“She was awful about me. A real cunt. It could have broken my heart, hearing this woman who had inspired me so much talking about how my body was a crime, but somehow it didn’t, because I think I understand her. She was there to totally crack open our sense of what a woman could be, what her place was, what her voice was.”—Lena Dunham on Joan Rivers
“Yes, Twitter is public. But that’s a sentence that would have been entirely meaningless just 10 years ago. Journalists haven’t fully grappled with exactly what it means. Reporters interested in public opinion used to have to actually go outside, meet people—or at least call them on the phone—and identify themselves as journalists. Now, Twitter connects us to 230 million active users who publish a combined 500 million tweets every single day, giving us a direct line to random acts of advocacy and casual expressions of bigotry. The new, virtual man on the street doesn’t even need to be aware of a reporter’s existence in order to turn up on a highly trafficked news source with name, photo, and social media contact information embedded. It’s the journalist’s “right” to reproduce these public statements, sure. But our rights are expanding radically, while our responsibilities to our sources are becoming more and more optional.”—I wrote about whether everything ever posted on social media is fair game for journalists to turn into news.
“On the Internet, women are overpowered and devalued. We don’t always think about our online lives in those terms—after all, our days are filled with work to do, friends to keep up with, Netflix to watch. But when anonymous harassers come along—saying they would like to rape us, or cut off our heads, or scrutinize our bodies in public, or shame us for our sexual habits—they serve to remind us in ways both big and small that we can’t be at ease online. It is precisely the banality of Internet harassment, University of Miami law professor Mary Anne Franks has argued, that makes it “both so effective and so harmful, especially as a form of discrimination.””—"Why Women Aren’t Welcome on the Internet," my cover story on online harassment, in Pacific Standard.
“This isn’t just about the books. When young women read the hyper-masculine literary canon—what Emily Gould calls the “midcentury misogynists,” staffed with the likes of Roth, Mailer, and Miller—their discomfort is punctuated by the knowledge that their male peers are reading these books, identifying with them, and acting out their perspectives and narratives.”—Amanda Hess on NO REGRETS (from n+1) in Slate. (via skeery)
As a male tribal elder I applaud your defense of the hirsute female form. It has been a lifelong fetish of mine and, in fact, I find the infantilized Barbie shaved female form absolutely repulsive.
There is nothing like a natural unshaved woman, armpits and all. What nectar lies there! Real women smell real and real men need to smell that. Please keep up your ways, it brings hope to this now tired old man who longs for the delicious textures and scents of a good Lark’s nest.
On behalf of millions of suffering men out there I bow to your sensibilities! Carry On!
“O’Keefe, like the rest of us, male and female, desired both these crucial experiences: the possibility of being a subject and that of being an object—a mere body that makes the pulse quicken in someone we love.”—on Georgia O’Keefe’s Body of Art
“In recent years, the bombshell bush has essentially disappeared. Wax-wielding estheticians and permanent lasers have whittled it down or erased it entirely. Pornography has served up a new degree of bareness. When the paparazzi shoot pantyless pop stars exiting limousines, their cameras zoom in on a barren landscape. But it wasn’t always this way. For centuries of artistic tradition, the absence of pubic hair was merely an illusion.”—A short history of female pubic hair.
“When Lily, a 26-year-old Brooklyn woman, revealed at a dinner party that her boyfriend loved a little tongue in his ass, “Someone asked, ‘Did you think that he was perhaps gay?’” She replied, “No, I thought he was perhaps human.””—investigating the taboo against the straight male rimjob.
“The chest of the Sexiest Man Alive is permanently inscribed with a string of Mardi Gras beads. The Sexiest Man Alive has a shark tattoo, which is one step away from a dolphin. The preferred birth control method of The Sexiest Man Alive is pulling out. The Sexiest Man Alive named his band Maroon 5.”—Adam Levine: A Close Reading
The popular narrative of bloggers transitioning to full-time punditry involves a handful of young men in Washington, D.C. But this is my story, too: I used Feministing as a career springboard. It was the first public, online space where it seemed like my opinion mattered. Before, I’d been one of those young women who said, “Aw, I don’t really know that much about this” and “Who cares what I think about that?” Feministing proved that I did know, and people did care. Learning that was more important to my future career than anything I absorbed in j-school.
