Women in technology have long endured scrutiny and inequality in a primarily male-dominated IT field making it difficult for more women to break into IT leadership positions
In a CIO Matters column from the show, SearchCIO-Midmarket senior site editor Wendy Schuchart wrote that these half-nude CES booth babes don't align with what so many women are trying to accomplish in IT: to gain respect amongst their peers.
Who honestly thought that mute naked models was a great way to sell technology?
To get a sense of our readers' opinions, SearchCIO-Midmarket asked, "Did the International CES models in body paint contribute to a hostile environment for women in technology?" Readers talked back -- and yes, they were largely offended:
- "This is ridiculous that this type of objectification is still happening. It is hard enough being a woman in the tech field without this kind of crap."
- "Enough of the 'booth babes.'"
- "It's very offensive. I am sick of this kind of treatment of human beings. Yes! Women are human beings. I would feel the same for men if/when they are treated with this kind of objectification and disrespect for their humanity. Get a brain, people!"
Who's to blame? Should someone be reprimanded for the CES booth babes? Our readers pointed fingers at the vendor hosting these showy exhibits:
- "Who honestly thought that mute naked models was a great way to sell technology?"
- "Why tolerate such a vendor? Say no to their product."
- "The vendor with the painted semi-naked women should be banned [from CES] for life."
More talk about women in tech
Gender diversity in IT under the spotlight
Report: Women in IT and the gender gap
Of course, there are two sides to every argument, and not everyone thinks that this one requires a radical response:
- "You pick your battles. You don't want to always be the person saying, 'That's offensive.' I am always saying it."
- "Methinks thou complaineth too much. You sound very hetrophobic [new word]."
Do CES booth babes and other showroom models contribute to a hostile environment for women in technology? Should vendors rethink their tactics? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.
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This was first published in March 2013