back to article 'Men only' job ad posts land Facebook in boiling hot water with ACLU

Facebook is under fire for allowing companies to allegedly unfairly post on the social network job ads specifically for men – and not women. The American Civil Liberties Union and Outten & Golden LLP, an employment law firm, on Tuesday dragged the tech giant and ten employers before the US Equal Employment Opportunity …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

    How is a men-only job ad any different than a women-only event of similar nature?

    One gets them a job immediately & the other trains them to get one eventually.

    How are they different in the eyes of the ACLU & other SJWs?

    1. Joe W

      Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

      Yes and no. It would be similar to a men only nursing or childcare course. It is a course, not a job, and I would have enjoyed having some courses without girls.

      On the other hand, there are a number of scholarships that are open only to women, and this I find a bit more difficult. Yes, you want to have more women in academia in science. This is however much too late. When young girls always get told they don't have to be good in maths because they are girls - quite often by their moms - then it is no wonder they don't study physics etc.

      Another thing I saw: most of my female fellow students left after their MSc for high paying industry jobs. That's more intelligent than continuing in science.

      1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

        1. RyokuMas Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

          "... me remembers high school.

          Judging by this style of writing, that would be about two years ago?

          1. Basler

            Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

            "Judging by this style of writing, that would be about two years ago?"

            I'd peg him as old (well, as old as me). "/me" is an IRC thing. Do kids still use that these days?

          2. JulieM Silver badge
            Boffin

            Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

            The post has been deleted now, but the "/me does something" usage dates all the way back to IRC; if I typed it, and my nick was set to "JulieM", it would display on other users' screens as "JulieM does something". And I remember using IRC in the early 1990s, from a PC running a Telnet client accessing a Unix system.

            IRC lost popularity in the late 1990s / early 2000s to a bunch of deliberately-incompatible, proprietary messaging applications. But Slack is actually using IRC underneath .....

            1. Mycho Silver badge

              Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

              Quite a few in-game chats also seem to use irc. Try seeing what happens if you use /me some time.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

        "It would be similar to a men only nursing or childcare course". Good luck trying to fly that one past the SJWs

    2. bobajob12

      Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

      If the point behind your anonymous comment is that the ACLU only ever take on cases that reflect some left-wing bias of theirs, I can assure you that they don't.

      For example, right now they just filed suit in support of the NRA against the state of New York.(link). They came out in support of the white nationalists' right to protest in Charlottesville (link). Those are just two recent examples. If you want to go further back in time, they even defended Col. Oliver North in the Iran-Contra scandal. (link)

      So, less of the cheap shots, eh?

    3. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

      "How are they different in the eyes of the ACLU & other SJWs?"

      trying to reconcile this obvious hypocrisy might cause you to eat your own brain...

      /me prepares you a rubber room. you're welcome.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Equality in advertising

        So you can now sue because someone *doesn't* show adverts to you?

        Oh well, this will put all the advertisers and their ABC123 market segregation to bed.

        Choosing where to display a Porsche advert? Decide it's not worth paying to display it on a board in a council estate? That's discrimination that is.

        1. Rich 11 Silver badge

          Re: Equality in advertising

          That's discrimination that is.

          People's wealth is something which can and does change. You could win the lottery one day and be bankrupt the next. Some of these circumstances might be beyond your control, or things you never experience, but most are something you have a say over (you don't have to buy a lottery ticket, you can manage your money wisely).

          What people are born with doesn't change (race, sexuality, gender dysphoria, etc) and is something they have to live with through no fault of their own.

          Societal discrimination affecting one of these two categories is patently unfair. Can you work out why?

          1. rcxb

            Re: Equality in advertising

            - "What people are born with doesn't change (race, sexuality, gender dysphoria, etc) and is something they have to live with through no fault of their own."

            So you're saying you fully support age discrimination?

          2. Alan Hope

            Re: Equality in advertising

            Curiously, nowadays and increasingly commonly, gender does change.

        2. Prst. V.Jeltz Silver badge

          Re: Equality in advertising

          So you can now sue because someone *doesn't* show adverts to you?

          Nail . Head . Best comment.

          You cant show all the adverts to all the people all the time , and I wouldnt like it if they did!

          Can women sue because they didnt see the "Become a royal Navy Engineer" advert shown during Scrapyard Challenge because they were busy watching Love Island?

          1. disgustedoftunbridgewells Silver badge

            Re: Equality in advertising

            I suppose you could argue that the Royal Navy knew men would watch Scrapyard Challenge and women wouldn't.

            For some reason they don't advertise tampons at half time in football matches. It's discrimination I tell you!

            1. FrozenShamrock

              Re: Equality in advertising

              But, females COULD watch the show which is the difference.

              As far as the inane comment about Porsche ads in a council estate, it has nothing to do with this debate. If the Porsche dealer refused to sell to someone from a council estate who could buy the car that would be wrong; but, choosing where to advertise a car is different than choosing to only allow certain types of people know there is a job opening. You want a car, you know where the car dealers are, just go there with enough money and/or credit and they will sell you a car. If you don't know which company has an opening or for what you cannot apply.

          2. israel_hands

            Re: Equality in advertising

            Nail . Head . Best comment.

            Only if you're a tool. Let me use your own example to make it clear what's happening and why it's wrong.

            If a woman has an interest in mechanical engineering and such she may well then be a Scrapheap Challenge viewer. If so then she'll see the Royal Navy ad and might be interested in joining up.

            The issue here is that Facebook are removing her ability to see the ad, no matter what her personal interests are, simply because she possesses a vagina. That's fucking stupid.

            The equivalent would be that during the ad break in Scrapheap Challenge her TV detected the fact she is of the vagina'd half of the population and replaced the Navy ad with one for makeup or shoes or something vagina-bearers are supposed to be interested in.

            Associating ads with things that people are likely to be interested in isn't a problem. It's when you remove someone's choice for following their up their interest based on something as daft and arbitrary as which set of genitalia they possess.

            1. disgustedoftunbridgewells Silver badge

              Re: Equality in advertising

              I'm torn between agreeing with you and thinking that you are a tool.

              1. overunder

                Re: Equality in advertising

                I think it depends on the job. As far as Uber goes, I believe they choose younger males because at any given point in time in history, they seem to be the least intelligent, or at be least the less focused (making them manipulatable). Ultimately, Uber might be guilty of more discriminations than are let on here. Uber... Guilty.

                As far as the bigger picture alluded here, I'm not sure where in nature or even human science where multiple physically different things are supposed to be equal in all aspects. Apparently in today's supposedly evolved society, a duck equals a car which equals a book, or 1 === 2 === X evaluates to true. But, I admit my bias. For example the "LGBT" movement to me was just the "LGB" (sorry, the "T" I simply can't recognize based on the fundamentals of science).

                Whatever, bring on the end. Uber is guilty, again.

            2. goldcd

              Re: Equality in advertising

              I agree with you logic - but this isn't "not accepting people for the job" - this is merely choosing where to place the advert.

              This would be like banning recruitment drives from a single-sex school or college.

              1. veti Silver badge

                Re: Equality in advertising

                To me the solution is so simple, I wonder what is the obvious thing I'm missing:

                Let advertisers aim their ads at whoever they like. But also make all ads available to anyone who requests them, filtered only by such terms as the viewer specifies.

                Then any woman using Facebook would easily be able to get a list of ads for job type XY, even if the advertisers themselves ticked "men only".

            3. eldakka Silver badge
              Unhappy

              Re: Equality in advertising

              The equivalent would be that during the ad break in Scrapheap Challenge her TV detected the fact she is of the vagina'd half of the population and replaced the Navy ad with one for makeup or shoes or something vagina-bearers are supposed to be interested in.

              With always-connected smart-TVs with embedded cameras, like for example where MS tried (and failed) to make an always-online kinect-enabled XBox One compulsory, I fear this is where we are headed.

          3. J.G.Harston Silver badge

            Re: "Become a royal Navy Engineer" advert

            Well somebody should sue, as they advetise the opportunity to become a technician, not an engineer.

          4. FrozenShamrock

            Re: Equality in advertising

            It is illegal to discriminate in employment in the US. If they posted a job in the local paper and said "females, blacks, Jews, and other riff raff need not apply" they would be in clear violation of the laws. By only allowing their preferred group to even see the job ad they are accomplishing the same discriminatory end. The "wrong" type of people cannot see the ad so they cannot apply so they cannot compete equally for the job. The Employment Laws are concerned with the end results, not how sneaky you can be getting there.

      2. kain preacher Silver badge

        Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

        Ahem Bob, can I call you bob ? You know that the ACLU has defend Klans men. They support all free speech not just whats socially popular .

    4. Mycho Silver badge

      Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

      Back to the point, El Reg has indeed attacked women-only job emails before.

    5. jmch Silver badge

      Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

      "How is a men-only job ad any different than a women-only event of similar nature?"

      a) Because a job ad is different from a coding camp

      b) because if it's simply one job ad, the applicant can apply for any one of hundreds of other jobs, but if Facebook is allowing the automation of thousands of job ads, potentially every job with a given company or sector, then the applicant cannot apply for any jobs.

      Incidentally in many parts of Europe, the title of every single job add is followed by (m/f) in brackets (or the equivalents abbreviations of male/female in whatever language is being used). I'm not sure if that is through practice or law

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

        You could advertise your IT job in Computer Weekly.

        But suppose it turns out that 90% of the readership of Computer Weekly is male?

        1. jmch Silver badge

          Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

          "You could advertise your IT job in Computer Weekly."

          Yes you could, but you couldn't then ask Computer Weekly to snip your ad out of any copies that are bought by women, could you? (and even if you could, why would you?)

          Likewise it makes perfect sense to advertise a computer-related job on a computer-related Facebook group, and if membership of that group was 90% male, then that would not be a problem, since any interested women could join the group*. But you shouldn't hide the ad from only art of the group based on gender.

          *putting aside the further issue of private closed groups for a moment

        2. katrinab Silver badge

          Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

          That’s fine because women are allowed to read Computer Weekly, and it is not a men’s magazine, or a magazine targeted at men’s issues.

          However, if you advertised it on the Computer Weekly website and and they agreed to only show the ad to men, that would be discrimination.

      2. MJB7

        Re: (m/f) in job ads

        Certainly in Germany, this is because discrimination is outlawed, but the grammar is such that job titles are different for men and women. A male programmer is "ein Programmierer", a female programmer is "eine Programmiererin" (you can occasionally still see that in English: "an actor" vs "an actress"). This applies to *all* job titles. That means you can either advertise for "ein(e) Programmierer/Programmiererin" or "ein Programmierer (m/w)" - and most choose the latter.

        I expect the same applies to most European languages.

        1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

          Re: (m/f) in job ads

          I expect the same applies to most European languages

          One of the few examples of sanity in English - we got rid of (most of) the gendered nouns.. (and have available the perfectly adequate "their" as an ungendered possessive - you rreally, really don't have to put "his/her"..)

          Sadly, we also appear to be losing the ability to conjugate past tenses - one website I was reading this morning (a US website) kept using "binded" instead of the perfectly adequate "bound".

    6. anonanonanon

      Re: Didn't ElReg just have a story about women-only coding camp?

      Coz there are already defacto male only events/posts, they may not be advertised as male only, but because discrimination is a real thing, they turn out that way. If discrimination wasn't a huge issue, you'd have a point, but as it is, you don't.

