Does the Internet = Women?
Sometimes it feels that way, with vibrant feminist discourse flourishing online, women writers self-publishing and self-publicizing, my own (ahem) attempts to build a name outside the hallowed halls of print commentariaticity. With friendly ladies tweeting me important lady-news. With Facebook being about “relationships” and feeding me dark chocolate (fair trade, thank you!) through the screen.
This recent editorial from N+1 hyperbolized this notion. The notion that because women are way underrepresented in traditional publications they have grabbed onto the Internet like pit bulls on a peanut butter rubber squirrel, and that therefore the Internet is implicitly feminine and the print mag remains implicitly dudely.
What do women have to do with the internet? We submit that, at least in the eyes of media executives, women are the internet. Women, we mean the internet, are commanding a larger share of the traditional print market. The internet, we mean women, is less responsive to conventional advertising than to commenting, sharing, and other forms of social interaction. Women, we mean the internet, are putting men, we mean magazine editors, out of work. The internet, we mean women, never pays for its content — or for their drinks!