Is There Room for Diversity in Silicon Valley?

Brit Middleton, BET, October 30, 2011

A new documentary shines a light on Silicon Valley, the place where Microsoft founder Bill Gates and former Apple CEO and founder Steve Jobs got their start, but not for its historic record of producing the next great breakthroughs in technology but, instead, for its apparent lack of diversity.

In the CNN documentary series, “Black in America,” eight Black entrepreneurs in the NewMe Accelerator program share their struggles to launch start-up businesses in a place where minority representation is virtually nonexistent. In an interview that ignited a firestorm on Twitter this week, Mike Arrington, an industry leader and founder of TechCrunch, revealed an even harsher reality: “This is a white and Asian world up here–it just is,” he said. Arrington, who also commented that he doesn’t know of a single Black entrepreneur in the Valley, was harshly criticized for his apparent acceptance of the racial disparity.

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While Blacks may work just as hard to get their businesses off the ground, there appears to be a different set of standards they face, from outward appearances to the ideas they pitch to investors.

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The documentary, “The New Promised Land: Silicon Valley,” the fourth episode in the CNN “Black in America” series, premieres on November 13 at 8 p.m. ET.

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  • Anonymous

    I try hard to dunk the basketball.

    I work just as hard to get off the ground as any NBA star, yet for some reason there appears to be a different set of standards.

  • Bernie

    “In the CNN documentary series, “Black in America,” eight Black entrepreneurs in the NewMe Accelerator program share their struggles to launch start-up businesses in a place where minority representation is virtually nonexistent.”

    Huh? There are probably as many Asians, Indians and Arabs in Silicon Valley as there are whites.

    But there are few blacks so instead of looking in the mirror they blame … guess who?

  • Anonymous

    What could your average, low-I.Q. black possibly bring to the table in Silicon Valley?

    Silicon Valley is full of smart, White nerds and Asian nerds – the kind of guys who got made fun of in college for studying on the night of the Halloween frat parties or on Christmas Day! These guys OWN Silicon Valley and guess what? THEY SHOULD!!!!!

    They worked hard! They put the time and effort in! They are marketing geniuses!

    If you can’t hack it, don’t complain and don’t try to bring the “poor pitiful me, I’m black…” card into it.

  • Anonymous

    Another example of Black-Run America (BRA) at work again…Now, we have BET and CNN coming to Silicon Valley and using their weight to muscle the big tech firms into hiring unqualified blacks and setting up contracts with black venture capitalists-many of whom are scam artists without the wherewithal to get things done on their own…so they whined and tugged on CNN’s skirt to make a big stink out of it. CNN = Crybaby News Network!

  • Rhialto

    Compare Mike Arrington’s view “This is a white and Asian world up here—it just is” with yesterday’s posting by Dilon Twity. One one hand, there is a black man working to advance the interests of his group. I can empathize (but not sympathize) with him.

    Twety, on the other hand, attacks and vilifies the group that he belongs to. There is no doubt who is the more dangerous.

  • Anonymous

    I first thought this was a joke when I started reading. “This is a White and Asian world up here-it just is” hahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa, the frustrations of the low IQ!

  • Seek

    Black diversity in Silicon Valley. That will happen when blacks develop computer software and hardware that people want. In other words, diversity wil have to wait.

  • (AWG) Average White Guy / Indianapolis

    Blacks invented

    the Motown sound, cornrows, and the word ‘bling’.

    Whites invented

    automobiles, airplanes, and aerosol;

    bacteria research, ballet, and banking;

    concrete, computers, and chainsaws;

    drills, doorbells and disinfectant;

    electrical application, enamel and escalators;

    factories, flashlights and the Ferris wheel;

    geodesic domes, grocery stores and grandfather clocks;

    and I’m getting tired.

  • Tom S.

    Bottom line – no company is ever going to turn down an invention they think they could market and will make them money, they only see green not black, White or brown. How many “breakthroughs of technology” have come out of Africa lately? About the only things blacks are really good at creating are drama, chaos and distruction! Now if they were paid for that, they’d all be millionaires!