      Do you see women only job postings you'd apply for in fields you don't think you'd get a job in otherwise unless there were men only postings?

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Facebook - "Is this a Trick?"

    They're all gunning for Zuk now... The lies and the dismissal of privacy concerns and other criticisms for years... Its all coming home now. Interesting deeper background on Zuckerberg himself, and how he can't fix any of the problems, as all he knows is growth at any cost:

    _______________________

    https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-09-18/mark-zuckerberg-profile-reveals-origins-of-facebook-fb-problems

    https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/09/17/can-mark-zuckerberg-fix-facebook-before-it-breaks-democracy

    _______________________

    "Four categories of Facebook harms: “on democracy, on public health with issues like addiction, on privacy, and on innovation because of its enormous market power.”

    _______________________

    "For a long time, Silicon Valley enjoyed an unencumbered embrace in America and now everyone says, Is this a trick? - Engineering ideology of FB was clear: “Scaling and growth are everything, individuals and their experiences are secondary to what is necessary to maximize the system - “connecting people,” that was, in effect, code for user growth - We believe in the religion of growth - FB had given away data before it had a system to check for abuse. - Do you really want to see what you’ll find? - What are the dark patterns that I can use to get people to log back in? - FB engineers became a new breed of behaviorists, tweaking levers of vanity and passion and susceptibility - FB engineers discovered that people find it nearly impossible not to log in after receiving an e-mail saying that someone has uploaded a picture of them. - containing the damage - a level of near-sovereignty “so powerful that the ordinary social and industrial forces existing are insufficient to cope with it.” - Senator, we run ads - It’s your data, but you give us a royalty-free global license to do, basically, whatever we want.” - Imagine, if a brick-and-mortar business asked to copy all your photographs for its unlimited, unspecified uses. “Your children, from the very first day until the confirmation, the rehearsal dinner for the wedding, the wedding itself, the first child being baptized. You would never accept that,” - “But this is what you accept without a blink of an eye when it’s digital.”

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

    Given that women

    * Work less hours on average

    * Get sick more often

    * Take more leave days overall

    * Are the overwhelming majority of sexual harassment complainants

    * In manual labour jobs, get injured more seriously, more often

    * Are the majority of OHS complainants

    * Are more likely to leave after having kids, and never come back.

    etc etc

    Why WOULD you hire them?

    The ugly truth is that if you are running a small / medium business, even hiring one woman can completely sink your business, as they lodge any sort of sexual harassment claim, even if it's proven to be 100% false and malicious can set your business back anywhere from $50-$150K, just to resolve it.

    Training them for a role has an equally risky ROI, where they may decide to have kids and never come back.

    My sister did exactly this. Fought tooth an nail to get into an extremely specialised field, studied to get a PHD over 5 years, went into the work force for 2 years, had a kid, decided she liked being a stay at home mum better, had a second kid, waited for her husband to pay off her student debts, then divorced him and took most of his stuff, and hasn't worked since.

    She literally spent more time in school, than she did working and is now a net drain on the taxpayer and the poor guy she married.

    Needless to say I don't speak to my sister, cos she is a monster.

    1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        painful divorce, Bob?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Bob, Bob, Bob

          I'm male and work with many women in my current role, some do work part time and invariably end up working more hours than paid for, re-arrange their hours around business priorities and often still have the responsibility for caring for young children or elderly relatives.

          Whilst some women do decide to be stay at home mum's this is a very small minority in the UK today, most professional couples continue to need both incomes to keep their heads above water. What is more common now is the mum's who have to return to work before they are ready, working longer hours than contracted and feeling guilty about the impact this is having on their kids.

          I'm in my 50's now and my first wife was able to take a few years out to look after our children until they were established at primary school. This was a joint decision as I'm sure it was between Bob's sister and her husband. By the time the kids were in school my-ex was desperate to return to her professional role but found breaking back into the jobs market incredibly difficult. In order to do so she took roles where her salary didn't even pay the child minders costs, we were very lucky that we could afford to do this. I suspect in cases where the mother wants to return to work but can only do so by taking a much junior role on a hugely reduced salary that won't pay for child care then some women are kept out of the professional job market and end up taking on lower paid work which can be scheduled around school and may never be lucky enough to re-enter their professions.

          You'll have gathered that I am no longer with my ex wife, our divorce was long, bitter and personally very expensive but none of that relates to her work history, professional ability fitness as a mother or any other characteristic.

    2. Allan George Dyer Silver badge

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      @AC - "Given that women

      * Work less hours on average

      * Get sick more often

      * Take more leave days overall

      * Are the overwhelming majority of sexual harassment complainants

      * In manual labour jobs, get injured more seriously, more often

      * Are the majority of OHS complainants

      * Are more likely to leave after having kids, and never come back.

      etc etc

      Why WOULD you hire them?"

      Even if your claims are true, it doesn't mean that a woman's productivity is any worse than a man's. If they work fewer hours, they get paid for fewer hours, and might be producing more because of less fatigue. Someone who complains about OHS might be reducing your overall injury rate and associated costs compared to people who put up with a dangerous situation. And leaving to have kids sounds like a positive advantage to employers who want to fire their expensive, experienced staff and replace with cheaper new hires: age discrimination by the back door.

      1. ratfox Silver badge
        WTF?

        Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

        Given that women

        * Are the overwhelming majority of sexual harassment complainants

        Yeah, how dare women complain more than men about sexual harassment.

        I also noticed, it's always the Jews who complain about antisemitism.

        1. Spazturtle Silver badge

          Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

          Rather sexist of you to assume that only women are sexually harassed. Women are just as capable of sexually harassing men as men are of women.

          The treatment of men and women should be the same, if a woman asking a man out for a drink after work is not considered sexual harassment then a man asking a woman for a drink after work is also not sexual harassment.

          1. tfb Silver badge

            Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

            No-one is assuming that. What they are assuming, because it is true, is that women are much kore likely to be sexually harrassed than men are.

          2. FrozenShamrock

            Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

            Asking a woman out for a drink after work is not sexual harassment (its how I met my wife). Continually hounding them after they say no, retaliating against them in their job if they say no, getting physical with your invitation after they say no is when you cross the line. And, as a general rule, don't be asking out anyone who reports to you because that would put them in the awkward position of saying no to their boss and even if you meant no harm, it would be understandable if they felt pressured to say yes.

        2. eldakka Silver badge

          Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

          Yeah, how dare women complain more than men about sexual harassment.

          I also noticed, it's always the Jews who complain about antisemitism.

          I'm not sure what you are trying to say here, because I'm hoping you aren't meaning how I am reading it.

          Since Jews are the only ones who can experience antisemitism, be the target of it, as that's what it means, being anti-Jewish, then comparing that to your leading sentence implies to me that you are saying only women can experience sexual harassment. Which I wholeheartedly disagree with. Men can be, and are, a target of sexual harassment also.

          1. Clarecats

            Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

            ..."aren't meaning how I am reading it.

            Since Jews are the only ones who can experience antisemitism, be the target of it, as that's what it means, being anti-Jewish, then comparing that to your leading sentence implies to me that you are saying only women can experience sexual harassment."

            I disagree with your statement. A non-Jewish person who is friendly with a Jewish person, or who employs them or is employed by them, can also be the target, directly or indirectly, of antisemitism. Much as a shop could suffer vandalism because some idiot decided they did not like the look of one of the employees.

            Men, women and non-binary persons can experience sexual harassment.

        3. Glenn Booth

          Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

          @ratrox

          Actually that's a bad example. Recently shouts of 'anti-semitism' have been loudest from anyone who doesn't much like Jeremy Corbin, be they Jewish or not.

    3. Insert sadsack pun here

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      "* Are the overwhelming majority of sexual harassment complainants"

      We've discovered that our factory is poisoning a nearby river, so we've decided to solve the problem by getting rid of the river.

    4. anonanonanon

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      I've left jobs after 2 years, plenty of men do, what does the reason matter? In fact, it would be considered very sensible to keep your options to keep your career moving along. Companies don't consider staff if it affects their bottom line, why should employees consider companies if things are better somewhere else?

      You're sexual harrasment mention is a joke no?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

        You're sexual harrasment mention is a joke no?

        This kind of comment is exactly why I just left instead of reporting anything both times.

    5. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      @AC the point is, we are meant to spread the risk. Men can get sick, women can get sick, men are more likely to do something risky and get killed, women are more likely to get pregnant and have kids. By spreading the risk and never discriminating by sex/gender/whatever it's called these days, we give fair and equal opportunities to everyone. We can pick and choose to some extent i.e. only hire people qualified to do the job, but we have to stop discriminating based on gender, race, etc.

      However, the problems start when you run a small business. You can't afford to spread the risk between men and women. Women *are* more likely to get pregnant and have kids, so do you really want to spend time training and money investing in someone who is likely to be a drain on your resources?

      By the way I don't speak to my sister either.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

        Jesus Christ, another bigot.

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      Wow, you're a massive sexist. Congrats.

    7. jmch Silver badge

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      @AC

      a number of your claims were already challenged/debunked above, but I do want to focus on this one...

      "* Are the overwhelming majority of sexual harassment complainants"

      I think it's far worse for a business to hire someone who sexually harasses other employees than hiring someone who might complain they're being sexually harassed. Yes, women are the overwhelming majority of sexual harassment complainants because of a small but significant minority of men behave like pigs.

      Unfortunately many companies still find it OK to tolerate their male employees behaving like teenage frat brats with fantasies of living in a porn movie just as long as their star trader, coder or whatever is kept happy.

      1. Spazturtle Silver badge

        Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

        You are assuming that 1) all complaints are true, 2) men are the only ones who perform sexual harassment and 3) the victim is always a woman.

      2. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

        "Yes, women are the overwhelming majority of sexual harassment complainants because of a small but significant minority of men behave like pigs."

        And they NEVER lie about it, right?

        It seems there's a certain allegation running around Washington D.C. at the moment, where a certain accusing female is being invited to testify under oath, and lots of backpedaling going on.

        The truth is, such allegations can be used as a form of leverage [particularly if false], to either get rid of someone you don't like, or to maneuver up the career ladder. These risks are REAL, and I think the truth of the matter is that the ABUSE of such allegations does more disservice to actual VICTIMS than anything else. It motivates people to NOT hire them, because of the expensive risks involved.

        There's almost an implied "You don't DARE *FIRE* a woman" policy demanded of you, if you're a male, and in a management position. Fire a woman without miles of documentation to cover your ass, and it's EXPENSIVE lawsuits where settling is the only option. Whereas, to fire a man, all you need is an 'allegation', right?

        And when back-stabbing is done by a woman, and you complain about it, or try to correct it, you're "just being mean" "to the girl". It's a hypocrisy held by both men AND women, though I think women managers are less likely to tolerate it (the 'tears of sympathy' shed over stupid things while being caught back-stabbing or undermining others, that is).

        How can you run a company in THIS kind of environment? You can't. Therefore, managers may be quietly 'hesitant' to hire women, not because they don't do the job as well, but because they MIGHT SUE YOU INTO BANKRUPTCY! You have to be EXTRA careful. And this "me too" nonsense is JUST FUEL FOR THE FIRE. Were it not the case, I doubt any kind of 'silent discrimination' would be happening. But I bet you'll find it, and it will be VERY hard to prove.

        Of course, in cases where the allegations are REAL, let the perpetrator have both barrels. In this day and age, it is no surprise that it makes HEADLINES when it DOES happen. [and that's not very often, now is it?]

