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Hey there, Imgurians on Android! We’re beaming into your device today to let you know about a few changes coming in your Imgur app. Let’s get right to the point: this is about ads.
Every day we hear from people who say that Imgur brings a smile when they need it, helps them connect with strangers around the world, or fulfills their daily cat GIF intake. We want to keep that good thing going by making improvements, building new features, helping new people find Imgur, and hiring a world-class team. Ads help us do this.
That’s why we’ve decided to introduce two new ad units: one small one at the bottom of the comments section, and the second series inside of posts 7 or more images long and with little to no text in the descriptions (aka “dumps”). To distinguish these larger square ads from the images, they appear in a dark grey box and are labeled with “advertisement.”
We know you’re concerned about malicious ads and a bad user experience. We are too, which is why we maintain a strict advertising policy that prohibits ads that automatically redirect you to other sites, play sound without your permission, or contain illegal content or malware. We only work with reputable ad network partners, and regularly end partnerships with those that will not adhere to our standards. We constantly monitor the ads internally and quickly react to user reports of bad ads. We have also implemented custom code to prevent malicious behavior such as auto-redirects and will continue to develop new solutions.
We truly hope you never come across a bad ad, but if you do, you can report it to our support team so we can investigate and squash it.
Ads are no one’s favorite, not even ours, but we promise to work diligently to keep the ads you see on Imgur high-quality and safe. We have a lot of work to do and we’re excited to continue our journey with you.
1. Back in February @thepancakewarrior reached out to the community to help fulfill his terminally ill wife’s bucket list. #forkerryann was created, and Imgurians responded with an outpouring of love in the form of 1,400 posts, and some 14,000 images with every item on the bucket list fulfilled. Sadly Kerryann passed away just 4 days later. Kerryann’s husband reached out and asked if there was a way to keep and share this memory with their young daughter, family and friends. We decided to build a script that would allow us to download EVERY image, and compile them into one gorgeous book as a gift.
Favorite Comment by @thepancakewarrior I have no words. For you guys to do this is just amazing. She was amazing and has left me with a piece of her that keeps me going.
2. Original artwork is adored on Imgur, and few more so than cartoons. Combine that with love, family and dogs and you’ve got a winning combination destined for Most Viral. @Kellssketchess draws people in famous art styles, including Bob’s Burgers, Family Guy, The Simpsons and many more.
Favorite comment by @NottherealSlimPickens445 You posted this in the wrong place, it belongs on FP +1
3. This month saw the introduction of sound to Imgur, and in true Imgur fashion the first #unmuted post to make it to the front page was of a cat. @laposheureux posted a short 10 second clip of his adorable ginger kitty meowing, which soared into Most Viral, with a mix of confusion and excitement in the comments.
Favorite comment by our very own @sarah Let us all document this historic post. The very first meow on Imgur!
4. Rarely does turning to the internet yield a diagnosis approaching anything like accuracy. Rather than a simple Google search returning results warning of brain rot and missing limbs, one Imgurian turned to the community for answers. In the tale of The Dancer Diagnosed by Imgur, @CheyAdeleRose posted a story detailing a string of agonizing injuries that had all but finished her dancing career. Through sheer will, determination and countless hospital visits she was finally able to dance again; only to encounter crippling back pain, headaches and blackouts. At a loss, she shared her story, with the message not to take things for granted; little did she know that the comments held the answer she had been seeking. Ehlers-Danlos Syndromes is an inherited condition affecting the skin, joints and muscles and commonly leads to dislocations, skin conditions and a myriad of other problems. Thanks to the Imgur comments, Cheyanne was able to go to her doctor armed with this new information, and was successfully diagnosed 7 years after it all began.