  • BookerT

    It might annoy us to see that some think that there should be a number of black entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley proportional to the number of blacks in the population. But the real problem here is that young blacks believe this, and feel hammered down and hurt when they can’t make it. Every day, in universities and in the press, leftists are raising unreasonable expectations for blacks, and this can’t possibly lead to anything good. What is needed is some kind of outreach program where blacks, too, learn the truth about racial differences.

  • Anonymous

    I worked in silicon valley proper for 20 years. I never saw a single black engineer. Not one.

    WHO ARE these blacks in this incubator? Are they ENGINEERS? Doubt it. They copy the MOTIONS of what white people SEEM to be doing, put on the suit, but never copy what happens inside the head.

    There are successful black entreprenuers. Famous Amos comes to mind. But cookie chips are a lot simpler than silicon chips.

  • Anonymous

    See the pattern? It is so obvious twirpy dorky Tweeney wrote a plea for his little black daughter and suddenly BET issues a clarion call for black entrepeneurs in silicon valley.

    They can’t even run their goverment agencies competently, how does anyone expect them to start a company from scratch.

  • Anonymous

    “In the CNN documentary series, “Black in America,” eight Black entrepreneurs in the NewMe Accelerator program share their struggles to launch start-up businesses in a place where minority representation is virtually nonexistent.”

    Indians are White, but asians are classified minorities by our goverment. There are numerous asian run companies. When BET says minority they mean black. I doubt they want the goverment to give them some small company that imports parts.

    They probably want the goverment to give them Apple to run into the ground.

  • Tim in Indiana

    Notice the kid gloves treatment this documentary gets:

    While Blacks may work just as hard to get their businesses off the ground, there appears to be a different set of standards they face, from outward appearances to the ideas they pitch to investors.

    There appears to be a different set of standards? Appears to whom? Who disagrees and why?

    I would say this bias is due to the fact that this story appeared on BET, but the rest of the media is just as squeamish about discussing the real issues.

    Notice the documentary is called “The New Promised Land: Silicon Valley,” rather than something like “Can Blacks Cut It In Silicon Valley? Why or Why Not?”

    Twenty years from now they’ll still be wondering why there aren’t more blacks in Silicon Valley.

  • Madison Grant

    Step 1: A group of blacks propose an idea to white moneymen hoping they’ll invest in their product

    Step 2: They get turned down because their product is a piece of crap

    Step 3: The blacks go running to the liberal media crying racism

  • sbuffalonative

    “This is a white and Asian world up here—it just is,”

    Thems fightin’ words!

    Now the race is one to find at least one black man who can succeed in Silicon Valley to prove the racists wrong.

    As BookerT noted, blacks are incessantly told that they equal to, if not better at everything, than the white man and the only reason they fail is because of the racist white man and his system of white privilege.

    Combine unrealistic expectations, equality propaganda, over-inflated egos, and racial resentment and you have the modern African-American.

  • Capt. kierkegaard

    Heres an idea black guys….LEARN MATH!!!

  • Anonymous

    6 — BookerT wrote at 9:38 PM on November 1:

    “It might annoy us to see that some think that there should be a number of black entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley proportional to the number of blacks in the population. But the real problem here is that young blacks believe this, and feel hammered down and hurt when they can’t make it. Every day, in universities and in the press, leftists are raising unreasonable expectations for blacks, and this can’t possibly lead to anything good. What is needed is some kind of outreach program where blacks, too, learn the truth about racial differences.”

    Much of the trouble began decades ago, when droves of blacks left farm work and moved into the cities. And now, decades later, after billions of dollars, BLOOD, sweat, and tears, they are nowhere, even when a black insinuated himself into the highest office in the land.

    I’ve got it!

    After talking today with a friend in Sonoma County, California where the growers are complaining that their illegal workers have disappeared, whites came out to do it, yes they did! BUT, they just made a fraud news report that shows interviews with a few old women, one who had to work all day with many breaks, just to earn $25.00 (she said she’d go buy some food). Another one gave up after three hours, complaining about her back (she’s over 60). Then, the spot showed the grower complaining that whites can’t do the work. Heck, they don’t know how to pick, he said. The one that said that was a yam farmer. He said they couldn’t pick yams right (how hard is that?). So Sonoma County made the Mexican’s ID cards acceptable as driver’s licenses. My friend says that the driving hazards there are high now, and the Mexicans drink a lot of beer after work.

