Google has reportedly sacked a senior software engineer for authoring a 10-page document condemning the company’s diversity efforts and claiming men are biologically more predisposed to working in the tech industry than women.
The news service Bloombergs has outed the now unemployed former employee as James Damore.
Damore’s rant (which you can read in full here) appeared over the weekend and was titled “Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber”. In it the writer argued that there are fundamental differences between men and women, hence, why, in his opinion, men seem to excel at tech careers where women struggle.
“I’m simply stating that the distribution of preferences and abilities of men and women differ in part due to biological causes and that these differences may explain why we don’t see equal representation of women in tech and leadership,” Damore wrote.
He also wrote that Google’s focus on diversity (a “left bias”) tends to alienate conservatives, which he believes is bad for business as conservatives tend to be more conscientious, a trait that is required for “much of the drudgery and maintenance work characteristic of a mature company”. He added that those with more right or conservative viewpoints at Google had to “stay in the closet” to avoid open hostility.
Damore believed that women were less interested in coding careers because they preferred jobs involving “people and aesthetics”, and that the low number of women in “high stress jobs” is down to them having more “neuroticism”. He added: “We need to stop assuming that gender gaps imply sexism.”
The mounting backlash prompted Google CEO Sundar Pichai to send a company-wide email titled, “Our words matter.” The email, the existence of which was reported earlier today by Recode, stated that Damore had violated the company’s code of conduct. “The line by advancing harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace,” Pichai wrote. “To suggest a group of our colleagues have traits that make them less biologically suited to that work is offensive and not OK.”