Far beyond the point of arguing the legitimacy of gender equality, the conversation has turned to what industries are skewed the most.
Many come to mind such as armed security and construction, with critics of gender equality citing outdated views of physical or mental prowess as a means to justify what is at its base sexism.
For many, the successes to this point have been enough.
We are seeing a surge of politicians, officers, and community leaders that are female and are using their voice to change the narrative of what it means to be a woman in both a social and professional sense.
Facing A Hard Truth
But, one industry that suffers from a unique kind of “boys club” situation is that of technology and its development.
From sales to customer service, there are alarming percentages of gender inequality present that are deeply entrenched and hard to shake.
The delicate situation of being a male advocate is not without its shortcomings, as its a fine line between advocating on behalf of and speaking for women and minorities that many find difficult to maintain.
Mason Soiza, a tech entrepreneur, is making use of his platform and influence to try and make a change.
Mason has been planning a series of events that will provide an open platform for women already in tech, those aspiring to be, and their allies to provide more opportunities to women while discussing problems they’ve encountered in the industry.
This forum will pull speakers and discussion leaders from top tech companies as well as local community leaders with the purpose of helping fix the situation of gender inequality in tech.
The Social Club of Tech Inequality
Mason Soiza believes that one of the biggest challenges is that the digital media industry and beyond is based in a majority of early adopters being men.
People whom, their fathers and brothers and uncles introduced them to at an early age.
Others stumbled into it through a friend or an associate between high school and graduate studies and so much of recruitment is based on fitting into a “culture.”
Not by malicious intent by large, but by apathy and favouritism, many people are hired based on who they know, and so a company’s culture becomes more insulated.
Many startups are created by groups of friends or friendly associates.
The initial hiring lead or even recommendation to get into technology either as a programmer or as a marketer happens to many over a social engagement.
While it’s easy to pass the blame off as “It just happens that way,” it’s because some have more access to those circles than others.
The Spread of Disinformation
Mason Soiza also believes that there is a culture of disinformation that leads to many with differing views being isolated from others.
Some companies have a culture that requires everyone they hire to fit into their paradigm of social or political issues.
The problem lies in what that company culture is.
While one company is bucking back against what they deem as “social justice” causes (hiring women and minorities on quota), another is doubling down on their attempts to level the playing field.
On Inspiration & Changing The Narrative
As a male advocate for gender equality, Mason Soiza from Linkrocket is very aware of how carefully he needs to tread in both speech as well as action.
“I don’t want my voice to be the loudest one. This isn’t about attention to me; it’s about bringing attention to and starting a conversation regarding a cause that is essential to addressing a major problem that is negatively impacting companies and communities”. He says.
“The word safe space has become a curse word.
But really, it’s an important area for those that are trying to solve problems to have where they can connect and work through significant roadblocks on the way to their goals.” He continues.
If Mason Soiza can create one more safe space for women to network and discuss, all the better.
Being an ally doesn’t mean you can’t be a leader, as long as you ensure those that are disenfranchised keep their ability to be heard.