Tech Journalism is Less Diverse than Tech. Here Are The Numbers.

982 People. 14 Outlets. 80% White. 2% Black. 18% Other.

A Graph of the Race Distribution in Big Tech and Big Media Companies.

After I published my post pointing out the hypocrisy of Big Tech Media in the diversity in tech debate, I got a few grunts of acknowledgement from a couple of the publications covered. Afterwards, these journalists sat on what was surely a newsworthy story. Why? I don’t know.

Outside of journalists banding together in silence, the post was well-received, but deep inside, I sensed people wanted a data size larger than just five Big Tech Media publications which I had used. So here is a more comprehensive data bank of 982 individuals across 14 publications. It’s a collaboration between myself and Balaji. It includes an estimated race and gender breakdown of those that determine what we read about tech, along with the code snippets used in collating the data as well as the raw data itself.

Read the study, it includes code samples.

Since Big Tech Media hasn’t published an official diversity report of their organizations, the study was done using publicly available information on Twitter and cross-checked with Twitter lists of tech journalists. It uses a few different methods for data collection, and a few different methods to determine race and gender, and gets similar results each time. The data set is open source, so if there are any errors please submit a correction. However, the best bet would be for each tech media corporation to follow the lead of tech companies and release a public diversity report.

Highlight of the results:

  • Big Tech Media is ~ 80% White
  • Big Tech is ~51% White

Again, you should take a moment and read it: https://techjournalismislessdiversethantech.com.

Next Steps

Big Tech Media corporations should do the right thing and release the demographic breakdown of their employee base. There is even a federal requirement to file the form EEO-1 Survey which breaks this data down.

Acknowledgements. I’ve been writing on this topic for ten years, and wrote about it again in early July on my own accord. After 22 major tech publications refused to publish my analysis (I posit collusion), @balajis graciously RT’d the post and put up a Bitcoin prize for people to follow up on my work. This funded the data analysis which you see at https://techjournalismislessdiversethantech.com/. I asked that my $1000 in BTC be donated in its entirety to Dev Careers, a non-profit that helps Africans get into tech via the provision of Laptops, Internet Data and Training.

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