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Age Discrimination, Indian-Style

timothy posted more than 10 years ago | from the tim's-run-approaches dept.

The Almighty Buck 400

theodp writes "In April, IBM CEO Samuel Palmisano told investors Big Blue hopes to dodge an estimated $6 billion in liability stemming from a judge's ruling that IBM violated U.S. federal age discrimination laws. In May, IBM closes on its $150-$200MM purchase of Indian outsourcer Daksh, whose age requirements for job applicants make Logan's Run seem progressive. On its Opportunities page, Daksh states that Customer Care Specialists should be between 21-25 years of age and Team Leaders should be no older than 27. Early Daksh investors included Citigroup and we-don't-need-no-stinking-unions Amazon."

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Please help! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232657)

I hate my boyfriend's friends. They're immature, drink too much and make disgusting, sexist comments. At first, I tried to cope with their behavior, but recently, I've started complaining to my boyfriend. He tells me to ignore them, but I don't think I can anymore. Any advice?

Re:Please help! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232673)

Do you really need advice from Slashdotters on this matter? --- 00-A3-B1-25-16-23-11-04-2C

Re:Please help! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232708)

just keep giving your b/f good head, he'll come around. tell his friends you'll let them fuck you in the ass if they grow up. i just pray you're not, otherwise none of this is going to work.

Re:Please help! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232711)

Actually, you'll find most people on /. are immature, drink too much and make disgusting, sexist comments. But you know that, because you're really a first post troll, and probably male, right?

Re:Please help! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232732)

Move to India.

Easy (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232742)

Offer to give him a blow job. Guys like this and respect girls who please them.

Your boyfriend may want to have his friends watch. If this happens, give in, and offer to fix them snacks and get them beer before you "go down" on your boyfriend. A girl who is hospitable to a guy's friends is definitely a "keeper." Your reputation as a good hostess will be assured, and your boyfriend will be appreciative. If he smacks you around a bit, that is his way of "letting off steam."

Well.. (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232674)

When are they going to state that the workers have to speak english? That'd be nice..

Re:Well.. (5, Funny)

lawngnome (573912) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232723)

You just want everything dont you? back in my day we had to read manuals! and half the time they were in another language! *looks at his vcr blinking 12:00 and weeps bitterly*

Re:Well.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232844)

"*looks at his vcr blinking 12:00 and weeps bitterly*"

Just remember not to leave your door open when the movers come to bring the sofa downstairs.

Hot girls, BSD style! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232675)

Is it any wonder people think Linux [debian.org] users are a bunch of flaming homosexuals [lemonparty.org] when its fronted by obviously gay losers [nylug.org] like these?! BSD [dragonflybsd.org] has a mascot [freebsd.org] who leaves us in no doubt that this is the OS for real men! If Linux had more hot chicks [hope-2000.org] and gorgeous babes [hope-2000.org] then maybe it would be able to compete with BSD [openbsd.org] ! Hell this girl [electricrain.com] should be a model!

Linux [gentoo.org] is a joke as long as it continues to lack sexy girls like her [dis.org] ! I mean just look at this girl [dis.org] ! Doesn't she [dis.org] excite you? I know this little hottie [dis.org] puts me in need of a cold shower! This guy looks like he is about to cream his pants standing next to such a fox [spilth.org] . As you can see, no man can resist this sexy [spilth.org] little minx [dis.org] . Don't you wish the guy in this [wigen.net] pic was you? Are you telling me you wouldn't like to get your hands on this ass [dis.org] ?! Wouldn't this [electricrain.com] just make your Christmas?! Yes doctor, this uber babe [electricrain.com] definitely gets my pulse racing! Oh how I envy the lucky girl in this [electricrain.com] shot! Linux [suse.com] has nothing that can possibly compete. Come on, you must admit she [imagewhore.com] is better than an overweight penguin [tamu.edu] or a gay looking goat [gnu.org] ! Wouldn't this [electricrain.com] be more liklely to influence your choice of OS?

With sexy chicks [minions.com] like the lovely Ceren [dis.org] you could have people queuing up to buy open source products. Could you really refuse to buy a copy of BSD [netbsd.org] if she [dis.org] told you to? Personally I know I would give my right arm to get this close [dis.org] to such a divine beauty [czarina.org] !

Don't be a fag [gay-sex-access.com] ! Join the campaign [slashdot.org] for more cute [wigen.net] open source babes [wigen.net] today!

$Id: ceren.html,v 7.0 2004/01/01 11:32:04 ceren_rocks Exp $

That's what is wonderful about outsourcing (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232683)

If it's not legal in one country, just outsource to another where it is legal.

Re:That's what is wonderful about outsourcing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9233167)

Yeah, like torture to Syria!

Let's make one thing crystal clear (5, Insightful)

Henrik S. Hansen (775975) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232707)

Let's make one thing crystal clear:

The only reasons companies discriminate based on age is that younger people are easier to persuade to work harder, longer hours, and that they usually doesn't require as high pay as older, more experienced applicants.

