“Infographics” are the big buzzwords on blogs. They’re funny! They’re brightly colored! They go viral! Even when they go viral for the wrong reasons ’cause they’re sexist and offensive! Yesterday, an infographic called “Which Female Tech Influencer Are You?” from something called WPromote hit the web. Following the chart and answering questions like, “Which hairstyle do you prefer?”, “White wine or tequila with worm?” and “Who is your dream man?” you find out which well-known woman in tech you most resemble. Your options are Marissa Mayer, Google VP; Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook; Natalie Messenet, founder of Net-A-Porter; Caroline McCarthy, tech writer for CNet,com; and Sarah Evans, a PR pro.
Something tells me the COO of Facebook and a VP at Google have more on their mind than their “dream man” or their favorite type of footwear.However well-intentioned it may have originally been, this flowchart is a misfire. It doesn’t appear to be tongue-in-cheek so much as serious. It’s more of the same-old, same-old sexism depicting women doing “a man’s job” as feminine, husband-hunting and label-conscious regardless of the Ivy League degree. Do people really not understand how pink flowchats about shoes, bags and boys contribute to the image men have of women in tech and the image these women have of themselves? Blogger Alexis Tsotsis put it best when she wrote at Tech Crunch:
“From experience, being a woman in this industry means a ton of being passed over for stuff, condescended to and if you are eventually successful, disliked. It’s no ‘Sex And The City.’ The women who have been highlighted here are smart, driven, and have worked hard for their success. They deserve so much more than being reduced to an infographic bobble-head on a cartoon body.”
Here, here! I don’t know any of the women depicted in this stupid flowchart personally. But that doesn’t mean I’m not embarrassed for them. [TechCrunch]