Man in video: comments by men address what he's saying.Woman in video: comments by men address how she looks, is dressed, etc. #wtf

-- Aral Balkan (@aral) January 25, 2012

Sexism is a serious problem in the web design and development industry. That's no secret, and people certainly need to become more aware of it and help to prevent it.

Aral's tweet above seemed to have uncovered a whole host of horror stories of sexism in the workplace, particularly in the web and IT industry. What he said above is entirely true, and I've seen it for myself countless times. It needs to stop. It's terrible that even in a community as wide, accepting, friendly, and fun as the web design community, sexism still occurs on a daily basis.

However.

This problem goes a little further than nerds having the hots for any women that grace their twitter feed. Since I started this whole design malarkey, I've noticed a recurring theme - I've even spoken to a few people about it in the past who have completely agreed with me. Females in the industry get it a lot easier1.

It seems to me that some of the most prolific females in our industry have gotten their status largely down to their gender. This sounds incredibly rude, but many of the female designers and developers who have attained industry fame actually produce relatively low quality work.

Don't take this the wrong way. I'm astounded by the sexism that exists in our industry - it is truly worrying. And I also know a vast number of female designers and developers who are extremely talented, and deserve all the recognition they can get and then some. Perhaps it's more to do with who you know than your gender, but gender certainly does seem to play a massive role.

The sexist attitude needs to stop, but it needs to work both ways. Recognise talent regardless of gender, and I think we'll be one step closer.


  1. This was quite a sweeping statement. I know that because of a sexist attitude, women in the industry may actually find it a lot harder to work and get recognised. I was largely talking about more prolific females in web design & development, who (in my opinion, and men are guilty of this too) are often praised for sometimes 'average' work.