It is NOT because younger people are smarter or brighter than older people. And who says they are, anyway? IMO, any supposed loss in thinking quickly is easily made up by the experience and better problem solving skills of older people.

Re:Let's make one thing crystal clear (3, Interesting)

SKPhoton (683703) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232728)

It is NOT because younger people are smarter or brighter than older people. That's true. I think it would be safe to assume that older people would have more applicable experience and be more effective at the job. I think another assumption usually made is that younger people are sharper and more on the ball. But then again, that's just a typical stereotype as well.

Re:Let's make one thing crystal clear (5, Insightful)

Roland Piquepaille (780675) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232735)

younger people are easier to persuade to work harder, longer hours, and that they usually doesn't require as high pay as older, more experienced applicants.

It is NOT because younger people are smarter or brighter than older people


Younger people are not bright when it comes to refusing to work overtime so much that it destroys health and family life.

I know that often they can't refuse to work hard, because jobs are hard to come by these days and some other youngster is ready to take the place, but also it's usually illegal to fire someone for refusing gross overtime. The only trouble for young people is how do you prove you were fired by your boss on that ground in court.

Shutup Grandpa (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232770)

Or we'll stick you in that crooked home we saw on 60 Minutes

If you're watching 60 minutes ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232870)

You must be the grandpa!

(unless it's football season and you're real lazy)

Re:Let's make one thing crystal clear (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232783)

If you want cheap tech support that just reads a script and you're supporting Some Random Game or How To Use Instant Messenger Brand X, then you probably aim for young, cheap people you can easily manipulate and strongarm into hard work, harder hours and little pay or other compensation with the false expectation that hard work pays off in corporations and doesn't just get you laid off when you are promoted into a position that they can no longer afford to keep.

However, if you are supporting mission critical software or hardware for a company with very expensive ($100k +) support contracts who expect reliable, professional, top-notch, respectable, hard-working employees who take sick days only when they're really sick and can be expected to return a page immediately and be on call like a responsible adult, you hire people with proven industry experience.

I work in such an environment and I'm almost the youngest person in our huge (thousands globally) support division at the age of 28. Almost everyone else is in their 30s, 40s and 50s. Almost all have college degrees plus five or more years of experience and many have masters degrees.

Re:Let's make one thing crystal clear (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232860)

It is NOT because younger people are smarter or brighter than older people. And who says they are, anyway? IMO, any supposed loss in thinking quickly is easily made up by the experience and better problem solving skills of older people.

Whatever you say grandpa :)

We can only hope for one thing (5, Funny)

hemp (36945) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232911)

Renewel on carousel!!

Re:Let's make one thing crystal clear (0, Flamebait)

Crashmarik (635988) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232950)

And the point is ?

What your'e saying is undoubtedly true, you have missed the fact that younger less experienced people are more easily pliable with vague promises of promotion into management positions. Young people are considerably less likely to leave a job to retire.

The question is should an employer be penalized for trying to use the best most motivated workforce ? Every time someone is hired there are numerous acts of discrimination. Candidate A went to a better school, Candidate B had a good personal presentation. Candidate C was 6 months pregnant and had a high probability of taking maternity leave.

Companies have legal status as individuals and well run companies do indeed act as individuals. Their first priority is to maintain their own existence. If they don't maintain their existence its moot to argue about their hiring practices. This is something that the legal system would do well to recognize as its very hard to sue defunct companies as well.

The only things that are legitimate complaints of descrimination are sex and race, and in alot of situations sex doesn't cut it. Yes ladies if you want maternity leave and pregnancy covered by healthcare it will get back to you. This is reality these choices cost money somewhere it will get paid for.

The truly sad thing in this story is the whiny annoying horrible premise that underlies it. The shear arrogance that says yes lets go to the courts and have the laws of economics, common sense and if at all possible the laws of physics set aside so that a class of people can hold onto what they have come to regard as their right and privilege.

There is something rotten in the state of Denmark! (1, Offtopic)

BlueUnderwear (73957) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232974)

ObOntopic: software patents lead to Outsourcing. Indeed, rather than run the risk of being sued for patent infringment, software companies will prefer to outsource their actual development to places (such as India) where there are no software patents yet, rather than do it in their homecountry, and expose themselves to potentially expensive patent litigiation.
That being said, if you happen to be Danish, please carefully watch the following clip:

There is something rotten in the State of Denmark [ugent.be]

Ok, no matter what the issue is: please consider your national pride, your national dignity! Do you really value representatives that let themselves be shoved around, and give an easy yes, rather than defending your country's best interests?

But the good news is, there is still a way out [ffii.org] . Yes, changing your vote now may be viewed as an admission that you (you're representative) screwed up, or didn't know the subject matter. But it also shows courage and the willingness to correct errors once they become known.

