Sexual Harassment at Work - Will It End?

fine-nance's picture
Rank: Gorilla | 666

Harvey Weinstein recently joined the club of executives getting accused of sexually harassing women at work. Apparently his victims include Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie. What a guy.

In response, an article came out a few days ago titled "Experts: Workplace sexual harassment should be reported, condemned." Well, no shit.

The real question is, what kind of punishments will actually bring down the rate of sexual harassment cases at work? Company policies? Any interesting stories you'd like to share?

Comments (48)

Oct 18, 2017

Where there's power there's people who abuse power. Company policies wont do anything. You can already have your career destroyed even if you are just accused of these acts. Tried by the media.

"The only thing I know is that I know nothing, and i am no quite sure that i know that." Socrates

    • 1
Oct 19, 2017
Bayoumonkey:

Where there's power there's people who abuse power.

This is a major logic flaw.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

    • 4
Oct 19, 2017

When there're morals there're people who abuse morals

Oct 25, 2017

Pretty sure this one is correct, originally stated, "power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely"

Oct 19, 2017

This cuts both ways. Every time something like this happens, for weeks after all we hear about is how every single case of accused harassment must be believed....and statistically I do find it hard to believe every single case. Especially when they tend to get "outed" in groups. Very unlikely. We start to go down a dangerous road every time this issue is discussed, because somehow it's seen as the "safe" choice. Now everything is assault. Everything is rape. But guys like Harvey Weinstein who actually do commit terrible, terrible acts of sexual assault against other people are not affected by any of this. Only the average person.

There will always be guys like Harvey Weinstein, if you think punitive punishment is going to stop this, you're as crazy as people who think the death penalty will stop serial killers. Weinstein quite clearly has a massive, massive mental & emotional problem. No set of codified laws will fix that. It's part of being human - you cannot protect against every single defective individual. However, I do think the cultural bubble Hollywood is in certainly doesn't help...that's the last place someone like him should ever be. There's a long, rich history of mental & emotional dysfunction in that industry - that's something that needs to be addressed. We're not talking about the average person here. We have a serious mental health problem in the West and it's only getting worse. Things like this will continue to happen as long as that persists.

"When you stop striving for perfection, you might as well be dead."

    • 2
Learn More

Side-by-side comparison of top modeling training courses + exclusive discount through WSO here.

Oct 25, 2017

This is a crime its punishment should me more then any other crimes.

Oct 25, 2017

what harvey weinstein did (assuming 100% truth) is unforgivable. trying to kiss women on the lips without permission, jacking off in front of them, etc., horrible stuff.

I hope we can have a reasonable discussion about some solutions to this instead of people just blaming men in the workplace and assuming we're all predators. yes, there are good looking women in my office, but if I compliment one of them on a haircut they've gotten, that doesn't make me a predator, just like I don't get offended if one of them says they like the shirt I'm wearing today.

let's get the predators out of positions of power, but let's also realize that one bad apple does not spoil the bunch.

    • 3
Oct 25, 2017

Playing the devil's advocate here(a little), with men in positions of power or "dominance", it seems rather natural in life and nature for a man with high status to secure mating with females of lower age and lower status. At what point is the drive for men to earn and succeed in business considered rape because their accumulation of assets/connections/influence/power. Current rape/sexual harassment laws clearly state that whenever anyone is in a position of power it is a form of coercion.

What is obvious, Harvey was deplorable in his actions. He abused his power is a golem created by the Hollywood culture.

Oct 25, 2017

From an evolutionary perspective, consider this interesting thesis.

It's clear that men's "worth" is in his financial power, while a woman's "worth" is in her physical appearance. Knowing this, and thinking critically, we come to some interesting (albeit controversial) conclusiosn.

Women cry sexual harrassment in the same way men buy flashy cars/yachts/houses. It's a method for the better looking females to raise herself above the masses of mediocre looking females. When she claims she was groped/raped/whatever, it garners the (secret) hatred from said mediocre looking women, since she is "better" and "obviously looks beautiful enough to have men salivating over her." Essentially, a feminine method of middle fingering other lesser females.
Men buy flashy things as a middle finger to poorer men. The logic follows in a similar fashion as above.

In both circumstances, the guy in the ferrari or the "me too" woman promotes themselves (whether consciouslly or unconsciouslly) to the upper strata of their gender, in terms of desirability. This is, after all, our way of signaling - an evolutionary method of reproducing with the fittest of genes.