Our favorite comment is from the original post and is by @ImTotallyOblivious241 @CheyAdeleRose Me and my family all have EDS, since it came from my mother’s mother. If you have any questions pm me. I’ve done presentations
5. Keeping the wholesome train rolling is an incredible update post from @lagomorpha. Back in February this year, a post made Most Viral that inspired an outpouring of generosity from the community. Hailee, who was born with cerebral palsy, works at a grocery store in Florida; and although she can stand it quickly becomes exhausting, and following a couple of falls, an inspired friend decided she could help. The solution was a simple one, albeit expensive, with a purpose built wheelchair that would allow her to work comfortably at the checkout, and get around the store with ease – A far cry from the hairdressing stool she had been using. lagomorpha turned to the Imgur community for help raising funds; and $500 quickly changed overnight in $5,000, and in little under a week had reached their goal of $10,000. This allowed Hailee not only to receive the absolute best wheelchair possible, but also a chair hitch for her dad’s truck to aid with the moving of the chair (at around 200lbs). This month we finally got the update we’d all been waiting for, as Hailee received her chair, and got to take it for a spin for the first time. The grin on her face making everyone’s efforts well worth while.
Our favorite comment is from TherapistHere What a beautiful, happy, young woman. Her smile brings a tear to my eye.
6. Imgur’s resident Lepidopterologist (we had to Google that one) @toebeens shared with us another awesome story about rearing butterflies. Where last time it was Monarch butterflies, this time she shared the tale of the Pipevine Swallowtails from egg to chrysalis, creating a fascinating timelapse of their growth and development. Much like the Monarchs, we can’t wait to see them fully fledged into beautiful butterflies. When disease, predators or just old age gets the better of a butterfly, toebeens uses their wings to make jewelry to help support the next generation of magnificent creatures.
Our favorite comment is by akissfromtom If you just scroll through the pics, it looks like you’re a jewelry maker with questionable methods.
7. What’s better than corgis? Corgi puppies. Einstein, or Ein for short, is a new addition to the home of @Politikz, and he is the most perfect little jellybean. We can’t wait to see more of this very good boy in the future. 5/7 would pet forever.
Our favorite comment by Rhalar2 The only acceptable name for a corgi
8. Overcoming challenges when the odds are stacked against you is the essence of the human struggle, and one of the hardest things a young adult can accomplish is graduating college. Nobody deserves it more than 24 year old Hanss Mujica, as detailed in a Twitter story posted by @Yoda1PositivityStar. Turning his attitude around driven by a desire to do his parents proud; and eventually surprising them with a graduation announcement.
Our favorite comment by @indybuzz Congratulations on your eventual success. We can be our worst enemy and you figured that out, and overcame. Nice.
9. Weddings are (hopefully) a once in a lifetime celebration of that purest emotion: love. Imgurian @Sephority shared a post starring her beautiful Celtic-inspired wedding dress just an hour before the big moment. She updated to let us know that everything went perfectly, and we wish the newlyweds all the happiness in the world.
Our favorite comment by @crankyoldgeezer I’m an old cranky dude and even I thought that dress was lovely. Have a great life!
10. We’re finishing this month’s Best Of blog with Imgur’s National Pizza Party day, where we set out to lift the world’s spirits by dishing out free pizza across the country. One lucky recipient was @mjs2353, who, in the midst of storms, power outages and downed trees, sounded like the could certainly use a slice of happiness. In the spirit of #PayThePizzaForward a delicious ‘za was sent their way, and spirits were indeed lifted.
Our favorite comment by Gestalted Looks good. Breakfast/lunch/dinner is ready
That’s all for this month! We can’t wait to see what June holds, so check back in with us next month to see all the big happenings on Imgur.
We’re here to bring you some ribetting news. Starting today, your posts can shine in all their full sound glory with video upload for Imgur on iOS!
Imgur’s mission is to surface the world’s most entertaining content, and we’re excited to introduce short-form video to our platform. This is a monumental shift for our future, and it furthers our commitment to becoming the world’s greatest community powered entertainment destination.
Video posts will have these shiny new controls so you can pause, skip, or replay at your leisure. Don’t froget! All videos are muted by default; to hear glorious sound you’ll need to tap or click on the sound icon in the corner. We’re kermitted to ensuring that those who love browsing Imgur in blissful silence can continue to do so.
With this update comes fancy new tools for editing your video. Upload, trim and share videos up to 30 seconds long. You can choose to include, or remove, sound from your post, have multiple videos in one post, or mix with images and GIFs.
While all Imgurians can enjoy the full sound experience on any platform, for now video upload is only possible on Imgur for iOS. It will be coming soon to other platforms soon. Check out the #unmuted tag on Imgur to see the videos that others are sharing.
