How Feminists are Taking over the Tech Industry

We saw the #Metoo movement and we smiled, we saw the wages of men and women working for large media companies being broadcast and we cheered, but with Trump in the Whitehouse and his appalling attitude towards women, we knew we were still far from equality.

If you have been following this blog for a while, you may remember my post about sexism in the Tech industry from last year.

Silicon valley’s first priority has never been women, their health or apps that could be used to make their lives easier, but is that beginning to change?

We are seeing a rise in so-called Femtech, designed to track our periods, pregnancy, aging, menopause and fertility management. I don’t think it is a shocking realization that at least half of the population are interested in the above issues.

The sector is set to reach around 50 billion dollars by 2025, but it has taken a long time to gather any traction.

What’s been holding it back? The men that develop most of the software. Men in Silicon Valley are perfectly happy to discuss the software they developed and their investment portfolio but become rather uncomfortable talking about the issues that these apps were created to address.

Linking back to our earlier sexism blog, you may remember that the conclusion I came to was that unless women took more influential roles in the development of technology, we might just find menstrual tracking apps, and other software designed specifically for female use, unsuitable for the purpose they were invented for in the first place.

We mentioned period tracking apps that told women it was impossible to have a period lasting more than seven days. Even fertility trackers struggle to detail all of the symptoms and events that happen during a woman in an average cycle.

Difficulty discussing women’s issues made it harder for companies wanting to expand into FemTech to find investors and funding. If “period”, “fertility” and “hormones” are dirty words then how are companies supposed to explain their product?

It is a sad fact that without technology geared to women, women sometimes struggle to understand their bodies. Let’s face it, the closest we come to being educated about the female anatomy was that one lesson in Sex Ed that lasted about 45 minutes and barely covered the use of sanitary products.

It was definitely not enough to explain the different hormones floating around inside us and the symptoms, side effects and health issues that can be caused just by being female.
Change is coming though.

With a larger focus being placed on equality and sexism, more companies are growing in confidence and feeling the pressure to create products that service the whole population, as opposed to just the male percentage.

Women are also not being pushed away from male-dominated professions as much as they used to be.

Take Ida Tin for example, she is the female founder of period tracking app “Clue”. She came up with the term FemTech and is pushing us towards equality in the tech industry.

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