You have to wonder why the morbidly obese women never claim harassment, or the guy on food stamps doesn't buy a Ferrari. In both cases, if society was absolutely ignorant (and gullable), they'd claim harassment/buy the Ferrari. The truth of the matter is, no rational person would believe them.

In fact, if you analyze how female reporters/interviewers cover these topics, you can sense a bit of unease in their tonality. The average person will assume said reporter is "disgusted"- in fact this is what she will rationally tell you she is feeling. However, on a more primal level, she is in fact, exhibiting traits of bitterness/jealousy.

It's refreshing to take an alternative perspective on society's "shortcomings". You should all try it sometime.

    • 3
    • 7
Oct 27, 2017

And this is exactly why evolutionary psychology is not an accepted mainstream field within the scientific community lol

Monkey see. Monkey Doo [Doo].

    • 3
Oct 19, 2017

The only people who don't "accept" it are people who think "xer" is a real pronoun. Not a group I'm concerned with.

"When you stop striving for perfection, you might as well be dead."

    • 2
    • 1
Nov 8, 2017

I find this neither interesting nor refreshing.

The analogy of buying a Ferrari to crying harassment is simply inapplicable. Assuming that a man ties his worth to his financial power, buying something expensive is a good way to display his wealth in a way that will bring him status. But, assuming worth = physical appearance for women, she doesn't actually need to do anything to show her worth. She just has to exist and be seen.

To suggest that women are in some way jealous of those experiencing sexual harassment or assault is preposterous. You clearly have never been a victim of sexual misconduct.

    • 2
Oct 31, 2018

The guy buying the Ferrari to signal his wealth makes sense. However, the girl calling "metoo" doesn't really hold up, what would make sense is women wearing makeup to signify her 'beauty' or youth, that's more along the evo psych thinking.

Learn More

Side-by-side comparison of top modeling training courses + exclusive discount through WSO here.

Oct 26, 2017

Shows what money can cover up. It's a shame that the A List women let their less fortunate and younger peers go through what they had to endure to protect their earning potential (after having amassed vast fortune already).

Oct 30, 2017

It is a shame.

It's like when I watch Shark Thank and Barbara Corcoran tells young women they are attractive and should "use it".

First, Barbara why do you have to say that, second, if Cuban said that he'd probably be off the show.

Best Response
Oct 27, 2017

The problem with all of these statements is that they feel true but aren't, at all. Take the Wisconsin University sexual assault survey and 25% of women have been victims of sexual assault or misconduct. Of the 300 plus cases reported that year of sexual assault, 221 were reported confidentially, meaning the victim was just seeking counseling and medical services, and didn't want to start investigations. When it's confidential the attacker isn't named or at least not reported. So what's the not to be believed motive?

You would also do well to read survey results of what men view as consent, you would be surprised to learn that 18% of men view sexual consent is received if they pay for dinner. 42% believe it is OK to force a woman to have sex if she has given consent previously. I could go on and on.

In both overt sexual assault, harassment, misconduct and indirect boy's club mentality, there is clearly a rampant problem in our culture toward women. I would encourage you to read the open letter in the Stanford rape case. To remain uneducated on this topic and choose not to be informed about the actual statistics and facts of this problem is, in my view, morally duplicitous.

Oct 27, 2017
ArcherVice:

morally duplicitous

excellent turn of phrase

Oct 30, 2017

Ironic you're claiming other people would do well to read survey results. The problem with your comment is that you've taken someone else's statistics without looking at how they came to them. Since you're so keen on not being morally duplicitous with actual statistics, I think you would do well to learn the definition used for being a "sexual assault" victim in the survey.

The definition used in the Wisconsin University's report was expanded to accept a "yes" to any of their 63 questions to be confirmation of being a sexual assault. Frankly, I'm surprised 100% weren't sexual assault victims with questions such as:

-"Has a partner tried to control you? Ie. Made decisions for you, such as, where you go or what you wear or eat" .... Have you ever gotten a direct answer from a female on where she wants to eat?

-"Made sexual remarks or told jokes or stories that were insulting or offensive to you."

-"Continued to ask you to go out, get dinner, have drinks or have sex even though you said "No""

I emphasize the "or" because it seems like a flawed survey to pair such severe accusations with rather forgivable ones - nevermind this confirmation making someone a sexual assault victim.

