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What It's Like to Work in Silicon Valley When You're Not a White Bro

Illustration for article titled What Its Like to Work in Silicon Valley When Youre Not a White Bro

It’s no secret that tech companies are cesspools of homogeneity—sometimes embarrassingly so. While a big initiative launches in the White House to help diversify the industry, here’s another very inspiring project that seeks to tell the stories of underrepresented voices in the tech world.

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Techies is the work of Helena Price, who posted an open call for the project on Medium in January. “I want to show the outside world a more comprehensive picture of people who work in tech,” she said. “I also want to bring a bit of attention to folks in the industry whose stories have never been heard, considered or celebrated.”

Illustration for article titled What Its Like to Work in Silicon Valley When Youre Not a White Bro
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Over the course of three months, she photographed and interviewed 100 people, and she has posted all the profiles on a website, all easily optimized for discovering a random person with an interesting career path or finding someone who might have had challenging experiences similar to your own.

Some of the more famous people profiled include designer John Maeda and Gizmodo’s own former editor Brian Lam, but I really enjoyed just picking someone I didn’t know to hear an inspiring—and sometimes dismaying—story. Price will be highlighting the interviews daily for the next 100 days, so follow her on Twitter to see more.

[Techies]

Alissa is the former urbanism editor at Gizmodo.

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DISCUSSION

This talk of homogeneity is Silicon Valley is bullshit, because people insist in talking in euphemisms and code.

While lack of diversity at the board level might be true, I work in Silicon Valley and the diversity never ceases to amaze me. At my tech company we have a lot of people from China, India, Vietnam, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Latin America, Korea, and Western Europe. We even have a few white American here!

The truth is, when people talk about diversity in America, they really mean African Americans and women, especially the former.

While America and Silicon Valley needs to do better for both these groups (and don’t for a moment think that the problem only lies at the hiring level), that doesn’t mean there’s a lack of diversity here in Silicon Valley. When we talk honestly, instead of in code, we’ll know that Silicon Valley isn’t a sea of white bros.