I care very much about making sure I am consuming a representative and wide range of topics in this area, and so welcome suggestions and recommendations! If you know of anything I ought to be reading, please send it my way.

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65 results
Read during the week of July 26–30, 2021
After all the coverage of the lawsuit against Activision Blizzard and the women who have been victimized at that company, Notis and Hernandez spotlight some of the very impressive work women in the games industry have done.
gender, tech industry
Read during the week of July 26–30, 2021
Employees at Google have described a pattern at the company where employees reporting issues like harassment and discrimination were directed to employee assistance programs (EAPs) for mental health counselling in lieu of proper investigations into the issues. They also describe scenarios where the company subpoenaed records from these counselling sessions to use against them in litigation. Some employees describe how this made them feel that the problem was with them, not with the employee(s) acting in harassing or discriminatory ways.
mental health, tech industry
Read during the week of July 26–30, 2021
The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) has filed a lawsuit against Activision Blizzard, the games company best known for games like World of Warcraft and Overwatch. The lawsuit alleges systemic underrepresentation, underpayment, and underpromotion of women and people of color across the company, as well as a "frat boy" culture of harassment and discrimination in which "women are subjected to 'cube crawls' in which male employees drink copious amounts of alcohol as they 'crawl' their way through various cubicles in the office and often engage in inappropriate behavior toward female employees. Male employees proudly come into work hungover, play video games for long periods of time during work while delegating their responsibilities to female employees, engage in banter about their sexual encounters, talk openly about female bodies, and joke about rape." The lawsuit alleges that HR was complicit in these issues, which pervaded the company up to and including at the executive level.
gender, tech industry
Read during the week of July 26–30, 2021
Kampf-Lassin compares mandated vacation time policies in European countries to the norms in the United States, explaining that in many European countries it is standard to take several weeks or even the entire month of August off. He describes the legislation requiring several weeks of paid vacation for all employees, and compares it to standards in US companies, where it can take 20 years before someone accrues even 20 days of paid leave in a year. He also describes research that has found that taking substantial vacation time increases productivity and economic output.
workers' rights
Read during the week of July 19–23, 2021
Sarah Schulman, a rank-and-file member of ACT UP New York since the 1980s, codirects the ACT UP Oral History Project, and wrote a book chronicling the group's activism. She speaks about the history of AIDS/HIV, activism, and ACT UP's role in it. She talks about what worked well for that movement, as well as its shortcomings, and the learnings that contemporary activist movements can take from it.
healthcare, LGBT
Read during the week of July 19–23, 2021
Women who stream on Twitch face enormous amounts of harassment, particularly sexual harassment, enduring an "environment where extreme harassment, rape and death threats, blackmailing, stalking and worse have become regular workplace hazards." Dedicated subreddits have been created to share unintentionally revealing screengrabs and digitally-created porn of these women, and their attempts to have the subreddits and similarly abusive channels removed have largely been futile. One streamer pays $2,500 a month for a firm to help remove sexualized images of her from the internet, and even then platforms usually only remove it when claims are filed based on copyright rather than on sexual harassment grounds. Some viewers have developed parasocial relationships with the female streamers, and some streamers have been targeted with violent threats and both online and in-person stalking.
online harassment, tech industry
Read during the week of July 19–23, 2021
The Internet Archive, a massive online library, has been used by neo-Nazis, antisemites, and other white supremacist and racist groups to host propoganda and incitement. Stalinsky writes about how the organization has done little to prevent usage by extremist and terrorist groups, even after years of knowing of their usage of the site, and claims that it is not responsible for the content shared using its service.
extremism, tech industry
Read during the week of July 12–16, 2021
A company that claims to provide a more socially conscious advertising platform to companies is displaying ads on sites like the Daily Caller and those run by Ben Shapiro. More generally, Wodinsky talks about the motivations behind companies removing ads from far-right sites.
extremism, tech industry
Read during the week of July 12–16, 2021
A recent report from a NYC transit think tank argues that heavy police presence on public transit has exacerbated issues of racism in policing, and is not the best way to promote public safety. The report argues that police should deprioritize enforcing low-level offenses like fare evasion and public sleeping, and increase unarmed personnel to offer aid for those who are unhoused or experiencing mental health issues. According to the report, 90% of people arrested for fare-related offenses by the NYPD from October 2017 to June 2019 were people of color. Furthermore, officers in the NYPD testified they were told to focus on Black and brown fare evaders, and ignore those who were white or Asian.
policing, race
Read during the week of July 12–16, 2021
Cahn explains Twitter's new criteria for verifying accounts, and how it disadvantages activists (particularly of color). According to Cahn, it is much easier to be verified as a journalist, since they only need to submit three recent bylines; activists must satisfy a slew of requirements such as being in the top 0.05% of users in a region, or starting a major hashtag. According to anti-racist economist Kim Crayton, "that blue check automatically means that what you have to say is of value, and without it, particularly if you’re on the front lines, particularly if you’re a Black woman, you’re questioned."
race, tech industry