Marlene Jaeckel, a senior software engineer as well as the co-founder of Polyglot Programming, alleges she has faced career sabotage by two Women in Tech groups, include Google’s Women Techmakers because she’s a conservative.
Specifically, she points at Martin Omander, Google Developer Group program manager for North America. She says that HE lol formally banned her from a developer group and Google WOmen Techmakers after a random feminist activist objected to her position there for her moderate conservative views.
According to Marlene, Martin Omander “declined to provide me with any details of the complaints against me or the rules that I’d allegedly violated.”
So here’s the rub… the sort of folly of these so-called Social Justice movements… The “Women Who Code” as well as “Google Women Techmakers” all have the same sorta message, that they want to “inspire women in to excel in technology careers” but based on Jaeckel’s experience it would seem they only want to inspire a certain type of woman.
So on the whole many of the people involved may be OK with someone like Marlene Jaeckel in their group but then when one person complains they fold harder than someone going up against Kenny Rogers playing cards, as is their nature.
In a post she made to Medium, Jaeckel has had a number of issues with this, and a “falling-out” with Alicia Carr over her position (opposition) to gender-segregated classes.
Unfortunately, during the Women Who Code hackathon, it became clear to me that this event focused on marketing strategies, creativity, and the discussion of gender politics, and not on the development of technical skills. At the group presentations and award ceremony, I observed that my group of mentees were being discouraged from discussing any of the technical details of the fully-functional application they had developed in less than two days, and I expressed my frustration about it on Twitter, stating that “when you’re a mentor and your mentees don’t get the recognition they deserve, you go to bat.”
In August 2016, Alicia reached out me via email and private Slack messages. She proposed forming a class for female coders who were interested in learning iOS development and asked me to tutor these students. I told her that I’d be glad to teach if the class also included males. She refused, stating that “I need everybody and anybody to help my Women and I’m sorry there is a gender issues [sic] but right now it [sic] about my ladies.” We were unable to reach an agreement, so I declined.
In September 2016, I again crossed paths with Alicia at a monthly meeting of the Atlanta iOS Developers group. She was extremely irate over my Twitter comment and my refusal to teach women-only classes. She became loud and disruptive during the meeting and the event’s organizer had to intervene repeatedly.
Despite her hostility, I still wanted to participate in Alicia’s ConnectTech panel discussion. I spent weeks preparing to represent iOS developers and the “Apple way” of doing things. Alicia was, however, completely unprepared to moderate and many of the attendees were visibly disappointed. Shortly after the session, Alicia posted disparaging remarks about me on Twitter, implying that she had to “carry the iOS side” and that I failed to contribute anything to the panel discussion.
Following this incident, I had limited interaction with other women in technology groups in Atlanta until January 2017, when I decided to volunteer as a mentor for a RailsGirls and RailsBridge workshop. Within hours of signing up, both organizations banned me from their groups and events. They even enlisted the help of two young white male developers to replace me as a mentor. Although the organizers of both groups declined to provide me with a formal explanation and refused to explain why or how I had allegedly violated their codes of conduct, I later learned that they strongly objected to my conservative political views. In addition, they were also friends of Alicia.
Marlene then volunteered for the Atlanta chapter of Google Women Techmakers where she helped them get speakers for their event. Then she supported James Damore — the Google tech who publicly called out Google’s diversity standards and she supported his move. This is when her backlash began.