[Baypiggies] Ageism rehashed

Glen Jarvis glen at glenjarvis.com
Tue Feb 1 20:39:36 CET 2011


    I have had an experience today that I think you can relate to. I'm never
been someone who has an issue with ageism because I am still quite young,
pass for young, and am quite current with the 'trends' etc...

    However, I don't think I've ever seen a more blatant violation of ageism
today. I had a phone screening with someone who, believe it or not, came
from the BayPIGgies list. They asked me blatantly "When did you finish High

    My mouth fell open. I couldn't believe that such a blatant question was
asked. Maybe he didn't know. I explained that I could answer that question
as it would reveal my age and that, therefore, was not a question he could
ask. He never backed down. In fact, he become quite confrontational that I
would have an issue with this. I was *amazed.*

    First of all, there is *NOTHING* possibly related to my resume of when I
finished High School. Not a single thing - no matter how he tried to justify
it. He can't justify "filling in any gaps" as High School was before my five
year history on my resume. I did leave IBM to finish a degree at University
- that is unusual - and would show a work gap until someone reviewed it. I
can easily answer that question and explain. However, he didn't seem
interested -- only when I graduated High School.

    I personally have no issue with my age as I'm currently in my
programming prime. But, I refused to answer out of principle -- like when
someone tries to ask race when they shouldn't.

    Regardless, I'm reeling from the conversation and am thinking of any
type of legal sanctions that I could ask for. I need to calm down before I
take this too seriously, but I am seriously considering what can be done as
it was so blatant and so unapologetic.



On Fri, Oct 30, 2009 at 2:52 AM, Glen Jarvis <glen at glenjarvis.com> wrote:

> So, my experience is that those resumes are not tossed automatically.
>>> However, they must be related to the job in question. I found that the
>>> quality of the programmer does not decline with age, even well past
>>> retirement age -- especially if that person is proactive and stays
>>> current
>>> in their field.
>> Let me give a specific case. There are 4 applicants for an ENTRY LEVEL
>> Django Python Web job. None of the applicants have any experience in Python
>> Django. Two are just graduating from TopNotchU with Computer Science degrees
>> and two have twenty years experience as programmers in a variety of areas,
>> but none of it with Web applications, and they have made it clear on their
>> cover letter that they will take a pay cut if necessary to meet the salary
>> range of the job.
>> How many hiring managers will consider all four applicants equally?
>> Rob
> My personal experience is that they are all considered equally. If it were
> me, I would consider them all equally.
> I agree that ageism exists, unfortunately, and you will find cases where
> some people will not treat those individuals equally. That's not generally
> my experience, however.
> Warmest Regards,
> Glen

Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter

-- Goethe
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