        1. FrozenShamrock

          Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

          You've never recovered from being turned down for the Prom, have you?

    8. Roger Kynaston

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      I shouldn't bite and others have responded more effectively than I can to your allegations. All I will add is that one anecdote does not a trend make. Whether the story about your sister is true or not you cannot extrapolate her alleged behaviour to all women in the workforce.

    9. macjules Silver badge

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      "Needless to say I don't speak to my sister, cos she is a monster."

      Let me try a random guess, your sister is pretty much your experience of women?

    10. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      Runs is the family

    11. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      My sister did exactly this. Fought tooth an nail to get into an extremely specialised field, studied to get a PHD over 5 years, went into the work force for 2 years, had a kid, decided she liked being a stay at home mum better, had a second kid, waited for her husband to pay off her student debts, then divorced him and took most of his stuff, and hasn't worked since.

      Sadly, this is an all too common tale nowadays. Modern society has fostered a breathtaking level of entitlement among women which, when combined with the ever present undercurrent of misandry, makes it very easy for large swathes of the "fairer" sex to game the system to their advantage.

      1. FrozenShamrock

        Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

        You people are absolutely insane. You need to get out the basement, off the Internet, and begin dealing with real people in a civilized way.

    12. eldakka Silver badge

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      @AC there is much in there that seems to be generalisations based on a specific personal experience that you had. While that may be true of your sister, generalising that out to all women is not only unfair but unsupported.

      But I will respond specifically to these related points below:

      ...

      * Are the overwhelming majority of sexual harassment complainants

      * In manual labour jobs, get injured more seriously, more often

      * Are the majority of OHS complainants

      ...

      The ugly truth is that if you are running a small / medium business, even hiring one woman can completely sink your business, as they lodge any sort of sexual harassment claim, even if it's proven to be 100% false and malicious can set your business back anywhere from $50-$150K, just to resolve it.

      Historically men have been conditioned to "suck it up", "don't cry", "put up with it", "be a man and stop complaining", "it's but a mere flesh wound", "It's only a scratch, keep working", "bottle up your emotions", "that's just the way it's done", and so on.

      Women, again historically, were taught to be more open with their emotions, to be "delicate little wallflowers", and so on.

      Therefore the mismatch in actual reporting of issues, injuries (OHS), harassment, and so on, is more aligned with that mindset where the men just don't complain, be tough and soldier on, but the women say - rightly IMO - "that's not right, it is an issue and I'm reporting it".

      To me, the women are leading here, men should be reporting when they are the targets of sexual harassment, or injuries at work, or unsafe conditions.

      So I think the dichotomy here is not that these things happen less to men, it is that the men are less willing to admit it, to talk about it, to report it, to see it as a problem and not just acceptable work culture, than the women are. And this is wrong, the men should be just as willing to report these issues as the women rather than just sucking it up and "being a man". In my mind, you are a better man, being "a man" by having the guts to report issues rather than allowing them to be swept under the carpet, rather than accepting that that is the work culture.

      1. Someone Else Silver badge

        @eldakka -- Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

        So I think the dichotomy here is not that these things happen less to men, it is that the men are less willing to admit it, to talk about it, to report it, to see it as a problem and not just acceptable work culture, than the women are. And this is wrong, the men should be just as willing to report these issues as the women rather than just sucking it up and "being a man". In my mind, you are a better man, being "a man" by having the guts to report issues rather than allowing them to be swept under the carpet, rather than accepting that that is the work culture.

        Post.

        Of.

        The.

        Week.

    13. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      Given that women

      * Get sick more often

      * Take more leave days overall

      Not in my household - my wife has (in 30+ years of work) taken only about 10 days sick. Me? I do about that in a month..

      (I also get more leave days than her..)

    14. 's water music Silver badge

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      * Are the overwhelming majority of sexual harassment complainants

      Pretty sure there are alternate strategies to address this other than avoiding hiring women

    15. FrozenShamrock

      Re: In the current environment, women are too much of a business risk..

      Do you have any evidence for your claims other than your sister? I've been in the work force for 42 years now and while women have always been a minority I can't say I've noticed any of the things you claim against them. Except perhaps complaining about sexual harassment; but, no one should be subject to that in the work place and if they are they are well within their rights to complain.

  4. forcing_you_to_think
    Meh

    The ACLU is only interested because it is Fac$book...

    I had an employer write into an ad that they were hiring only women for an I.T. position and also tell me the same thing on the phone. They would not even look at my qualifications.

    I called the ACLU in Atlanta GA and was told that they were not interested in pursing the case.

    I guess it only matters when the ACLU might get a chunk of money when taking the case.

    1. alcopops

      Re: The ACLU is only interested because it is Fac$book...

      No they are only interested in discrimination against women. Yes, hypocritical, double standard I know, but that is the gynocentric society we live in.

    2. eldakka Silver badge

      Re: The ACLU is only interested because it is Fac$book...

      @forcing_you_to_think, no it's not about the size of the payout. It's about the scale of the problem.

      One employer setting that policy for one job is an individual job/business problem. ACLU has limited resources.

      However, this Facebook issue is a systemic issue that affects thousands of businesses, hundreds of thousands of jobs, and millions of people. At the low end! Quite likely an order of magnitude or even 2 worse. And it indicates a societal issue. It is more likely to set a viable, wide-ranging legal precedent than dealing with a single job.

      You think that really compares to a single job affecting a few dozen people?

  5. llaryllama

    I think some people might have missed something...

    If this was a case of certain people being denied jobs outright then that is not OK, but these are paid ad placements.

    If you had a limited budget for posting a job ad and knew that 95% of interested parties would most likely be men then you target your budget to where it will be most effective. Why would you want to spend half your budget advertising to a group that will give you a very low rate of qualified, interested applicants?

    1. Richard 12 Silver badge

      Re: I think some people might have missed something...

      Why would you spend your budget on "safety equipment" and "fire extinguishers"? Most of them will just sit around for years and never get used!

      You do it because a) hopefully you don't want your employees to die and b) even if you don't care, the law requires it anyway.

      Equality is primarily about opportunity.

      If you never get the opportunity to even see a job advert, how are you going to apply for it?

      So yes, it is flat out illegal to filter who sees your job adverts by any of the "protected statuses" - gender, skin colour, age etc.

      The only legal question is whether Facebook are also liable for allowing it. Their only plausible defence would be if they have no way of knowing it's a job advert. That seems unlikely, given that "job" is a specific advert category.

      1. Kevin Lomax

        Re: I think some people might have missed something...

        <If you never get the opportunity to even see a job advert, how are you going to apply for it?"

        I don't use Facebook - can I sue?? /s

        Personally I wouldn't wait for social media to offer me things I might be interested in - the amount of vaguely-relevant spam you get from the liked of LinkedIn is bad enough.

        If I was looking for a new position, I'd be hitting the IT recruitment sites looking.

        Kind of agree though - why on earth would FB even *have* a button that allows you to filter based on a specific gender in this equal-ops day and age?

    2. tfb Silver badge

      Re: I think some people might have missed something...

      So, why do you think most of the interested people would be men? That couldn't be, for instance, because you make it so unpleasant for women? No, of course not, it must be because men are just innately better, right?

      1. ratfox Silver badge
        Alert

        Re: I think some people might have missed something...

        Equality is primarily about opportunity.

        Yes... But I'm going to follow attentively the case, because I think it's a bit tricky.

        The law probably says that you cannot discriminate by gender at hiring, but I'm not sure this extends to how to spend ad dollars.

        It's a fact that for multiple reasons, from social pressure to harassment, there are far fewer women looking for IT jobs than men. It doesn't need to be so, and it may well change in the future, but at this moment, it is so. Which means that advertising to women has a smaller ROI (and marketing is all about optimizing the ROI).

        To make a comparison, it's probably illegal to discriminate by origin when hiring. That doesn't mean that when putting an ad for a job in the local newspaper, you need to also place an ad in every local newspaper in the country, even the most remote, just in case there's someone there who would want to move.

        1. Wellyboot Silver badge

          Re: I think some people might have missed something...

          @ratfox >>>That doesn't mean that when putting an ad for a job in the local newspaper, you need to also place an ad in every local newspaper in the country<<<

          You're right it doesn't, but the local papers don't print a copy with specific ads for each individual reader, everyone has an equal chance. Anyone from out of the area looking to relocate will (should?) be actively looking on their own initiative.

          Asking FB to show the job ad. only to a specified group does explicitly exclude a large potential applicant pool to the eventual detriment of the company placing the advert, Job ads. are and need to be a special category.

          FB will either fight this to the supreme court or add a 'find a job' service to let people browse the ads.

          1. katrinab Silver badge

            Re: I think some people might have missed something...

            It is generally OK to prefer candidates that live near your workplace. You have to careful about where you draw the lines if for example most of the black people live in a particular neighbourhood.

          2. katrinab Silver badge

            Re: I think some people might have missed something...

            "FB will either fight this to the supreme court or add a 'find a job' service to let people browse the ads."

            Facebook are not LinkedIn, so a "find a job" service doesn't really fit with what they are doing. LinkedIn you may have noticed don't ask what your gender is and don't provide an option to put it anywhere in your profile.

        2. PM from Hell
          FAIL

          Re: I think some people might have missed something...

          There is a world of difference advertising in a periodical which is read by professionals or on a similar website and restricting visibility of the ad's.

          Whilst the majority of computer weekly subscribers were male, our female colleagues were not restricted from subscribing and did so. Similarly I'm sure the vast majority of IT job seekers in the up registered with jobserve are male, but my female colleagues also register when job hunting.

          It would never offer to me that when Facebook show me a job advert about a PM role that the female colleague at the next desk would not also be presented with the ad.

        3. Eddy Ito Silver badge

          Re: I think some people might have missed something...

          I definitely see the tricky bit since in the same token I can see how targeting ads would equally qualify. It's entirely possible that I see more ads for a pickup truck and my wife sees more ads for an SUV but does it fall under equal opportunity? Maybe, maybe not, but how about if one is offered a better deal in the ads based on gender? Perhaps they are willing to discount the pickup more for my wife in order to sway her knowing that I'm more willing to pay more because men 'liked' more pickups and women 'liked' more SUVs.

          I can easily see this topic get far more complicated and going beyond just jobs because it certainly wouldn't be fair to offer different prices based solely on gender or other traits.

          1. katrinab Silver badge

            Re: I think some people might have missed something...

            Charging men more for a product is definitely illegal.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: I think some people might have missed something...

              But gender specific pricing is actually common - haircuts, bic shavers, clothes etc. Lots of cases where the same item or service is priced differently depending on package and target market.

              1. katrinab Silver badge

                Re: I think some people might have missed something...

                I went into the men's section at Boots and bought a Philips OneBlade. Nobody stopped me.

          2. eldakka Silver badge

            Re: I think some people might have missed something...

            I definitely see the tricky bit since in the same token I can see how targeting ads would equally qualify. It's entirely possible that I see more ads for a pickup truck and my wife sees more ads for an SUV but does it fall under equal opportunity?

            It may be the same, but in that case if it was the same it doesn't mean what they are doing with the job ads is OK (because everyone else does it with other types of ads), it means that those other types of ads may also be in breach of the law.

            However, I will note that I know that there are many laws explicitly around the labour market - hiring, discrimination, and so on - which may not exist around, say, retail product (or vehicle retail) sales.

            Just because one could be legal doesn't mean the other is. it could also be perfectly plausible that one type of targeted advertising - for cars - could be perfectly legal while the same type of targeting advertising around specific categories, such as employment or housing, could be illegal.

          3. mtnbiker1185

            Re: I think some people might have missed something...

            Yet insurance companies do this very thing and no one says anything about it.

            1. Clarecats

              Re: I think some people might have missed something...

              "Yet insurance companies do this very thing and no one says anything about it."

              The EU has stopped motor insurers from offering cheaper quotes to women, on the basis that men, especially young men, are more likely to speed and have serious crashes, but firms must not discriminate against them.

              A firm selling motor insurance is called its4women.ie and offers quotes to women or men without bias.

              Thus all other drivers now have to pay more on the premium to account for the non-loading against young men.

        4. eldakka Silver badge

          Re: I think some people might have missed something...

          @ratfox

          That doesn't mean that when putting an ad for a job in the local newspaper, you need to also place an ad in every local newspaper in the country

          Further to @Wellyboot's reply, I'll add:

          But anyone can buy that local newspaper and see those ads. But in this case, people are buying the local paper, i.e. having a Facebook account, and are still being denied the ads.

          So this is the same as on buying the local paper, the seller cutting out the ads based on the individual who is buying that copy of the paper.

      2. Spazturtle Silver badge

        Re: I think some people might have missed something...

        "No, of course not, it must be because men are just innately better, right?"

        No not better, but more interested in that field, just like women dominate other fields that they are interested in.

        1. tfb Silver badge

          Re: I think some people might have missed something...

          There's pretty much no evidence for this. For instance look at computer science: the proportion of female CS graduates has fallen dramatically in less than a generation. CS is something women are, in fact, interested in, but they are being driven away.

          1. Eddy Ito Silver badge
            Alien

            Re: I think some people might have missed something...

            CS is something women are, in fact, interested in, but they are being driven away.

            This is something that I find fascinating and I wonder what the timeframe is. When looking at human development there is a window when children are young, prior to hitting the 'growth spurt', that a massive amount of brain development occurs. Could it be that my mother was right in saying that females develop faster which would narrow the window to develop the needed synapses?

            Please don't misunderstand, I'm simply observing that when I was about 10-12 years old my male classmates and I were considerably shorter than the vast majority of our female classmates but that dramatically reversed over the next several years.

            My guess is that the brain and body don't develop at the same time simply because the energy needed to do both surpasses the general available intake so it is naturally staged. If female brains do, in fact, develop sooner then it is the early education that needs to be addressed, possibly in the first 5 to 7 years. Maybe it's just a matter of injecting science earlier in the curriculum that would even out the balance. Maybe I shouldn't have that second glass of wine after dinner. Maybe I should have had a third, now there's an excellent idea.

          2. katrinab Silver badge

            Re: I think some people might have missed something...

            "There's pretty much no evidence for this. For instance look at computer science: the proportion of female CS graduates has fallen dramatically in less than a generation. CS is something women are, in fact, interested in, but they are being driven away."

            The proportion of female CS graduates in Iran is way higher than here, and Iran is not exactly a hotbed of feminism.

    3. Mr Humbug

      Re: I think some people might have missed something...

      'Most of these employees are men, so I shall advertise to men' is the wrong way of solving the problem. If I want to recruit a welder and I advertise to men then I'm going to waste most of my budget because, even though most welders seem to be men, most men are not welders. I should be trying to advertise to groups that include welders and not restricting my potential applicants based on criteria that are not essential for the job.

  6. DougS Silver badge

    Companies probably aren't doing this to discriminate

    They are doing it to maximize their advertising dollar. If you are advertising for an oil field worker, you are getting far less of your money's worth by advertising to women, or to men over say 50 years old. Likewise you wouldn't want to advertise a wildcatter job to people with a college degree, people who live in NYC, or single parents. Your advertising dollar goes a lot further advertising towards those more likely to be interested.

    Maybe Facebook should turn it around and let people register their interest in certain types of jobs, and everyone who registers themselves as interested in oil industry jobs will be the only ones who see such jobs. Of course they wouldn't want to do that - they'd rather you have to spend 100x as much to hit the 1 in 100 people who are interested. If you aren't allowed to discriminate then you'd have to spend 200x as much to hit the 1 person who interested - so forcing Facebook to do this is only going to make them more money!

    1. Spudley

      Re: Companies probably aren't doing this to discriminate

      They are doing it to maximize their advertising dollar. If you are advertising for an oil field worker, you are getting far less of your money's worth by advertising to women, or to men over say 50 years old...

      What you just wrote is basically a pure capitalist justification for racism / sexism / ageism / whatever-ism.

      It doesn't stop it being sexist just because you're doing it for financial reasons.

      1. mtnbiker1185

        Re: Companies probably aren't doing this to discriminate

        If that is the case then why hasn't the ACLU gone after insurance companies for offering cheaper car insurance to women than men, or younger drivers than older ones? Just because they charge you based on your level of risk doesn't mean it isn't discrimination.....

        1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

          Re: mtnbiker1185

          "why hasn't the ACLU gone after insurance companies for offering cheaper car insurance to women than men, or younger drivers than older ones?"

          Why don't young men drive safer?

          "Just because they charge you based on your level of risk doesn't mean it isn't discrimination....."

          There's being offered a higher rate because of your gender, and being offered no job at all because of your gender. I guess it's a matter of priorities.

          C.

        2. eldakka Silver badge

          Re: Companies probably aren't doing this to discriminate

          If that is the case then why hasn't the ACLU gone after insurance companies for offering cheaper car insurance to women than men, or younger drivers than older ones? Just because they charge you based on your level of risk doesn't mean it isn't discrimination.....

          Well, you see, there is this thing called the law.

          Various laws are passed for various things. Some laws are passed that apply to specific industries, events, things, and so on. Sometimes there are laws that make it illegal for one person to do something - speed - but other people in other circumstances are allowed to do that - emergency services.

          There are laws specific to the insurance industry that allow them to do that. The laws explicitly allow them to do that,

          If the ACLU tried to sue insurance companies based on that, they'd be laughed out of court, since the law specifically allows them to do that.

          However, there are laws specific to employment that prevent that same sort of discrimination. And it is this that the ACLU are bringing to court - employment discrimination.

    2. iron Silver badge

      Re: Companies probably aren't doing this to discriminate

      Alternatively you could advertise your oil industry jobs on relevant job sites and save $$$$ because everyone viewing it will be interested and not trying to look at pictures of cats. And as a bonus you're not giving your money to Satan's incarnation on Earth.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Companies probably aren't doing this to discriminate

        "you're not giving your money to Satan's incarnation on Earth"

        You do raise an interesting question, who would you rather work for, the oil industry or Facebook?

        1. small and stupid

          Re: Companies probably aren't doing this to discriminate

          Oil. Oil is a necessary evil.

    3. Crazy Operations Guy

      Re: Companies probably aren't doing this to discriminate

      They are suing Facebook in addition to the organizations posting the job ads specifically for that reason. Facebook's pricing model for posting job opportunities is incentivizing posted to discriminate. The ACLU's goal here is to get Facebook to either A) eliminate the option of targeting jobs ads specifically to people based on their immutable characteristics or B) remove any cost difference between selecting one option versus two or more options.

      1. DougS Silver badge

        Re: Companies probably aren't doing this to discriminate

        They can't remove the cost difference, they can only remove the option, because the cost difference is merely because Facebook charges by the reach (i.e. number of people who see an ad) which is why it is in the best interests of an employer to maximize the percentage of people who see the job posting that might be interested in it.

        One could argue that advertising an oil industry job in Men's Health, or a nursing job in Cosmo would be almost equally discriminatory given the gender disparity in the readership of each. Heck, just advertising on the internet could be seen as age discrimination, given that the older people are the less time they spend on the internet.

    4. katrinab Silver badge

      Re: Companies probably aren't doing this to discriminate

      Maybe you could advertise it on sites like CVLibrary where people do register an interest in the job types they are interested in.

    5. eldakka Silver badge

      Re: Companies probably aren't doing this to discriminate

      They are doing it to maximize their advertising dollar.

      Whether that is the motivation or not behind it doesn't matter. You can't choose to disobey a law because following it would cost you more money. (Well, OK, you could, but you'll have to face the consequences of doing so if caught).

      They need to find a way within the law that is the most cost-effective.

  7. Timmy B Silver badge

    Unless there is an overwhelming physical or sociological reason that only a particular sex can do a job then there should be no limitations on who that job is advertised to (not many women would be appreciated as men's restroom assistants, and vice versa, etc). Likewise there should be no restrictions on education, etc.

    If it is sexism to only advertise to and accept men then it is as much so to do the same with women. What matters and the only thing that should matter is that the best capable and qualified person gets said job.

    This goes not just for sex but for sexuality, race, religion, political views, etc. etc.

    Obvious relly.

    1. baud

      no restrictions on education

      > "Likewise there should be no restrictions on education, etc."

      So, to advertise a job opening as a doctor, the local hospital couldn't advertise only to doctors? Thus showing the ads to the other 99% who aren't doctors? Same for nurses? For teachers?

      1. Timmy B Silver badge

        Re: no restrictions on education

        @baud

        Read what I said a bit more carefully. The paragraph was about job restriction according to sex and I said there should generally be none. The "likewise" linked the closing sentence of that paragraph to the previous contents. So we should not limit education according to sex.

    2. jmch Silver badge

      @Timmy B

      Slightly off topic, but it does strike me as odd that religious and political views are given the same protection as race, gender or sexuality. Race, gender or sexuality are innately unchangeable.

      Religious and political views, however strongly felt, are choices / opinions, are learnt* and can be changed. Of course, anyone can choose to have their own religious or political views, and be free to air them (in public, not soliciting!) , and one should not be discriminated against for believing in one sky fairy rather than another...but I can say the same about for example anyone's preference of cats vs dogs.

      *or indoctrinated

      1. NiceCuppaTea

        "Slightly off topic, but it does strike me as odd that religious and political views are given the same protection as race, gender or sexuality. Race, gender or sexuality are innately unchangeable."

        Ever heard of sex change operations, Michael Jackson or Theresa May (one look at her naked would put me off women for life)?

      2. Timmy B Silver badge

        @jmch

        I totally agree. The only decider of if you get a job is if you can do that job better than all the other people applying. You should be treated decently as you treat others decently.

        Bill and Ted had it sussed: "Be excellent to each-other....

        … and Party on Dudes!"

      3. eldakka Silver badge

        @jmch

        *or indoctrinated

        By definition if you have been indoctrinated - as many religions do from an early age - then it is not a choice or a formed/informed opinion.

        1. jmch Silver badge

          "By definition if you have been indoctrinated - as many religions do from an early age - then it is not a choice or a formed/informed opinion."

          Yes and no. I was an indoctrinated catholic. But, luckily, I was also educated and exposed to other ideas, giving me the opportunity to change my views on the matter. I can say the same for many of my peers.

          Indoctrination isn't just the early-age stage (although that is foundational), it's a continuous process. And indoctrination can be broken by education and life experiences

      4. mtnbiker1185

        Might have something to do with there never being wars fought, and people slaughtered, over their preference of pet.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Unless there is an overwhelming physical or sociological reason that only a particular sex can do a job...

