Media outlets are lying about a memo written by one of Google’s top scientists, which calls out the tech-giant’s illegal discrimination practices and blinding liberal biases.
Google has fired the author of the memo, James Damore, after the document received considerable backlash and was unfairly portrayed by many news outlets.
Here are some of the more blatant lies about the memo perpetuated by news media outlets.
1. The Washington Post
The newspaper which likes to remind us that “democracy dies in darkness” posted this downright lie about the whole affair on its Snapchat.
Damore never once says that women are “genetically unsuited” for tech jobs. Saying that men and women are different and that ignoring those differences will harm employees by causing stress or creating tensions is not the same as saying one is “genetically unsuited.”
Google CEO cuts vacation short to address controversial memo that argued women aren’t biologically fit for tech jobs https://t.co/BuAbsL6VzZ pic.twitter.com/GG2ETX1XOu— CNN (@CNN) August 8, 2017
The subtitle on the article linked in the tweet is bonkers: “Google CEO Sundar Pichai has condemned portions of a controversial memo sent by a male engineer at the company who argued that women are not biologically fit for tech roles.”
The now-fired Googler never once states that women are “biologically unfit.” The memo merely states that men and women are biologically different, and that those differences need to be embraced, because pretending these differences don’t exist is harming the mental health of women in the office, as evidenced by higher levels of anxiety among female employees.
The magazine that’s been slowly dying for nearly a decade published a writeup of the ordeal, calling the memo a “tirade” in their headline: “Google Has Fired the Employee Who Wrote an Anti-Diversity Tirade, Report Says”.
To anyone who’s actually read the memo, it’s clear a “tirade” is the least accurate way to describe it. It’s calm, it’s rational, and not at all angry or rant-like. Just because someone says something that doesn’t fit a certain political agenda doesn’t mean it’s a “tirade.”
4. The Atlantic
Ian Bogost’s account for The Atlantic is problematic in a number of ways. First, he calls the memo a “screed” and a “jeremiad,” which is not just dismissive, but also inaccurate. As I wrote earlier, the overall tone of the memo is very calm and even-handed. To claim that it’s the unhinged manifesto of a deranged man is totally false.
“The Googler’s complaints assume that all is well in the world of computing technology, such that any efforts to introduce different voices into the field only risk undermining its incontrovertible success and effectiveness,” Bogost writes.
This line is the exact opposite of what the memo was all about—it was about embracing and increasing diversity in a realistic fashion. The memo doesn’t say diversity is bad. It criticizes the tech companies’ means of achieving a more diverse staff.
And then there’s this gem of a graph, in which Bogost calls the memo a “displaced Reddit post” that dismisses anyone not “predetermined to be of use” (aka white and male).
Even the fateful Googler’s memo enjoys the spoils of a world already designed for male supremacy. What is this letter, after all, but a displaced Reddit post? Certain but non-evidential. Feigning structure, but meandering. Long and tedious, with inept prose and dead manner. This false confidence underwrites all the claims the memo contains, from its facile defense of jingoism as political conservatism to its easy dismissal of anyone not predetermined to be of use.
This word salad is not just cringe-worthy, it’s a downright lie.
The magazine is repeating the “anti-diversity” descriptor in this embarrassing and inaccurate headline.
Google fires anti-diversity memo writer, drawing sharp criticism from right-wing circles https://t.co/UyanX1NMUU pic.twitter.com/WK18WDvMPw— Forbes (@Forbes) August 8, 2017
6. The Huffington Post
The Huffington Post decided to get on in the action, and repeat the “anti-diversity” lie.
Google fires male engineer behind anti-diversity memohttps://t.co/ywqob3xKKn pic.twitter.com/7475X1DhKj— HuffPostWomen (@HuffPostWomen) August 8, 2017
8. ABC News
And ABC News.
Google fires employee behind controversial anti-diversity memo https://t.co/SFtK6l8vt1 pic.twitter.com/V13adkpzWa— ABC News Radio (@ABCNewsRadio) August 8, 2017
Slate’s Christina Cauterucci writes that Damore stole talking points from men’s rights activists’ Reddit posts.
The document’s arguments owe a great deal to men’s rights activists, who have maintained for years that programs devised to advance women are hurting men, the real victims. ‘The same forces that lead men into high pay/high stress jobs in tech and leadership cause men to take undesirable and dangerous jobs like coal mining, garbage collection, and firefighting, and suffer 93% of work-related deaths,’ the Google author writes in his manifesto. MRAs tirelessly employ this factoid in documentaries and Reddit threads to argue that men shoulder the world’s toughest burdens while women reap the rewards. The ‘death and injury gap’ is a handy distraction tool, a foil MRAs like to present when the gender wage gap comes up in discussion, as if one gender disparity cancels out the other.
She also calls him a white supremacist.
MRAs are undesirable company, for sure, but the Google guy’s memo aligns him with an even more despicable crowd: white supremacists. In the Google document, the author tosses in criticisms of programs that support people of ‘a certain race’ and dismissals of calls for racial diversity.
But here’s what Damore actually said about diversity:
I strongly believe in gender and racial diversity, and I think we should strive for more. However, to achieve a more equal gender and race representation, Google has created several discriminatory practices. . . These practices are based on false assumptions generated by our biases and can actually increase race and gender tensions. We’re told by senior leadership that what we’re doing is both the morally and economically correct thing to do, but without evidence this is just veiled left ideology that can irreparably harm Google.
The memo itself states that diversity is a good thing to strive for. Damore isn’t questioning the benefit of having a staff composed of different backgrounds, races, and sexes. He’s saying that affirmative action-like quotas and special programs aren’t the best way to achieve that goal.
The tech news outlet, which was one of the first to break the story of the memo’s existence and print it in full, has since updated the post containing the text of the memo to remove all of the hyperlinks and charts.
“The text of the post is reproduced in full below, with some minor formatting modifications,” the post states. “Two charts and several hyperlinks are also omitted.”
A quick look at Gizmodo’s modified version of the memo versus the actual memo shows that the media outlet removed nearly all of Damore’s supporting evidence. Was this an effort to make the memo seem less credible?
The headline certainly doesn’t help Gizmodo’s case: “Exclusive: Here’s The Full 10-Page Anti-Diversity Screed Circulating Internally at Google.”
This is why only 4 percent of Americans have a “very positive” opinion of the news media: they subvert the full truth in order to serve a political agenda.