Trying to stop using “woman in a meeting” language? Look no further than you inbox! This winter, creators at Cyrus Innovation launched “Just Not Sorry,” a Google Chrome plug-in that alerts you when your email language turns apologetic. Those familiar red spell check lines draw users’ attention to phrases like “sorry,” “I think,” and “do you know what I mean?”—lingo creators claim might undermine the strength of your email’s actual message.
The app—clearly targeted at women and available for free download in the Chrome Web Store—also provides feedback on language, calling out phrasing that may appear self-conscious or “make you appear unfit for leadership.”
Though the plug-in may in fact prove useful for women trying to limit their likelihood to apologize, ultimately, it’s just one more example of the over-examination of women’s language. The app doesn’t take into account the double-bind faced my so many women: say sorry and be deemed weak; write boldly and be deemed bossy. How about an app that flags this kind of hyper-judgmental reader bias?
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