IT Women Calendar Causes Controversy

    July 18, 2006

A calendar designed to encourage more women into IT occupations, and help dispel the notion that IT is not a desirable career for women, has caused a storm of controversy in Australia.

The Screen Goddess calendar features 20 women IT pros whose photos are taken as poses from movies such as Dr No, American Beauty, Basic Instinct and Charlie’s Angels.

The calendar’s promoters say the top two reasons why they have produced this are to “smash through the perception of the geeky technologist” and “generate media sensation to put a spotlight in the industry and increase national interest and awareness.”

Well, I’d say they are doing pretty well indeed with their second goal in particular:

[] As debate over the calendar raged across the media, public forums and blogs, the site racked up 3.5 million hits worldwide within 24 hours. Then on Friday night it was almost struck down by a denial of service attack co-ordinated from the US.

Whatever the outcome of the media storm, undoubtedly the calendar will sell like hot cakes.

[Addition] There is at least one precedent for a calendar featuring women in erotic (or, at least, alluring) poses to promote a cause – the calendar produced by members of the Rylstone and District Women’s Institute in the UK in 1998 to raise money for leukemia research.

A hit movie was a natural development from that bold initiative.

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Neville Hobson is the author of the popular blog which focuses on business communication and technology.

Neville is currentlly the VP of New Marketing at Crayon. Visit Neville Hobson’s blog: