A good boss knows when to offer support and when to keep his nose out of his employees’ private lives. Jack Ma, the co-founder and CEO of Alibaba, very enthusiastically made a suggestion about his workers’ lovemaking frequency.
Alibaba and many other tech giants recently unveiled a extremely rigorous “996” schedule that calls for 6-day 9 AM to 9 PM work weeks.
The company also celebrated its annual Ali Day, which also has a ceremony for all the employees who were married in the past year. After defending the 996 policy, Ma playfully asked his workers to institute a “669” policy. Ma implied that he wants them to have sex “six days, six times, with “longer” duration being the key to making it extra efficient.
Elaborating further, Ma claimed “The key to a happy marriage is to make good use of ‘ding ding,’ (ding ding being slang for the male anatomy). The number 9 can also be pronounced as a double entendre.
The company posted Ma’s statement with a winky face emoji on Weibo, a bold move for such a public and prolific entity.
The rest of Ma’s speech built on the 996 principle, declaring that marriages have a responsibility to produce “results” in the form of children. Ma also likened starting a family to making an investment.
Response to Ma’s statements has been decidedly mixed. Some coworkers protested that they simply don’t have enough time with the oppressive work schedule. One popular post by an annoyed netizen asked “Get off work at 9 pm. Make it home by 10:30 pm. Who has the energy?”
Others saw it as just another microaggression in a long pattern of office-based sexual harassment. They feel that his statements were clearly directed towards men and degrade women as being responsible for their gratification. Ma’s critics believe his jokes are no laughing matter because they reduce hard-working women to submissive sexual stereotypes.