How bad is Silicon Valley's sexist work culture?

A woman attempts to use a laptop
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Ghislain & Marie David de Lossy  Getty Images Contributor

A woman attempts to use a laptop Credit Ghislain & Marie David de Lossy Getty Images Contributor

James Damore, the engineer fired by Google after penning a memo crtiticizing the company's diversity policy, published an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal explaining "Why I was sacked by Google". Recently, a startup investor Alex Rubalcava who spotted the ads on benches and bus stops near the company's office in Venice had this to say: "Someone is in Venice is not happy about Google's firing of that memo guy".

The memo written by a Google employee that went viral earlier this month hit a raw nerve. Damore was sacked on Monday. "I engaged in reasoned discussion with some of my peers on these issues, but mostly I was ignored", he wrote, of the initial response to his document. "I think what's really inspiring is they did this on their own - basically", Johnson added.

In his memo, Damore slammed Google's "politically correct monoculture" and suggested women may lag behind men in top tech positions because women are less assertive and more neurotic. While Damore was sacked, a huge online debate continues...

Damore focused on the idea of shame in his op-ed. Public shaming serves not only to display the virtue of those doing the shaming but also warns others that the same punishment awaits them if they don't conform.

Scandal in Silicon Valley. Google and Outfront didn't immediately return requests for more information. "Google had to solve the problem caused by my supposedly sexist, anti-diversity manifesto".

His words came hours after he canceled a company-wide meeting on gender issues.

Damore, who has emerged as a hero of conservative media, stands by his memo, saying he considered it a "reasoned, well-researched, good-faith argument". Introduced as evidence in a lawsuit brought by a former employee alleging that Google's confidentiality agreements were illegal, the email was telling because it highlighted the importance of open discussion at the company as well as its potential perils. In addition to the WSJ, he has given interviews to Bloomberg, spoken at length with two YouTube personalities popular with alt-right and right-wing audiences, Stefan Molyneux and Jordan B. Peterson, and he did a photoshoot with alt-right photographer Peter Duke. Fired4Truth, widely believed to be Damore's Twitter account, is closing in on 50,000 followers in a matter of days.

Google declined to comment on the planned protest.

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