Jul 23

LATINOS LOSE WHEN LATINOS ATTACK LATINOS By Martin Chavez, Senior Advisor HTTP

martin-chavezStarting out as a real volunteer with Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta in California during my college days, spending 17 years in elected office, working countless initiatives to better our communities and now serving on the Board of Directors of MALDEF, I was at first saddened when Alex Nogales, head of the National Hispanic Media Coalition said that Latinos and Latino organizations like the Congressional Hispanic Leadership Institute who disagreed with him on whether the FCC should apply Title II (otherwise known as “heavy” government regulation) to the Internet or utilize a “light “regulatory touch via Section 706 were “. . . at best misinformed and at worst intentionally distorting facts.” Caramba!

From my perspective, we’ve always been at our best as a community when we stick together and that when we disagree, we do it respectfully and without questioning personal integrity.  As Latinos, we know we have differences of opinion, but we also know that there is much more that unites us than divides us.

We saw the exact same phenomenon from a group aligned with Mr. Nogales calling themselves Presente.org.  Like Alex Nogales, they support treating the Internet as a utility and want it regulated under Title II.  Congresspersons Loretta Sanchez, Henry Cuellar and Albio Sires had the audacity to say that they prefer the “light” regulatory touch of Section 706 to the 1960’s types of regulations.  What did Presente.org do?  They directly attacked their personal integrity saying:  “Big corporations like AT&T and Comcast are poised to rob the Internet of its incredible potential” and that “The truth is that it would only disadvantage our communities while lining the pockets of the telecommunication giants that have donated tens of thousands of dollars to these representatives’ campaign funds.”  Caramba otra vez!

Presente.org can’t get their story straight.  On the one hand, they credit the free Internet (never before regulated by Title II) with having helped advance causes important to Latinos but then complain that Congresswoman Sanchez and her colleagues, by opposing Title II “make it sound like their position is meant to protect Latinos”.  Simply, what the Congresswoman, most Latino organizations and most experts are saying is don’t apply a decades old rotary phone regulatory regime to the Internet.  If the Internet, through “light” regulation helped advance causes essential to Latinos without Title II, why is Title II so necessary now?  Latinos no longer use rotary phones.  In fact, we use smart phones in greater percentages than any other group of Americans, regardless of ethnicity.

And, more importantly, why must Latinos who disagree with Alex Nogales and Presente.org be subjected to attacks on their personal integrity?

So while I was initially saddened by my friend Alex Nogales’ attacks against the Congressional Hispanic Leadership Institute and others for committing the egregious crime of disagreeing with him, I also know that Alex was properly raised by his parents to treat others with respect.  And I believe that upon reflection he’ll recognize that his angry outburst and lapse of judgment should not define who he is.  We all make mistakes.  And though we disagree on this particular issue, our disagreement should remain respectful.  Who knows, Alex and Presente.org might even change their position and join with the overwhelming majority of Latinos who demand an Open and Unfettered Internet as one of our great opportunities forward!

Latinos and all Americans win when our debates are vigorous, merit-based and respectful.  Only Latinos lose when Latinos attack Latinos.

 

Jul 22

The Growing Importance Of Hispanics In The Digital Space

Immigrants Become Naturalized US Citizens At Ceremony In New JerseyNew Census Bureau data estimate that the U.S. Hispanic population reached 54 million as of July 1, 2013, and it is no surprise that there is much talk about the power of the Hispanic voters and their impact on the upcoming midterm elections. From the Obama campaign’s “Digital First” strategy to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s 2012 re-election campaign tactics, much has been written on how to win over the corazónes of the Hispanic voters. Yet, despite the growing importance of Hispanics in the digital space, some political campaigns are still relying heavily on mail, billboards or boots on the ground to get their message out, rather than a multifaceted approach to connect with Hispanic voters through culturally relevant content online and offline. According to the Interactive Advertising Bureau, there will be 42 million Hispanics online by 2015, which will represent 73% of the Hispanic population and 16 percent of the total online users in the United States. A survey published by Pew Research Center in 2013 also showed that 86% of U.S. Hispanics own a mobile phone and 76% of them use a mobile device to go online. Adult Hispanic mobile users are twice as likely as non-Hispanic users to be interested in receiving ads on their phone, and 58% of them have engaged in mobile commerce. That speaks volume about the need for campaigns to use digital media to reach Hispanic voters.