      Exactly! Science has proved that chicks can't code. Fact.

      1. katrinab Silver badge

        Given that it was a woman who invented programming, I don’t think so. And up until about 1970, the number of inventions by women was far larger than the number of inventions by men.

      2. Someone Else Silver badge

        @dumber-n-soup AC

        Exactly! Science has proved that chicks can't code. Fact.

        Dumbest.

        Post.

        Evah!

        Not sure if you are simply a troll or a moron. Naturally, that could be an inclusive 'or'.

        I make the assumption you know what an inclusive 'or' is...that may prove to be a stretch....

  8. colinb

    Sourcing jobs from Facebook?

    "thus excluding users outside of the selected groups from learning about these opportunities"

    I'm all for giving these retarded companies a kicking but why over-egg your case with fake bombast.

    If you really want to be surrounded by people with no life experience and even less morals here you go:

    https://www.facebook.com/careers/

    https://www.uber.com/en-IE/careers/

  9. Jonathan Richards 1

    The language is wrong

    A targeted indication of a job vacancy is not an advertisement. It's an invitation sent to a defined group. The degree of definition is the very essence of what makes FB et al. multi-billion dollar businesses.

    Short of saturating spaces with bill-boards and posters, there was always a degree of this going on, in that people seeking to fill vacancies would select particular newspapers to carry their advertisements. That wasn't as exclusive as the FB invitation model, though. Anyone could buy The Guardian, or the Times Literary Supplement and see the job advertisements. Without non-targeted, i.e. proper, advertising, excluded groups, (who are as finely and completely excluded as FB can possibly manage), never SEE these opportunities. That, by definition, gives employers the tools to exercise bias and prejudice.

    It should be a function of job market regulation to ensure that vacancies are properly advertised, and FB invitations don't count, in my opinion.

    1. eldakka Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: The language is wrong

      @Jonathan Richards 1

      A targeted indication of a job vacancy is not an advertisement. It's an invitation sent to a defined group. The degree of definition is the very essence of what makes FB et al. multi-billion dollar businesses.

      That is a very interesting, and nuanced, take on the matter. Advertisement vs invitation.

      I like it.

  10. Warm Braw Silver badge

    There is no place for discrimination on Facebook

    True; it's equally vile wherever you look.

    For all Facebook's faults, however, this isn't a new phenomenon. Employers have always targeted advertisements - knowingly or unknowingly - by the choice of publication in which those advertisements were placed.

    More interesting is that potential employers continue to believe they have any meaningful influence over the suitability of the candidates they eventually hire. Many selection techniques pick the "right" candidate less than 50% of the time*. The most commonly used (the unstructured interview) delivers a good candidate around 31% of the time. So the arguments about whether any form of discrimination is "justified" are pretty much futile. As long as you can get some evidence that people have approximately the right skill set, you might as well just pick them at random unless it's the kind of job for which it's worth putting people through a rigorous assessment centre process (where you can get the likelihood of a good hire up to 68%).

    *Fundamentals of Human Resource Management: Managing People at Work

    By Derek Torrington, Stephen Taylor

    1. Spudley

      Re: There is no place for discrimination on Facebook

      For all Facebook's faults, however, this isn't a new phenomenon. Employers have always targeted advertisements - knowingly or unknowingly - by the choice of publication in which those advertisements were placed.

      You're right, there is a comparison to be made with placing a job advert in a magazine with a known strong demographic. You may advertise for a builder in a DIY magazine, knowing full well that most of the people reading it are going to be men.

      The difference is that a woman who is looking for a job as a builder does have the option to buy the magazine. She may be in a minority, but she can still access the job advert if that's what she wants. On Facebook, the adverts were explicitly only sent to men, and the woman looking for that job would never have had the opportunity to see it.

      That's why this is being claimed as sexist where other forms of demographic targetting are not.

      1. Someone Else Silver badge

        @Spudley -- Re: There is no place for discrimination on Facebook

        You may advertise for a builder in a DIY magazine, knowing full well that most of the people reading it are going to be men.

        If that is indeed the case, then that is discriminatory. One would better advertise (not "invite") in a DIY magazine, knowing full well that most of the people reading it are skilled in construction, mechanical engineering, are part of the "maker" community, etc.

        I know several women who know their way around CAD programs and CNC machines, and might just read such magazines.

  11. Ken 16 Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Lookalike Targeting

    I think that option will be self selecting in a different way as the companies using it succumb to group think and go out of business through too many yes men. Diverse experiences make for diverse opinions and a healthier approach to business planning.

    1. baud

      Re: Lookalike Targeting

      On the other hand, a cohesive group will not get into shouting matches/get torn apart about divisive subjects.

      Some diversity is important to have enough different viewpoints and possible solutions, but it has its downsides.

      1. Crazy Operations Guy

        Re: Lookalike Targeting

        "On the other hand, a cohesive group will not get into shouting matches/get torn apart about divisive subjects."

        I've found that the more homogeneous a group is, the more they are going to fight about trivial bullshit and fright more intensely. Like when you bring up bracket styles in development chat rooms / mailing lists and they'll be an inch away from stabbing someone over whether the function closing bracket gets its own line or not.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Facebook "jobs"

    Well to my eyes, seems all Facebook "jobs" in the UK are actually disguised data harvesting exercises where you submit all your details for a chance to get a job "evaluating" some piece of tat, and where your payment is ... one piece of tat.

    So the ladies here may have had a lucky escape ....

  13. This post has been deleted by its author

  14. fords42

    No wonder we need women only spaces, given the state of the comments here...

    1. Smooth Newt Silver badge
      WTF?

      Girls are made of sugar and spice, and all things nice.

      No wonder we need women only spaces, given the state of the comments here...

      Women are no different to men when it comes to being vicious, intolerant and unpleasant. Maybe you should look at at Mumsnet more often.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Girls are made of sugar and spice, and all things nice.

        Women are also capable of love, kindness, intelligence and many more positive things.

        AC because identity doesn't matter, and I expect down votes.

      2. sabroni Silver badge

        Re: Women are no different to men when it comes to being vicious, intolerant and unpleasant.

        Citation please! I've only got personal experience to go on, just 50 years, so the fact that in my experience vicious, intolerant and unpleasant men massively outnumber vicious, intolerant and unpleasant women may just be me projecting. You sound like you've got data, please share!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Women are no different to men when it comes to being vicious, intolerant and unpleasant.

          I was bullied out of my previous career by my female manager. I've had lots of other managers since then, both male and female who have been fine.

          So anecdotally women can be just as bad as men, and men can be just as good as women. In my previous career (teacher) fights between boys tended to be violent, short and swift and then matters were settled. Fights between girls were vicious, long drawn out and would involve lots of bullying over periods of months where an effort was made to psychologically harm the opponent. Girls can be very nasty so don't even think that one gender is better than the other. Maybe you've just come across less nasty women because they've not been in a position to be nasty to you?

          I also recall reading about surveys where most social media bullying of women is carried out by other women.

      3. katrinab Silver badge

        Re: Girls are made of sugar and spice, and all things nice.

        I don’t know any women who like Mumsnet, and I know plenty who actively boycott “Mumsnet Rated” products. They should be shut down as a terrorist / hate organisation, and I’m not exaggerating. Especially after their recent attacks on the NSPCC.

  15. E_Nigma

    Is it discrimination

    The point of targeted ads is that they are to be shown to people more likely to click on them and go for what you are advertising. If one in 100 guys is a truck driver and just one in 1600 women is (numbers roughly correct for the US), then, since you're paying to have your job ad shown, you only pay to show it to guys, because otherwise you're wasting half of your money by paying to show the ad to people who are 16 times less likely to go for it.

    1. Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

      Re: Is it discrimination

      It is still discrimination. The fact that it is financially motivated does not make it less discriminatory. Also, from the point of view of someone who has worked with women programmers in the past (and is hoping to work with them in the future), more diversity at positions traditionally dominated by men is a good thing. I do not mean "eye candy", but diversity of opinions and approaches to problem solving. Hiring managers who place such discriminatory ads are doing themselves and their employers a disservice.

      1. E_Nigma

        Re: Is it discrimination

        A have a few female coworkers at the moment and I appreciate them very much. Smart, hard working, dependable, well mannered, and I really mean all those things (which also generally apply to my male colleagues as well, it's a really nice team). I absolutely wouldn't turn anyone's job application down based on gender, race etc, but that is one thing.

        A completely different thing is: you have an offer for which you will pay to be displayed to people on Facebook; you can't have it displayed to everyone as it's prohibitively expensive; therefore you pick parameters of a population that's most likely to respond positively so that you can get the best response for your money; if the job is in the US, you probably don't need to show that message to people in Germany; if 16/17 professionals in that branch are male, you target men with that paid ad. Because if you, say, pay $100 to have the job offer shown to 10000 random people, the expected number of truckers that you reached is 100. If you pay the same $100 to show the offer to 10000 random men, you've most likely reached somewhere around 200 truckers (supposedly, there are around 3.5M truckers in the US). The yield doubles.

        That's unless you have reliable access to much more private information about everyone, such as previous job experience (in which case, of course, you pick those who have worked in the field), and that still doesn't mean that you turn down women who apply for the job.

        1. Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

          Re: Is it discrimination

          It is not illegal to limit the job ad reach according to locality. It is illegal to limit the job ad reach according to gender (or race, age, religion, sexual preferences etc). I know, to a hyper-logical brain of a talented software engineer (with a slight deficiency on empathy side) that does not make sense, but nevertheless that's how it is. And if you think about the reasons why this is (something to do with personal identity) it might just start making sense.

          1. Bernard M. Orwell Silver badge

            Re: Is it discrimination

            "It is not illegal to limit the job ad reach according to locality. It is illegal to limit the job ad reach according to gender."

            Mmhm. Quite so. Perhaps then you can explain these businesses and their hiring policy?

            http://www.femalebuilders.co.uk/index.html (Female only builders)

            https://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-business/10786110/White-van-women-Men-shout-at-us-for-being-sexist-were-a-girls-only-removal-firm.html (Female only logistics)

            https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-42997068 (We only publish female writers)

            http://worldscreen.com/tveurope/2018/01/31/new-london-based-all-female-production-company-launches/ (Women only theatrical production/promotion company)

            or, how about all these jobs that are advertised as female only? Granted, some of them should be (female models, gym instructors, carers etc.) but some should not (modelling agent, Sales assistant, early years practitioner etc.).

            https://www.indeed.co.uk/Female-jobs-in-London

            If people want equality then they need to practice equality. The Law should be applied equally to all, and opportunity should be open to all.

            And yes, these companies are breaking the law.

            https://www.hattonjameslegal.co.uk/are-women-only-businesses-legal-in-employment-law/

            1. Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

              Re: Is it discrimination

              @Bernard M. Orwell I believe you are right (cannot access that www.hattonjameslegal.co.uk link now), but that does not make "men only" job ads any less wrong.

              1. Bernard M. Orwell Silver badge

                Re: Is it discrimination

                Here's another link that will be useful to anyone discussing this situation in the UK. It's the law, clearly explained, by the Citizens Advice Bureau. It lays out precisely what is and is not discrimination. Take special note of the illegality of provision of services based on gender and the fact that Positive Discrimination is still discrimination.

                https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/law-and-courts/discrimination/discrimination-because-of-sex-or-sexual-orientation/discrimination-because-of-sex/

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: Is it discrimination

                  The word you are looking for is sex, not gender. Sex is a protected characteristic, gender isn't.

