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Thread: Women and Equal Pay in Tech

  1. #1
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    Red face Women and Equal Pay in Tech

    Found an interesting article when I was surfing around today:
    Wage Gap Narrower for Women in IT.

    IT professions faired better than most in 2007. Computer support specialists appeared closest to closing the wage gap, with women earning 87 percent of what men did in the same occupation, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The numbers beat the national average in other categories, including computer and information systems managers and computer programmers (85 percent) and database administrators, computer scientists and systems analysts (84 percent).
    As a college student wanting to be in this field, I at first thought "YAY! Less of a wage gap!"

    But then I read on to a REALLY REALLY interesting point I had never thought of:
    "What strikes us is why there should be any. It's a relatively new field and people come in at relatively [the] same education level," said Leber, who explained that there has been a historical bias in many older fields reflecting past attitudes that men worked to support a family and women worked for pin money.
    Why the heck IS there a wage gap here at all? I mean, some of the older fields I can sort of see, though it's no excuse. Things like the law profession and the medical field have been traditionally dominated by men, and come from back in the day when wage gaps were the norm and pretty standard, those fields are still catching up to the 21st century.

    But the tech field? We're freaking newborns compared to the law field.Why the discrepancy in such a new field? Thoughts?

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    Re: Women and Equal Pay in Tech

    Quote Originally Posted by Alex J,
    [B
    Why the heck IS there a wage gap here at all?[/B] I mean, some of the older fields I can sort of see, though it's no excuse. Things like the law profession and the medical field have been traditionally dominated by men, and come from back in the day when wage gaps were the norm and pretty standard, those fields are still catching up to the 21st century.

    But the tech field? We're freaking newborns compared to the law field.Why the discrepancy in such a new field? Thoughts?
    Patriarchal dominance is so inherently evil, as well as cultural (Racism)
    gaps. These things though seem to be built in to our brains in concrete survival mechanisms, fight or flight, is a abstract example, but I think metaphorically valid. In psychology Women are 60% of the practitioners, although I don't know the wage data.
    Last edited by frankleeee; September 29th, 2008 at 02:36 AM.

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    Re: Women and Equal Pay in Tech

    Isn't there a law about wage discrimination with regards to gender? I agree with your sentiments. There shouldn't be any difference. Especially in the IT field. Unfortunately Misogynists are still around.

    M.
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    Re: Women and Equal Pay in Tech

    Any ideas why though in the tech field?

    I guess I'm just more optimistic, I was hoping that such a recent field could have gotten over most of the sexism...I mean we did have awesome Grace Hopper...

    So you think it's just jerks in the field, rather than having to do with the way that the field/career is structured?

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    Re: Women and Equal Pay in Tech

    Quote Originally Posted by Alex J. View Post
    Any ideas why though in the tech field?

    I guess I'm just more optimistic, I was hoping that such a recent field could have gotten over most of the sexism...I mean we did have awesome Grace Hopper...

    So you think it's just jerks in the field, rather than having to do with the way that the field/career is structured?
    I don't think there are any empirical answers to this question, since it would involve to many variables to put a statistical data base together, but that doesn't preclude us from speculating.

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    Re: Women and Equal Pay in Tech

    I think the fact that Dr. Grace Hopper was a Rear Admiral in the Navy helped. If she had been in the private sector working for some fat bald headed sexist pig, she probably wouldn't have went very far.

    M.
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    Re: Women and Equal Pay in Tech

    I'm sure others have said this, but I asked my Father and my Aunt, both of which have held management positions in IT for decades about this once. Keep in mind, my aunt is a bit of a feminist.

    they both agree that the only reason there are fewer women in IT, is because fewer are interested in taking the career path. to be a good programmer or network admin, you have to do a LOT of study to get credentials, and credentials and experience are what get you jobs. My aunt asserted that the reason they make less money extends from the credentials gap. Women she reasoned are less likely to get the certification to get out of the helpdesk and into the server room.

    Their consensus was that there are simply fewer qualified women interested in jobs in IT. My aunt really wishes there we're more, as she would hire them in a flash.

    just be good at what you do, and don;t look down your nose at the geeks, and you will have no more problem finding a job than any of the rest of us over the next few years.

    cheers,
    franklin
    Last edited by doas777; September 29th, 2008 at 03:13 AM. Reason: less schizophenric and spelling

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    Re: Women and Equal Pay in Tech

    I don't think there are any empirical answers to this question, since it would involve to many variables to put a statistical data base together, but that doesn't preclude us from speculating.
    Like I said, optimist. I'd rather not even speculate sexist morons.Though, you're right...shouldn't be excluded....

    mike1234, good point with the navy thing, never considered her line of work versus the private sector. The navy was probably a little more desperate and willing to take whatever they could get during that time period. Heh...maybe we should make IT companies engage in battle royales with each other to make them more willing to take women (joking obviously).

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    Re: Women and Equal Pay in Tech

    just be good at what you do, and don;t look down your nose at the geeks
    But I am a geek!

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    Re: Women and Equal Pay in Tech

    Quote Originally Posted by Alex J. View Post
    Why the heck IS there a wage gap here at all? I mean, some of the older fields I can sort of see, though it's no excuse.
    ( snippage )

    But the tech field? We're freaking newborns compared to the law field.Why the discrepancy in such a new field? Thoughts?
    What most of these articles leave out and most studies do not take into consideration is that men and women are not equal. Shock! Horror! But it's true.

    I'm not saying that women are not as capable as men in the fields listed above. They are. I've known far too many female SysAdmins and Programmers that could run circles around me in either field to think otherwise. Nope. It's something else entirely.

    Men... can't... get... pregnant.

    Pregnancy quite often turns into maternity leave. Long term leave, medical, maternity or otherwise, is not counted for seniority. Rightly so since a person who has had 4 different cases of 3-month leave will effectively have 1 year less experience compared to a person who has taken none.

    Since those who have more experience tend to get higher pay those who have been actively working in a field longer will have higher pay.

    Since men are incapable of the precondition for maternity leave (at most companies, I'm sure there's one or two oddball ones that allow the men maternity leave) they are, statistically as group, going to have a higher average experience in any given profession as compared to women, as a group.

    Now, whether that is "fair" is entirely another debate because any way you try to balance it will be unfair to men or women as individuals. Regardless, any study which shows the disparity of pay for "equal work" without also factoring in seniority/overall experience is pretty much bunk.
    Warning: Any code examples I write are probably untested and contain bugs. Do not execute directly. Look for intent, not accuracy, please!
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