The Intel Diversity Initiative Swindle

Introduction

On the 6th of January 2015, the CEO of Intel Corporation, Brian Krzanich, announced to the Consumer Electronics Show that Intel Corporation would engage in a $300 Million initiative focused on improving the diversity of its workforce. During this announcement two contractors were displayed as being included in the program, Feminist Frequency (@femfreq) and the International Games Development Association (IGDA).

These organisations have such a corrosive reputation with consumers that it led to a massive flood of the #CES2015 hashtag and the @Intel account on twitter and numerous complaints being made to the Intel Facebook account over several weeks. Consequently consumers have taken it upon their own shoulders to research into the links between these organisations and Intel management to understand the rationale behind the selection of these contractors.

Information

Based upon some summary evaluation of the facts, this is what information is understood from publicly available information:

• There is a perceived conflict of interest between Kim Pallister; a Director of Content Intel and Kate Edwards, the Executive Director of the IGDA who previously worked side by side at Microsoft Corporation on Halo 2 in addition to having a long running personal friendship.

o I think this relationship could indicate a violation of the fourth Code Principle as listed on Page 3 of the Intel Code of Conduct ‘Act in the best interests of Intel and avoid conflicts of interest. Avoid situations where our personal or family interests interfere — or even appear to interfere — with our ability to make sound business decisions in the best interest of Intel.’

• The selection of the IGDA as a contractor for the diversity initiative considering that the Executive Director, Kate Edwards employs her sole owned and operated consultancy Geogrify into that organisation to perform diversity studies upon the industry. Who then as the author of these studies formally uses the platform of the IGDA to recommend her companies services to IGDAs members in what may be a violation of the United States Federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (1970)

• The selection of the IGDA as a contractor considering their endorsement of an industry and extra-industry blacklist based upon the politics of the persons involved, which is at the date of this letter being used by jobs boards to silence political opponents. This is in violation of the law in many countries in which Intel operates including the United Kingdom under the Employment Relations Act 1999 (Blacklists) Regulations 2010 and is against the Employment Law of California and other states within the United States of America.

o I think that the selection of a contractor with widely perceived malfeasance in its operations will lead to a loss of shareholder value by degrading its reputation for competence, in violation of the fifth Code Principle as listed on Page 3 of the Intel Code of Conduct ‘Protect the company’s assets and reputation. Protect the value of Intel’s assets, including physical assets, intellectual property, confidential and proprietary information, Intel Brands, and its name and reputation as well as the confidentiality of information of our customers, suppliers and employees.’

• The selection of Feminist Frequency, a company with a track record of non-performing projects including their over-prescribed but undelivered flagship project ‘Tropes versus Video Games’ due its past performance is extremely questionable.

o I think that the failure of Feminist Frequency to deliver on previous commitments creates the perception that they cannot perform the scope of work they have been asked to perform and therefore that the selection of this contractor will lead to a loss of shareholder value, in violation of the fifth Code Principle as listed on Page 3 of the Intel Code of Conduct ‘Protect the company’s assets and reputation. Protect the value of Intel’s assets, including physical assets, intellectual property, confidential and proprietary information, Intel Brands, and its name and reputation as well as the confidentiality of information of our customers, suppliers and employees.’

• The selection of Feminist Frequency whose producer and co-writer, Johnathan McIntosh openly expresses viewpoints which are vehemently anti-Israeli and which have caused outrage towards Israelis and Israel supporters.

o I think that by contracting the openly anti-Israeli Feminist Frequency creates an unfair and disrespectful environment towards customers, suppliers, distributors and others in violation of the first Code Principle as listed on Page 3 of the Intel Code of Conduct ‘Conduct business with honesty and integrity. Conduct business with uncompromising integrity and professionalism, demonstrating honesty and high ethical standards in all business dealings and treating customers, suppliers, distributors and others with fairness, honest and respect.’

o I think that by contracting the openly anti-Israeli Feminist Frequency shows disrespect towards and breeds mistrust between the Israeli employees of Intel and the Intel Corporation in violation of the third Code Principle as listed on Page 3 of the Intel Code of Conduct ‘Treat each other fairly. Work as a team with respect and trust for each other.’

Recommendation

I call upon Intel Corporation to stop trying to ignore this issue: it won’t go away. Instead they should address customer concerns with a formal response. This will allay the concerns of shareholders and consumers that the award of contracts to these parties are in line with industry standard practices and expected due diligence.

References:

  1. Intel Code of Conduct, Signed by: Brian Krzanich, Chief Executive Officer of Intel Corporation, ‘policy-code-conduct-corporate-information.pdf’, Date Retrieved: 16th March 2015; Retrieved From: http://www.intel.co.uk/content/dam/www/public/ us/en/documents/corporate-information/policy-code-conduct-corporate-information.pdf
  2. Article: ‘Q&A: Englobe’s Edwards Talks Gaming’s ‘Geocultural risks’’, Author: Mathew Kumar, Date: 9th April 2008, Gamasutra, Retrieved From: https://archive.today/RE23l
  3. Website: Geogrify, About Website, Date Retrieved: 10th March 2015, Retrieved From: https://archive.today/eJDbl
  4. Article: ‘Austin GDC: Microsoft talks casual Gaming’, Author: Mark Androvich, Date: 6th September 2007, gamesindustry.biz, Retrieved From: https://archive.today/MEtze
  5. Report: ‘Developer Satisfaction Survey 2014, Summary Report’, Author: Kate Edwards, Date Published: 25th June 2014, Retrieved From: https://c.ymcdn.com/sites/www.igda.org/resource/collection/9215B88F-2AA3-4471-B44D-B5D58FF25DC7/IGDA_DSS_2014-Summary_Report.pdf
  6. Message ‘A huge THANK YOU to everyone who participated in the IGDA’s Developer Satisfaction Survey for 2014! http://lnkd.in/bJkkN_N , Author: Twitter account, @geogrify official company, Date Published: 29th April 2014, Retrieved From: https://archive.today/dQM9D
  7. Website: Geogrify: Clients, Kate Edwards, Executive Director of IGDA hires her own company to provide services to the IGDA, Date Retrieved: 22nd March 2015, Retrieved From: https://archive.today/XDODy
  8. Website: IGDA Online Harassment Resource, Date: 22nd November 2014, Date 18th March 2015, Retrieved From: https://archive.today/hdmqF#selection-2333.0-2339.1
  9. Article: #GamerGate: Indie Devs Blocked by Jobs Resource Bot Using GG Autoblocker, Date: 22nd March 20155, Retrieved From: https://archive.today/E8wut
  10. Website: Kickstarter: Tropes vs. Women in Video Games, Date 19th March 2015, Retreived From: https://archive.today/eLWQD
  11. Website: Feminist Frequency, Youtube Channel, Date 19th March 2015, Retrieved From: https://archive.today/8XbEs
  12. Website: Feminist Frequency Website, About, Date: 19th March 2014, Retrieved From: https://archive.today/A62Xb
  13. Tweets by Johnathan McIntosh (@radicalbytes), Numerous Dates and Contents, Retrieved From: https://archive.today/MUr3q https://archive.today/GsQPf https://archive.today/GYCYR https://archive.today/jt9w5 https://archive.today/7QC8J https://archive.today/0ZcVR https://archive.today/0kdQX https://archive.today/1Hno6 https://archive.today/rJ9dl https://archive.today/rrp8Z https://archive.today/YnnDC https://archive.today/9sY02 https://archive.today/0GtRV https://archive.today/zHLm6
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