LinkedIn pulls tech company ads over complaints women engineer was too attractive
A California tech company butted heads with jobs website LinkedIn after the company’s advertisements featuring women were pulled on account of what LinkedIn described as complaints over their “woman images,” the Daily Dot reported.
The issue first came to light on Friday following an angry blog post by Toptal CEO Taso Du Val saying LinkedIn pulled advertisements from the developers networking site featuring female members. According to Du Val, a LinkedIn representative said in a message to him that “many LinkedIn members complained about the women images you were using” but did not elaborate on the nature of the complaints.
“We’ve taken extremely professional photos of both men and women who are part of the Toptal network and made sure they looked sharp, well dressed and happy,” Du Val wrote. “However, LinkedIn’s internal advertising’s staff completely disagrees that they both look sharp, well dressed and happy. Actually, they believe, with 100% certainty, that the women in our advertisements are offensive and harmful to their user base. To me, this is unbelievable.”
On Friday, LinkedIn told Du Val via email that his company’s ads would be reinstated if the advertisments were changed, prompting him to ask for a phone conversation between both firms if Toptal agreed to pull the images, which included a picture of an Argentinian Toptal member, engineer Florencia Antara (pictured above.) On those terms, LinkedIn allegedly agreed to repost the company’s advertisements.
“The fact of the matter is: members of the tech community (LinkedIn users) saw it as impossible that our female engineers could actually be engineers, and a leader of the tech community (LinkedIn) agreed with them,” Du Val wrote.
The Daily Dot reported that online readers reacted with skepticism after learning that Antara worked in the industry, with one writing that she was “staring at the camera as if she is about to make love to it.”
Du Val updated his post on Saturday to say that LinkedIn had decided to reactivate their ads “after careful consideration and careful review of all ads, landing pages and the nature of [their] business,” but a LinkedIn spokesperson told the Daily Dot that the images were pulled by mistake during a “standard review process.”
[Image via Toptal.com]