Another study from Pew Research Center revealed that 80% of Hispanic adults in the U.S. use social media. Six out of ten internet users ages 50-64 are social media users, as are 43% of those ages 65 and older. Additionally, according to Facebook’s Internal Data published in September 2013, 23 million Hispanics are active on Facebook every month and they outpace the overall U.S. subscriber base on mobile usage, frequency and overall engagement.

Campaigns can use social sentiment and predictive analytics to give campaign staff more information on what the Hispanic voters care about, how they will vote, and how to effectively message the campaign’s mission to them. The 2014 special election in Florida’s 13th Congressional District, which Republican David Jolly emerged as the winner against former state Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink, is a good example for the application of social analytics. PsyID conducted a social analysis of voters from the district over several months leading up to the election, and their data consistently showed that Republican David Jolly was leading the social sentiment. Among the registered voters in the district, 39.25% of them shared positive sentiment for Alex Sink, while David Jolly led with a 46.2% positive sentiment. The social data showed what the district’s voters were talking about on social media and provided accurate predictive analytics. With a keen understanding of digital targeting and a data-centric approach, campaigns can improve their targeting efforts and increase their chances of winning the hearts of the Hispanic electorate.

Jul 18

New Data Shows How Quickly Broadband Speeds are Increasing.

broadbandNew data from NTIA reveals broadband is getting faster and reaching more people.

NTIA’s full report details the combined broadband speeds from wireless and wireline services from June 2010 to December 2013. Laid out, the charts do a great job of showing side-by-side how quickly broadband speeds and access have improved in 30 months.

The big highlights are that over 99 percent of Americans have access to at least 6 Mbps via wired or wireless connections. 92 percent have 6 Mbps over wired. In addition, two-thirds of Americans have access to speeds over 100 Mbps. An astounding feat considering in June 2010, only ten percent had access to 100 Mbps.

 

broadband2

Of course, access is one thing – actual delivered speed is another. For cable’s part, the FCC’s recent Measuring Broadband America report showed that during peak periods, cable-based services delivered 102 percent of advertised download speeds and 111 percent of advertised upload speeds, on average. The FCC concluded that these results “demonstrate that consumers should be reasonably confident that the performance they receive from their ISP will be consistent with [the FCC] Report.”

Improved access and popularity of high-speed tiers is also reflective of the fact that broadband providers are consistently working to improve service, quality, and reach. As NTIA explained, the big improvement in access to 100 Mbps service is “primarily attributable to an upgrade in existing cable systems.” And those upgrades and speed increases are continuing into 2014 and beyond. So perhaps the most important takeaway of these reports is the clear evidence that consumers are reaping the benefits of faster and more robust broadband connections.

Jul 16

LISTA Applauds HACR for Electing Cid Wilson as their New CEO

cidThe Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility Board of Directors Selects Cid Wilson as New President and CEO

Margaret Moran, chair of the board of directors of the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility (HACR) announced today that the board has selected Cid Wilson as its next president and CEO. Wilson, who currently serves as managing director, U.S. Equity Research for Princeton Securities Group, will succeed Carlos F. Orta. Orta successfully served HACR for nearly eight years.

“The HACR board has made an excellent choice. Cid has exceptional qualifications, bringing the perfect mix of corporate experience and a decades-long involvement with the Latino community and its organizations. He has a proven commitment to increasing the representation of Latinos in all areas, including Corporate America. He also has the vision to take HACR to a new level. We are very, very pleased,” said Moran.

HACR, headquartered in Washington D.C., is the nation’s largest advocacy group for Hispanic inclusion in Corporate America. In addition to conducting valuable research initiatives and advanced professional development programs, HACR creates a forum to ensure corporate responsibility and market reciprocity for the nation’s growing Hispanic population.

“I am honored that the HACR Board of Directors selected me as their next President and CEO,” said Wilson. “As an alumnus of HACR’s programs, I know firsthand the work that HACR does around the country to advocate for greater inclusion of Latinos in Corporate America. I look forward to leveraging my 21 years of Wall Street experience, with my national board experience, and my passion for Latino advocacy, to execute on HACR’s mission.”

Wilson is a graduate of The Ohio State University and has worked in the financial services industry since 1993. In 2006, Forbes ranked him the top equity financial analyst in his field.

In Sept. 2009, President Barack Obama appointed Wilson to serve on the National Museum of the American Latino Study Commission with the mission of presenting a plan to the president and Congress on the proposed creation and construction of a new Smithsonian Museum on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. In Nov. 2012, he was named chairman of the board of Friends of the National Museum of the American Latino, which advocates for Congressional support for the authorization and creation of the new Smithsonian American Latino Museum.

A lifelong resident of Bergen County, New Jersey, Wilson is a dedicated community leader, serving as the vice chairman of the board of trustees at Bergen Community College, chairman of the board for the Bergen County Relief Center, and a board member of the New Jersey Council of Community Colleges.

Wilson also serves on the ethnic advisory board for PepsiCo and the consumer advisory board for Verizon Communications. He has also been a board member of leading minority advocacy groups such as LatinoJustice PRLDEF (formerly the Puerto Rican Legal Defense & Education Fund), the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) and Dominicans on Wall Street. He is the former national president of the Dominican American Roundtable (DANR), and a Gold Life Member of the NAACP.

The HACR executive committee, and distinguished friends of the organization, executed a thorough national search process led by HACR Treasurer and Search Committee Chair Ronald Blackburn-Moreno and HACR Board Chair Margaret Moran.

“The HACR board did an outstanding job in the search for the new CEO,” said Blackburn-Moreno. “It was a long, very rigorous process involving the board and our corporate partners. We had 58 highly qualified candidates, which once again shows the depth of talent in the Latino community. Each candidate was evaluated on an array of criteria on a broad numerical scale. We then selected the top 15. The search committee, composed of the five HACR executive committee members and five non-voting corporate partners, evaluated each candidate again to decide on the final five that were interviewed by the board,” he said. “It was a difficult decision because of the quality of the finalists, but the board made the right choice.”

Upon announcing Wilson’s appointment, Moran and Blackburn-Moreno thanked Interim President and CEO Frank D. Alvarez, adding that the entire organization was thankful for his leadership during a time of change. “Alvarez did a remarkable job of keeping the organization focused and moving forward. Those efforts allowed our board and search committee to concentrate on the selection process.”

Jul 16

The 46 Most Brilliant Life Hacks Every Human Being Needs To Make Life Easier

burstingwithbrilliant
I love finding clever solutions to the little snags I come across in cooking, building, cleaning, or just about anything. These are some that I find myself using all the time! 

 

 

 

1. Use retail hangers as chip clips

Use%20retail%20hangers%20as%20chip%20clips

2. For the always-falling zipper

For%20the%20always-falling%20zipper

3. Freeze Grapes Chill Wine

4. Fit two bowls into a small microwave

Fit%20two%20bowls%20into%20a%20small%20microwave

5.

6. Use a leaf blower and PVC pipes to clean gutters without a ladder

%20Use%20a%20leaf%20blower%20and%20PVC%20pipes%20to%20clean%20gutters%20without%20a%20ladder

7. The easiest way to make an ice cream sandwich

The%20easiest%20way%20to%20make%20an%20ice%20cream%20sandwich

8. Unclog drains without expensive chemicals

Unclog drains without expensive chemicals 

Pour a half a cup of baking soda and a cup of vinegar into a clogged drain. Once it stops foaming rinse down the sink and your drains will be clear. A cheap and environmentally friendly way to unclog a sink!

9.

10.

11. Stop people from stealing your pens at work

Stop%20people%20from%20stealing%20your%20pens%20at%20work

12. Putting your phone into airplane mode will charge it twice as fast

%20Putting%20your%20phone%20into%20airplane%20mode%20will%20charge%20it%20twice%20as%20fast

13.

14.

