Monday, October 6, 2014

Preaching Diversity from a Mostly White and Mostly Male Ivory Tower

Saturday, the New York Times editorial board delivered a stern message to America’s tech companies:Silicon Valley’s Diversity Problem” was the title of the editorial.

Now we here at DMF enjoy with great glee the loving and tender mocking of the left. And the NYT's allows more than their share of opportunities. This editorial is a target rich environment for just such mocking; the Time's Editorial Board's own diversity.

But First, let's meet the NYT's Editoral Board:

Male - (63%)
Female- (27%)
White - 14 (74%)
Asian - 3 ( 16%)
Hispanic - 1  ( 5.3%) 
Black -  1 (5.3%)

So now, a little playful turning the tables on the hypocrisy laden editorial and rewrite it to address what goes on behind the Time's own backyard fence......

"After years of playing down the problem, technology companies like Google, Facebook and Apple The New York Times now say they're it’s serious about improving the gender and ethnic diversity of their work forces and corporate its editorial boards. Recent data from those companies and others like them about the composition of the NY Times editorial board confirm what everyone has long known: Most of their employees contributors are white and Asian, most are men. As shown above, men on the NY Times editorial board outnumber women by almost 2-to-1 (12 men vs. 7 women), and blacks (5.3%) and Hispanics (5.3%) are significantly under-represented on the board relative to their shares of the US population (13% and 17% respectively for blacks and Hispanics).   

Tech Publishing companies like the New York Times should care about these numbers. Many studies show that companies publishers with gender, political and ethnic diversity on their editorial boards tend to be more creative and more profitable, because varied perspectives help them design products and services write editorials that appeal to a diverse, worldwide audience."

There are approaches that could help:
* Top technology companies The New York Times hires a lot of graduates from elite universities like Stanford, Harvard, Yale, Brown, Chicago, Columbia, NYU and the University of California, Berkeley for its editorial board (see list above). Their Its recruitment efforts should include a broader array of colleges…
* Companies The New York Times should open up the initial interviewing process for its editorial board. The National Football League, for example, has the Rooney Rule, which requires teams to interview at least one minority candidate for every head coach or general manager opening, and this rule should be implemented at the New York Times.
* Creating a welcoming culture, which is often easier said than done, would help these companies The New York Times retain employees board members who get in the door. The under-representation of women and minorities on the current New York Times editorial board might not be creating a sufficiently “welcoming culture.” 
"There is a lot that the education system and the government need to do to get more women and minorities interested in science and technology journalism. But the technology newspaper industry (including the New York Times editorial board) can start tackling its diversity problem right now."

Thanks to John Hinderaker’s article at the Powerline Blog (“Self-Knowledge at the New York Times“) for the inspiration.