Guest Post

Minorities in Web Design

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As of late, there is a lot of talk about the lack of minorities in the web industry and there has been little response to the topic. To be clear, I am not one, but one of my friends and co-worker is and he wanted to share his experience and thoughts on the topic. So, this is article is a guest post from Martin Duran. I’ve read over the article and really enjoyed his thoughts on the subject and hope many more in our industry can appreciate his words as well.


Every now and then, I’ll hear talks about minorities in web design sprinkled into conversation. To be clear, minorities, in this article, pertain to women, Latinos, blacks, and any other classes of
people you don’t see very often around your office.

Why are there minorities in web design?

It’s 2014, equal opportunity is rather prevalent. People of different genders can, frankly, be/do whatever they want. So, why do we see so few women, Latinos, and blacks in web design? I think we could all agree that our culture/industry is pretty exciting. Who wouldn’t want to be a part of it?

I can’t shed light on why exactly there are still obvious minorities in web design. There are probably multiple reasons. I can, however, tell my story.

I’m a minority, I’m a web designer

I recently accepted a front ­end developer position at the “best place for nerds to work,” The Nerdery. It wasn’t until a few weeks ago that I was sitting at my desk when I thought, “Hmm, I’ve only met one other Latino.” We are a company of 400+ professionals, and, while I haven’t met everyone, I’ve only met one other Latino.

Being born in 1989, I’ve grown up as a member of Generation Y and have been exposed to various cultures and lifestyles throughout my life. Honestly, I’ve never felt like a minority anywhere. I don’t feel like a minority at the Nerdery either. Sure, factually I am. However, no one during my time, roughly 3 years, as a front­ end developer has ever made me feel not welcome.

Maybe it’s my generation; we are more tolerant. Nah, I think it’s our industry. We are and typically work with smart people. We share a passion inseparable by race or gender.

Join us!

Ultimately, the community surrounding the web industry is one of the best I’ve ever been a partof. Whether you’re black, a women, or white, if you are interested in joining us, the door is open. After all, code is a universal language.

In response to this article, I had a reader, Marc Manley, who has written about his experiences with minorities in web design. Please be sure to give his article, Where Have All the Black Web Designer Gone, I enjoyed it very much.

11 Responses to “Minorities in Web Design”

  1. Anonymous says:

    I think this is a great article. Many fantastic points are made about the transition that people who gather to do something we are passionate about can ascend from the old way of thought! That being said I am now becoming passionate about this discipline; Hope to hear back soon.

  2. Ivy says:

    Enjoyed your article. Although L&J Processing, LLC has been in business for over 14 years – the process of attracting other minorities for the support of minority owned business has declined.

  3. […] Also, see Jason Kinney’s post, Minorities in Web Design. […]

  4. nodoubtfan says:

    You should check out Revision Path — it’s a website and a podcast that showcases Black web designers.
    http://revisionpath.com

    • jkinney768 says:

      Very cool, thanks for sharing. I’m surprised something like this hasn’t had more recognition.

      • nodoubtfan says:

        I agree! I know the person who runs it, Maurice Cherry, has expressed before how hard it is to get Revision Path noticed in the design community because many people don’t want to “deal” with race.

  5. Zakiya Cameron says:

    Hello,

    I am a senior at California State University- Dominguez Hills and this article as well as Manley’s article have been very insightful. Though I major in Advertising and Public Relations, I have been thinking a lot about this subject. I have been trying to start a blog of my own to get myself out there and all the while I have been thinking “I wish I knew web design.” Though I am in the research phase, I have decided to open a non-profit for the city of Compton (where I reside). The goal would be to introduce, promote, and teach various aspects of web design and graphic design to the kids in our city. With technology constantly changing and opportunities constantly surfacing, I can’t help but to feel that the inner city youth aren’t getting the same opportunities as those in the suburbs or those who attend private school, in which classes are offered in this field. Thank you for your post.

    If it is alright with you, I’d love to pick your brain about some things on this matter. If that is okay, please contact me via email.

    Thank you!

  6. Marc Manley says:

    I wrote on this very same topic back in 2009, while teaching a web design course at Moore College in Philadelphia. In the intervening 5 years there seems to have been little up-tick in the number of web designers of color, at least in the visibility of web designers of color. You may find some of the comments interesting: Where Have All The Black Web Designers Gone?.

    Thanks for keeping the conversation going.

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