15. Fix a blurry phone camera

Fix%20a%20blurry%20phone%20camera

16. Wrap a wet paper towel around beer, and put it in the freezer to cool in just 2 minutes

Wrap%20a%20wet%20paper%20towel%20around%20beer%2C%20and%20put%20it%20in%20the%20freezer%20to%20cool%20in%20just%202%20minutes

17.

18. Use a can opener on obnoxious plastic packaging

%20Use%20a%20can%20opener%20on%20obnoxious%20plastic%20packaging

19.

20.

21.

22. Create a bright light in a pinch

Create%20a%20bright%20light%20in%20a%20pinch

When camping or just in a pinch, a standard headlamp strapped to a 1 gallon jug of water can illuminate an entire room or tent.

23.

24. Tell which side an exit ramp will be on

Tell%20which%20side%20an%20exit%20ramp%20will%20be%20on

25.

26. Chinese containers are designed to fold out into plates

Chinese%20containers%20are%20designed%20to%20fold%20out%20into%20plates

27. Run the razor across old jeans to resharpen and extend its life.

Run%20the%20razor%20across%20old%20jeans%20to%20resharpen%20and%20extend%20its%20life.

28.

29.

30. Unwrinkle a shirt in a flash

Unwrinkle%20a%20shirt%20in%20a%20flash

31. Perfectly cut cherry tomatoes all at once

Perfectly cut cherry tomatoes all at once 

32. Keep a pot from bubbling over

Keep%20a%20pot%20from%20bubbling%20over

33. Soft-drink lids can double as coasters

Soft-drink%20lids%20can%20double%20as%20coasters

Avoid getting a tongue lashing from your mom for putting your cold drink on her new coffee table.

34. Pinching the end of a banana is a far easier way to open it.

Pinching the end of a banana is a far easier way to open it. 

35. Adding a teaspoon of of baking soda when you boil eggs and the shell will come off easily.

Adding%20a%20teaspoon%20of%20of%20baking%20soda%20when%20you%20boil%20eggs%20and%20the%20shell%20will%20come%20off%20easily.

36. If you don’t have baking soda, then peel away a small hole at the top of the boiled egg and a large one on the bottom. Finally, put the small hole close to your mouth and blow.

If you don’t have baking soda, then peel away a small hole at the top of the boiled egg and a large one on the bottom. Finally, put the small hole close to your mouth and blow. 

37. Stack clothes vertically side by side in the dresser to save a lot of room

Stack%20clothes%20vertically%20side%20by%20side%20in%20the%20dresser%20to%20save%20a%20lot%20of%20room

38. Charge your phone while traveling

Charge%20your%20phone%20while%20traveling

Many hotel TVs have handy USB slots in the back that will charge most smartphones.

39. Folding shirts doesn’t have to be a tedious chore.

Folding shirts doesn’t have to be a tedious chore. 

40. Pulling the bones out of a chicken wing makes it easier to eat. Just twist the bone and pull.

Pulling the bones out of a chicken wing makes it easier to eat. Just twist the bone and pull. 

41. Place a plastic bottle on top of a yoke and gently squeeze to separate egg yolks from egg whites

Place%20a%20plastic%20bottle%20on%20top%20of%20a%20yoke%20and%20gently%20squeeze%20to%20separate%20egg%20yolks%20from%20egg%20whites

42. Save space when packing a spare change of clothes.

Save%20space%20when%20packing%20a%20spare%20change%20of%20clothes.%20

43.

44. Use AAA batteries in devices that require AA

Use%20AAA%20batteries%20in%20devices%20that%20require%20AA

Use AAA batteries in gadgets that need AA batteries by filling the gaps with scrunched up tin foil. It won’t last as long as AAs but it’ll help you out when you’re in a pinch!reddit.com

45. Avoid Elevator Pranksters

Avoid%20Elevator%20Pranksters

46. Play games without ads.

Play%20games%20without%20ads.

Putting your phone in airplane mode while gaming will stop those annoying ads from playing!

