“Swipe right I am hot, swipe left if I am not.” This is the basic idea behind the widely popular dating app, Tinder. The app has become a popular way to find casual hookups in the area in which one lives. It is not surprising to hear the news of female co-founder, Whitney Wolfe, filing a lawsuit against the company for alleged sexism, when the basis for the app is largely superficial. 

 

Whitney Wolfe and Justin Mateen (youtube.com)

Justin Mateen and Whitney Wolfe (youtube.com)

Wolfe claims that her title as Vice President of Marketing was revoked by the company on the basis that “having a 24-year-old girl as a co-founder would make the company seem like a joke.” Allegedly, fellow co-founder, Justin Mateen, was the one who made these sexist statements and had been verbally harassing Wolfe during her time at Tinder. Wolfe claims she endured “misogynist, frat-like” behavior and was subject to sexual harassment in the workplace. Wolfe had hoped the situation would be taken care of confidentially, but her complaints were brushed off for months. The last straw was at a company party where Mateen allegedly called Wolfe a “whore” in front of company CEO, Sean Rad. It is known, however, Mateen and Wolfe did have past relations, and one has to wonder whether Mateen’s actions were a result of resentful feelings toward Wolfe.

Did you know you can use tinder without posting Facebook

Despite their past relationship, this is not the first time the tech world has been accused of sexism. Women are a highly underrepresented group in the tech world, accounting for less than 20 percent of programmer positions. “Brogammer” is a term used to describe the frat-like culture of Silicon Valley, where women are often used to attract male employees. The technology field continues to be male dominated, with few women pursuing computer science degrees.

 

A depiction of “brogammer” culture (motherjones.com)

Dan Shapiro, creator of startup, Sparkbuy, told VICE News the brogammer culture is only a small part of a greater problem of sexism saying, “the everyday sexism in the tech industry is usually less gaudy.” Shapiro went on to say, “it’s made of inappropriate comments. It’s made of decisions that quietly exclude or assume. It’s made of assumptions that put people in certain buckets.”

 

The alleged sexism at Tinder and “brogrammer” culture is enough to keep any women from pursing a career in this field, but more women in tech jobs is what is necessary to help stop sexism all together. In order to change what people think of when they think programmer, both men and women should be encouraged to pursue degrees in technology. Having the ideas of both sexes will broaden the scope of ideas and minds present in the world of technology.

 

What are your thoughts on the Tinder accusations? What can be done to stop sexist “brogrammer” culture? Let me know what you think in the comments below or find me on Twitter @whatsthesich