UW report: https://www.uhs.wisc.edu/wp-content/uploads/full-report.pdf

Interesting Video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lNsJ1DhqQ-s

    • 6
Oct 27, 2017

Wisconsin is far from the only survey on sexual assault. Where's the explanation for 42% of men thinking it's OK to force a woman to have sex if she's given consent previously?
Strange omission. Additionally, what's also important to highlight are the 2/3rds of sexual assault victims, chose to make their reports confidential, so that they had access to medical services for victims without having to live through the legal battle and investigation. Now tell me what explains their motive that's malicious or strains credulity?

Don't give me a half baked response because you take issue with some survey questions and then promptly ignore everything else. Having said so, which questions did the women respond to in order to identify as being victims of sexual assault and misconduct?

Nov 8, 2017

25% of women are sexually assaulted in college? If these stats were anything remotely close to the truth then parents who send their daughters to college are ABSOLUTELY INSANE and are REPUGNANT parents. If these stats were true (they're not, by the way--they've been thoroughly debunked), you'd be a literally evil person to send your daughters to college.

Oct 27, 2017

I'm glad you responded like this. Had you continued reading the sentence you apparently stopped at you would have noted sexual assault and misconduct, misconduct is a very broad umbrella term that adds context to a broader culture of misogyny, furthermore that year there were 300 reported cases of sexual assault which I assume is substantially less than 25% of the females on campus. To misconstrue what has been said to say that 25% of college women are sexually assaulted is at best intellectually malicious and at worst fucking stupid.

Which has been one of my points: that this information is out there, it isn't just at one university or with one age group or in one state or country. We'd all prefer, women too, a more attenuated version of this problem, but it's just not. In my opinion, only a fool would remain deaf to this problem, even if your inclination is to acknowledge this situation with a measure of skepticism.

Oct 30, 2017

All Hollywood are trying to do is get that bad publicity about them away and direct to your average guys like us. The I'm holy attitude most of the left have

RIP LEHMAN
RIP MONACOMONKEY
RIP THEACCOUNTING MAJOR

Nov 1, 2017

What bothers me is none of these girls and/or victims said shit when they were trying to get to the top.

If you really feel victimized, have some skin in the game. Donate all your earnings in anything Harvey helped you create to a woman's organization or abuse organization.

They talk about being victims after. It's bullshit. Speak up when you should, not when it's convenient. It misleads others.

    • 1
Nov 1, 2017

Totally spot on. Well-said.

    • 1
Nov 8, 2017

Statistics are kind of interesting, in general. I'd surmise that the primary reason that the issue with sexual harassment is so intractable is because a tiny subset of males are responsible for virtually all misconduct against women, meaning the rest of men (90+%) genuinely have no idea what's going on with regard to sexual harassment/assualt.

Politifact discussing the percentage of the population that is responsible for virtually all crime:

http://www.politifact.com/texas/statements/2015/oc...
To sum the article, there is no clear-cut answer, but something like 5-8% of the population is responsible for nearly 100% of crime, meaning more than 90% of the population is law-abiding. The same probably (I say "probably" because I don't have the stats in front of me) holds true with sexual assault/sexual harassment, that virtually all misconduct is perpetrated by a small subset of males.

You've heard the recent cry from feminists: "Teach boys not to rape." Well, that's the thing--the overwhelming majority of males don't rape.

You see this kind of trend in sales, for example--the 80/20 rule, or the idea that 20% of salespersons produce 80% of revenue or sales. You see this in the world of sex, too, where a small subset of men have far more sexual partners than is typical (6.1 the median # of sex partners among U.S. males, although many reading this comment now have been with dozens of women).

Sex partners:
https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nsfg/key_statistics/n.htm
To sum, I hypothesize that sexual assault/harassment is perpetrated by a small subset of men, and the way crime is really hard to stamp out completely, you're probably starting to bump up against the law of diminishing marginal returns with regard to reducing sexual harassment in the workplace (in other words, it's already largely gone with much of the remnants largely intractable from men who will always be deviant).

Nov 22, 2017

It's never going to end, all this human squishy values-based shit is not quantifiable, and therefore not manageable.
Scenario: Person 1 was raised in hippy home where family was naked and discussed sex at the dinner table. They go to a business dinner with Person 2, whose parents were nevernude Jehovah's Witnesses. Person 1 casually mentions something that to them is totally conservative, but it blows Person 2's mind and they get uncomfortable. Boom, sexual harassment.

In the end it's a inter-personal issue that's only magnified by hormones on both sides and the taboo of sex in Western culture lends it tons of power. There's no way people won't use it to their advantage like the noobs in the World Cup tripping over buttterflys because you cannot measure it. There's also no way people won't be tempted to make advances on other people they find attractive, and no way that the other person will reciprocate the feeling 100% of the time.