Good luck! Your life may never be the same again…

Read More @ http://www.epicdash.com/the-46-most-brilliant-life-hacks-every-human-being-needs-to-make-life-easier/

 

Jul 09

Guest Blogger Lynn Ponder Says: It’s Time To: #ExposeTheTruth

webcity@webcitygirls was invited to witness Space Coast Credit Union big announcement about the reality of Rate Markups, vital information we as consumers need to be in the know. A rate markup is a common auto lending practice, whereby banks and finance companies markup the interest rate a that consumer qualifies for based on his or her credit score, and they split the difference with the dealership.  The average rate markup according to the Center for Responsible Lending is 2.5%, costing consumers billions of dollars each year.

The two-part campaign began June 9 in South Florida markets with an opening teaser campaign, featuring blinded folded members and a cryptic message, “only 21% know the truth, do you?”  The reveal campaign will begin on June 23 and run through August 31, using the same SCCU members, this time with no blindfolds, sharing their testimony of how SCCU protected them from rate markups.

To kick-off the reveal of this consumer advocacy campaign, an event with media heavyweights was held on Thursday, June 19, at the Aloft Hotel in the city of Doral, South Florida.  SCCU representative, María Valdés, Express Sales Manager, explained rate markups and shared advice on how consumers can protect themselves from becoming victims.

“SCCU is committed to protecting our members’ interests in all aspects of their financial lives,” said Valdes. “We are our members’ watchdog, and keeping them safe from rate markups is one way we watch out for them. SCCU has never engaged in rate markups, and our goal is to save members $30 million in rate markups this year.”

In addition, the campaign leverages social media elements, including a Facebook page, (facebook.com/ExposeTheTruthFL) and Twitter hashtag, #ExposeTheTruth. A video will be available on SCCU’s Youtube channel (youtube.com/SCCUMembersWatchdog).  In a thought-provoking way, the video compares consumers’ reactions to being taken advantage of in a sales transaction to how car buyers feel when they’re victims of a rate markup.

This new campaign is the latest effort by SCCU Members’ Watchdog to maintain and protect the financial needs of its members first and foremost, educate the community at large, and provide the best and most reliable financial services to all members.

Great Infographic For A Better Understanding of Rate Markup:

#Expose_The_Truth_SSCU

Jul 09

Google Is Offering Free Coding Lessons To Women And Minorities.

google-Google is offering vouchers to any women and minorities interested in learning how to code, CNET’s Seth Rosenblatt reports.

In a blog post from Gregg Pollack, CEO of the Code School, Google is paying for three free months for any women and minorities interested in tech to expand their skills.

While Google is also offering the same vouchers to the women in attendance at its annual I/O developers conference a few weeks ago, the search giant has released an online application that’s available to women everywhere. Google says its available vouchers for women number in the “thousands.”

This new initiative comes just days after Google published a diversity report that revealed only 30% of its employees are women, while African-Americans and Hispanics only comprised 1 and 2% of Google’s tech employees, respectively. Google said the current state of its company diversity is “miles from where we want to be.”

Google did say at its I/O keynote, however, that there were twice as many women in attendance compared to last year.

The search giant also recently launched its $50 millionMade With Codeinitiative, which aims to help close the gender gap in tech. (That particular enterprise is unrelated to the Code School vouchers.)

Outside of Google, the Labor Department says only 20% of software developers in the U.S. are women, while only 12% of computer science degrees today go to women.

Megan Smith, vice president of Google’s X division, said the company’s initiative to encouraging women in tech is all about “debugging inclusion.”

“We shouldn’t feel guilty about our biases,” Smith said. “We should wake up and do something about them.”

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/google-free-coding-lessons-to-women-2014-6#ixzz36yb2NhoA

Jul 02

Explosive Growth for Mobile Clinical Health by Joseph Conn

Mobile-Health-Monitoring
Right now, consumer purchases are driving explosive growth in the mobile-health-device market but that will change in the next decade as consumer buying slackens and clinical purchases and usage grows, according to Boston-based emerging technology market watcher Lux Research.

“Consumer mhealth devices that have been increasingly hyped since 2010 will hit a wall as the next decade progresses,”Lux forecasts in a new report.