Ok, as a Luxembourg I must admit that I sit in a glasshouse [happyworker.com] here. I hereby encourage my countrypeople to do something about it, and contact our ministry of economy [public.lu] about the matter, and encourage them to review their vote.

Remember: we are only two votes short of winning [ffii.org] , and every country, no matter how small can make a difference, be it Denmark, Luxembourg, or even Malta!

Re:There is something rotten in the state of Denma (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9233050)

Don't take it personally, but the Danes are traditionally afraid of taking a strong stance [www.ifka.dk] . Nothing personal, nothing specific to software patents.

... Not that they don't fear the problems, they certainly do, but they hope that others will cope with the problems for them, as they have before.

So, realizing this, why should Denmark risk sticking their neck out, if Malta and Luxembourg are just as "powerful" to solve the problem at hand?

heh (2, Funny)

SKPhoton (683703) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232712)

Age discrimination and Indian-style in the same sentence? Did anyone else picture a class of kindergardners sitting around indian style? Heck, I'd think they were unsuited to be "Customer Care Specialists" too.

Is this a problem? (4, Insightful)

Serveert (102805) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232715)

This is why we outsource to India. Less government regulation, fewer worker protection laws, fewer environmental regulations... I mean, are we to enforce our minimum wage laws on India? No.

Re:Is this a problem? (4, Interesting)

Pituritus Ani (247728) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232771)

Which is why when jobs are outsourced like this to circumvent American worker protections, the products of such labor (or the gross, in case of service businesses) should be heavily taxed.

Re:Is this a problem? (4, Insightful)

Serveert (102805) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232826)

Should Europeans who outsourced to America tax American products given that Americans don't require workers to be near a window, don't require workers to have 5 weeks of vacation and can be fired with ease?

Things are tricky. I lost my job to Indians but managed to find something more stable and well paying since I do have a good degree, do have plenty of experience, I am relatively young. But what happens when I get older.

Things are bleak and cold and confusing, the only thing that is sure is people will not think twice about letting you go if that means they can keep their job or make a quick buck.

Re:Is this a problem? (2, Interesting)

Pituritus Ani (247728) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232922)

Yes--any country has the right and the duty to attempt to avoid the circumvention of its employment laws. The best way to effect this is to hit said companies in the pocketbook. The next step in the escalation is that the capital leaves the country--but then, tarrifs can be employed to keep the fruits of exploited labor out.

Re:Is this a problem? (1)

forgoil (104808) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232846)

Why not just make it simple? Any outsourced job has to go to someone with the same benifits and rights as the worker in the country of the origin of the outsourcing.

I can't really get especially mad if companies outsource to better workers, but since they are outsourcing to workers who accept much worse conditions I do tend to get mad. Are we really so eager to let major corporations throw away all the progress we have made to force them to treat us like sentient beings and not numbers?

Re:Is this a problem? (1)

Pituritus Ani (247728) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232934)

Works for me--but then the purpose of exporting the job wouldn't be to circumvent labor laws. This would help provide the "level playing field" we hear apologists for offshoring talk so much about when jobs go offshore, but not with respect to worker protections.

Re:Is this a problem? (2, Informative)

GileadGreene (539584) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232943)

I can't really get especially mad if companies outsource to better workers

Better in this case equates to "same capability for less cost". Lower wages do not necessarily mean worse working conditions. In fact, from talking to Indian friends who have worked both in the US and in India the actual working conditions are equivalent. So why are you mad exactly?

Re:Is this a problem? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232957)

They're equivilant because they have their own stable power grids, running water, satellite hookup. Go outside of the little fortress/island and you'll find the real india, desolate villages with no power/telephone lines. See, in America, we subsidize those people in far away places. It doesn't make any financial sense to help those people, it only makes social sense.

Equivalent? (1)

gordonb (720772) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233107)

I don't know if you are being sarcastic. In India, while the cubicle may look the same, the employment conditions are not equivalent. There is no Social Security (although that may not be here for us either, based on current short-sighted administration and Congressional policy), Medicare, OSHA, and a host of other government mandates/programs.

These programs do make a difference in employees' quality of life. Many were instituted in response to problems in the workplace (safety, child labor laws) that were not addressed by the all-powerful market, that totem of faith for the GOPers. In India, the Phillipines, Malaysia, and other outsourcing destinations, salaries are less due in part to lower costs of living. Standards of living are not the same, particularly when you consider public utilities (such as water), the health care system, and the hidden costs of environmental degradation. Employers' non-personnel costs are also less as labor and employment standards are not comparable, tax avoidance is endemic, and current tariff regimes allow, even encourage, movement of production and services.

Re:Is this a problem? (2, Insightful)

Dark Lord Seth (584963) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232975)

And who will pay for those additional taxes? That's right, the customers will. Sorry chap.