            2. eldakka Silver badge

              Re: Is it discrimination

              @Bernard M. Orwell

              I'm not quite sure what your point is. You say:

              ..Perhaps then you can explain these businesses and their hiring policy?..

              ...or, how about all these jobs that are advertised as female only? ..

              Asking for an explanation why, but then you make your own sound conclusion:

              And yes, these companies are breaking the law.

              Yes, they are breaking the law. What's that got to do with this topic? The ACLU are suing Facebook for, potentially, breaking the law. They aren't suing those businesses you've listed.

              What's the relevance that others are also breaking the law? How does that impact the ACLU's case against Facebook?

              "Other people do it too" is not a defense in a court of law. "Other people do it too" doesn't make it right.

              If you have problems with those companies practices, then you do something about it, you begin a lawsuit against them for discrimination.

              1. mtnbiker1185

                Re: Is it discrimination

                I think his point is that it wasn't a problem when the ads were "women only", but only became a problem when someone made "men only" ads. I.e. the fact that it became a discrimination problem is discrimination in and of itself due to why it became a problem. In other words, when the ads were targeting women everyone was OK with it, but now that someone is targeting just men it's a problem.

                Kind of like how the U.S.'s Affirmative Action policy was designed to fight racism while being racist itself.

          2. mtnbiker1185

            Re: Is it discrimination

            Is it though? It is illegal to not hire someone based on sex, but advertising is a different story. Otherwise, tampon companies would be required to have just as many ads in Men's Health as they do in Women's Health. It is also perfectly legal for insurance companies to charge different rates based on sex. To the point, someone recently made the news for changing his sex to female so he wouldn't pay so much in car insurance.

    2. jmch Silver badge

      Re: Is it discrimination

      "If one in 100 guys is a truck driver and just one in 1600 women is (numbers roughly correct for the US), then, since you're paying to have your job ad shown, you only pay to show it to guys, because otherwise you're wasting half of your money by paying to show the ad to people who are 16 times less likely to go for it."

      That's awful reasoning. You're assuming that the choices are:

      a- target women and get one in 1600 people interested

      b- target the general population and have one in 850 people interested

      c- target men and get one in 100 people interested

      So choose option (c)

      But actually if I have a powerful ad platform like Facebook or Google that can finely target a given demographic, I would choose option (d) - target groups of people who are probably truck drivers. Based on how good the FB / Google / other ad networks' algorithms are, it's not going to be a 100% match, but it will certainly be better than 1/100.

      1. DougS Silver badge

        Targeting peopel who are already truck drivers

        Well that's fine if you are looking to fill a position that requires experience and you don't want to train them. What about entry level jobs. Let's say cooks and servers in a diner. If the diner has been around a decade and only had one female cook and one male server and dozens of the other sex, an owner on a tight budget probably considers it a waste of money to advertise both positions to both sexes.

        If there was a way to target "people who would consider working as a cook" and "people who would consider working as a server" obviously you'd MUCH rather target that way than by male or female. But that's not the reality, you can only target those who already have those jobs, which greatly limits your reach (and is a zero sum game if everyone does it)

        Plus, it isn't like Facebook would be your ONLY job posting. Maybe you advertise on a community website that offers flat rate help wanted ads, which are open to anyone to see. Maybe you post a sign on your door that you need a cook or a server. Maybe you take out a classified ad in the local paper or on Craigslist.

        Is it so terrible to discriminate (without any intention to restrict the positions by sex) in ONE avenue of advertising, when others are equal?

        1. eldakka Silver badge

          Re: Targeting peopel who are already truck drivers

          @Doug

          an owner on a tight budget probably considers it a waste of money to advertise both positions to both sexes.

          The law in this matter doesn't care whether the owner thinks it is (or it in fact is) a waste of money of not.

          It's a waste of money to properly dispose of the rubbish generated, therefore it's ok to just toss all the rubbish onto the street?

          Is it so terrible to discriminate (without any intention to restrict the positions by sex) in ONE avenue of advertising, when others are equal?

          There is an intention to discriminate by sex, it's right there in the options that the advertiser explicitly chose to select in the advert. Or are you saying the advertiser didn't explicitly select the option to target a specific sex? That Facebook did it automatically for them?

          Any avenue of advertising that allows you to explicitly, with specificity target - for or against - a protected class is discriminatory. Sure, you could put ads up only in YMCA notice boards, which implicitly targets young men. But there is a difference between explicit and implicit. Explicit is definitely illegal, implicit you might be able to get away with.

          1. FrozenShamrock

            Re: Targeting peopel who are already truck drivers

            By the way, the YMCA in the US is gender neutral; anyone can join and use the facilities so posting on a YMCA notice board would be posting to all types of people.

      2. This post has been deleted by its author

      3. Muppet Boss

        Re: Is it discrimination

        Imho, when you choose option (d) and target truck drivers in your truck driver job ad campaign, you are clearly discriminating against non-truck drivers who might be interested in applying for and capable of doing the job but will never have a chance of seeing the ad...

        I understand why people think that discrimination is bad but do not accept it myself that any discrimination is inherently bad. This is a part of human nature, like discriminating strangers in favour of your family. Known attempts of changing the human nature and creating an impartial Übermensch failed miserably and catastrophically. Look, Apple fans!

        The modern Western society defines certain 'protected categories/groups/classes', where negative discrimination is not acceptable. gender being one of them. Interestingly, positive discrimination if often tolerated and even encouraged, rationale being righting the past wrongs or just guilt. Then there's reverse discrimination and quotas...

        The ads in this case seem to be negatively discriminating a protected category and feel unfair ("seem to" due to limited info available and the accused party's point of view not present).

        What if the ads were exclusively targeted at women or seniors to "attract diversity into traditionally male-dominated industries", would these be seen as discriminating and unfair?

        It looks like there are cases where discriminating 'protected categories' is generally accepted by the Western society. Targeted tampon ads? Targeted ads for 'family hotels'? 'Child-free' hotels? 'Gay-friendly' hotels? Targeted ads for 'shaving subscriptions'? Oh yeah, surely there are poor souls deeply offended by not seeing these...

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Advertising is different from hiring

    Presumably there is nothing stopping anyone looking on the careers page of companies they want to work for from time to time?

    Are online job sites and their customers discriminating against low income and older people who have less access to online services? Is anyone suing these companies to force them to advertise in the local community newspapers?

    1. DougS Silver badge

      Re: Advertising is different from hiring

      Advertising in newspapers could be considered reverse age discrimination. How many people in their 20s do you know that subscribe to a local newspaper - either print or electronically? Their demographics are tilted heavily toward older people, who have subscribed to their local paper for decades. When the baby boomers die, 98% of the newspaper industry will die with them.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wow

    I see the MRAs are out in force this morning. I wonder if people defending Uber's discrimination realize that they are the exact reason we need laws against discrimination?

  18. Little Mouse

    I've got the answer

    First, we need a great big melting pot, big enough to take the world and all its got...

  19. MonkeyCee Silver badge

    Gender bias in advertising

    There are a few things going on here. The actual case seems pretty clear cut even with only my limited understanding of employment law. Business students in the EU are expected to be aware of US employment law :)

    Firstly, if it's illegal to only advertise a job to one gender, then "target only male/female" shouldn't be an option for job ads. Same for all the other rules about what you can and can't bias against (ie only targeting ads at people with a STEM degree is probably OK).

    The more fuzzy problem is that even without explicitly excluding women from the advertising pool, women will (generally) be shown less of the ad anyway. Because Facebook (and google et al) charges more for a woman's ad impression than a man's. That's not artificial either, advertisers pay more because there is more demand for it.

    This effect doubles down for professional women, as they have more disposable income, so they are even more expensive to buy impressions for.

    Thus you can get a gender bias in job ad impressions without any "girls can't do it" crap, just because other people will pay more to get those eyeballs.

    As for women in the workforce, my overwhelming impression has been that they are generally harder working, paid less and much more adapt at reducing social friction. Obviously many exceptions abound, this being humanity and all. But the best sysadmin, change control, problem management, mechanic/inventor and IT managers I've known have been all been women.

    1. MrMerrymaker

      Re: Gender bias in advertising

      I like how you got down votes for that!

      1. Spazturtle Silver badge

        Re: Gender bias in advertising

        Because he ended his post with some drivel about women getting paid less which is not true. For the same job women get paid the same as men, 1) it is a legal requirement to pay people the same and 2) if it was true companies would try and only hire women to save costs.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Gender bias in advertising

          "some drivel about women getting paid less which is not true"

          Really? The OECD would beg to differ.

          https://data.oecd.org/earnwage/gender-wage-gap.htm

          1. Bernard M. Orwell Silver badge

            Re: Gender bias in advertising

            "Really? The OECD would beg to differ"

            The OECD commit the same fallacy that everyone else does; they don't take age demographics into account. In some age ranges (over 30's IIRC) there is pay gap (probably due to long term and outdated employment contracts). If you look at the pay gap for people under 30, you'll find that not only is it far, far more equal, but in some areas and roles, women now earn more than men.

            I do not deny that there is a pay gap, and from this report you can see that, in full time employees, there is as much as a 9.4% gap in favour of men, but the same report also highlights that the rate at which pay rises are applied favour female staff by around 7% per year. The times are a-changing, and we need to recognize that its not the 1970's anymore.

            I see your OECD and raise you the ONS report:

            https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/earningsandworkinghours/articles/understandingthegenderpaygapintheuk/2018-01-17

          2. Spazturtle Silver badge

            Re: Gender bias in advertising

            "https://data.oecd.org/earnwage/gender-wage-gap.htm"

            That is meaningless data as it is not measuring people with the same job. Men and woman who are hired to do the same job are paid the same, this is the law. Will you be complaining about the wage gap between cleaners and neurosurgeons next?

  20. UNCL3LARRY

    BBC did the same with race

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-36443113

    It's not much different, there's discrimination in all fields- albeit some more than others.

  21. Zippy´s Sausage Factory
    Devil

    "There is no place for discrimination on Facebook; it’s strictly prohibited in our policies," said Facebook spokesman Joe Osborne. "We look forward to defending our practices once we have an opportunity to review the complaint.”

    Although, y'know, they provide all the tools to do it. It's kind of like making a shop display of bottles of arsenic next to a book called "how to commit the perfect murder" and then being shocked - shocked, I tell you - that anyone would ever use arsenic for poisoning anyone...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "There is no place for discrimination on Facebook; it’s strictly prohibited in our policies," said Facebook spokesman Joe Osborne.

      Talk is cheap.

      Just how cheap, of course, we didn't really understand until the advent of social media.

    2. TechDrone
      Unhappy

      So by the same reasoning, it would be illegal for me to have different adverts targeting each demographic to get my job vacancy in front of potential future employees in a way that they're most likely to respond to?

      Or the government campaigns to get under-represented groups into jobs (eg men into teaching, women into engineering) would have to waste taxpayers money on targeting the adverts at everyone else too?

      I guess shooting the messenger, especially a rich one, is easier than looking at the complex messy underlying issues.

      1. FrozenShamrock

        Your first example is ludicrous. There are no laws saying individuals must apply to any and all companies; you can discriminate all you like in where you apply for work. There are laws saying employers cannot discriminate in their hiring practices.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    IT Attitude towards women

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LS37SNYjg8w

    Especially in the UK. Keep it up Commentards!