In the future, only those companies that develop “high-value sensor solutions” and can “pivot to clinical applications will be able to weather” some “sluggish market conditions” for consumer products ahead, according to its 18-page proprietary report, mHealth Showdown: Consumer and Clinical Devices’ Battle for Market Dominance.

Lux defines mobile, or mhealth, devices as those incorporating “a combination of off-the-shelf components and application-specific sensors to form a complementary set of features that address specific medical applications.” 

In 2013, the overall market for vital signs monitoring applications for mobile devices was $2.8 billion, a figure expected to balloon to $23 billion in 2023, using its “moderate” growth scenario, Lux reports. 

Of that, the market for high-end, clinical monitoring devices will jump from $372 million in 2013 to $16 billion, with clinical applications catching and surpassing consumer applications in 2021.

Some of the larger medical-device makers already are tuned in to this trend, Lux notes. Covidien and Intel recently bought some of the earliest innovators in the clinical and consumer spaces. 

Covidien itself became an acquisition target last month, agreeing to a $42.9 billion offer from Medtronic

“In general, mhealth devices are greatly over-hyped right now, particularly consumer devices,” said Nick Kurkjy, a research associate at Lux, and the lead analyst for the report. “The reason why clinical devices are really going to blow away consumer devices in a decade or so (is) there is so much more value to be had in a clinical setting. Outcomes-based reimbursement and a focus onreadmissions is going to really drive this,” he said.

“If a vital signs device can help a provider reduce recovery times or decrease readmission rates, that’s so much more valuable for a healthcare provider or for a payer and for the patient, compared to helping you lose weight,” Kurkjy said.

“It’s great to know how many steps you’ve walked, but to be able to take your heartbeat or blood glucose levels or more elaborately, do an analysis of a EEG signal, (these) clinical settings are where the value of an mhealth device are realized,” Kurkjy said. 

“If that data is going to be put back into an algorithm that automatically makes decisions, that’s a regulated clinical product,” he said. “If you have to go through the FDA regulatory process, you’re a clinical device and you have to raise your price to pay for” it.

Jul 01

Santa Clara University & the National Hispanic University Foundation Announce New Collaboration.

Feature_NHU_380Santa Clara University and the National Hispanic University Foundation announced, last week, a new collaboration to create educational opportunities for Latino communities.

Through the University’s School of Education and Counseling Psychology, the Foundation and SCU will offer a premier graduate studies program for the development of culturally responsive educational leaders. Graduate students will be able to earn a master of arts in teaching and California single or multiple subject teaching credential.

The effort is primarily focused on English Learner and Latino education in the Silicon Valley. While American education has traditionally placed high value on English as the primary language, the collaboration insists on curriculum that places equal significance on bi-literate education, and the critical role students’ primary languages play in their success.

Importantly, a focus on Latino teacher preparation is needed as the nation and California grow more diverse. Teachers of color and Latino teachers, in particular, are significantly underrepresented in K-12. According to the National Education Association, only 18% of all public school teachers in the United States are non-White, compared to over 40% of students being non-White. More than 40% of schools do not employ even one teacher of color. Latinos only comprise less than 8% of all K-12 teachers.

The partnership advances educational opportunities for Latinos at all levels, particularly leveraging the efforts of three east San Jose charter high schools developed by the Foundation — Latino College Preparatory Academy, Roberto Cruz Leadership Academy, and Luis Valdez Leadership Academy.

Latino College Prep focuses on providing its students with a rigorous curriculum and environment made up of high expectations and community. The mission of the Latino College Prep is to enable underserved high school English Language Learners to become bi-literate in English, Spanish, mathematics, and science. These skills will ensure their ability to successfully complete requirements for a high school diploma and pursue post-secondary educational opportunities of their choice.

LCPA has been successful in increasing college access and success for Latinos, which comprise nearly 99% of the high school.

In 2012, 51% of seniors were CSU-eligible, and 31% UC-eligible, and 92% of students are placed at the top college of their choice. This is particularly significant as 94% of LCPA students are first-generation college students. A majority, 60%, of LCPA parents do not have high school diplomas.

