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Yellow, coloured, mulatto’: IBM apologizes for racially insensitive language on application

Computer

Tech company, IBM, is apologizing about insensitive race terms made during a so-called “accidental situation” during  according to CBS News.

On their recruitment page, IBM offered job seekers the option to choose their ethnic group from a drop-down menu with choices such as “yellow,” “mulatto,” “coloured” and “indigenous,” along with caucasian and Black.

Twitter user, Alex Gao, a computer science student at New York University, took the the social media site to share his thoughts on the situation. He posted a picture of the application saying, “seen on a job application today… whaaat are we using ‘yellow’ casually like that?”

He also wrote, “I was appalled to be asked on an IBM internship application to choose my ethnic group, and be given the choice of ‘yellow.”

Richard Park, a New York web designer was upset that he wasn’t able to move forward with his application without choosing from the listed options. He wrote on Twitter that he had no choice but to choose  “yellow” and “coloured.”

Users complaints online led New York-based IT services company, The Armonk, to take down the section with the presented choices.

IBM admitted that the websites “temporarily and inappropriately solicited information concerning job applicant ethnicity, based on local government requirements in Brazil and South Africa.” But, wait, the position is is located in the U.S.

An IBM spokesperson said that the company apologizes for the incident and clarified that tech giant specifically hires based on skills and qualifications.

He also added that they are making sure that the situation doesn’t happen again.

In the past, the company has been accused of other discriminatory practices. They face lawsuits for discriminating against older employees, one of them being a class-action suit filed in September. IBM denies the claim. 

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