All year long, The Frisky has blogged about representations of women and girls in the media. And what a year it was! The Onion tweeting Quvenzhane Wallis a “cunt.” The “slap Hillary Clinton” game. The music video for Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines.” Miley Cyrus’ everything. I could go on and on and on. Or you could watch this supercut from the folks behind the documentary “Miss Representation” of the highs and lows of women’s representations in the media in 2013. To be honest, it is reeeeally depressing when the sexism over the course of an entire year is condensed into two-second clips and presented all at once. And that’s even with me disagreeing with every single example used in this supercut. You know that ladyblogger cliche, “We’ve come a long way, baby!”? The truth is, we really haven’t. [YouTube.com/MissRepresentation]
Tag Archives: media
On Monday night at a media industry event, a reporter from Capital New York asked Cosmopolitan editor-in-chief Joanna Coles about her magazine and feminism. Coles responded that Cosmo is “deeply feminist,” and covers issues like “equal pay for equal work,” “sensible control for guns,” and “access to contraception and access to abortion, should, God forbid, you need one.”
“There’s nothing more mainstream than equal pay for equal work. I mean, it’s completely obvious that’s what feminism should be for, and for women’s right to choose what happens to their own bodies. It’s unbelievable in 2013 we happen to be talking about this, but the battle over healthcare, the battle for women’s right to choose their own contraception, that ludicrous panel full of old men in Washington ruling what women could and couldn’t do—where is feminism then? Where are all the left-wing academics? Actually, Cosmo has been out there clamoring all along for this.”
Some feminists are not so happy about this, perceiving Coles’ remarks as dismissive of academics in areas like gender studies, race theory, history and others that have had a direct result on feminist advances of the 20th and 21st century. But I’m actually happy that the editor of the most major women’s mag in America didn’t run screaming in the other direction when the F-word came up.
Keep reading »
If you are a lady of a certain age with an Internet connection, chances are you read Jezebel.com. In fact, you might be on it right now. The blog launched in 2007 and truly proved — to the mainstream media, to our feminist foremothers who complain that women today are apathetic, to men — that there is an appetite for smart, sassy, feminist commentary on the Internet. The site inspires intense feelings amongst feminists and Reddit-trolling men’s rights activists alike — the former critiquing the site for its coverage of hot-button issues and the latter for encouraging women “to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians.”
OK, that last one was Pat Roberston, but I am betting he would not like Jezebel either. Which is precisely why I love it.
So you can imagine how thrilling it is that Anna Holmes, founder and original editor of Jezebel, has published The Book Of Jezebel, a coffee table encyclopedia of modern womanhood. The contributors’ page reads like a who’s who of the smartest women writers today, who have written entries ranging from “Roseanne” to abortion to Alice Walker to vulvas. No wonder the conservative web site The Daily Caller already had an apoplectic fit about The Book Of Jezebel, accusing its “angry women” authors and fans of having widespread daddy issues.
I called up Anna Holmes to discuss the book’s release and her thoughts on the feminist media ecosystem today. Here’s our conversation, after the jump!
If you were on summer vacation when Bustle.com launched this summer, allow me to catch you up on the startup community’s version of a shitshow: in a piece on the tech blog PandoDaily, the founder of Bleacher Report, Bryan Goldberg, announced he had created a website for women. Bustle.com is not just not just any web site for women — it’s THE GREATEST WEBSITE FOR WOMEN OF ALL TIME. “Isn’t it time for a women’s publication that puts world news and politics alongside beauty tips?” Goldberg wrote. “What about a site that takes an introspective look at the celebrity world, while also having a lot of fun covering it?”
Bustle hired a whole mess of low-paid young female writers and interns to crank out high volumes of content daily — a strategy Goldberg presented as women writing about content that interests them. He, of course, would be the fundraising brains of the outfit — as he so eloquently put it, “knowing the difference between mascara, concealer, and eye-liner is not my job.” Perplexingly, Goldberg also shared with the world his somewhat mangled definition of feminism … which appears to be no more complicated than, you know, employing women: “Is [Bustle] a feminist publication? You’re damn right this is a feminist publication.”
Sadly for Goldberg’s feminist credentials, Internet sleuthing quickly discovered that Bustle would pay writers only $100 per day, which translates to about $24,000 a year pre-tax. So Bustle is a feminist blog except for that whole “paying women a living wage” part! When Goldberg first PandoDaily article was widely mocked across the Internet (including on The Frisky) — the best headline was Amanda Hess at XX Factor, “Man Creates Very First Website for Women Ever” — he tried again with an apology post, which basically somewhat backtracked on everything his first post had said. Keep reading »
- CBS Miami actually did an article on the best places to watch hot women “without looking pervy.” (Note CBS’s original URL for the headline.) Shocking locations include the beach, bars and a casino. What a proud day for journalism. [Jezebel]
- Meet Cornelia “Nina” Pillard, one of President Obama’s picks for the District of Columbia federal appeals court. Conservatives are all aflutter that she might be a “radical” feminist, whatever they think that even means. [Slate]
- ESPN announced the subjects of their new “30 for 30″ documentary series and female athletes are still largely absent. [Think Progress] Keep reading »
A women’s studies class at the University of Saskatchewan made this provocative video which questions commonly perpetuated stereotypes about gender in media. Pointing out that women are often in a subjugated position — turned into objects themselves, along with whatever object they’re supposedly selling, placed in prone, sexually provocative poses — the video connects violent images in the media with their real-life consequences. From the beginning of advertising, there have been ads that have capitalized on female sexuality, gender stereotypes and violence against women. (Seriously, some of these ads would make even Pete Campbell blush.) While it’s tough to say just how much advertising is responsible, it’s pretty clear that violence against women is rampant and more women than ever are going to extreme lengths to pursue a “perfect” body. And even men are not immune — as the video notes, media images have been linked to a recent increase in depression among men, too. Keep reading »
The always-inquisitive Jada Pinkett-Smith recently posed a question that has many people scratching their heads and some folks outright upset. In short, she’s wondering if black women ask to be represented in mainstream media, on the covers of magazines like Vanity Fair, shouldn’t white women be represented on the covers of traditionally black magazines like Essence, Ebony and JET?
The answer? Yes and no. Keep reading »
Today In We Should Be Careful About Posting Other People’s Photos On The Internet Accusing Them Of Shit They May Not Have Actually Done:
Former MTV VJ Dave Holmes took to his Tumblr blog today to clear something up: he is not the Dave Holmes who is managing/dating Azealia Banks and allegedly tried to rough her up.
So kindly please stop reposting pictures of him on the Internet accusing him of being a domestic abuser, okay? Keep reading »
A British watchdog group called Women In Journalism has carried out a four-week study of UK newspapers and had these dismayingly sexist findings about who ends up on the front page:
- Male writers
- Photographs of Kate Middleton, Pippa Middleton, or missing child Madeline McCann
Iconic Fear Of Flying author Erica Jong has publicly criticized Arianna Huffington — who uses the unpaid labor of thousands of bloggers on The Huffington Post — and accused her of “hurting writing as a profession.” A feisty Ms. Jong spoke to The Slant, a journalism blog, about Huffington’s effect on the media biz and, wow-ee, she did not hold back. (Which is precisely why I love her.) Keep reading »