We're slowly taking steps to codify what's ok and what's not, but that will continue forever as humanity's culture changes, and the interaction between different cultures happens more often (shit's goign to hit the fan as we try to do more business with the Middle East).

    • 1
Nov 8, 2017
urmaaam:

There's also no way people won't be tempted to make advances on other people they find attractive, and no way that the other person will reciprocate the feeling 100% of the time.

Ya know, to this point, men, in particular, are driven toward, uh, "procreation" (sex all day, every day) and there will always be males willing to take career risks by making an advance on a woman. I remember a few years ago quitting my excellent job, abandoning my productive real estate, and moving to the middle of nowhere to be with a painfully sexy girl 8 years my junior (I was 26, she was baaaaarely 18). It was totally and utterly irrational (and I knew it at the time) and yet I...couldn't help myself.

So to your point, I agree that there will always be men willing to take risks for sex (in this case, rejection and potential career suicide with sexual harassment claims).

Oct 18, 2017

Sounds like blackmail material to me. WWFUD? What would Frank Underwood do?

"The only thing I know is that I know nothing, and i am no quite sure that i know that." Socrates

Nov 22, 2017

Discreetly knee him in dick. Let's him know that if he wants to "play ball" , it's gonna be full contact and painful.

But, we honestly need more details. You're woman right? Is he being obnoxious or is it that you haven't properly blown him off (ie. "My boyfriend...", "Be a good boy...")

Nov 22, 2017

Erdy, have you checked out these or run a search:

  • 7 Tips for Office / Holiday Parties kingdom young padawans. 0. The Preparation: is this a holiday themed party? is it business casual? ... it. it could very well be possible, but the christmas party is NOT the time to do it. you have all ... the post What are helpful tips for office parties? and I wanted to add it to the frontp
  • What are helpful tips for office parties? With the holidays approaching, office parties are becoming increasingly prevalent. CNBC states ... employees. This means that you could be finding an invitation to an office party very soon. But, while these ... events are supposed to be fun and relaxed, there are definitely certain ways to work an office party to ...
  • Is the party worth it? After hearing stories of people getting arrested... is the party worth it? One wrong move and your ... I am sure all of us have had the night where the drinks went down to good and limits were passed. ...
  • Company holiday party parties at swanky venues followed by an after-party where people would get wasted. I guess this is a sign ... of how badly the fund is doing. holiday party ... Wow. My fund has just announced that the annual holiday party will consist of a day of community ...
  • MBA Schools with least partying with the MBA is the party culture (just a personal preference really, not a diss). I know school ... do well in an atmosphere with excessive partying, where it's almost one of the main focuses of ... question is, which schools are the "others"? Any help/advice would be greatly appreciated. ...
  • Prestigious Party Schools hit up some parties in New Haven. Anyway, where does your school rank-- if it managed to make the ... nitpicking, but if what makes a party hardcore is some alcohol and dancing, then I'm definitely trying to ... list, that is. preftigious why is cornell here party Ivy to Sunday, August 7, 2016- 7:55pm ...
  • Intern's first office holiday event/party of event as an intern? holiday office party event intern ... I am currently interning at big bank and will be attending my first office holiday celebration. ... Does anyone have any suggestions on how to make the most of this or advice on how to navigate this kind ...
  • More suggestions...

No promises, but sometimes if we mention a user, they will share their wisdom: @mamu @American Psycho @CFLateral

Fingers crossed that one of those helps you.

Oct 31, 2018

Being someone who has experienced sexual harassment at many of the jobs I've had, going as far back as the late 1980's and as recently as 2015, harassment is not likely to ever end, regardless of all the sensitivity training, policies, procedures and whatever else may get put in place to deter it, discourage it, punish it. I also fear that the #MeToo movement has blurred the lines between varying levels of harassment and has conflated matters to the detriment of the efforts to try and create a more open dialogue between the harassed/assaulted and those that do the harassing/assaulting.

As humans in supposed civilized cultures, we've been surrounded by rules, tenets, edicts, etiquette and laws, be they religious or secular, for thousands of years... and for thousands of years, people have committed all variety of crime, harassment, libel, slander and assault of the verbal as well as physical kind.

Short of us only interacting with each other remotely 100% of the time and never sharing the same physical space, perhaps physical harassment would cease.

But harassment of other kinds is sadly here to stay and is on the rise, especially when you consider the double-edged sword of anonymity of the web.

    • 2