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    re. a load of bloke-only ads

    this must have been intentional, you know, Barbara Streisend effect. Clever marketing trick to show that Uber actually prefers female drivers!

    p.s. I guess you could argue there are fewer uber-drivers, because women are too smart to work in such a shitty-money job...

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    In the beginning there were programmers

    And they were women.

    And men were operators and system analysts.

    And this was the era when a full-time employed female programmer was expected to resign "for personal reasons" once they got pregnant. And if they returned to work after having a child they were expected to be part-timers. And there was an HR department for female employees and an HR department for male employees.

    And so it seems there was a time when women were programmers and discriminated against in the workplace. And now we've reached the point where women are expected not to be programmers....

    1. jmch Silver badge

      Re: In the beginning there were programmers

      "In the beginning..."

      "there was a time when women were programmers and discriminated against in the workplace. And now we've reached the point where women are expected not to be programmers"

      Spot on. Brings me in mind of some neanderthals who think women's football isn't 'proper' football, but are ignorant of the fact that women's football in the UK used to be as popular as men's and drew crowds over 50k in the 1920s... until the FA (comprising of 100% middle-aged / old white men) banned women's football on any their member's pitches

  25. DuchessofDukeStreet

    Being Blonde

    So if you've got a vacancy for a taxi driver in Seattle, you target your advertising at the following categories:

    current location

    current or former job as "driver"

    interest in "cars"

    socio-economic group

    etc

    you don't target

    gender

    religion

    race

    What's the problem?

    It would be illegal in most countries of the world for me to go to an agency and ask them to recruit me a male developer for a role, why would it be acceptable for me to ask for an advert to be targetted only to men? It *is* the 21st century....

    1. Spazturtle Silver badge

      Re: Being Blonde

      Facebook charge extra if you want your advert shown to women due to higher demand. So it's not that they didn't want women to see it because they didn't want to hire women, but that they simply didn't want to pay Facebook extra.

      The company will argue that it was facebook that broke the law by charging more for female views then for male views.

    2. DougS Silver badge

      Re: Being Blonde

      interest in "cars"

      Seriously? Why would a taxi driver be any more likely to be interested in cars than anyone else? Heck, if I drove 40 hours a week cars would be the last thing I'd be interested in during my time off. If you work an office job, do you have an interest in cubicles and coffee machines?

      Nevermind that you are greatly limiting yourself if you target only those who are currently or formerly listed as a "driver". It isn't like being a taxi driver takes a lot of skill, so there is a huge pool of potential drivers out there who would need very minimal training and passing a test to get the proper type of driver's license.

  26. NiceCuppaTea

    Does it really make any difference whatsoever?

    If the hiring company wants to be any number of *ists then they will. Policing the advertising of roles makes no difference whatsoever.

    For example Nasty Co ltd only wants to employ a 20 year old, white, heterosexual male but they know they will get in trouble for saying so.

    Generic non discriminatory advert is posted.

    When it comes to CV sorting any female or foreign sounding names get binned (who's gonna know?).

    At the interview stage anyone who does not match their bigoted criteria are also then told to sod off (in a nice, PC, gender neutral way).

    Guess what? End result is that the 20 year old white heterosexual male gets the job!

    The only thing that's changed is the company has not publicly show their bigoted ways and cannot be avoided by the consumer based on this.

    The current PC brigade and offended generation are making a misguided attempt at eliminating prejudice and only force such nastiness to below the surface where nobody else can make judgement and choose not/to deal with Nasty Co Ltd as they do/don't agree with their moral ideals. Not only that but Mr 20 year old, white, heterosexual male actually likes working with a diverse set of colleagues but doesn't know that the company he is interviewing for only employs his specific "type" of person so gets to be super disappointed when he turns up to an office full of his clones.

    SJW's, PC Brigade and the butt-hurt generation are making things worse, for everyone, lets ban them!

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. jmch Silver badge

      Re: Does it really make any difference whatsoever?

      I understand your reasoning, but it's not really being forced underground, for large companies at least.

      "doesn't know that the company he is interviewing for only employs his specific "type" of person so gets to be super disappointed when he turns up to an office full of his clones."

      Most big companies now publicise the diversity of their workforce and even make it a "Unique selling point". Of course you are right that any company / department manager can choose to hire only white men, consciously making discriminatory choices. However it would soon be evident that the company workforce vs other companies or the department staff vs other departments in the same or similair companies have a very different composition.

      As another commenter said, it should be about equality of *opportunity* not equality of *outcome*.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Discrimination is required.

    Wish I could comment freely as I have workplace experience on the topic but this site censors. At least I'd get censored which seems strange when I look at comments they don't censor. I guess that's to be expected when censorship is done for varying reasons depending on the day and censor. Maybe I'll try anon this time.

    We, society and business, can have non-discriminatory hiring and promotions, firings and layoffs. We can do it, some have done it but that is never suggested by those claiming to be concerned about discrimination.

    Some countries have made non-discriminatory practices illegal, notably Canada. Maybe that isn't surprising when the Canadian Constitution demands and gives racial, religious, ethnic and linguistic special status to the select few. Who you are in Canada decides your rights and responsibilities (or lack off), your access to government resources and your representation in the political systems.

    Discrimination is foundational to being Canadian, it is a requirement.

    When it comes to the ACLU we should remember that the ACLU actively encourages discrimination when it comes to hiring, school placement, and all aspects of society to promote "diversity". The only problem they have with discrimination is when it occurs without benefit to those they feel are worthy.

    If Facebook and Uber had targeted almost any other group there would be no complaint from the ACLU in this case.

    If this post hasn't been censored I encourage the reader to search ACLU and Affirmative Action. Read their history on that topic and you will see that discrimination has become a foundational belief of the ACLU.

    They only have a problem when it is the "wrong" group benefiting from discrimination.

    1. jmch Silver badge

      Re: Discrimination is required.

      "Discrimination is foundational to being Canadian, it is a requirement.

      When it comes to the ACLU we should remember that the ACLU actively encourages discrimination when it comes to hiring, school placement, and all aspects of society to promote "diversity". The only problem they have with discrimination is when it occurs without benefit to those they feel are worthy."

      here's the problem with your argument - non-discrimination in any direction should give an ideal outcome if starting from a level playing field. But the playing field is already tilted towards a certain group of people based on history. For the US and Canada, that's mostly the white males whose ancestors' patriarchical society killed most of the original inhabitants of the land and enslaved a whole bunch of other people from somewhere else to work that land. After a few hundred years of that going on, they say OK, no more discrimination, lets keep the playing field level. Except that the playing field is FAR from level, and screams of protest erupt if any attempts are made to actually really level it.

      For what it's worth, I don't agree with Affirmative Action as a group strategy or with the idea that straight white males shouldn't have say in any social issue, a is advocated by the ultra-left. Each individual should be treated primarily on their merits as an individual, not based on their group identity. But for that to happen they have to be SEEN as an individual. That's why I'm in favour of schemes such as the Rooney rule where there is no obligation to hire minorities, but there's an obligation to consider them.

      1. Haefen

        Re Re: Discrimination is required.

        I wish an full exchange of ideas was possible but that will result in censoring here. I'll risk one response to an oft felt if, not so reasonably said response (thumbs up for that!).

        ""Discrimination is foundational to being Canadian, it is a requirement." I would add to that the Constitution is effectively chiseled in stone in Canada and cannot adapt to the changing needs of the Confederation. Racial discrimination, and the others, will forever be required regardless of the horrific outcomes, which in the case of Canada is ongoing. That is also by design, to change we would need to change the union itself.

        ".....non-discrimination in any direction should give an ideal outcome if starting from a level playing field. But the playing field is already tilted towards a certain group of people based on history. For the US and Canada, that's mostly the white males whose ancestors' patriarchical society killed most of the original inhabitants of the land and enslaved a whole bunch of other people from somewhere else to work that land....."

        All successful societies, particularly those in Canada when Europeans started arriving after 1000AD have been patriarchal. By successful I mean "able to endure longer than others" because that is the only measure that matters before the modern age.

        That history is something to keep in mind when looking at those killing most of the original inhabitants of Canada. The proper legal term in Canada are Aboriginals which include, Indian, Inuit and Metis. Those are the terms in our foundational documents so I tend to use those when suggesting we change our laws.

        If ancestors committing mass genocide precludes a person from having equal rights we need to revisit the special status of Indians and Inuit as both have a foundational history, of mass genocide. Those groups are here today because they purged their land of all others.

        Genocidal conflicts horrified the Europeans that saw it first hand and that it has been well recorded, including the attempts to use those genocidal conflicts to European military advantage.

        Today we have more evidence than the writings of a person from hundreds of years ago.

        Recent DNA studies have shown that the Beothuk were distinct from the Mi'kmaq. It now appears that the original reports of the Beothuk being under threat of genocide from the Mi'kmaq were accurate. Given what we know of the situation with other groups at the time of European arrival that shouldn't be surprising and should bring into question the claims being made by the Mi'kmag that they deserve compensation due to Beothuk genocide.

        DNA has been even more revealing of genocide than recorded history when it comes to the Inuit. In Canada we use the term "Culturally Displaced" when referring to the genocide of the Thule or the "Proto-Inuit" but generally we do not refer to it at all. Our history books will avoid the topic when they can. Many (most?) Canadian school children are told that "Whites" in Canada committed genocide but are not told of other larger and more complete genocides of North America.

        So complete was the Thule genocide that today there are no Thule left in Canada and the DNA studies have shown that there was less intermixing between the groups than between todays Europeans and the Neanderthals. Some Canadian classrooms have been told that, Neanderthal displacement, was genocide but not the Thule displacement. Smart Canadian students know not to ask why but the treatment of those students that do ask shows all others how to be a good Canadian.

        The Inuit did not just purge Canada of Thule but also Greenlanders and Icelanders who prior to the arrival of the Inuit had been trading in Canada for hundreds of years. There is a case to be made that the genocide of the Greenlanders by the Thule was the result of the genocidal conflict with the Inuit. That Canadian conflict drove the Thule deeper into Greenland and south where the indigenous white Greenlanders had been living for hundreds of years.

        Of course indigenous by definition only applies to those from Asia. Even if a land is devoid of humans Europeans cannot be considered indigenous, so I used that term incorrectly. (sarcasim, yes, but not as much as it should be IMO)

        Hopefully the above very different, politically incorrect, views on our Canadian history will give lots of search terms for an individual to find comfort in what they have already been told or begin to question what they thought was decided history.

        Either way I hope it brings into question the idea that rights and responsibilities should be given based on being assigned to certain groups.

        And bring into question the idea that the different rights and responsibilities of those in the groups should be based on the genocidal actions of that group in the past.

        As for level playing fields we are very far from level, that is most easily seen in access to education and job placement which for some groups is fully supported and not at all for those in other groups. More racism is not the solution to racism.

        Tagline (because this is a site with those that have used them): "Judging people by their gender, race and social satus is wrong, I wish those privileged white men would get that."

  28. Andy The Hat Silver badge

    Excuse me ...

    I apologise for interrupting this very stimulating "you're sexist" "no I'm not" comment tennis but perhaps a basic question can be answered by somebody for a non- F/B specialist like me?

    Does Facebook sell specific categories of advertising including 'jobs' (or similar) or are all adverts accepted as non-specific in subject?

