Revelations that the Massachusetts Institute of Technology hid donations made by convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein has stirred a debate about the ethics within the administration of the school. During an interview with Boston Public Radio on Friday, tech writer Andy Ihnatko said that the university is not the only culprit of taking money from questionable sources. Ihnatko believes that while many universities and companies justify taking money from people like Epstein by producing good products and research, the positives do not outweigh the negatives.

“It’s just terrible,” Ihnatko said. “It has a caustic effect on the entire institution that the money is supposed to be helping.”

Ihnatko also said that he hopes the controversy at MIT also generates a conversation about the culture within the tech sector. He said that it’s common in the tech sector for women to experience harassment and sexism.

“Every time I talk to a friend of mine who’s female and is in academia or in some of the biggest tech companies you can name … so many times it is just these stories of horrible, horrible treatment,” Ihnatko said. “Not bordering on criminal, but I would not pick up a colleague and lift her up in the air just because I can, and this is the sort of stuff that [happens].”

Ihnatko is a tech writer and blogger. He tweets at @Ihnatko





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