Asus Comment on Twitter Sparks A Controversy; Is There Rampant Sexism in Tech?

This is a discussion on Asus Comment on Twitter Sparks A Controversy; Is There Rampant Sexism in Tech? within the Android News forums, part of the Android.net category; Asus is in hot water with the public for a Tweet they made recently regarding one of their new devices, the Transformer AiO. The Twitter ...

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Thread: Asus Comment on Twitter Sparks A Controversy; Is There Rampant Sexism in Tech?

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    Editor in Chief dgstorm's Avatar
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    Asus Comment on Twitter Sparks A Controversy; Is There Rampant Sexism in Tech?


    Asus is in hot water with the public for a Tweet they made recently regarding one of their new devices, the Transformer AiO. The Twitter comment, which you can see above said, "The rear looks pretty nice. So does the new Transformer AIO." It was in reference to a picture of one of their booth-babes demonstrating the new product at Computex 2012. The Twitter-verse was suddenly on fire with charges of sexism.

    One tweeter, Corinne Marasco, said, "Wow @ASUS, coming right on the heels of that awful NYT article where "Men invented the Internet." OK, I'll take my disposable $$ elsewhere." Another, Alexander Horré, fired off with, "Looks like @asus just committed social media suicide." A third, Leigh Honeywell, said, "@ASUS hey Asus, do you not want women as customers or something? Not cool." From there it snowballed. The comment was quickly taken down, but not before it was captured by the unstoppable permanency of internet captured moments.

    Since then Asus apologized for the matter. They issed the following statement,

    First of all, please accept our sincere apologies for causing offence to many of Twitter’s users – it was never ASUS’ intention to offend anyone, let alone be sexist.

    We have spent some time investigating this since it came to our attention and, due to the hectic schedule around Computex and the fact a number of third parties had access to our social media accounts during this period, we realize that someone has made a deeply regrettable mistake. We have taken steps to ensure that this does not happen again.
    They also Tweeted the following, shown in a pic:


    This massive marketing faux pas on the part of Asus seems to bring into stark clarity that the world of technology may be too skewed toward a sexist mentality. In fact, it even makes one wonder what the purpose of the "booth babes" is to begin with... More than likely, they are a "hand-me-down" concept from car & gun shows, which tend to be fairly male-dominated. Does it really need to be there anymore?

    The number of women in the world that enjoy technology is growing constantly. They have every right to be treated with respect as anyone else.

    Also, please make no mistake, I am not jumping on a high and mighty soapbox of self-righteousness. I am calling myself out for this behavior too. I admit that I initially thought the Tweet was funny, but writing this piece has put me in a self-reflective mindset. It's easy to bash on Asus for this mistake, but perhaps the problem with this prevalent sexism in the world of technology can only be fixed by looking in the mirror. Where does any type of prejudice begin, and, more importantly, where does it end?

    To paraphrase Mr. Shakespeare, from his play, Julius Ceasar, "The fault lies not in our stars, but in ourselves."

    Source: Yahoo

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  3. #2
    Super Moderator RobKort's Avatar
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    Mite all they need is an "I'm so sorry" campaign. :rolleyes:

    -end of line-
    dgstorm likes this.



  4. #3
    Editor in Chief dgstorm's Avatar
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    I think I am going to chime in on this one now that it has had time to percolate a bit. Even though in my original article I got a bit philosophical there at the end, ultimately I can see multiple sides of this issue as being valid. I will elaborate on several different perspectives (covering many sides of this interesting topic/debate) that are mulling around in my head.

    One... I agree with the many folks who posted that the world has become too politically correct. It gets old having to walk one egg shells to be careful what you say, just because someone else is hyper-sensitive. We should all learn how to relax and not take things too seriously.
    Two... As a male, I can see why the original tweeter made the comment. She is attractive, and that was the reason why she was hired. Just because his comment might have the potential to be construed as insensitive, doesn't make it any less true.
    Three... By trying to put myself in the shoes of a woman, I can imagine that it must be tough to live in a world where you are constantly bombarded by the prevailing culture to look attractive, yet you also want to be taken seriously as an intelligent human being. It would be a pain in the arse to pulled in so many different directions.
    Four... It seems silly to blame Asus for the comment of one person. Yes, technically he is a representative of Asus, but he is also a human being, and guess what... people make mistakes. (and it could be argued whether this was a mistake or not.)
    Five... I also must admit that I sometimes wonder why we think we need to continue the cultural norm that "sex sells." Yes, it does. But that doesn't mean we need to use that technique. Lying to people sells too, but that doesn't mean it should be used as a sales technique. In other words, why do we have the "booth babes" at all? (Although again, I must admit that the "monkey" in me certainly likes to look at them.)
    Six... Should a person be indignant about defending someone else, when that person doesn't really want or feel the need for it. In other words... the model wanted to be hired to be gawked at. She wanted the job and the money knowing what the job would entail. Perhaps she even likes to be looked at. Why should all the angry tweeters "come to the rescue" of someone who probably doesn't need rescuing.
    Seven... I come back to the original question in the title of my story... Is there rampant sexism in the tech world? I have read several sources that show women in the IT world find it harder to be taken seriously, and do not make nearly as much money as men. Does that also filter down into the retail world of tech?
    Eight... if we really are willing to get self-reflective and look deep in the mirror, are we missing some perspective in which we are being disrespectful to others? If we can honestly say that we have the best interests of ourselves and others at heart and are comfortable with that, then everything is okay, and this "issue" really was just an overreaction. However, is it possible, even in the tinniest way, that we might be glossing over some larger issue? If not... that's fine with me.

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