tek, thinks & la strada ☯ॐ☢ csmr@kapsi

Computers are the natural enemy of the toxic feminist

Low number of women in Finlands STEM-fields has been a frequent discussion topic all of my career in the IT-industry. I can recall discussion boards, brainstorming sessions and speeches on this very topic: how to get more women to work in IT or Tech. This was IT, power or process industry companies (read: paper industry). From the first years of 2k to 2020, mathy and techy Finnish people have not been able to get more girls to study STEM fields.

Finnish girls don't want to study in STEM fields

The problem seems to be known to humanist research as well, since several studies outline the gender division of recent decades. Engineering doesn't seem to be something most girls like to study. It is a very hard problem to solve, and these industries simply do not have unrecruited women to recruit. And its not like IT corporations or process industry can force people to study engineering or chemistry.

Graph of educational quality by gender, stat.fi 2019 This problem has been visited and revisited, to death, on and on. For directors board, the solution was a gender-based quota. Now finnish corporations must have certain percent of females in the company leadership board. Its unlikely it has any effect on the STEM-students gender-ratio, though.

Brief history of computing for context

History of computing: prehistory, era of mainframe computers between 1960-1980, the era of PC during 1980-1998, and the internet-era computing readers now know, by 2020.

During mainframe -era computing was for organizations that could pay millions. You couldn't. It was corporations that owned computers. It was the corporations private business.

The era of PC meant everyone - even non-gendered - could buy and operate a computer, literally a "Personal Computer". This is where any person in Euroland could learn computing: learn computing, even engineering skills with it, and make what they want of themselves. This era started in early 1980's. And I'm one of its products: a self-made man.

The internet bubble came in late 1990s. In the turn of Millenium the Internet Revolution put the PC into every household and into every day life. The price of computers fell further.

And access to information on computing, including how to program computers became simpler! Much easier than physically going to the library and finding obscure notes by plowing through each book. It wasn't exclusionist or elitist, but usually only the nerdy boys did this stuff before the Millenium, in my experience.

You have to take the initiative yourself

There is no other way: you sit down and study, or never get it. This is how I learned the basis for practical IT engineer skillset. I scrounged libraries and bookstores for computing books. Local library even had the classic Kernie and Richingham C -computer language book to borrow! Basic and, Pascal books. It was thorny, whole thickets of thorns, that one couldn't pass on your own. Thats why I majored in Fine Arts!

No barriers for access

IT engineers life isn't glamorous. Technologies, programming languages and framework-libraries get old as often as your phone. Then one has to learn a new one. Engineering and project -related practices keep changing and vary from one company to another. Yet it is not some secret society information. It is publicly available, and I'd like to think its the IT engineer profession to keep up with the changes on the field.

Of course, it probably doesn't make these fields attractive to young people making decisions on what to study. C'mon, it is way better than being a lawyer!! At the least one doesn't have to put ones hands in other peoples pockets!

Finnish STEMmers know the reason why few women "code"

So, I'm arguing that the people in the finnish engineering and IT industries know the gender-related percentages. They know the ratio of men to women in their respective fields. They know the dialogue. They know that the problem is, that STEM fields do not attract that many girls.

Little over 20% finnish STEM graduates are women

In recent years, around one fifth of finnish STEM graduates are women - yes, a little over 20%. We even know, that in Algeria this percentage is over 40%. We also know that finnish women can get in: they have better scores from secondary level education that men. It's simply:

Young women don't want to study computing or engineering.

Enter the pseudofeminist narrative

The feminist doesn't care. More books or newsmedia articles must be sold. This society is just a horse for her popularity. A lie about STEM fields is a small price to pay for some cult following.

An invented story, a little feminist-narrative fairy-dust on top, and Sim-Salaa-Bim!!! Now the fairytale story about women being victimized out of tech and computing is ready..

But it is not true. It's the finnish women who chose. And they were free to choose. I'm actually someone who has been paid wage to wonder why. And I still think there is no problem: this is freedom!

In the latest Suomen Kuvalehti (1.4.2021) Sofia Oksanen hates on this fact for some reason, building an false narrative about women being grilled out of "coding". A narrative built to deceive those who didn't work in computing or engineering, and don't know any better. Seems to me Oksanen doesn't care for reality. I thought this narrative is probably to sell her books.

Opportunity attracts all kinds of tall tales

I've seen dozens of mud-slinging gold diggers willing to ignore reality in order to gain feminist following. Some even think they are doing good. Yes, I am talking about the IT-context here. Many even visit industry events, scheming for money in exchange of magically procuring more equality, when finnish women already choose for themselves.

Show me don't tell me

Probably booksales-ism that feminism has degenerated into isn't a real threat to the equality and equity that we have received, readymade. Feminist narrative is hitting the media mainstream. But even feminist should have honesty.

I hereby name you: Toxic feminist narrative. I'm thinking something along the lines of: why don't YOU learn to code. Show us don't tell us. Seems to me that Suomen Kuvalehti article was #fake like a pre-election Trump tweet.

I can recommend finnish IT jobs to everyone, women, men, non-binary, post-sexual, even!

There is very little discrimination in finnish IT. If anything, women will encounter privilege, due to their low numbers. Engineers that I've worked with are happy to help anyone, up to speed in their area of expertise. It's not any "internet-toilet-wall" type of environment. IT is fun and woke. These are people who like their work, and make the World a better place with it. Even if the World generates toxic narratives in return.

Copyright Casimir Pohjanraito 2021

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