There is no excuse for not hiring women, whether your publication covers sports or tech or politics. I’m sick of hearing male EICs and CEOs say they really want to change the ratio without ever doing it. It’s not that hard. And by refusing to make it a priority, to just get the job done, the editors of those publications are the ones feeding the Damon Bruce-style trolls. Publish all the smart stuff you want about why Bruce is wrong. Just don’t ever forget that you are part of the problem too.
“Love is so weird. We do and say things when we’re with romantic partners that would seem embarrassing and deranged if shared with the outside world, and that’s exhilarating. Publicity can spoil that intimacy. Even the most delightful inside jokes wither under the harsh light of public scrutiny. Some moments acquire beauty and meaning not through their literal content, but by virtue of their limited audience.”—Never tweet a photo of your boyfriend sleeping, and other rules for social media romance
“[Sofia Coppola] said she’s consistently drawn to teenage characters when writing films because they have time to be introspective, a luxury that adult lives tend to get too crowded for.”—Tavi Gevinson
“Are we hugging here? Oh, we are? So my arms are going over—OK, under. One over, one under? Or is this an open-faced, one-arm-clutching-the-opposite-shoulder situation? Should our torsos graze? Is that weird? Where is your mouth—are you making a legitimate attempt to kiss my cheek right now, or are we doing one of those pretend ones? Dear God there’s no time: I have anchored my ass a foot away from your body, flattened my face into your clavicle, and am now waving my rag-doll arms limply from between your armpits. Great to see you!!”—Hugs are falsely intimate power plays. Stop imposing them on everyone you meet.
“Breaking Bad I just got into, but I haven’t been able to keep up with it as much. There’s just a lot of him coughing. I’m in the first season, and the coughing is driving me crazy. Like, we get it. You’re dying. Do you really need a whole two-minute scene of another cough attack? It’s too much. In every bad situation, how does he get out? He just starts coughing.”—Miley Cyrus is correct.
“David is a 21-year-old guy from London who listens to Kendrick Lamar, obsessively watches the British TV drama Top Boy, and tweets about grades and drugs. Whenever he feels like it, he pulls down his pants, points his phone toward his crotch, and tapes himself masturbating for six seconds. He publishes the results on Vine, a microvideo app dedicated to the quick and easy sharing of Internet catnip: pets acting cute, skateboarders falling down, and—inevitably—porn.”—Talking with the microporn stars of Vine, Tumblr, and Instagram.
Bustle's freelance rates begin at the low, low price of $0
When Bleacher Report co-founder Bryan Goldberg announced the launch of Bustle, his $6.5 million “feminist” website for women, one corner of the vast and sweeping backlash to his announcement centered on how much of Goldberg’s multi-million dollar payday would actually trickle down to the women writing the site. In one widely-circulated job posting published last month, Goldberg offered to pay Bustle freelancers $100 a day for half a dozen pieces of content.
Low wages are not rare in online publishing, but Goldberg pledged to set his site apart by offering a pittance, at least. “At Bustle, we thoroughly recruit and review prospective writers, and we pay them,” he wrote on PandoDaily. "It’s very hard to pay writers a full-time salary with benefits these days,” he acknowledged to Forbes in April. But “there’s a lot of room between paying someone $100,000 and benefits and paying them nothing.”
When one writer contacted Bustle asking about their freelance rates late last month, she was told that her contributions to the site would, in fact, pay nothing. A contract news writer tasked with writing 8 to 10 200-300 word breaking stories each day would be paid a $100 daily rate ($10-$12.50 per piece), she was told. A contract opinion writer could earn $100 for 4-5 “well researched and more developed longer pieces” published in one day ($20-$25 per piece). But the typical Bustle freelancer stood to earn $0:
We are open to freelance pitches, though at this moment, we’re unable to offer compensation. We definitely hope to in the near future, however, so please do stay in touch. In the meantime, we’re happy to accept submissions or pitch ideas.
Publishers have completely lost sight of which dimension their readers are not-living in. This is a territory where spirits are doomed to roam without purpose, yearning for a divine closure they will never, ever find. They have nothing but time on their (formless) hands. And, in many cities, they out-number their living counterparts! But magazines like UsWeekly talk to ghosts as though they were children, and they fail to connect popular culture with any form of social commentary about what it’s like to spend eternity trapped in a necromantic feverscape.
Invest in your lifeless future with TheBoostle.com
“Where is the Gawker for women? The ESPN for women? The Awl for women? The Slate for women? The Onion for women? Perhaps when Google finally launches a search engine for women, we will be capable of locating the websites targeted at us, so that advertisers may sell us things. For now, we will read Bustle.”—Man Creates First Website For Women