Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, the New Yorker and Women in Silicon Valley

Well-known New Yorker writer Ken Auletta has taken on Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg in the magazine, with a largely glowing profile provocatively titled: “A Woman’s Place: Can Sheryl Sandberg Upend Silicon Valley’s Male-Dominated Culture?”

My short answer is: No, she can’t. But Auletta does yeoman’s work explaining the irksome issue by using Sandberg as his metaphor.

Sandberg has been very vocal about the issue of women in the workplace over the last year, in a series of speeches she has made.

But, actually, the Auletta piece is mostly a full-on Sandberg profile, hitting all the obvious stops in her life and in that of Google — her previous employer — and Facebook, her current one. Also, of course, we can’t leave out the fight between those two tech behemoths.

No news is committed, but it is a very good read (and the second big piece — the other was the cover of Bloomberg Businessweek — Sandberg has been the subject of of late.)

I was also interviewed for the piece, which started out as a larger one on women in Silicon Valley. No surprise, it quickly became largely about one of its most interesting ones.

Oddly, in a section about women in tech, I am quoted saying that I scare men. To be fair: I am an equal opportunity terrifier.

Sandberg, who comes off as quite a deft smoothie (which she is) in the New Yorker piece, is clearly not a terrifier and it seems to be working out well for her so far.

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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus