Google leadership recently sent out a new “inclusive language dossier” to its United Kingdom staff, asking them to stop using terms such as “man hours” and “you guys.”
The technology company encouraged its employees to refrain from using potentially offensive language. The style guide targeted common IT lingo, including “whitelist,” “blackhole,” “blacklist,” and “black box.”
It also asked staff to avoid referring to people or things as “chubby,” “dummy variable,” or “crazy, bonkers or mad.”
The language guide was specifically sent to Google developers, the U.S. Sun reported.
It asked staff to be more gender inclusive in the workplace by replacing the term “man hours” with “person hours.”
“When referring to a group of people, use non-gendered language such as everyone or folks,” the document stated.
Conservative Member of Parliament Nigel Mills told the Sun that the language guide is “woke nonsense.”
“This is just woke nonsense. I don’t know where people find the time to come up with this sort of thing,” Mills stated. “Who cares? We should not be ditching phrases and words used for a generation just because some snowflakes might get impacted.”
One anonymous Google employee told the news outlet that the company’s staff is “too busy” to be concerned with the inoffensive terms.
“We’re much too busy to be worried about whether some totally harmless phrase that’s been used for years might upset someone, somewhere,” the staffer stated.
A Google spokesperson told the Sun that the dossier was given to employees as “editorial guidelines for writing clear and consistent Google-related developer documentation.
Last year, the tech company released an inclusive language function to flag certain words and recommend alternatives for writers using its Google Docs program.
When a suspected offensive word is used, the program pops up a message to the writer that reads, “Inclusive warning. Some of these words may not be inclusive to all readers. Consider using different words.”
The computer program, which was launched in April 2022, suggested changing “landlord” to “property owner” or “proprietor.” It also recommended using the term “humankind” instead of “mankind.” The function also flagged “policemen,” “housewife,” and “motherboard.”
At the time, Google told the Sun, “Our technology is always improving and we don’t yet have a solution to identifying and mitigating all unwanted word associations and biases.”
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