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Speeding is good

    Way too many commentators here would, on being stopped by a policeman for speeding argue -'But it's more efficient for me to drive faster because time is money'.

    Because too many people in the world have made decisions in the past that have been biased, we have LAWS that say you can't be biased. Those laws impose some extra cost on society, business and individuals. Just like the 'don't murder people' law inhibits my ability to stab someone and steal their wallet.

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Want to learn about API's? Sorry guys, it's women only. Different rules for different folks.

    http://sagepay-api-workshop.s3-website-eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/

  31. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge

    As an old guy ...

    "female and older men" excluded from these ads. I guess you young guys will all have to work together while I get a job alongside all the women.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So would you hire...

    Lottie Dexter?

    Adria Richards?

    And what about Hitler? My point exactly.

  33. bvsimmons

    Use your brains

    1.) You're a supposedly "for profit" company and you want to run ads

    2.) Independent studies show that male drivers are better able to make money (i.e. be satisfied with your product / service)

    3.) You don't want to upset your accounting and/or marketing department by wasting money on ads

    4.) So do you:

    a.) target your ads by gender (and likely some other criteria)

    b.) not target and waste at least 50% of your campaign dollars

    Before the hyper-sensitive, looking for any reason to find offense, crowd gained traction, no one would have been particularly surprised by option a. In fact, your competency would be seriously questioned if you chose option b.

    This is no different than a retail company targeting women because spending patterns indicate women spend more money, return more often, and/or are more satisfied customers. That company is likewise "discriminating" against men because they are in the dark about the company's clothing. Oh wait, discrimination against men is okay. I suppose that you also think Uber is depriving women of real "jobs."

    If many of the comments here were posted to a general news site, it'd be understandable. A good percentage of you, however, have the technical understanding to know better. And how many of you claiming to be deeply incensed by the very notion are actually women? Get a life.

    1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

      Re: Use your brains

      I wish you'd use your brains.

      You're missing the point of equal opportunities: there shouldn't be unfair barriers to people applying for a job. When there's a chance a woman would be just as good as a man – and vice versa – then discriminating at an early stage on gender is unfair.

      Literally on another story about women in tech people were griping that women aren't being excluded from anything. Well, see above. It's *equal* *opportunities* to apply and be considered.

      Next, you cannot compare job application barriers to retail targeting. It's apples and pears.

      C.

      1. bvsimmons

        Re: Use your brains

        diodesign: Nothing is black and white anymore. The female consumer targeted by said retailer might be a blogger whose income depends on keeping up-to-date with the latest trends. Said retailer is thereby depriving men of the “opportunity” to become fashion bloggers if the retailer excludes men in said advertising. Oh wait, more women than men ARE fashion bloggers… must be because of a FB ad. You see… you can make ANY circumstance fit a discrimination argument if you think about it hard enough (good news for lawyers). Meanwhile, FB has ads to sell and personal data to mine. Clearly the most pressing concern is that not enough women are seeing Uber ads on FB and missing out on such a wonderful career opportunity.

        1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

          Re: bvsimmons

          "The female consumer targeted by said retailer might be a blogger"

          I swear to God this stuff - equality, equal opportunities and codes of conduct - are major overthought by critics when it's really not rocket science.

          It is pretty simple. If you advertise for a role and you immediately disregard a whole gender or generation, then that's not equal opportunities - not to be confused with equal abilities.

          And job opportunities and blogging... ah, you're just overcomplicating a situation to bend it into a narrative.

          C.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Use your brains

      Use your brain to read the LAW. You may not agree with the law, but that doesn't make it any less of a fact. So explicitly discriminating on sex is against the law. So tough!

    3. FrozenShamrock

      Re: Use your brains

      Get a clue. Job discrimination is ILLEGAL! That is not an opinion, that is a fact. If you break a law you pay the price.

  34. bleedinglibertarian

    i like the idea of excluding people by what college they attended

    a good way to keep people with degrees from liberal universities from applying.

  35. Someone Else Silver badge

    Uh-huh...sure

    "There is no place for way you should be able to find out about discrimination on Facebook; it’s strictly prohibited in our policies," said Facebook spokesman Joe Osborne. "We look forward to defending figuring out how to better cover up our practices once we have an opportunity to review the complaint.”

    There, FTFY

  36. intrigid

    Racism!

    How is this any different than Rolex deciding not to put up a billboard advertisement in an inner-city getto?

    1. Geekpride
      FAIL

      Re: Racism!

      This has been addressed numerous times already, but as you are apparently too lazy / stupid to read, I'll spell it out again.

      A billboard is potentially visible to anyone.

      These job adverts were specifically restricted to be visible to men only.

      Denying an entire gender the possibility of seeing a job advert is obviously discriminatory.

    2. FrozenShamrock

      Re: Racism!

      Your reasoning is as bad as your spelling.

  37. Hremm

    Brilliant!

    <b>on behalf of three women and the Communications Workers of America, alleging gender discrimination.<\b>

    <b>“Sex-segregated job listings are roaring back to life,” Galen Sherwin, a senior staff attorney at the Women’s Rights Project of the ACLU, said in a statement.<\b>

    <b>to ensure that progress toward gender equality is carried forward into the digital age."<\b>

    What does the ACLU's staff attorney of the Men's Right Project say?

    Just out of interest?

    <b>but it quickly becomes problematic, say, if the workforce is made up of mostly white people.<\b>

    Because white people are "problematic"

    1. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

      Re: Brilliant!

      "the Men's Rights Project"

      Oh, you mean, the United States legislative process?

      C.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      IT Angle

      Re: Brilliant!

      Learn html. Then comment.

      1. Hremm

        Re: Brilliant!

        Have a argument and come back.

  38. Big Al 23

    The ALCU might be confused

    According to published reports, a small U.S. town has voted to boycott the purchase of any Nike products based on the disrespectful actions of Colin Kaepernick and those "taking a knee" when the national anthem is played at professional sporting events. According to the ACLU they feel boycotting Nike is some violation of law because Kaepernick is a paid pitchman for Nike. Lawyers everywhere disagree with the ACLU who has been wrong on many occasions.

    Just as Kaepernick has the "right" to take a knee, so do consumers including townships have the right to decide what product brands they chose to purchase with personal or tax payer money.

    1. graeme leggett

      Re: The ALCU might be confused

      The town of Kenner? the mayor did it off his own bat.

      "His memo, dated September 5 reads that any purchases for use at city recreation facilities made by sports booster clubs for "apparel, shoes, athletic equipment and/or any athletic product" must be approved by the city first"

      Since which the mayor has reversed his stance, and blamed the city attorney for giving him bad advice.

    2. FrozenShamrock

      Re: The ALCU might be confused

      The issue was not that Kaepernick was the spokesman it was that the city presumed to tell other entities what could or could not be worn on public property. Anyone can boycott any company they like; the city can't refuse service to an individual or group for not following the city 's boycott if they would otherwise be entitled to that service.

  39. Thomassmart

    Not defending the companies in any way, but I haven't seen this mentioned in the comments:

    I believe it costs more to advertise to a larger group of people. The assumption might be that "women wouldn't be interested anyway, so why waste advertising budget on showing them the ad.". Again, not defending this view but it could be part of the reason (which is still sexist/discriminatory).

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Learn to read?

      Thomas, I think you need to actually read. 4 pages of comment and just about 1 in 3 commentators said 'because money'. To which every time 'because it's the law'.

  40. Claptrap314 Bronze badge

    ACLU policies

    Have changed. After Antifa crashed the Charlottesville protests, the ACLU has stated that they will no longer represent neonazis. Compare their statement about representing them in Chicago. Given that Antifa is WAY more violent than the neonazis over the last few years, one could be forgiven for being surprised.

    The ACLU has long leaned left. Until last year, this was not official policy, however.

  41. Claptrap314 Bronze badge

    Cost-effectiveness verses abstract ideals.

    Suppose you had a company that was in the construction business. You decide to run a sign campaign advertising for workers. The sign company has various sign locations all over town, and the prices of these signs depends mostly on the total amount of traffic.

    You going to buy signs next to the football stadium or next to Pottery Barn?

    --

    I interview with Amazon. They have a fascinating process regarding customer engagement. They send one, and only one, email out every night. The various groups within Amazon bid to have their material in that email. They are penalized if a purchase does not happen. I have an account, but I have never bought anything with it. Guess what? I don't get those emails any more.

    --

    What is happening here with Facebook is very, very similar. So long as there is a cost for running ads on F, ad sellers are going to be very, very sensitive to ROI on their ads. For whatever reason, there are far, far, fewer women looking for work in tech than men. That means that smaller businesses are not going to pay to put ads for workers in front of women. It costs them too much.

    I don't like this. At all. However, I am aware of the basics of economics. So let's thing about what happens next.

    This is a business opportunity for someone who can identify tech-prepared women and target them for job ads. In particular, if someone is so foolish as to use F for job hunting, the nature of the links that they are following should be a very strong indicator of what sorts of jobs to offer them. Also what kind of websites they spend their time at. (Excluding women for ads on this site would just be stupid.) If F is not presenting this to employers, they are blowing it, big time.

    I have a lot of complaints against big social, but the problems of microtargetting actually do sort themselves out. Every case of business discrimination becomes an opportunity for another business to snatch a valuable worker.

    I just received my first job ad targeting conservatives in tech last week. Especially if the bigs continue in their drive to create workplaces that I view as hostile and toxic, I am certain that I will receive more.

  42. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Conservatives in tech?

    I know this was touched on further up the comments - but those adds, presumably harking back to the glory days of 1960s 'send a man to the moon' will presumably target black women? Certainly got to have a better ROI than targeting chip on shoulder white men who can't accept that a law is a law.

  43. MachDiamond Silver badge

    There are times........

    When it's needed to be able to hire a specific sex.

    Washroom attendants aren't as common these days, but there are similar posts such as an attendant in a locker room at a spa/public pool/school where it would be very awkward and creepy to have a male supervisor in a female locker room or a female supervisor in a male locker room. It's worse when it's a school and we're talking about under 18's. This is an easy case.

    A harder case example is when a male owner of a photography company wants to start making school photos, children's sports photos, etc. There is a huge bias against a man working with kids, but a female photographer or assistant has no such automatic bias and can pose the kids, brush their hair or straighten their coat. It's a lucrative business so it's not just weirdo guys that want to get into it. (It's really good money, actually, but a lot of work). If the male company owner advertises for a female assistant, is it discrimination?

    A doctor may want a nurse/assistant that is the opposite sex to assist patients and to be present to avoid lawsuits. This can be especially the case for gynecologists.

    I'm sure that if I thought about it some more I could come up with other situations. One last one that I remember vividly was during the set up of a concert with union labor. The Union always calls up workers based on seniority and doesn't take into account how strenuous the job might be. An old guy couldn't hold his end of a really heavy speaker and dropped it on a coworkers hand. The job needed a bunch of young bucks rather than the wisdom of long experience. I worked on one more job with that Union and ran before I was injured.

    Real discrimination comes when a job can be done (physically, mentally, politically) by any number of people but the opportunity is only offered to a select few based on artificial criteria. I'm past the age and health where I would be worth my salt as a basic roadie on a tour so I shouldn't be considered and part of that would be age related. If there were also the need for an electronics tech or another post where brains were used more than brawn, I should be given a chance at it.

    It's tough to draft a set of laws that can apply to every single situation. Details do matter.

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