Facets: Issue 34

March 19, 2017

Insurance and Feelings

EricaJoy
"without an environment that encourages being good humans, without leadership that champions empathy, kindness, communication, and compassion, all diversity efforts are for naught."

Joy is happy at work. She’s happy because that workplace champions empathy, kindness, and humanity from the very top. It sounds simple— no hiring of “diversity heads" or expensive initiatives—but it’s not. It’s an emphasis on community above all— an intense focus on, as Joy mentions, finding people who won’t just help us with a work problem, but ask how we’re feeling every day, and care about the answer.

How Nextdoor reduced racist posts by 75%

Kashmir Hill
“We don’t think Nextdoor can stamp out racism,” said Tolia, “but we feel a moral and business obligation to be part of the solution.”

Nextdoor CEO Nirav Tolia was surprised to hear that his product was enabling racial profiling— users were reporting “suspicious” people based primarily on the color of their skin. They have, however, tried to improve. The product’s design and behaviour changed in a variety of ways to create different decision points for its users, forcing them to acknowledge the possibility that they were engaging in racial profiling.

As A Trans Woman, I’ve Seen Nerd Culture’s Misogyny From Both Sides

EmilÆaxima
"I’ve found the accepting and understanding community that nerd culture is supposed to be. But I’ve also realized how far we are from being that all the time, for everyone."

After going from one of the boys to “just like” one of the boys, EmilÆMaxima had to re-negotiate nerd culture. This piece is about how her understanding of that culture changed, of both its male- and female-centric spaces alike, as well as how we create those spaces in response to our perceptions of gender.

This Is…Teetotaling in Tech: A view from the middle seats

jess vadino
"as part of our work day, marketing events, hiring events, and meet-ups? Why does [alcohol] often warrant its own line item on so, so many /career pages?”

Why is alcohol so prominent and pervasive in tech culture, and why do we so harshly question those who respectfully don't want to take part in it? What are we losing because of that? vadino asks us to reflect and leaves us with a dare: don’t focus on consumption, but “fucking commit to being the inclusive environment we all claim to want."

Hey Silicon Valley! Hire Literally — LITERALLY — One Black Person

WorkingMichael
"maybe the Valley isn’t the fearless, earth-changing, status-quo disrupting geniuses they told us they were. Maybe, just maybe, you’re actually all just the cash-rich, fashion-sense-poor children of Wall Street we always thought you were."

The solution to the diversity problem is here, and It's a three-step process. First, hire a Black person. Then, let them be Black, and let them be a person. And finally, give them responsibility. It can (and should) be that easy. Why isn't it?

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