A senior software engineer was fired by Google for writing a 10-page memo, critical about the company’s diversity efforts in the tech industry. He said that men are more apt for working in tech sector compared to women. This is the reason he was fired, and he confirmed this news by saying that he was dismissed for “perpetuating gender stereotypes.”
The manifesto by Damore spread inside Google this past weekend. It was reported by Motherboard and then the full details of the document were published by Gizmodo. This started the argument that Damore’s opinions damage the effort made by Google and similar tech sectors in promoting women in the industry.
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The main viewpoint of Damore was that the differences biologically present between men and women are the reason for gender gap at Google. He said that the struggle to minimize this gap is reducing “ideological diversity”. It is thus introducing a culture that separates itself from conservative viewpoints.
The first response by Google was tempered. The vice president of diversity in Google, Danielle Brown said that Damore’s opinions are not that “I or this company endorses, promotes or encourages.’ Brown also wrote that Google is tolerant towards contrasting opinions.
“Part of building an open, inclusive environment means fostering a culture in which those with alternative views, including different political views, feel safe sharing their opinions,” Danielle wrote.
So this statement by Brown didn’t tell us if Google would take any action against Damore or not.
It was unclear at the time what, if any, action Google planned to take on the matter, though even after this statement by Brown reaction and criticism towards Damore continued to grow.
This almost forced Google CEO to take some action; he wrote an email to the whole company stating “Our words matter.” It made it clear that Damore broke company’s code of conduct.
“The line by advancing harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace, to suggest a group of our colleagues has traits that make them less biologically suited to that work is offensive and not OK.”
The email did not make it clear that Damore was fired but the engineer himself confirmed it that he has been dismissed.