is apologizing for a presentation made at its Disrupt 2013 startup conference that included a pitch for an app that features photos of people staring at breasts.
“Titstare” was the first presentation of the day, and Australian developers Jethro Batts and David Boulton apparently meant it as a joke. Problem is, not many people seem to be laughing. At least not now.
The crowd seemed at least somewhat amused during the presentation:
Still, The Atlantic Wire
sums up why so many are upset over it:
It's as if the brogrammers seen here didn't know their audience wasn't all bros like them. There's a lot going on here, not the least of which is the broader context of discussions on the public alienation of women in tech. There's also the exasperating repetition of moments like this at big tech industry conferences.
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issued the following apology soon after the presentation:
It issued a lengthier apology on its site Sunday:
Normally our hackathons are a showcase for developers of all stripes to create and share something cool. But earlier today, the spirit of our event was marred by two misogynistic presentations.
Sexism is a major problem in the tech industry, and we’ve worked hard to counteract it in our coverage and in our own hiring.
Today’s issues resulted from a failure to properly screen our hackathons for inappropriate content ahead of time and establish clear guidelines for these submissions.
Trust us, that changed as soon as we saw what happened at our show. Every presentation is getting a thorough screening from this hackathon onward. Any type of sexism or other discriminatory and/or derogatory speech will not be allowed.
You expect more from us, and we expect more from ourselves. We are sorry.
The presentation seems to be resonating, even prompting some poetry
about the “soft bigotry of bro expectations.”