In 2014, the ice bucket challenge and sexy mugshot guy ruled the distinctly quadrilateral-shaped Imgur homepage. A lot has changed since then. We’ve grown from the simple image host of yore to the best place on the Internet to enjoy community-powered entertainment, and with that we think a new look is in order. After six months of building, testing, and tweaking in beta we’ve begun rolling out our new desktop homepage.
When you arrive, you’ll see a new design with larger thumbnails that show post details, new tags to explore, improved search, and a friendlier feel. Not just that, but you can now customize the thumbnails to your unique browsing taste by toggling between waterfall view or grid view and GIF autoplay on or off. The medal icon takes you to a swanky new leaderboard, where you can ooh and ahh over the daily top comments.
Your profile has time-traveled from the stone age as well. See your hard-earned internet points and trophies front and center, and covet the others you’ve yet to unlock.
We know this is a big change, but we hope you’ll give the change a chance. It’s still possible to opt-out for now by visiting the link in your profile.
We’d like to extend a massive thank you and a virtual bear hug to all of our 60,000 beta testers! Thanks to your helpful feedback, we’ve been able to make important tweaks and fixes that ensure this new look matches the functionality of the old site you know and love. We hope this update helps you stay entertained, makes discovering new posts even easier, and brings a little magic to your day.
Here’s the gist of the changes:
–We aren’t asking to collect more data or use the data we do collect differently. Instead, we’re being more specific on how we use the information we collect (spoiler alert: we don’t collect much) and the rights you have regarding it.
–We’re adding information about how you can control, edit, and delete the data that you’ve provided to us.
–Finally, we’re clarifying image, album, and post privacy settings to make sure you know how your uploaded content is being consumed.
Upvotes and Cat GIFs,
In this edition of the Imgur Blog, we’ll be delving into the annals of Internet history, exploring the posts that make up the fabric of Imgur. In Imgur’s 9 years as home to the magic of the Internet it has played host to countless amazing posts that have made us laugh, cry, and take sides with a toaster. (#teamtoaster for life)
Special shoutout to @PatrioticMexamerican who has been an avid Imgur Historian for some time, and kept archive of many of these moments.
If you look to your left, you’ll see a piece of Imgur’s absolute foundation, the infamous comment that earned @fartharder a whopping -142,971 downvotes. In the years since this comment was made the innocuous, and seemingly innocent, comment “Edward Macaroni Fork” has become something of a landmark for Imgurians new and old, passing by the vaulted comment to leave their downvote.
Just over there we have Imgur’s best known conundrum. When your 16 year old sister is pregnant, your father is on his way, and all hell is breaking loose, what better way to handle it than posting the whole thing on Imgur? That’s exactly what AnthonyCapo did, in what became known as TheDanquanSaga. What followed were incredible memes, ferocious team loyalty and a bunch of stolen toasters.
As we continue our tour, you’ll notice a simple typo. It happens to the best of us, but unlike @SHITTYBANANAS, most don’t become a piece of Imgur history. On a seemingly standard post showcasing an ingenious way to feed a fire, our user stepped up to offer some friendly advice… Or so they thought. Soaking your logs in wood became an instant Imgur meme, and has continued ever since.
The Imgur Art Gallery is full of amazing works, and if you’ve been on Imgur for any amount of time, you’ve no doubt encountered, fallen for, and cursed yourself for not checking the username. @ANewBadlyPhotoshoppedPhotoofMichaelCeraEveryday became a regular of Most Viral with his incredible Photoshop and GIFfing abilities, quickly followed by a slew of “should have checked the username!” comments. Here we have the post that started it all, the very first badlyphotoshoppedphotoofMichaelCera. Although he no longer posts every day, they are forever a welcome surprise!
As we conclude our tour, we ask the age old question: Is this object the size of a jellybean, or an elephant? We may never have known were it not for the official Imgur unit of measurement – the humble banana. Thanks to Master of Measurements @KingOPancakes Imgur was able to adopt, implement and standardize the ‘banana for scale’ unit sitewide. Ever since we have had everything from Olympic bronze medals, animals and even babies accurately measured and categorized by the mighty banana.
