Bryan Goldberg's new website for females is actually condescending towards women
Once upon a time, according to many published reports, men invented the Internet. Because Internetting is just too darn difficult if you’re a woman, manly men with manly ideas had to step up and create this monstrosity that runs our lives. OH BUT WAIT. If manly men invented the Internet, who in the world is Radia Perlman?
Radia Perlman (and I’ll be honest here, I’m copying this from Wikipedia because while I can Internet with the best of them, I’m not fluent in engineer speak) is a software designer and engineer. I know! A girl engineer, someone tell Mattel! Ms. Perlman is the inventor of the Spanning Tree Protocol, which is fundamental to the operation of network bridges. Her work “transformed the Ethernet protocol from using a few nodes over a limited distance into something able to create large networks.” This is kind of a big deal. In fact, if you Google “spanning tree protocols,” you find hundreds of entries about how STPs work, what they do and really everything about them.
I bring Ms. Perlman up because a rather noxious little creature named Bryan Goldberg recently raised $6.5 million to start a (get ready for it) website for da ladies called “Bustle.” Mr. Goldberg is the founder of “Bleacher Report,” an online locker room for penis jokes and manly sports.
Bryan decided that we gals needed a place to read the news and get makeup advice. You know, because the real Internet is too manly for we dainty little flowers. Almost $7 million to give women our very own website. Since we don’t have others?
Truthfully, I thought “Jezebel” has this corner of the market… well… cornered. Obviously I’m wrong because Internetting is too hard for me and I misread something somewhere. Look, if some guy wants to start a website for women, whatever. It’s the REASON he claims to have started it that’s making many of us narrow our eyes and glare at the computer screen. Bryan Goldberg made a few statements about his new pet project which is when the narrowing of the eyes began. Here’s his explanation of why “Bustle” is so fabulous:
“We’re different, because we recognize how many diverse interests are shared amongst the next generation of women… Creating an amazing blend of content – one that puts news and politics right beside fashion tips is what will set us apart.”
Amongst? Do you understand Bryan that when I type that word, Google, MS Word and Word Press draw a red line underneath it? I don’t think that happens because it’s not a word, I think that happens because it’s so pretentious a word, no one should use it. I bet Radia Perlman never says “amongst.”
Fashion tips next to politics. Do you have a demographic, by any chance, because it sure ain’t me. I don’t need fashion tips next to my politics; I prefer my politics the way I prefer my coffee – strong, without any shiny accessories. Don’t drop a Tom Ford shoe into my politics, Bryan, just don’t.
Goldberg also wanted to make sure we all understood how “Bustle” would be run, pointing out his delegating skills. His job “as CEO is to hire the right people… Knowing the difference between mascara, concealer, and eye-liner is not my job.” Of course, once we silly Internetting women pointed out how deeply offensive this sentence was, he dialed it back and reminded us overly sensitive vagina owners that it was meant “tongue in cheek.”
Ignore that there should be no comma after “concealer” and “eyeliner” is one word. Just let that go.
This is nothing “different,” and by claiming “Bustle” will appeal to a “diverse” clientele while not-so-subtly implying other sites do not is disingenuous at the very least. He named it “Bustle” for God’s sake. As in that thing Scarlett O’Hara wore under her skirt to make it all poofy. If a man wants to start a website for women, fabulous, wonderful, thank you.
If a man wants to start a website for women that seems, at least from his press release, to be all kinds of condescending and purports to be “different” while in fact following the same model others have used for years, that’s not fabulous and wonderful. That’s just lazy.