In order to avoid potentially offensive terminology, T-Mobile Master Agents have officially been renamed ‘Primary Agents’
T-Mobile is the latest company to remove potentially offensive terminology from their customer-facing positions, by renaming T-Mobile Master Agent to Primary Agent.
The decision comes on the back of the term “master” being deemed offensive due to its ties to the slave trade.
Let’s explore the position of a Master Agent, the shift itself, and then the effects we’re likely to see as the tech industry continues to move toward neutrality.
What is a Master Agent?
The role of a master agent can be defined as the holder of a contract with a carrier with the goal of extending the contract to a network of subagents or partners.
Master Agents essentially work as a liaison between customers and the tech infrastructure world that telecommunications companies like T-Mobile plug into.
Master agents use their established industry network to offer businesses and their clients a range of expertly tailored solutions.
A master agent is so much more than a customer service representative, following the customer through the entire lifecycle.
Now we understand the role of a T-Mobile Master Agent, let’s take a look at the shift to calling the position primary agents.
T-Mobile Master Agents become Primary Agents
T-Mobile Agents have now officially been renamed to Primary Agents.
The more neutral naming convention for the position comes on the back of the Black Lives Matter movement.
When it comes to tech, while the term ‘master’ may refer only to someone providing a system or set of processes for a client, there’s no hiding from the fact that in 2021 eyebrows will be raised.
The subtle references to slavery can no longer be ignored and T-Mobile’s shift to Primary Agents puts them at the forefront of the tech industry’s phasing out of such terminology.
With it now clear that there are individuals who will be hurt by the use of the term Master Agent, T-Mobile has made the call to change.
Making a small change to something as simple as the terminology around a position can avoid unnecessary hurt due to the term’s social context.
In today’s climate, the shift from Master Agent to Primary Agent seems like a no-brainer for all involved.
For anyone who feels marginalized by the society that they’re a part of, seemingly simple changes such as this can have immense effects.
It de-normalizes terminology that we all know can be interpreted in numerous ways and is just the right thing to do.
The effects of T-Mobile’s shift to Neutrality
Following on from the 2020 Black Lives Matter movement, T-Mobile isn’t the only tech company to make subtle changes in order to become more inclusive.
Changes such as T-Mobile’s shift from referring to Master Agents as Primary Agents continues the movement across the telecommunication and tech industries.
While the word master may not intentionally be used in a racially charged manner, there’s no denying that it could be perceived that way.
The entire industry is therefore making the voluntary decision to make the shift toward inclusion.