Re:Is this a problem? (4, Insightful)

Copid (137416) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233083)

Here's what follows from that: Your goods are no more competitive than they were when you weren't circumventing US employment law. You're making no more money than you did when you weren't circumventing US employment law. Thus, the incentive to circumvent US employment law goes away. The customers are either going to pay for additional taxes or additional worker benefits. If the taxes are imposed at the right rates, there should be no difference.

India -- Democracy (1)

d4v3v1l (728709) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232855)

In contrast to many of the other potential outsopurcing candidates, India is a Democracy and HAS Unions and Wage Laws.
It's simply cheaper. Competition for Jobs is as hard there as it is in the USA, so the extra hours aren't really objected against.

Re:India -- Democracy (2, Informative)

Serveert (102805) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232904)

Every country has worker protection laws, even China. Does that mean they're enforced or are strong? No. American companies would never be allowed to list age limitations, yet Indian companies have no qualms. So, in this context, the protection laws in America ar stronger.

Re:India -- Democracy (1)

GileadGreene (539584) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232951)

Maybe American companies can't, but the US government sure can. You aren't even allowed enter an officer training program unless you will be "under 27 at the date of commissioning", or something along those lines.

Re:India -- Democracy (1)

Serveert (102805) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232983)

American companies cannot do this, period. The military gets away with all sorts of things like this.

Re:Is this a problem? (1, Informative)

pavon (30274) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232901)

This is why we outsource to India. Less government regulation, fewer worker protection laws, fewer environmental regulations...

While you could make a case for this in some industries, like textiles, it isn't the major factor in most cases of outsourcing. The main reason that companies outsource is because people are willing to work for less elsewhere, and this is overwelmingly because the standard of living is lower in their country.

As someone else pointed out India does have unions and wage laws, and if they think they need more they are a democracy and can pass more, just like the US did. So no this is not a problem at all.

Re:Is this a problem? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232946)

While you could make a case for this in some industries, like textiles, it isn't the major factor in most cases of outsourcing. The main reason that companies outsource is because people are willing to work for less elsewhere, and this is overwelmingly because the standard of living is lower in their country.

Why is the cost of living lower in India? Because they don't have things like subsidized power or telephone lines. That's right, in America, you pay more for, say, telephone service so those people in the middle of nowhere can have service, otherwise companies wouldn't deem in cost efficient enough to erect wiring to them. America was once a source of cheap labor, then that changed after we put into law things like this. India is merely playing catchup.

Re:Is this a problem? (4, Insightful)

GileadGreene (539584) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232968)

...this is overwelmingly because the standard of living is lower in their country

It's not so much the standard of living as the cost of living. For example, the film industry has started doing lots of low-cost production in Australia and New Zealand. Now, the standard of living in those countries is comparable to (and arguably better than) the standard of living in the US. But the cost of living is much lower, so the labor is cheaper. From what I understand of the situation in India the standard of living for Indian tech workers is simialr to that of their American counterparts, but again, their cost of living is much lower.

Nothing new here (4, Insightful)

cpu_fusion (705735) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232716)

If you consider the working/living conditions in mainland China, home of countless "outsourced" wage-slaves for western industry, age-discrimination seems downright harmless.

soviet (-1)

Coneasfast (690509) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232717)

in soviet india, ajay kapoor takes your job!
in soviet USA, dave clark takes your job!
in soviet russia, you don't have a job to take!

Retirement: Whoo hoo! (5, Funny)

ScriptMonkey (660975) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232720)

Cool. It looks like I'd be up for retirement on my 26th birthday (10 weeks from now) if I worked there. I'm sure the pension plan includes all the starvation I can eat. Famine. mmm....

Re:Retirement: Whoo hoo! (2, Informative)

challahc (745267) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232841)

You could be a team leader for 2 years before the famine.

HR's business (5, Interesting)

fembots (753724) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232722)

Why do they want to make the age requirement public? This can be discretely discussed with the HR department and just filter anyone over xx age out automatically.

Re:HR's business (2, Interesting)

kunudo (773239) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232804)

Why do they want to make the age requirement public? This can be discretely discussed with the HR department and just filter anyone over xx age out automatically.

Maybe they did, and someone noticed?

Re:HR's business (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232806)

I think they see it as apealing to their customers.

The young people are probably seen as being more trainable, etc -- an therefore apealing to companies like IBM who hire them.

Re:HR's business (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232932)

Yeah, because surely nobody would notice that all your employees happen to fall in very clearly defined age brackets.

Two points: (5, Interesting)

dncsky1530 (711564) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232727)

1] People start to work and have kids at an earlier age in India, by ensuring people are between certain ages, you ensure they will be with the company a long time.

2] More resources on age descrimination [yahoo.com]

Re:Two points: (3, Interesting)

Darkman, Walkin Dude (707389) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232791)

Sorry, this first point here is a crock of Sh*t. Speaking as an employer myself, I will ALWAYS take more experienced people, whatever their age, over younger types. It makes solid economic sense to do so. Less problems on all sides.

