Now men’s rights advocates in Silicon Valley have galvanized.
“What Google did was wake up sectors of society that weren’t into these issues before,” said Paul Elam, who runs A Voice for Men, a men’s rights group. He said his organization had seen more interest from people in Silicon Valley.
Silicon Valley has always been a men’s space, others said. Warren Farrell, who lives in Marin, Calif., and whose 1993 book, “The Myth of Male Power,” birthed the modern men’s rights movement, said, “The less safe the environment is for men, the more they will seek little pods of safety like the tech world.”
This turn in the gender conversation is good news for Mr. Damore. “The emperor is naked,” he said in an interview. “Since someone said it, now it’s become sort of acceptable.”
He added, “The whole idea that diversity improves workplace output, it’s not scientifically decided that that’s true.”
Mr. Damore filed a labor complaint against Google in August and said more than 20 people had reached out about joining together for a class-action suit about systemic discrimination against men. He is represented by Harmeet Dhillon, a local firebrand lawyer.
“It’s become fashionable in Silicon Valley for people like James, a white man, to be put into a category of less desirable for promotion and advancement,” Ms. Dhillon said. “Some companies have hiring goals like ‘We’ll give you a bonus if you’re a hiring manager and you hire 70 percent women to this organization.’ That’s illegal.”
Google declined to comment.
Two men who worked at Yahoo sued the company for gender discrimination last year. Their lawyer, Jon Parsons, said the female leadership — Yahoo’s chief executive was Marissa Mayer, before Verizon bought the company — had gone too far in trying to hire and promote women. He tied the suit into today’s women-in-tech movement.
“When you’re on a mission from God to set the world straight, it’s easy to go too far,” Mr. Parsons said. “There was no control over women hiring women.”
He said that his clients, Greg Anderson and Scott Ard, had faced gender discrimination in Yahoo’s media teams and that other teams like cars were headed by women, which to Mr. Parsons was a sign of problems.
“No eyebrows are going to rise if a woman heads up fashion,” Mr. Parsons said. “But we’re talking about women staffing positions — things like autos — where it…