After criticizing how white tech is, venture capitalist deals with blowback

Samara Mejia Hernandez just wanted to draw attention to the fact that women and minorities are underrepresented in tech.

But she got more than she bargained for when a post she published last week on the subject, “Why your boss is still a white guy,” quickly went viral.

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Chicago developers launch Decred, a Bitcoin alternative

If you’re not sure you understand Bitcoin, you just fell another step behind: Decred, a digital currency created by former Bitcoin developers in Chicago, is the latest alternative coin seeking acceptance among cryptocurrency enthusiasts.

Company 0, the Chicago-based maker of Bitcoin tools and secure communications software, launched Decred widely Monday, CEO Jake Yocom-Piatt said.

By midday Tuesday, Decred was trading on at least one exchange for less than 1 percent of the value of Bitcoin, which was worth about $373 at the time — giving the new coin a value of $1.27.

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Venture capitalists are so white – but what if they weren’t?

What if venture capitalists looked less like Oscar voters and more like the rest of Chicago?

The vast majority — 87 percent — of venture capitalists are Caucasian, according to a 2011 survey from the National Venture Capital Association, and 89 percent are male. Only 4 percent identify as African-American or Latino nationally, and there are very few in Illinois. The widely mocked Oscar voter lineup is 94 percent white and 77 percent male.

It’s hardly a representative group to define what success looks like, whose ideas are funded and even who pursues entrepreneurship to begin with.

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Here’s how ContextMedia plans to hit its goal of hiring 600 new employees by the end of 2016

I spoke to several leaders at Chicago-based health information provider startup ContextMedia to learn about how they are balancing rapid growth with a detailed, multi-phase interview process. The series of interviews and activities is essential for finding good fits and maintaining culture, they said. But the length of the process could be a detriment, some others said. Read the article here.

Everpurse customers are angry; will a national product deal help?

Chicago fashion tech company Everpurse has abandoned production of its eponymous product and shifted attention to pursuing deals with national fashion brands, but not before leaving a trail of angry customers who placed orders that were never filled.

After at least a year of complaints from customers who have paid for bags, Everpurse told them in an email early Thursday morning that it is on the verge of announcing new products in collaboration with a top fashion brand that will allow it to fufill orders. Some customers have had orders pending for more than a year. It is the first communication some of them have received in months.

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YWCA Metropolitan Chicago opens YShop to reach ‘humanity in all of us’

If consumers spent for charity the way they do for personal goods, non-profits such as YWCA Metropolitan Chicago would be raking in a lot more.

That’s why it’s venturing into e-commerce. The YWCA on Friday launched YShop with the hope of capturing consumer dollars, following a trend of non-profits venturing into sales as alternative ways to raise money and support their missions.

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