If I decided to take on younger people, the only reason I can imagine I would do so would be to milk them for everything they're worth, and then discard them for the next generation of suckers. And that is what is happening right now in India.

It's Justifiable (-1, Flamebait)

illuminata (668963) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232736)

Come on, they are getting close to thirty. Old people are more forgetful, slower, and rather unpleasant to be around.It won't be long until their poopers start giving out on them. You can't have a clean, functional workplace with a bunch of people soiling their adult diapers. And they eat a lot of curry, too.

Does anybody know what the Indian equivalent of a Wal-Mart is? They could get some work as a door greeter there. Doesn't take much out of a person to say hi and all.

This is gonna get worse. (3, Insightful)

Orclover (228413) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232746)

Im 32 years old (in a couple days), thankfully i run a small buisness network of 60 systems spread out across a city. But if my job ever went south again i always thought i could fall back into computer/networking phone support once again. But unlike 10 years ago it seems there are little oportunities for someone my age to work in such a field, first because most of those jobs got shipped off to malaysia and india (fuck you dell), and now because im over the hill. Seems to be yet another reason to hang onto my current job with a iron griop.

If you want to keep your job (1)

Crashmarik (635988) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233027)

Always be looking for another one. Your'e employer knows in his bones that you would dump him the minute something better comes along and he has to be willing to do the same to you. Your best defense is to be continuously aware and in the path of other opportunities.

Nice theory, but... (4, Insightful)

corporatemutantninja (533295) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232747)

...there's a simple reason call centers want young people: they have to retrain them to use American accents (actually, they teach a neutral accent they call "Global English") and older learners have a harder time changing their accents. Old dog/new tricks and all. Judging by the posters selection of links, I'd say he is grasping for ways to bad-mouth the Indians in order to keep the jobs here.

Then they can become H1-Bs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232818)

So ... they turn 25 in India, ship them to the US to replace older worker here!

Yay for Globalism !!!

Re:Nice theory, but... (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232836)

"(actually, they teach a neutral accent they call "Global English") "

I've received quotes from Indian outsourcing companies where they could supply a staff of people who spoke (a) brittish, (b) southern/texas, and (c) american/california accents, and promised they'd adjust their style to match the caller.

They also quoted rates for having the staff read the local newspaper of key markets so they could make appropriate comments about the weather, ball games, etc.

This service was much more expensive than the competitor's heavy-indian accent bid, though.

Re:Nice theory, but... (3, Insightful)

StrawberryFrog (67065) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232924)

they teach a neutral accent

There's no such thing. It is imposible to speak English (or any other language for that matter) without pronouncing your words in a particualr way. That is a way of speaking, an accent. Travel a bit, and you'll realise that "unaccented speach" is really just "the way people talk where I grew up".

Re:Nice theory, but... (4, Informative)

corporatemutantninja (533295) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233120)

I didn't say "unaccented" I said "neutral accent" and there absolutely is such a thing. It's simply a language spoken without an identifiable regional accent, sort of an "average" accent. In the U.S. we have "newscaster English" which is neutral-American, and in the U.K. BBC newsreaders speak in neutral-British. In India they try to teach something which to American, UK, and Australian speakers sounds neutral. And they do a damned good job of it. I'm from Maine, and believe me they weren't talking "the people talk where I grew up." Ayuh.

And, I was "traveling a bit": I was observing an accent training class at Daksh in Mumbai two weeks ago.

Know of what ye speak.

Re:Nice theory, but... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9233176)

This reminds me of the uproar when kids in Bavaria were being taught "television-german" instead of the good honest Bavarian dialect.

Life expectancy in India (4, Interesting)

thedogcow (694111) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232756)

This poses a problem if they want younger crowds as the life expectancy in India is less compared to other countries See here [indiatogether.org]

reverse age discrimination (0, Flamebait)

slothman32 (629113) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232762)

I'll probably get flamed but how come whenever we talk about age discrimination we prevent older people from working. We never talk about the fact that millions 17- people are discriminated all the time for all kinds of things ranging from big machinery to going to movies. Yes in many cases they might not be mentally or physically mature but they often are. I was mentally the same as I am now when I was 14 or even younger. And as an age many "older" people are just as "dumb" as younger ones. Sometimes people talk about needing a cutoff but we don't need one. Age just isn't related to most of that. Size might be for a few things but not most. They can't even vote but the law expects them to be tried as adults. Wasn't there a revolution about taxing without voting! It's isn't fair and won't be until children get all rights due to them.

Re:reverse age discrimination (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232794)

Please tell me you're 14.

Re:reverse age discrimination (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232864)

I was mentally the same as I am now when I was 14 or even younger.

That's because you're stupid.

