Thursday, May 13, 2010

And now a posting for all the single ladies...

"Sex discrimination involves treating someone (an applicant or employee) unfavorably because of that person’s sex."

United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

It is with this as background that I offer one of my favorite parts about Hollywood, the job posting that requests gender.  Now I'm not a labor lawyer.  So I will not suggest that I know all the legal minutia that can be debated on this matter.  But it seems a little hinkey when a job posting (and this one is hardly a rarity) can read like the one I saw this morning.  I have posted a slightly redacted version of it for your review.  I don't want to get sued either...
I need to find a replacement for myself on [Executive's name redacted] desk. He and I would like to fill the position fairly quickly... If you have any names (females preferred, please)* of people who you'd like to recommend, I'd rather take direct referrals than put it on the job list...Resumes can come directly to me at [email redacted].
And for all you unemployed gentlemen, if you're interested in gender reassignment surgery, here's a list of costs.  That said, I'm not really sure it's worth it.

*Emphasis, mine.


Anonymous said...

well that's weird. they didn't even put in the required cup size.

Anonymous said...

This is a real problem, and not only do a lot of men ask for women assistants out of sexism, but a lot of women execs want to only hire women as well as some sign of solidarity. I'm an assistant at an agency and I can't tell you how many jobs I wanted that I found out were "females preferred".

Anonymous said...

*pretty females preferred, please. Guys, unless you know my boss - keep walkin'

Sounds about right.

Anonymous said...

In defense of the person who posted this, I saw the original posting and it was meant to be just an email to a few friends, so at least they weren't placing an actual job ad that said females only.

That being said, it does totally suck how often most people in Hollywood do this. Many execs just assume that women are "better at taking care of them" or they figure that some female assistants will be more content to be their underling for a few years with no hope of any real advancement (not necessarily saying that it's the case with this posting). I once saw a posting for a job I really wanted that had the caveat "diversity candidates only" without specifying exactly what that meant.

I've worked for guys who whenever a female candidate is being interviewed for a job, the first thing they ask is, "is she hot?" And for that reason, some bosses purposely don't hire women, because they want to be able to say ridiculously sexist things or look at porn at work and assume a dude assistant won't care (Newsflash guys, even though your assistant might be a dude, he really doesn't want to know who you jerked off to last night, especially if she's coming in for a meeting that day).

Hollywood is a place where stereotypes thrive, I think partly because every business decision is based on ratings/tracking data that lump everyone into one group, so that OBVIOUSLY every woman between the ages of 15-50 can't wait to see the Sex and the City Movie but won't play video games. I once had a pilot script get turned down at a cable network because it was deemed "too male oriented" despite the fact that every woman who read it, including the exec who said it was too male oriented, loved it.

I look forward to the day when stuff like this seems as outdated as segregated cities.

Anonymous said...

This does happen, but it works both ways. I can't tell you how many jobs I've lost out on because they exec decided that they wanted a guy. I think that female execs prefer men. Certain male execs prefer women. And everyone prefers agency people.

Anonymous said...

I’ve seen countless posts of people looking for assistants and going beyond “preferred” to simply “seeking female assistant.” I’ve also seen (too many) posts requiring resume, references, and “headshot or photo.” And it’s not limited to the entertainment industry, I’m talking postings for assistants in various industries on various sites…..Oh sorry, I just threw up a little.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with those that said sexism comes in all shades.

I worked for a female producer who came-up in the male-dominated 80's teevee world. She would only hire male assistants and used them as retribution punching bags for the sexist slights she'd suffered in her early career. Lots of personal, emasculating remarks.

I also worked at a show mostly run by women and gay men. As a young piece of boy-meat I endured all kinds of butt grabs, nipple pinches, and unwanted sexual advances. And women were definitely favored for promotions.

For myself, I viewed those experiences as a chance to better understand what it might be like to be a woman in most other workplaces. I don't think my experiences were the norm; there's no doubt women get the short end overall. But it does go both ways.

Anonymous said...

Having a name like Adrian means sometimes I'll get an interview under this type of crazyness, but I can say personally that I have been turned away from multiple interviews after they found out I wasn't a female

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