That’s all for now, but we’ll be back shortly with another round of awesome historical posts! Special thanks to all the Imgurians featured, your stories are part of the fabric that makes Imgur great!
We’re here today for a very important reason – to announce some research that is dear to our hearts. Sitting right at Imgur’s core is our vision to lift the world’s spirits for a few moments each day. Making millions of people smile is something we are very proud of and privileged to call work. But in recent times, many digital platforms have come under the microscope for opposite reasons. Many of our digital peers seem to be causing more harm than good, which is cause for any company in the industry to pause and take stock of the situation. So that’s exactly what we did, we took a long hard look in the mirror. But there is only so much a mirror can tell you, before you need the expert opinion of someone else…
We reached out to YPulse, an expert youth culture research firm. They surveyed 2100 social media users from ages 13-35 across America and took up the task of finding out exactly what was going on.
Social media isn’t making us happy. In fact, the more platforms we use, the less happy we are.
But interestingly, when we shift the focal point of content consumption away from ourselves and into community-powered entertainment, we see a more positive impact on people’s mood. When you trade the selfies and check-ins for cat GIFs and memes, people are more relaxed and less vulnerable to the negative impacts of quantified popularity.
Anonymity affords a sense of authenticity that is lacking when people are overly concerned with curating the “best” version of themselves. It is hard to be the real you, when the game is to project the ideal you. When you remove your face from the picture, you are free to breathe and express yourself without fear of judgement.
Unsurprisingly, the better mood people are in, the more receptive they are to communications from brands. Which means that as a brand, placing your content alongside uplifting entertainment is a no-brainer.
And as they say, that is that. We hope you’ve found the research as interesting and thought-provoking as we have, if you have any questions or knowledge to share, reach out at email@example.com.
Hey there, Imgurians! We come to your screens today to tell you about some changes you may start to notice in the Imgur app. Let’s get right to the point: this is about ads.
Every day we hear from people who say that Imgur brings them a lot of joy, which is why we want it to be around for a really long time. In order to make sure it is, we earn money through advertising: both display ads and promoted posts. This helps ensure we can grow our team, make Imgur better, and achieve our vision of lifting the world’s spirits through community-powered entertainment.
That’s why we’ve decided to introduce a new ad unit, which will first appear on Imgur for iOS and later on Android. These ads will appear in between images in long posts with little or no text descriptions (aka “dumps”). Currently, this new ad space appears as you scroll through a post containing a minimum of seven images. You may start to notice this new addition as you browse this week in the beta version of the iOS app. During beta, we hope to learn and improve regarding proper frequency, load times, and usability.
We know you’re concerned about bad ads. We are too, which is why we maintain a strict advertising policy that prohibits ads that auto-redirect you to other sites, play sound without your permission, or contain illegal content or malware. We only work with reputable ad network partners, and have ended partnerships with those that would not adhere to our standards. You can read our ad policy at: https://help.imgur.com/hc/en-us/articles/214706683
To protect you from bad actors that may attempt to exploit these ad partners, we constantly monitor the ads internally and quickly react to user reports of bad ads. We have also implemented custom code to prevent malicious behavior such as auto-redirects. We truly hope you never come across a bad ad, but if you do, you can report it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can investigate and squash it.
Ads are no one’s favorite, but we hope to keep the ads you see on Imgur high-quality, unintrusive, and safe. We have a lot of work to do, and we’re excited to continue our journey with you to make Imgur more awesome, more fun, and more magical!
1. Imgurians creating awesome stuff, and putting it out into the wild, is one of our favorite things. Imgurian MyRespectableAlterEgo let the community in on his awesome invention, the Vagaband, an ultra-tough and potentially life saving replacement to the traditional medical alert bracelets. Aimed at young travelers, and designed in multiple languages, the Vagaband rocketed to the front page with a bonus torture test included.
Favorite comment by jag07: As a doctor. God bless you for this. Seriously, you have no idea how much this can help.
2. Losing a loved one is a heart wrenching tragedy we all go through at some point in our lives. One Imgurian decided to turn his hand to gardening to help, and with the help of some friendly neighbors, and the magical Plant Fairy, he created a gorgeous garden of succulents – More important, he adds, he never has to mow again.