And as an age many "older" people are just as "dumb" as younger ones. Sometimes people talk about needing a cutoff but we don't need one.

The laws are there to prevent parents from working their children to death, which they used to do, in mills, right up until the 1930s (when noone could get jobs anyway). Read some history for Christ's sake.

Because they're children. (4, Funny)

glrotate (300695) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232902)

Who let you in here anywhay?

Re:reverse age discrimination (5, Insightful)

Arcanix (140337) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232939)

Yes, this all sounds great but personally I would prefer not to have a bunch of kids who have no clue about the real world and no concept of responsibility be selecting who will run this country.

The problem with 14-17 year olds is not in their lack of intelligence, but in their lack of common sense. I think the main issue is that the majority of kids do not support themselves and until they do the really shouldn't have much of a say in how things should go.

I suppose I could possibly support a measure for them voting if they were not claimed as a dependent on anyone's tax return.

Re:reverse age discrimination (1)

servognome (738846) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233048)

umm so at age 18 you magically get common sense? It would be nice if there were a test that required you to demonstrate you had the basic sense to mark the right box... unfortunately like everything else it could be used for evil

This is bad even for /. (3, Insightful)

sultanoslack (320583) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232774)

Wow, this should get a gold metal for such a high number of mostly unrelated information given in a single article summary.

The age discrimination IBM was hit with was related to pensioners having their benefits plan changed; it had nothing to do with hiring.

The stuff on the Indian side of things, well, isn't really all that strange. The same thing happens informally in the US and in fact even the government has minimum ages for many elected representatives.

But of course this will just turn into another "Oh, woe is me, I can't believe that skilled people in other countries are getting jobs too." (Nevermind that it's still much harder for an Indian with strong tech skills to find a job than an American.)

Where do you think you are? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232842)

You don't seem to understand the subtleties of Slashdot "editor" duties.

First, bear in mind that Slashdot "editors" are not like typical and sundry media editors. Typical editors check stories for completeness, accuracy, and (at least superficially) ensure the author did his due-diligence when it came to fact checking.

Slashdot "editors"---on the other hand---are hard pressed to ensure the same story hasn't run within the last 48 hours; their success rate is in the low thirty percentile range (subscribers---Taco's coup de main for getting people to actually pay to do the "editors'" job---help out in this regard). Fact checking is non-existent, as they could care less about discouraging plagiarism (most external stories are copied word-for-word), and ensuring stories are topically relevant is for "old media" establishments.

To sum, when you submit a story to Slashdot, the "editors" do the least amount of work possible to get it up on the front page. If it generates enough hits, then that is all they care about.

Re:This is bad even for /. (2, Insightful)

phatsharpie (674132) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233093)

While I agree with you that the IBM comparison isn't valid, since the lawsuit is quite different from the gist of this story, which is the age requirements of hiring in the Indian firm.

However, your comparison of minimum age requirement in US elected representative doesn't really apply in this case. The problem with the hiring in the Indian firm is about maximum age requirement. This is indeed troubling.

I find it strange that people seem to brush off foreign IT hiring practices. Look, outsourcing is an emotional issue for many people, and although I don't particularly like it, it's nevertheless a procedure that is here to stay. However, we have to be somewhat aware of what these outsourcing firms are doing in regards to their hiring. True, we can never hold foreign countries to the same standards that we apply to ourselves in the US, but we get outraged when we hear about GAP and Nike and other apparel company employ child labor or practice any questionable hiring practices, why shouldn't we feel disturbed when foreign IT firms do something similar? Outsourcing proponents often point to the influx of income as good for these foreign workers, but it takes more than just money going towards these companies that makes the workers' life better.

-B

Subject line is too small (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232784)

Yeah, off topic but now I'm really too annoyed to write on topic.

story text is misleading (5, Informative)

poincare (63294) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232800)

From the article: A judge ruled last summer the pension changes IBM made in the 1990s violated federal age discrimination laws. Palmisano said Tuesday IBM hopes to win the case on appeal and avoid an estimated $6 billion in liability.

IBM has discrimiated against older workers in the past, and they're buying a company that discrimiates against aged works now, but other than sharing the common feature of discrimination by big blue, these two events are unrelated.

Your mom (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232962)

Your mom is unrelated.

Time to UNIONIZE (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232810)

This is outrageous, yes, but was it really unexpected? With all these companies outsourcing American IT jobs to the Far East, there is only one soultion, one that will keep American corporations from exploiting their workers, both at home and abroad: unionization.

I've heard a lot of arguments against this in my time (many of them on Slashdot), and most of them boiled down to this: IT workers, as professionals, shouldn't unionize. Unions are for blue-collar workers. While I suppose this is a nice way to think about your job and make you feel better about paying tens of thousands of dollars a year for a degree in Information Studies, it's ignoring reality. Perhaps the best way I've seen someone put it is, in reply to someone complaining about needing a buzzword-compliant resume, that such requirements should be a clue that IT workers are now a commodity. Like it or not, IT is the new factory worker of the 21st century, and if IT workers don't wake up and unionize, they'll get screwed so fast their heads will spin.

