Yesterday afternoon, the news broke that Jill Abramson, the executive editor of The New York Times and the first-ever woman to hold that position, was leaving her position. Managing editor Dean Baquet would be replacing her, making him the first-ever African-American executive editor at the Times.
Jill Abramson had been managing editor at the Times (the number two position) since 2003 and before that was the Washington, D.C. bureau chief and an investigative reporter. She was appointed executive editor at the Times back in June 2011. If you don’t give a shit about the NYC media scene, the news may have simply looked like a personnel issue, indistinguishable from any other revolving door news item. But details about Abramson’s tenure and exit point to something bigger — shedding light on how the Times may have mistreated its first female executive editor and illustrating what it still means today to be a woman in power. Keep reading »
The Cannes Film Festival begins today in France. Movie stars along the French Riviera sounds lovely, of course. But Cannes, and every other film festival, is always a reminder of women director’s underrepresentation in the movie business. In the past decade at Cannes, there have been several years when ZERO female directors have had a feature film screened — and that’s in pools of, like, 22 competing films. Keep reading »
What would tabloid headlines look like without sexist commentary? For one thing, they’d be totally boring. Vagenda magazine thought it would be funny to prove this by asking Twitter followers to rewrite tabloid headlines without the sexism. The result evokes that weird moment where you laugh so hard that it eventually turns into tears, and then you’re not sure whether to feel amused or just grim. If you’re in a mood to laugh, you can check out the whole series of tweaked headlines over at Death and Taxes. Can this be an everyday Twitter activity, please? I’d be so in. [Death And Taxes]
When it comes to life as a working mom, not all states are equal. According to a survey by WalletHub, where you live in the United States as a working parent can help determine how much opportunity you have. The survey focused on statistics regarding child care, professional opportunities and work-life balance (I loathe that phrase, but that’s a post for another day). Each state, along with the District of Columbia, was ranked in order of how opportune they are to working moms. Keep reading »
It’s been two weeks since 234 Nigerian schoolgirls were kidnapped from their school and they are no closer to being found. The kidnapping is believed to be orchestrated by a group of Islamist militants called Boko Haram (whose name translates to “Western Education Is Sine”), though they have yet to claim responsibility for the mass abduction. Boko Haram has ties to Al Qaeda and is especially opposed to education for girls.
The girls, ages 15-18, were kidnapped at gunpoint on April 16 when militants stormed the Government Girls’ Secondary School boarding school in Chibok, in the rural northeastern state of Borno. Their school was the only one still open in the area; all other nearby schools were closed due to security threats. Despite the presence of guards, the girls were taken at gunpoint, loaded into trucks and carted off to the nearby Sambisa forest. Not much has been done by Nigerian security leaders to ensure the girls’ rescue, and their families have received little information.
It’s a tragic, gut-wrenching story that we wish was getting more international attention from world leaders. Here are five essential things to know about the kidnapping. Keep reading »
“It’s remarkable that in this day and age, an unlikeable woman is nasty and awful and an unlikeable man is an anti-hero.”
Gone Girl author Gillian Flynn spoke in my city last night, so of course I’m finding that out today. Hers has always been a brain that I’ve wanted to pick, thanks to her masterful crafting of female anti-heroes like Amy Dunne from Gone Girl and Libby Day in Dark Places. (If you haven’t read Dark Places yet, it is, like, 12 times more fucked up than Gone Girl.) Flynn’s female characters just don’t give a shit and it’s such a pleasure to read. Though, I would argue that, deep down, both the protagonists in Gone Girl are pretty nasty and unlikeable! [Last Night's Reading]
Wioletta Komar, a 25-year-old mom of two, is demanding an apology from the retailer Sports Direct after she was forced from of their stores for breastfeeding her son. Komar was waiting for her father, who was to trying on a t-shirt, when she began to nurse her baby son, Daniel. “My son started crying, so I wanted to feed him. I sat on the bench near the shoe rack,” she told UK’s Daily Mail.
Then, an employee of the Nottingham, England shop approached Komar and told her that she could not nurse in the store due to “company policy.” The employee suggested she head to McDonald’s, which had a “baby and mother” room. Other customers were disturbed by the situation and helped Komar push her stroller outside. “It made me feel very upset. I was shaking and I didn’t know what to do. I knew that I was allowed to be there, but what could I do?” Komar said. I can’t help but think that any woman would react the same way to such a stressful situation! Komar made her way outside and into the rain to finish feeding Daniel, where she couldn’t help but cry. “I can’t understand why a baby has to be punished for being hungry and why I need to feel like a criminal when I just want to feed my baby son,” she said. Keep reading »
I’ve written before about issues around payment processors and the sex industry, how businesses like Paypal, WePay and Google Wallet were shutting anyone they suspected of sex work out of using their services.
Well, turns out that a trickle down effect is happening within the banking world, as Chase recently sent letters out to hundreds of porn performers telling them their bank accounts would be shut down May 11th. Perez Hilton posted a photo of one of these letters from adult performer Teagan Presley, and while I am somewhat loath to link to his blog, I think it’s important to read the language. You’ll notice that Chase never specifically cites adult work in their decision, just that they “reviewed the account and determined that we will be closing it on May 11, 2014. Please accept our apologies for the inconvenience.”
I’m sure they’re terribly sorry. Just as they were really apologetic for refusing to process payments for Lovability CEO Tiffany Gaines. Her crime? Selling condoms, because they’re “adult-oriented material”. The same adult oriented material, of course, as Trojan, who could process their payments with no issues through Chase, but never mind. As long as they’re really sorry about it. Keep reading »