If you haven’t noticed, the Google Doodle team — which creates those special Google logos — has been making up for lost time in 2014, adding significantly more women to the number of historic figures featured on Google’s various regional and global homepages. Now, nearly half the logos feature women.
Google was called out in February after a revealing study by female advocacy group SPARK uncovereded Google’s considerable lack of female-focused Doodles. The study found only 17 percent of the Google logos honoring historic figures between 2010 and 2013 celebrated women.
Google Doodle team lead Ryan Germick acknowledged the site’s shortcomings at the time of the study, claiming his team was working toward evening the number of female versus male logos, “We’ve been working to fix the imbalance in our doodles – this year we’re hoping to have women and men equally represented.”
The number of women featured so far this year on Google’s homepage proves Germick has made good on his team’s effort to fix the imbalance between male and female logos.
Of the 115 regional and global logos listed on the Google Doodles archive page for 2014, 48 honor historic figures, and 23 of those are women. That brings the percentage of woman-based logos to 48% versus 52% for male-focused logos.
Sadly, drawing attention to gender bias in the tech world has become cliché. Just last week, Search Engine Land’s Ginny Marvin reported on a study conducted by Wordstream offering quantitative data that female digital marketers are undervalued by 21 percent compared to their male counterparts.
What’s refreshing is to see someone admit there’s a problem, and then actually do something about it as the Google Doodle team has done.
In addition to upping the number of women featured on various Google homepages, the Google Doodle team marked “International Women’s Day” on March 8 with an interactive logo that included the following film recognizing over 100 inspiring women from around the world:
On the US Google homepage, the number of females featured since the start of the year has outpaced the number men.
Of the 17 US Google Doodles this year, writer John Steinbeck and chemist Percy Julian were the only men honored with a logo, while the following seven women have been featured on Google’s US homepage:
- Zora Neale Hurston, January 7
- Dian Fossey, January 16
- Harriet Tubman, February 1
- Agnes Martin, March 22
- Dorothy Irene Height, March 24
- Audrey Hepburn, May 4
- Dorothy Hodgkin, May 12
Google’s Harriet Tubman logo kicked off Black History Month.