Breaking up the Boys' Club of Silicon Valley

Book - 2018
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Instant National Bestseller

"Excellent." -- San Francisco Chronicle

"Brotopia is more than a business book. Silicon Valley holds extraordinary power over our present lives as well as whatever utopia (or nightmare) might come next." --New York Times

Silicon Valley is a modern utopia where anyone can change the world. Unless you're a woman.

For women in tech, Silicon Valley is not a fantasyland of unicorns, virtual reality rainbows, and 3D-printed lollipops, where millions of dollars grow on trees. It's a "Brotopia," where men hold all the cards and make all the rules. Vastly outnumbered, women face toxic workplaces rife with discrimination and sexual harassment, where investors take meetings in hot tubs and network at sex parties.

In this powerful exposé, Bloomberg TV journalist Emily Chang reveals how Silicon Valley got so sexist despite its utopian ideals, why bro culture endures despite decades of companies claiming the moral high ground (Don't Be Evil! Connect the World!)--and how women are finally starting to speak out and fight back.

Drawing on her deep network of Silicon Valley insiders, Chang opens the boardroom doors of male-dominated venture capital firms like Kleiner Perkins, the subject of Ellen Pao's high-profile gender discrimination lawsuit, and Sequoia, where a partner once famously said they "won't lower their standards" just to hire women. Interviews with Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, and former Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer--who got their start at Google, where just one in five engineers is a woman--reveal just how hard it is to crack the Silicon Ceiling. And Chang shows how women such as former Uber engineer Susan Fowler, entrepreneur Niniane Wang, and game developer Brianna Wu, have risked their careers and sometimes their lives to pave a way for other women.

Silicon Valley's aggressive, misogynistic, work-at-all costs culture has shut women out of the greatest wealth creation in the history of the world. It's time to break up the boys' club. Emily Chang shows us how to fix this toxic culture--to bring down Brotopia, once and for all.
Publisher: New York : Portfolio/Penguin, c2018
ISBN: 9780735213531
Branch Call Number: 331 .4133 CHA
Characteristics: viii, 306 p. ;,24 cm


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Mar 05, 2018

[Update: Heard an interview with the woman who founded Girls Who Code organization the other day; thought she must have been a real brainaic as she kept mentioning how easy coding and programming were - - having coded some fundament components which allow global communication, used billions of times daily, and several other items also used billions of times daily - - recalled investing considerably time and energy in those endeavors. Then, towards the end of the interview, the woman-founder admitted she had never coded or programmed in her life. Hmmmmmm . . . .]
I'll be interested in reading this, but from what I have heard from interviews and this description here, it appears like a silly narrative, avoiding the most important aspects of a Real Narrative: namely the offshoring of tech jobs, and her mention of fake newsies who have finally been outed as sex assaulters and villians - - without regard to their fake newsery - - is offputting to say the least. Also, the treatment of Peter Thiel as typical - - Thiel has long been on the board of American Friends of Bilderberg, Inc. [and that's from their filed tax forms, bubba!], and founder of the diabolical total-information-awareness-type-CIA-related firm, Palantir, so he's definitely not your ordinary anti-female gay dude!
[Last time I went out on a programming assignment - - my final attempt in American IT industry, BTW - - I was cancelled out upon arriving at the job site, where the manager was a youngish African-American business school type, and the entire department was made up of young Asian or Asian-American women?!?! Recent Seattle Weekly articles focusing on local IT companies not utilizing women and minorities, ignored the fact that the majority of their IT departments were made up of non-white foreign nationals?!?!]

Mar 04, 2018

An exhilarating history of how high-tech selected for "brogrammers". Chang writes crisply yet descriptively as she covers unhappy men like Thiel (the PayPal Mafia Trump supporter) and Damore (infamous Googler "biology favors the dudes" memo writer); the false promise of meritocracy when mostly everyone in Silicon Valley has Stanford/Harvard connections; the sexist venture capital culture (which then affects who gets funded); short yet probing summaries of three high-profile women--Wojcicki, Mayer & Sandberg; Susan Fowler's bravery at Uber; shutting down online trolls; exposing sex parties for their silly premises (yah, we dunno what to do with our money); and finally, Chapter 9, a clear-eyed look at what companies and people can do. "It is because of their endurance & courage [the women who speak up and their male allies], I believe, that we have reached a cultural tipping point. From here on out, ignorance of the problem can only be willful. Reactions of "Gosh, I didn't know _this_ was going on" and "Is it really that bad?" are simply no longer credible. Or acceptable."

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