Web Summit: Where white guys speak

November 7, 2014

Behold, reason #439,241 why we exist.

Yesterday was the last day of  Web Summit, an international tech conference that prides itself as “one of the most influential” tech events in the world. You can’t help believing them, considering they garnered over 22,000 attendees in Dublin this year, including big names like DropBox founder Drew Houston and celebrity guest, Bono.

But if they’re making a big mark in the tech world, we can’t help but worry when 75% of their 600 speakers were white men. According to the speakers they listed on their website (whether they had more than this list, we don’t know), 16% of their speakers were women, 6% were people of color, and just 2% were women of color. 

If the tech industry wants to diversify the field, it needs to look at who’s holding the mic. What if every tech conference’s organizing committee had a Speaker Diversity Task Force? Doesn’t seem like too big of a sacrifice to make. (And let’s be real, those conferences would probably be a hell of a lot more interesting.)

Time to pass the mic, guys.

Related reading: FRESH Speaker Ann Friedman on fixing tech’s woman problem. 

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