Silicon Valley likes to think that it exists as some paradigm for equality, rewarding intelligence and hard work over class, race, sex, and pedigree. But that’s not quite true. Rich kids had no problem infiltrating the culture with people like the Mall of America heir and David Tisch buying their way into the club, as chronicled in The New York Times last year. Money and an important (Stanford) education can buy access. Also, think about all the Harvard people Mark Zuckerberg hired to work at Facebook and then think about what it takes to get in to Harvard. Meanwhile, the notable lack of female and black faces out there suggests that other barriers — not hard work and smarts — have limited entry of minorities and women.
A great analysis by Rebecca Greenfield of the response to Jamelle Bouie’s post.