[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: women in IT (in ES)

Hi all,

Sorry for the late answer, but there is something I would like to share
with you, because this struck me when I actually realized about it.

In the private companies I have worked in doing IT since 1999, I was
always "one of the guys". The women working in these companies where
generally doing administrative work, generating content, documenting, or
this kind of stuff. I was not uncomfortable, but felt a bit lonely and
was looked at by these other women as a "rara avis", amazed that I could
talk to "the guys" in their own "weird terms".

Since last April I work for a company that works for the government, so
my desk is in a government building, I have of course one hundred bosses
(this is very Spanish), one in my company, two in the Ministerio, and so
on, and I also I deal with both government employees and "external"
people like me.

What unconciously struck me when arriving here is that the ratio of
men/women in IT is close to 50%. And the age of the women here (in their
40s or 50s), and their technical competence. 

But as I just said, I was not completely conciously aware of this all
until I was requested to give a sudo workshop for the sysadmins there.
Having a coffee break with one of my trainees,a woman who told me she
was 50, I commented on how comfortable I was with the gender ratio in
the Ministerio, and that I felt a lot less discrimination and much more
technically respected that in my previous work experiences, where I was
usually questioned until some guy agreed with me (ie. until a male
validated my technical criteria, which was a bit fustrating, but I was
not really aware of at the time).

She told me she had worked for the government for 20 years, and she had
the answer to how this peculiar environment was created. 

When you work for the government here for a certain amount of time (I
think it is three years), you can leave your job, pursue something else
and if you decide to come back you are guarranteed to get your job back.
I have no idea what the word for this in English is.

Simply put, the IT men where tempted by the increase of income they
would get by taking the chance to go work for companies, where, she told
me, at the time, women had a much harder time getting a similar job. 

So the women stayed, and sysadmin-ed the systems, and coded, and made
decisions, and made it to higher responsability jobs, and so on. So I
truly find myself in an absolutely unique work environment. And I am in
love with this, I want to stay here forever, despite all the RH
Enterprise servers }:)  (There are still some slink servers around, but
they will be sadly migrated to RH at some point).

I have witnessed some sexism, but coming from the "outside world". As in
a "marketing" meeting where Alteon load-balancing solutions were tried
to be sold to the Ministerio, where a woman was asking the questions,
and the marketing guy would listen to her, then answer the question
addressing the guys, untilshe stopped making questions at all. She is
the network master, BTW. I was saddened by this meeting and hated both
the propietary expensive solution payed with our taxes and that this
great woman, in her 30s, that knows her shit so well, was silenced like

But all in all, I am happy because this is not the norm, just the
exception, and I have the pleasure to work with technically competent
and experienced women who do not see me as a "tomboy" or a threat just
because I love my job and I am and act like a geek.

I just wanted to share this with you all, because I think it is so
unique and cute :)

Happy hacking!

  ·''`.             If I can't dance to it, it's not my revolution
 : :' :                                            -- Emma Goldman
 `. `'           Proudly running Debian GNU/Linux (unstable)
   `-     www.amayita.com  www.malapecora.com  www.chicasduras.com

Reply to: