The Worst Behavior

two years after the incident and DataCamp is here to collect their reward for doing the absolute bare minimum.

Jesse Mostipak

Yesterday, DataCamp belatedly acknowledged an incident of sexual assault that took place at the company in 2017. They euphemistically refer to it as “unwanted physical contact”, and the rest of their post is written in the same vein. (Apparently the investigation was conducted by “a third party not involved in DataCamp’s day-to-day business”, which begs the question what kind of involvement they did have…) https://twitter.com/dataandme/status/1113939480300355584 has a de-euphemized version, while https://twitter.com/no_reply/status/1113923302915837958 and other threads offer analysis.

People say that the culture of an organization is defined by the worst behavior its leaders are willing to tolerate. I think it’s also defined by the worst behavior that the rank and file are willing to tolerate. DataCamp’s statement only appeared after considerable pressure from the community; its half-heartedness and deflection just make me sad, and the fact that so many people who have known about the assault for months have chosen to continue working there makes me even sadder.

Full disclosure: DataCamp fired me in June 2018, citing “poor performance”.

Update: shortly after I posted this, Kara Woo came forward and stated that she was the target of this assault; see this thread and others for further discussion. I am very grateful for Kara’s strength and courage; at the time of writing, the person who assaulted her is still a senior executive at DataCamp.

Update: Noam Ross then discovered that DataCamp deliberately tried to bury their acknowledgment of the incident (see this post for more on the details).

Update: please see this update on my story and this well-researched article by Buzzfeed’s Davey Alba.

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