In the last year I laid my wife to rest, found a way to cope through gardening, had a Plant Fairy secreting gigantic succulents to my yard in the middle of the night . . . then without noticing it happening, I just started feeling OK again.
Favorite comment by baronMarbleBreaker: This is one of those things that you look at and can just feel the emotion of it.
3. Teachers are unsung heroes, and one thing is for sure in the United States, these heroes do not make the wages they deserve. One Imgurian and teacher has been on the front lines of the walkouts in Oklahoma, and opened their post up to all and any questions about the on going issues they, and thousands of other teachers, are going through.
Favorite comment by FlairFaceFlop: Fellow Oklahoman who’s parents were teachers. Keep up the good fight. You all are invaluable and we are so thankful for you.
4. April also played host to Earth Day on the 22nd, and Imgurian PigsWeGetWhatPigsDeserve has made it his duty every year to do his part to keep the planet green. Starting small back in 2015, he has helped and organized clean up operations along his local riverbank. Now with over 300 volunteers, this Imgurian is making a big difference.
Favorite comment by zma123456: Your first post really inspired me. I remember seeing it. This one is even more inspiring. Man I’m gonna do something like this.
5. phsnyc is something of an Imgur legend at this point, sending Imgurians home for Christmas has become his trademark awesome deed. As someone who, in his own words, spends all his time on planes, phsnyc has racked up an incredible number of air miles, and at Christmas has graciously donated those miles to get Imgurians home, who otherwise would have been unable to. In a twist of fortune and routine, and to celebrate his cakeday, phsnyc offered a flight to an Imgurian in need – In comes smileyyeti, seeking a way to get her mother back to Ohio to see her own ailing mother. phsnyc and another anonymous Imgurian came through in spectacular style, and they were on their way back to Ohio.
Favorite comment by phsnyc: This has made my entire week! I’m so happy to hear that it worked out for you and your mom. If you ever want to pay it forward, consider a donation to Best Friends Animal Society. Amazing people doing amazing work for all animals. Again, so glad i could help you both!
6. Grate Artiste has become something of an Imgur legend over the past year, so when long time fan, and grate arte lover HighrockTendales had the opportunity to buy a Grate Artiste original there was no debate whether or not to take it. With even the envelope graced by the hand of Grate Artiste, there is no doubt that this was a solid purchase.
Favorite comment by UranusSpelunker: If one person likes it and another says WTF it’s art. If a whole bunch of people say WTF and one says they like it it’s Arte.
7. Blame it on upbringing, genetics or pure dumb luck, but when two brothers on opposing sides of the planet spotted each other in the same clothes, there really only was one reaction…
Favorite comment by GuacIsExtra: Do you need a sister in law?
8. Imgur has adopted a new father figure, in the form of TacticalHipster‘s dad, as they documented his recovery from triple heart surgery stemming from cancer. With his beaming smile, perky attitude and awesome beard, the community celebrated in his recovery and he returned the favor in true style with a pair of bright green upvote arrows and some sick dance moves! All the best for your future recovery, ImgurDad!
Favorite comment by downvotedforusinglinux: Main reason I joined IMGUR is because of the community. We are family.
9. April was also the month of the Zuckerberg memes, and between bizarre questioning, and Mark’s strained movements, the whole event made for a meme goldmine.
Favorite comment by brendanroche: It’s like watching Data from star trek learning how to smile
10. Bees are awesome, there’s no doubt about that. Imgur’s resident beekeeper was back this month to talk about all things beeswax, and why this amazing byproduct is so handy (as well as smelling so good!) and exactly how he processes beeswax using nothing more than a clever box, and the sun!
Favorite comment by datfandomdoe: This is really cool, but I’d like to thank you for helping to literally save the world. So thanks <3
This post first appeared on Medium, by Amber Morey-Wu.
Women have increased their numbers in many professions previously dominated by men, including law, business, medicine, and other STEM fields in the U.S; however, the number of women in engineering in the U.S. has not increased since the early 2000s. — Society of Women Engineers
Women make up half of the total U.S. college-educated workforce, but only 29% of the science and engineering workforce…relatively low…in engineering (15%) and computer and mathematical sciences (25%). — NSF, Science & Engineering Indicators, 2016
I’m not new to being the only female in the room. When I was at high school, I was the first girl who asked to take Woodwork instead of Home Economics (AKA cooking and household management). I had to ask permission from the headmistress for a special exemption. Unfortunately my Woodwork teacher was an elderly protective chap who wanted to do all the work for me instead of letting me use the tools myself… Later I became the first girl at my school to take technical drafting (this was pre-AutoCAD days, we used paper, pencils and rulers). In the late 1990s I went to the Vancouver Film School and took a “multimedia” course studying web design, CD-ROM design, 3D animation, and audio and video production. I was one of three women in a class of ~30 and one women dropped out in the first couple of months.
So you can see that I was used to being in an environment that was majority male at school, but as I moved into the workplace I found it’s a different experience to navigate. Why is it different? Unlike a class you can drop if you don’t like it, you need to keep your job to pay your rent. There’s also office politics and other factors that can be out of your control in the workplace. There’s plenty of articles that talk about the barriers and challenges for women in tech — they tend leave me a little depressed frankly. I’d like to talk about what you CAN control if you are a women working or applying to work at a tech company.
I’m going to assume you’ve gotten the skills side of things down. You’re studying the current programming languages for your field. If time permits you’re doing side projects and checking code into GitHub so you can establish your technical reputation. My suggestions are about the soft skills to help even out the uneven playing field you will face as a woman in technology.
1. Use your network
Getting your foot in the door is the first struggle that women disproportionately face. I have frequently gotten interviews because I had a connection at the company I was applying to (LinkedIn is your friend). For five out of the last six companies that I worked at, I had my resume directly handed to a recruiter and sometimes to the hiring manager vs applying through the general system. Of course that only gets you over the first hurdle of getting the interview — then you have to prove yourself to actually get the job. But you’ll never get the job without getting over the first interview hurdle.
What if you’re a new graduate? Your school should be providing some support. Your fellow graduates have connections. Your parents and their friends have connections. Reach out and ask for an informational interview to learn about a company or role that interests you. People like to help other people, it makes them feel good about themselves, so don’t be afraid to ask. Do be sure to make good use of their time and yours. Come prepared with a list of questions you’re interested in, and always end by asking if there are other people they recommend you speak with.
You should also go to networking events to make new connections. Meetup is a great resource for tech networking events. If you don’t yet have a job, still make sure you create a LinkedIn profile and start connecting with all the people I mentioned above. Get good at searching on LinkedIn for connections who can help you, or know someone who can help you. Get printed business cards featuring your LinkedIn profile URL and few keywords summarizing your skills/business value proposition to share at events. Just keep in mind that networking should always be a two way street — you should be thinking about how you can help this new acquaintance, as well as what they can do for you.
2. Stay Focused and Move On
Based on your gender, people may make incorrect assumptions. Don’t get stuck in your frustration when that happens. Believe in the skills and abilities that you bring to the table and present them authoritatively.
It’s a fact. You are occasionally going to get mistaken at tech networking events, conferences or corporate parties as “someone’s girlfriend” or “the booth babe.” You have no idea how mad that makes me when it happens to me. Ask my husband how mad I get… 😉
These days I try to turn the situation around as gracefully and as quickly as I can. I reply, “Actually I am a (job title) at (company name) and have been in the industry for xx years.” Figure out what your response will be in advance so you can smoothly get beyond your shocked/frustrated/horrified state and establish your credentials right away to banish any doubt that you belong in that room. Like water slides easily off a duck’s back, let their assumptions slide off you — stay focused and move on.
3. Ask for what you want
You don’t have to meet 100% of the qualifications listed in a job ad to apply for that job. Generally, men don’t let that get in the way. As one Forbes article put it, “Men are confident about their ability at 60%, but women don’t feel confident until they’ve checked off each item on the list.” Their advice: women need to have more faith in themselves. A Harvard Business Review article did another analysis about why women tend to only apply if they meet all the job applications and concluded it wasn’t just women not believing in themselves, they also didn’t want to put themselves out there to fail. Whatever the reason is that we have been shying away from jobs that we don’t perfectly match — stop it! Get the 100% match notion out of your head right now.
