As long as coding pros were seen as “nerds in the basement,” Birnir wrote, companies’ recruiting pools would remain limited. The introduction of the brogrammer is a blatant sales pitch to men who consider themselves socially superior to the stereotype of a code writer, or a computer science major.

“In an attempt to reach a broader (and necessarily male) audience, the brogrammer ideology takes what is generally latent misogyny  in the tech community and makes it overt,” she wrote. “Joking is a-OK, but stupid machismo is not cool. I promise there are non-sexist, non-exclusionary possibilities out there for you all.”

Dan Shapiro, a product manager for Google, wrote in a February blog post that he was appalled by comments made about a successful woman technologist who served on a panel at the Enterprise Forum Northwest conference.

A conference participant introduced Rebecca Lovell, chief business officer for GeekWire, as “sexy single woman” who had recently become “a sexy married woman,” prompting nervous laughter from panel attendees.

It’s far from the first instance of bald-faced sexism he has witnessed among men in the technology industry, and Shapiro encouraged startup executives and employees to make an issue of flippant comments meant to objectify and intimidate women in the workplace.

“Everyone has a reason. One person was older. One person was from another country,” he wrote, describing several instances of sexism in technology companies. “It just doesn’t matter. If we keep this … up, we’re going to crap all over another generation of women tech entrepreneurs. And it’s just a rotten thing to do. Think before you open your mouth. And if you see someone doing this, call them on it.”


Add your opinion to the discussion.