Maybe the AFL-CIO or UAW would be up to the task? They're only a postage stamp or a phone call away.

Re:Time to UNIONIZE (1)

Noose For A Neck (610324) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232895)

Agreed. Big Business has been exploiting us ever since the dot-bomb crash back in 1999. It's time to take out the trash and organize, use our collective bargaining power to get us a little job security and better wages. If autoworkers can do it, then we can do it, too!

Re:Time to UNIONIZE (1)

pyrrhonist (701154) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232965)

Maybe the AFL-CIO or UAW would be up to the task? They're only a postage stamp or a phone call away.

Get the Teamsters involved! Think about it: If IT workers were Teamsters, and there was a contract disagreement between IT and management, then NOTHING would get shipped ANYWHERE by truck. That would really be an issue for most large corporations.

Don't rely on professional organizations like the IEEE and ACM to help you with your career. These are international organizations, and don't give a rat's ass about IT in the USA.

Scew Unions (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9233153)

They served their purpose when needed. But, like the RIAA and MPAA, they're obsolete now.

Slightly off topic.... but along the same lines.. (4, Insightful)

tonywestonuk (261622) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232830)

The best age group for IT related tasks will, at the moment be between around 28 to 35..... Why?

Well, people in this group grew up with the likes of the VIC 20, the ZX81, The Oric, The 80's 8 bit computers that we learnt and understood like riding a bike. No qualification, or degree will ever match what we know, and understand. Where students now learn computing in Uni, or secondary school, get taught IT skills, we learnt it through love of it, at 10 years of age, or earlier.
We are the David Beckhams of the industry, The Tiger Woods. Understand that in this era, we are kings, and our ability will never be surpassed by anyone just getting a degree, however young. I am 31, and the my best work (so far) has been in the last year or so. In my workplace, we have had people younger, but, though they can code well, they seam to just miss the point... They just analyze any problem, and apply it to what they've learnt at school or uni, they do not truly understand that problem, or how to realize the best solution.... and there solution is, well, ok, but never shows any innovation or 'Wow factor'

.... Tony.

Re:Slightly off topic.... but along the same lines (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9232893)

Yeah, and I bet you can hit Randy Johnson's fastball too.

Re:Slightly off topic.... but along the same lines (1)

Arcanix (140337) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232966)

Yes, you're right, no one younger than 28 has any love of computing, we're all just out to make a quick buck with our fancy university degrees.

There are still kids that love computers (1)

SilentJ_PDX (559136) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233040)

Yes, there are a lot more "I did IT because it pays well" kids out there these days. But there are also plenty of kids who cut their teeth at age 10 on 386s and 486s and even Pentiums just for the love of it.

If your employer is hiring more of the former, I agree they are getting less capable people. But that's the fault of your employer because I know plenty of kids out there who love computers and understand them as well as I understood my Apple IIe. A lot of them are reading your post now...

Ummm, no. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9233179)

I'm a very ancient and creaky 40. My first computer was a VIC 20. I'm also a very skilled software engineer. So, by your rules I'm too old. Thanks.

-Scott

Anyone ever looked at job ads in Japan? (3, Informative)

dbleoslow (650429) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232872)

Almost every job listed will have some sort of min/max age requirement. You could even be denied a job based on your blood type! Having type B blood puts you at a disadvantage from the start when looking for a job in Japan.

Re:Anyone ever looked at job ads in Japan? (1)

sashang (608223) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232930)

Why don't the Japanese like people with type B blood?

Why?? (1)

gatkinso (15975) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232952)

Hmm??

Re:Why?? (1)

alannon (54117) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233070)

Most corporate jobs in Japan highly stress conformity. Blood type 'B' is associated with unpredictable and non-conformist people.

Read here [japanvisitor.com] .

Re:Anyone ever looked at job ads in Japan? (1)

jwave (768379) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232960)

Having type B blood puts you at a disadvantage from the start when looking for a job in Japan.

I'm ignorant of Japanese employment-do. Why is blood-type B such a bad thing?

Answer (5, Interesting)

Adam9 (93947) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233053)

I didn't know why they consider blood type as a hiring factor, so I found this:

Personality assessment through blood type analysis has been prevalent in Japan sine the early 1970's. The Japanese term for this theory is 'ketsu-eki-gata', and is taken surprisingly seriously by the people from that part of the world. Books have been published on the topic, selling very well. In fact, Toshitaka Nomi has published over twenty-five books, and is considered the worlds leading expert on the topic. The blood type categories are used in a similar way to astrology in the west, focusing mostly on relationship aspects of life. Nomi goes further in his books though, even using blood type make up within a country as a theory for that nationality's general national traits.

