What do Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and Jack Dorsey all have in common? They’re men. They’re white. They’re heterosexual (AFAIK). They’re smart.
None of that counted for shit. Sorry, feminists. Whine your little guts out til the end of the freakin’ world. Being a straight, white male had nothing to do with why those men are famous and rich beyond measure. I’ll let you in on a little secret: there is one reason, and only one reason those men are the giants of the tech world.
A brilliant idea.
See, that’s the whole point of capitalism, and why it works the way it works. You see a problem (often when others don’t even realize it’s a problem yet) and you solve it in a way that is brilliant, efficient, user-friendly and reasonably easy to manufacture. You don’t need money to make your idea happen. At least, not your own money. You need venture capital.
Venture capital happens when someone has some extra money lying around they would like to turn into more money. Venture capitalists invest in new ventures in the hopes that the new venture will turn their money into more money. It’s really that simple.
Money creates more money when invested wisely.
How do you convince venture capitalists to give you money? That’s also pretty easy. Have a great idea and then sell it. Your great idea won’t get anywhere if you don’t know how to sell it. Mumble and stare at the floor and downplay how it works and you are not likely to find anyone throwing bags of cash at you. If you don’t think it’s a truly great idea, why the hell would anyone else?
Great idea + knowing how to sell = venture capital.
Get a load of this pity party for women in tech, in Newsweek. What Silicon Valley Thinks of Women is a giant sobbing, blathering mess that ignores our two key means of getting venture capital. The women in question have a shitty idea that won’t work, and they are mumbling, stammering simpletons who can’t express themselves. Two strikes and you’re out, ladies.
The gist of their idea is that women need to connect with other women in tech so they can help each other out professionally because vagina. Women should not cultivate relationships with other professionals in their areas of expertise because men are gross and might look at their asses. Their genius idea is called Glassbreakers. Oddly enough, venture capitalists are not throwing oodles of cash their way because misogyny and sexism, amirite?
Here are just a few reasons why Glassbreakers is a stupid idea that won’t work.
First of all, the answer to sexism is not more sexism. By creating an app that connects humans with vaginas to other humans with vaginas you are leaving out half your potential market. Really well thought out, ladies. Let’s assume that no men will assist colleagues with great ideas if those colleagues have vaginas and then exclude them from women’s networks based on that assumption.
Secondly, the idea that women are going to genuinely help other women is laughably naïve. Heaven help any woman in tech who is above average pretty, who thinks other women are going to help her. Virtually 100% of women will aggress against a peer they perceive as sexy. Women will not only refuse to help an attractive woman in tech, they will go out of their way to demean and harm her. Women who achieve power over others (#BanBossy!) are hated pretty much by everyone, but by other women in particular. Lady Bosses are often petty, mean-spirited drama queens and women are each other’s own worst enemies. Why would tech be any different? This story in particular makes me laugh: a feminist went to work for a feminist organization and ended up hating those bitches and quitting. Lol. Yeah, Glassbreakers is such a great idea! Let’s connect women professionally so they can actively destroy each other! That should work! Who wants to invest?
Thirdly, by their own admission, the developers are addressing a problem that doesn’t exist: sexual harassment and sexist behaviour. Eileen Carey, one of the devs, “claims she has only rarely experienced sexual harassment or even sexist behavior”, but in the next heartbeat claims “bias and harassment are endemic in her profession.” So which is it? Rare or endemic? And they wonder why venture capitalists are not chucking money at them?
And finally, both developers admit they are pathetic cowards when it comes to selling their ideas. After rambling and mumbling all over the place, one investor had to outright ask Carey if she wanted funding. Way to sell that concept! If women are incapable of the “swagger” and “confidence” of men, how are they going to be capable of mentoring each other? If women habitually understate their accomplishments, how are they going to convey anything the slightest bit useful to one another?
Glassbreakers hasn’t attracted funding because venture capitalists hate women. Nonsense. It has failed to attract funding because it’s a crappy idea the developers themselves can’t get behind. If women in tech want to improve their positions, they need to do two things: grow a set and have better ideas. Easy peasy. Sitting around whining and crying that teh menz are mean, casting about for someone to blame other than themselves, and looking for any excuse to avoid asking the tough questions are the things holding women back. Who wants to bet the majority of these mewling children identify as feminist? Funny that Marissa Meyer didn’t experience any of these terrible roadblocks, and thinks feminism is a crock of shit, too.
Hey women in tech who aren’t really killing it, if you’re looking for someone to blame, try a mirror.
And then get back to work.
Lots of love,