Castes are still castes in Silicon Valley

 

But things are progressing. Hopefully.

Castes are still castes in Silicon Valley /img/indian-castes.jpg

Two years ago I wrote here that “as far as today goes, it is interesting (but sadly unsurprising) to read that as progressive and egalitarian as it is, Silicon Valley seems to ruin Dalit lives just like Trantor, or ancient India.

Yesterday, Reuters reported some progress on that front, noting that:

  • this is a very current problem: “about two dozen Dalit tech workers in the United States [contacted by Reuter] said discrimination had followed them overseas”
  • the issue is complicated because “[current] U.S. discrimination laws… do not explicitly ban casteism”
  • however, “America’s tech giants are taking a modern-day crash course in India’s ancient caste system”,
  • because the rejection last month of a company’s bid to push a lawsuit for casteism to private arbitration could finally

“[force] Big Tech to confront a millennia-old hierarchy where Indians’ social position has been based on family lineage, from the top Brahmin “priestly” class to the Dalits, shunned as “untouchables” and consigned to menial labor.”

We’ll see. For the moment, I can’t help to repeat one of the comments I made in 2020: never, ever confuse “digitally competent” with “rational”. Anywhere. Humans will be humans”

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