The Impact of Product Decisions on Tech Diversity Initiatives

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Curated by: Small Business Management

Google set the trend of releasing demographic diversity data roughly two years ago, and since then, many of the companies who pledged to change their demographics haven’t made any improvement. Tech companies use the same tactics and excuses over and over: the pipeline, ‘standards’. Less discussed is how tech product decisions result in the constant alienation of diverse users: these decisions make it obvious why marginalized people either aren’t eager to work at these companies, or don’t see a place for themselves there.

In the past year, three major tech companies, Facebook, Twitter, and Airbnb, have faced scrutiny for having features that allow for discrimination that manifests in many ways, including racism, transphobia, and sexism. We can all agree that tech has a diversity problem, but the problem is compounded when products are created without consideration for marginalized people. Diversity initiatives don’t stand a chance if companies have reputations for overlooking the very people they’re looking to hire.

Facebook’s Ethnic Segmentation

Photo CC-BY Austin.

Facebook, no longer just the social network that allows you to keep up with your distant friends and family, has become a behemoth of a platform that revels in its advertising capabilities, even at the expense


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