Think creatively when you see a job ad. Do you like the company? Do you meet more than half the requirements? I remember applying internally at a company for a role and being terrified because the title had “director” in it and I had never been a director. I won that role and over time excelled in leading a team of ~12 — with some mentoring support from past colleagues. Don’t let your doubts and fears stop you from asking for what you want, put yourself out there and take risks. It’s the best way to grow.
4. Don’t be afraid to negotiate
Everything in life is negotiable. You don’t get what you deserve. You get what you negotiate.
“Women may not realize that many companies set aside money with the expectation that employees will ask for better compensation packages… Yet only 30% of women bother to negotiate at all, while 46% of men negotiate,” according to Katie Donovan, founder of Equal Pay Negotiations. Apparently these figures add up to almost $2 million in lost revenue over a lifetime for the average woman seeking to climb the leadership ladder. That’s a lot of money to potentially lose!
At the last six companies I worked at I negotiated on the initial job offer. I got more salary, more vacation, more shares or some combination at five of those six companies. The sixth company didn’t budge so I took the job and knew I hadn’t left any money on the table. Simple. Do some basic preparation like research your market value through tools like Glassdoor and other online salary calculators. There are lots of great articles about negotiating salary so please go read those for more detailed pointers. I reread information about salary negotiation to freshen up my skills every time I am close to getting a job offer.
5. Choose the right company
I’ve worked at very “bro” companies where my voice was often discounted, where I had to put up with atrocious sexual innuendos in senior management meetings, and where promotions seemed more readily available to men over women. The good news is that I’ve also worked at great, supportive companies where I was encouraged to push myself and grow, to apply for a promotion that was a stretch, and where it was comfortable to be myself.
Let me tell you — everything gets easier if you choose the right company. Caveat — there is no “perfect” company. But some are much better than others! Things to look out for:
Good people (AKA company culture). Company culture is a squishy thing to define, but here are a few thoughts. When you are interviewing, do you feel comfortable with the people you are talking to? I know there is always some level of tension and nervousness in interviewing, but are they people you respect and would like to get to know further? Replay the interview in your head later — were they respectful? Did they listen to you or talk over you? What does your gut tell you about the work environment? I recently interviewed with a company and an older male asked me about my scrum certification and said, “So would you be our scrum mistress?” I’ve never ever heard gender applied to the title of scrum master before. Needless to say I did not take the job.
Flexibility in work hours and openness to remote working. It’s a stereotype that’s changing over time but generally women are far more often the caregivers for sick children, aging parents etc. I recently had a serious family emergency and was able to work remotely for a week while also spending time in the hospital with my family member. A company with a healthy remote working culture will give you the opportunity to fulfill your work obligations while also taking care of those you love. (Thank you Imgur!)
Role models and mentors. If you are early/mid career, are there any senior women at the company for inspiration and occasional advice? Are there non-white people at senior levels, showing the company’s commitment to diversity? Sadly this is a tougher ask in many tech companies as the stats are still so bad, but at a minimum look for signs that that a company is courting diverse candidates (see flexibility and company culture). I have greatly benefited at companies that had female leaders who supported me and helped me grow.
If the company is larger, do they have a professional women’s group? Do they offer reimbursement for training so you can continue to grow your skills? If their engineering team is majority male, do they still make the effort to make sure you interview with a woman even if she’s not an engineer so you don’t feel like you’ll be alone? Remember, sometimes someone has to be the first female engineer for there to be a second, third, etc — just look for the fact that you’ll be given support. Someone has to trail-blaze!
Speaking of choosing the right company, Imgur is hiring (you saw that coming, right?). It’s a great company for women — we offer a flexible working environment, we pay for training relevant to your role and much more. And although we are not a huge company, we’re even starting a professional women’s group (a Lean In Circle). Take a look at our current opportunities here and feel free to contact me directly if you’re interested — we’d love to hire more diverse candidates.
Amber Morey-Wu is the Technical Program Manager at Imgur. Previously she was the Director of Product Operations at Wikia, the Director of Developer Services at DeNA, worked on new IP projects at LucasArts, and lead the FIFA QA team at Electronic Arts.