28 October 2016
Alibaba wants to hire "encouragement specialists" for its in-house programmers. Photo: internet
Alibaba wants to hire "encouragement specialists" for its in-house programmers. Photo: internet

Alibaba removes job ad seeking assistants with pornstar look

Alibaba pulled an advertisement seeking female candidates to fill an odd programming-related post, after netizens blasted the ad as sexist, materialistic and discriminatory against women.

Programming is an incredibly male-dominated field. And in a bid to boost the productivity of its programmers, the e-commerce giant came up with a unique, if disgusting, plan.

Last Friday, it posted a job ad on its website looking for candidates to work in a new post—programmer encouragement specialist.

Given the title, it is quite clear that Alibaba wants to employ female employees whose main duty is to encourage in-house programmers.

So what exactly is the kind of encouragement that Alibaba wanted its programmers to have?

The company listed six criteria for the job, one of which is that the candidate must look like Japanese porn star Sora Aoi or the elegant Korean artist Song Hye Kyo.

“You have to look stunning to the programmers. Even a quick glance at you should excite and inspire them, and provide waves of positive energy for them,” according to the online ad which was later deleted.

Other duties include ability to praise, compliment and encourage the programmers.

Also, the “specialists” have to wake up programmers early in the morning for meetings, remind them of their daily responsibilities, and encourage them to complete their duties.

The ad attracted waves of criticism from social media. One netizen remarked: “Alibaba is no doubt the industry leader, now they want to employ comfort women.”

Alibaba later removed the ad, explaining the original idea was to seek innovative talents in a humorous way. The group then apologized for making people feel uncomfortable.

According to some mainland media, Alibaba later resumed posting ads for an encouragement specialist, but deleted references to porn stars.

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