Space Engineers developer Keen Software House tweeted a sexist recruitment message yesterday, and while it was probably meant to be humorous, the backlash forced the tweet to be deleted due to its inappropriate, misogynistic message.
The sexist recruitment ad was soon replaced with another tweet, this time far more appropriate and with the type of you should expect to see from a professional organization.
This not the first time that Keen Software has been called out for the behavior of its team. In 2019, a developer on the official Discord server made racially insensitive comments relating to slavery, and when confronted by other users, they shrugged off the behavior under the guise of not intending to be racist, and that people are too easily offended.
The outrage from Discord users was predictable, but it was some time before the developer officially responded to the complaint, which was little more than a standard PR letter stating that the comments of that one developer do not represent the entire organization.
The sexist recruitment image shines a light once more on what appears to be a toxic culture at Keen Software House, or on the other hand, a complete lack of oversight when it comes to how individuals act when representing the organization as a whole.
Unfortunately, neither paints a positive image of the organization, because it would seem that this type of behavior is either engrained into the workplace and only stopped when outsiders call them out for misbehaving, or there is a lack of competence among leadership when it comes to stopping the problems at the root. Whether due to maliciousness or incompetence, the latter is only slightly better than the former.
At this point, Keen Software House approaches a crossroads of sorts. With its inappropriate display of misogyny, and either no one able to control or change the toxic culture that appears to exist with some of the employees, the developer may soon find itself in big trouble. The leadership Keen Software needs to step up, especially because since posting the recruitment ad, they apologized with yet another generic PR blurb.
People are not stupid, and they can smell BS from a mile away. You can only spout the same repetitive “apology” so many times before they have had enough, and real change needs to happen to avoid contributing to misogynistic behavior online.
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