Eyes Above The Waves

Robert O'Callahan. Christian. Repatriate Kiwi. Hacker.

Monday 19 September 2016

Is Apple A Christian Environment?

There's an article in Tech.Mic, syndicated to the New Zealand Herald and probably other places, about sexism in Apple's workplace culture. Most of it sounds all too plausible :-(. I haven't seen many examples of this sort of behaviour at Mozilla or elsewhere, but I wouldn't expect to have since, very sadly, I haven't had many chances to work with women in the office.

One detail doesn't sound right, though:

"several people" who have quit, citing a "white, male, Christian, misogynist, sexist environment"
Is Apple really a Christian environment? In my experience of the Silicon Valley technical workforce, Christians are extremely scarce and most of those keep quiet about it at work ... often for good reason. The environment is, in fact, fairly Christian-hostile. In social settings I have sometimes been in conversations where people started talking about what idiots those Christians are, assuming everyone present shares such views, and I'm sure there are more when I'm not around! I find it hard to believe Apple is different. (I know it's a cult, but not that kind of cult :-).)

I guess the quote probably meant "Christian" as some kind of general, malign force of culture and tradition, only loosely connected to actual Christians and Christianity. Regardless, it's frustrating to be saddled with.


I hope you had courage to stand up and mention casually, that you don’t feel you were stupid ;) I do, on such occasions and reactions are usually lovely.
So far, for me, it's always been in some specific context, about some particular issue. So I try to push back gently in a context-dependent way. Except when I agree with them about that issue, of course :-).
I wish they had used religious intolerance instead. I guess they used Christian as a (false) shorthand to indicate a majority Christian organization that is also comes across intolerant towards other religions (and atheists/agnostics).