    As I exclaimed above, I’ve got it.

    The solution is tho herd all these flash mobbing blacks onto farms and have them taught the fine art of picking crops. And since 60+ year old ladies can’t do it right, maybe those out of work OWS kids would like some activity for a change?

    America was once a solid, agricultural society and 90% white. We knew how to grow and pick our own food, make our own gadgets, and run our lives well enough before all this Diversity and scam employers took over. When harvest time came, all the family worked on it. Maybe a 60+ year old can’t pick more than 20 hours a week, but we have more and more of us. I am willing to work picking 20 hours a week, even with my arthritis. Is it all or nothing? Maybe it’s time to take OWS to the farm?

    But the fact is, blacks were better off when they were rural and working on farms.

  • WR

    So Asians don’t count as “diversity”. Apparently the word “diversity” is reserved for the races whose members are concentrated in the bottom half of the IQ distribution.

  • Anonymous

    No. In white mans world sometimes you really cant fake it and have to be really smart.

    Blacks have always had the propensity to lie their butt off and thats why Cain who never held office is jutting up plus he never rode a public bus and had to sit in the back.

    The funny thing is white America is brainwashed and only told half the story on integration that overtook separate but equal.

    In the south there were more cities who voted NOT to integrate with whites than vice versa but of course this was covered up by the lib neocon media. Blacks preferred living in their own shacks as opposed to govt housing rent Sec 8 and preferred their own schools where they did much better than todays thugs and pimps.

    It wasnt the whites who protested integration, it was the blacks.

  • Paleface 6

    I spend at least six hours per week trying to get network connectivity, figure out why printers won’t work, etc. when I’m at work.

    Can you imagine what our technological society will be like when a bunch of illiterate, innumerate affirmative action hires get a hold of it? We’d best not move too fast to do away with the Post Office…or bring back the Pony Express.

  • Anonymous

    Look at the root of the problem. Any black child that does try to excel scholastically is immediately torn into and bullied by their community/culture for trying to act White. You reap what you sow.

  • elitist

    Given everything we know about IQ distribution among Africans and African-Americans, it seems as though there should be at least a small number of black geniuses or at least highly gifted blacks.

    Even if only 1% or even less of blacks are gifted, that is still tens of thousands in the US, plus African immigrants.

    There should be a small but nonetheless significant of highly gifted Black engineers, surgeons, mathematicians, etc.

    Where are they? One would expect a great deal of publicity to surround each genuinely genius black.

    Can anyone explain this?

  • b

    I’m still waiting for a show where we see white Liberals move to more diverse location to share their “diversity” with others.

  • Anonymous

    I can explain it.

    Near Genius level is typically a 160-180 IQ level.

    Gifted is the 140 IQ level.

    Among whites, Gifted might appear at a 1 in 10,000 rate and near genius at a 1 in 100,000 rate.

    But among blacks, Gifted barely appears at all, at the 1 in 1,000,000 rate and Near Genius is non existent. So among the 20 million blacks in America, they may have only 20 people who actually are gifted. But among the 150 million whites, there are 15,000 gifted or better.

    So while there are a fair number of blacks who function above their 85 average IQ as many black Americans are actually 50% white genetically or even 90% white and still call themselves black.

    But true gifted genius level people simple doesn’t exist among blacks, not even in black hybrids.

  • white is right, black is whack

    Blacks invented

    the Motown sound, cornrows, and the word ‘bling’.

    Yes, and where would we be without those necessary, life-saving inventions!

  • Anonymous

    As a White who had to compete with other startups for scarce dollars around 2000, I can tell you who the competition was. How about nerdy Whites with a Phd in Computer science who are very creative. Or how about Jews with 150 IQ’s who are willing to work 100 hours a week, have an inherent grasp of business and who are also very original thinkers. Or endless Indians or East Asians who are willing to have no life for years on end. Now I have never met a Black who has a Phd in Computer Science. Or who will work 100 hours a week. Or is a great businessman. Anymore questions?

  • Sylvie

    Blacks invented

    the Motown sound, cornrows, and the word ‘bling’.

    Did they also invent that ‘M-F’ word that they are so fond of saying?