Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer doesn’t think the issue of gender in the workplace is very relevant to the technology industry.
Here’s what she said to Backchannel’s Steven Levy in reference to why the gender of a CEO in Silicon Valley doesn’t matter:
The moment you play into that, it’s an issue… In technology we live at a rare, fast-moving pace. There are probably industries where gender is more of an issue, but our industry is not one where I think that’s relevant.
The controversy as to whether or not men and women are treated equally in the tech workspace is one that’s ongoing, which is what makes Mayer’s take so interesting. While Mayer says the sex of a CEO in the tech industry isn’t “relevant,” the media hasn’t been able to stop talking about how sexist the tech industry can be.
The Guardian, for instance, polled tech industry workers and learned that 73% of male and female respondents believed the industry to be sexist. Wired ran a story in July that described the experiences of female entrepreneurs that had been caught in uncomfortable situations because of their gender. There are dozens of stories like these.
That’s not to say all women in the tech industry feel this way, but it’s been a controversial topic.
At the same time, there’s a noticeable discrepancy in the number of male versus female tech employees at major Silicon Valley companies. Only 37% of Yahoo employees are female, for example, and only 30% of Google’s workforce is made up of women.