Japanese companies often take blood type into consideration when hiring employees, to ensure harmony throughout the staff. All the major car companies in Japan have reorganised themselves in order to attain positive blood type combinations in different working sectors. Surveys have been carried out to try and determine the preferences of different blood types, be it for food, clothes or any recreational activity. It is also a popular topic of conversation in social settings.


More can be found here [allsands.com] .

Let's hear it for Logan's Run! (-1, Offtopic)

tylernt (581794) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232887)

Man, that was a great movie. Jenny Agutter was a hottie, and those flaming pistols were cool. What's even better is you can find the DVD in the Wal-Mart $5 bin.

I tried to name my daughter Jessica Six, but the wife wouldn't go for it. :( At least she let me name her Jessica. :)

Re:Let's hear it for Logan's Run! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9233173)

Offtopic? Uh, hellloo, Logans Run was mentioned in the freaking article!!

workers of the world (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232967)

With good salaries, adequate benefits (including environmental protections), and growth opportunities, the American workforce leads the world. Merely taxing foreign products produced without those costs hurts American workers when we buy those products. How can we structure global trade (in products, services, and labor) to *raise* the standards of workers abroad? That will equalize not only the price competition, but also the worker abuse that translates into so many other problems that inevitably attack Americans wealth and health: war, famine, plague. Then we'll be left to compete on productivity, innovation and market appeal - where Americans will continue to lead. But we'll all be in it together.

If only... (1)

JonLatane (750195) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232971)

If only there were more companies like Daksh, we would never have to worry about outsourcing again.

I feel utterly horrible saying that, but it's the first thing that popped into my mind.

Just More Of The NeoLiberal Economic Nirvana! (0, Flamebait)

Cryofan (194126) | more than 10 years ago | (#9232985)

Thanks be to Milton Friedman, Presidents Clinton and Bush and free trade!

This is quite common in the third world (2, Insightful)

rollingcalf (605357) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233004)

They can legally discriminate based on race, age, gender, religion, or anything they want. So companies can limit their applicants by flagrantly advertising age, gender, and other requirements that would be illegal in the US.

Businesses have much less regulations and worker protections than in the US and other industrialized countries, so they often collude to set artificially high prices for goods (although those prices may be still lower than in the US, due to the limited income of third-world consumers) and artificially low wages and working conditions for labor. And a handful of families control the majority of the wealth in the country.

US companies that outsource should realize that the countries and companies that have a blatant disregard for worker's rights and fair competition also aren't going to give damn about less tangible ideas like intellectual property and privacy.

Unions are dead (4, Insightful)

Grieveq (589084) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233008)

There is plenty of fodder in the above comments that could be remarked upon. (Bashing of US companies outsourcing jobs to India) But I think the current state of the economy shows that in the long run, the outsourcing of low wage/skill jobs to India and China is a good thing.

"we-don't-need-no-stinking-unions Amazon."

Unions are dead. Japanese car makers, Walmart, and many other business have show us this time and time again. Unions kill creativity, bring little benefit to workers anymore, and will only stagnate the company's growth.

age discrimination in india is legal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9233024)

you would find age restriction for almost all government jobs too and also in almost all educational institute. my sister is a handicap and there was not enough facility in a village where she grew up (she is more than a decade older than I am). so she picked up her study later when we moved to a city. she was denied almost all job posting due to her age by the time she finished studies (and this included several govt jobs). The age was cited as reason in writing.

I doubt there is any way to sue any firm based on age discrimination in job in India.

Welcome to the information age... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9233046)

Back in the days of the industrial age, older workers' experience was an asset. Hence the higher pay. Today, age means obsolescence, especially in hi-tech fields. The material taught in college cs classes changes almost every year. Why keep 30-year olds around when the kids out of college are better trained, better motivated, and will work for less?

Trust free markets (5, Insightful)

argoff (142580) | more than 10 years ago | (#9233054)

If a company doens't hire someone because they're too old, then let them suffer the natural consequences of not getting the most effective people for the job. If a company hires a young person because they can pay them cheap and exploit them - make your own company, hire tham away, pay them more and pick the cream of the crop at will.

Of course, sometimes companies take advantage of the system to expolit people, like communisim. Other times they take advantage of phoney property rights like copyright and patnet monopolies, other times they take advantage of false barriers to entry - like excessive regulation of the railroad industry, or RF frequencies. Not to mention our centralized monitary/tax system routinely rips people off, and locks people into the system when it comes to credit or money. - But from my experience, these problems have more to do with the publics poor belief systems than free markets.

Moral: societies that have more libertarian values have more economic prosperity for the little guy.

This too will pass.. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9233113)

The unemployment rate in India is huge and the young workers comprise the bulk of the population, as they age, the laws will catch up. Remember america was built by immigrants and returning WWII soldiers who didn't have much of the same protections.. as these workers age the social constructs will catch up with them as well.

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