The Foundation will expand its service to the Latino community as it opens the doors to another charter high school supporting on Latino education. Luis Valdez Leadership academy opens this summer, and Roberto Cruz Leadership Academy will open next year with a focus on the dramatic arts.

The Foundation will also establish a research and policy institute focusing on Latino educational advancement later this summer. The first of its kind collaboration will integrate research, policy, and practice to provide a national focus on advancing Latino students with a concentration on educational achievement, attainment, and advancement.

The SCU-NHU Foundation partnership is primed to develop other opportunities to support Latino community development and Latino educational success, including increasing Latino college access in the Silicon Valley.

Jun 27

When It Comes to Diversity in Tech, Companies Find Safety in Numbers by Alison Griswold.

10 billionIt was a foregone conclusion that Facebook would release its workforce diversity data (and it did, earlier this week). In the month since Google became the first major tech company to publish its demographics, owning up to diversity issues has become something of a tech trend. LinkedIn and then Yahoo had already followed Google’s lead, making Facebook’s absence from the club conspicuous.

 

The lack of diversity in tech is often discussed as an industry problem. If nothing else, the statistics from Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, and Yahoo illustrate as much. Looking at the data, what stands out most is how similar the breakdowns are from one company to another. At Google, Facebook, and LinkedIn, the overall U.S. workforce is 91 percent white and Asian (and at Yahoo it’s 89 percent). All four companies employ just 3 to 4 percent Hispanic workers and 2 percent black workers. In terms of gender, between 60 and 70 percent of employees at each company are men. In leadership roles, that figure rises toward 80 percent, and in tech-specific leadership roles, it climbs toward 85 percent.

screen_shot_20140627_at_12.26.20_pm
Chart data from Google, Facebook, Yahoo, and LinkedIn.screen_shot_20140627_at_12.28.09_pm

Watch Reverend Jessie Jackson discuss the issues in Silicon Valley

http://www.bloomberg.com/video/diversity-in-tech-bloomberg-west-03-19-CDWYWoPSRImumCcC4FSHxA.html

In addition to reporting similar figures, the tech companies have also issued nearly identical statements about their demographics. Google laid out the formula in late May when it reiterated its commitment to diversity in a blog post but conceded that “Google is miles from where we want to be.” LinkedIn echoed this tone in its announcement two weeks ago. “In terms of overall diversity, we have some work to do,” it admitted, before outlining steps it has taken to help close the gaps. Facebook’s statement this week fell in line accordingly: that “diversity is essential to achieving our mission” but “we have more work to do—a lot more.”  

That these four major tech companies have chosen to come forward about their demographics all within a month of each other suggests that with controversial topics—i.e., diversity in Silicon Valley—there is safety in numbers. The spotlight is not turned on Google or Facebook, Yahoo or LinkedIn individually, but rather on the industry as a whole. This was likely intended. A source close to one of the companies, who asked to remain anonymous, said discussions took place about sharing diversity numbers over the past two months, though nothing was decided at those meetings. (The source did not specify which companies took part in those conversations.)

In the overall U.S. labor force, 80 percent of workers are white, 12 percent are black, and 5 percent are Asian, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Forty-seven percent of the total employed are women. Figures are tougher to come by in tech specifically, but an oft-cited fact is that the pool of potential hires is itself largely white and Asian, and largely male. The fraction of women pursuing degrees in computer science has declined dramatically since the 1980s. Blacks and Hispanics are a small slice of college grads and of computer science degree holders.

Since the gap starts early, initiatives announced by Google and its peers have included donating to programs that expose women and minorities to computer science education from an early stage. Google is helping historically black colleges and universities improve their computer science programs. Facebook is collaborating with “Yes We Code,” which brings coding lessons to low-opportunity youth. “It’s encouraging to see not just the numbers, but that there’s real synergy in the solutions across tech companies, from education initiatives to unconscious bias training,” says Meghan Casserly, a spokeswoman for Google.

Time will tell if these initiatives prove effective at integrating tech workforces and increasing diversity among those getting a coding education. But in any case, Google’s lead in releasing its diversity data has gotten other tech companies talking.

ALISON GRISWOLD

Alison Griswold is a Slate staff writer covering business and economics.

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