Recently, Dave McClure, the co-founder of accelerator and investment firm 500 Startups has written an apology letter with the title “I’m a Creep. I’m Sorry”. In it, the powerful tech investor is apologizing to the women in the industry towards whom he had an inappropriate behavior. He is also admitting that he made advances toward many women in situations where the discussion shouldn’t have been about anything else but work. He is actually the latest tech investor in a series of many who admitted to their contribution to tech’s sexist culture.
An apology towards women
Just a day earlier, another important tech personality, “Shark Tank” star and venture capitalist Chris Sacca, an early investor in Twitter and Uber, admitted his influence regarding this sexist behavior that is more and more frequent. However, it seems like there is a reason behind all of these admissions coming from tech investors. Therefore, the disturbing story about Binary Capital investor Justin Caldbeck might be what prompted them to admit their mistakes.
About a week ago, six female founders, three of whom had their names made public, shared some rather unsettling stories. All were about their interactions with Caldbeck. The courage of these women made many others come forward and share their own. This caused a huge controversy in Silicon Valley. All of their stories had to do with inappropriate behaviors and the tech industry’s very problematic power dynamics.
Now, it seems like McClure is the latest tech person to become involved in such stories. It all started on Friday, when a report from The New York Times claimed that the 51-year old investor behaved inappropriately towards Sarah Kunst. Back in 2014, the woman was reportedly looking for a job at his firm 500 Startups. The report was stating that after the interview, McClure sent Kunst a Facebook message. In it, he said that he didn’t know whether to hire her or to hit on her.
Many cases of sexism
Moreover, the Times said that they talked with 24 women in the tech industry. They named 10 men who displayed inappropriate behaviors towards them. McClure was reportedly one of those. On Saturday’s apology post, McClure admitted that he sometimes didn’t have the best attitude towards women. Also, he sincerely apologized to everyone who ever felt emotionally hurt by his words.
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