was vets. More girls wanted to be pop singers than STEM workers.
In addition We were doing as much as we could to hire and retain women. We even fast tracked them for promotions. I gave up several promotions for that purpose.
And experience wise, when I started there in the mid-70's, there were more women working in the STEM positions. Some retired, some left over time, some switched careers.
In the end, I developed an opinion that runs contrary to what we are told is the problem.
Young ladies as a demographic are simply not interested in STEM. The first wave of women who graduated college in the early 70's tried out many careers. After the initial experimentation, they settled on careers they liked. Business, medical, financial (for careers considered professional.
That being said, there are also women who are interested in STEM. I've worked with a number of them, and tthey do just fine. Interestingly enough, they share something with their male counterparts. A passion for the work. Probably pretty important.
Now here is one thing they have in common, interestingly enough, my wife has also noted the phenomenon - the biggest resistance they have received has been from other women
Do you even remotely think that the present shakers and movers of the "men are pigs" explanation for the number of women in STEM would ever allow such heresy to be heard in a frank and honest discussion
I only have 30 some years of experience, and quite a few of trying to recruit women into STEM, and have formed an opinion based on history.