I swear, I really don’t mean to keep coming back to this. I feel like Michael Corleone. “Every time I think I’m out, they pull me back IN.”
Gawker offered their take on the Vanity Fair Twitter Fail of 2010 and, you guessed, they think the uproar is just a bunch of cranky women being…cranky.
But is it possible the women portrayed want to have it both ways? They agreed to a photo shoot where they appear to be naked under a trench coat. They call themselves “girls”—not women—on their Twitter pages and blogs. It implies that using sexuality and “girliness” for personal and professional gains is fine, as long as it’s on their own terms. Grigoriadis is being attacked for not “getting” that these women are SERIOUS REAL WOMEN, but I think her argument is that these women are incredibly serious—about gaining influence and power in a new medium in a way that also takes advantage of their attractiveness (in every sense of the word).
So, ladies, own it! Accept that you have a will to power that is based partly on your ability to exploit your sexuality. And you know what? That’s fine. It doesn’t undermine your professional achievements.
I asked Vanessa what she thought about the outsized, outraged response her article had generated. She responded: “Twitter is obviously an awesome tool conceptually and in aggregate. But it’s gotten a free ride in the media in the past six months, and I was trying to poke a little fun at the quest for power on it, which can be kind of absurd. I didn’t expect to be frisked by the Twitter police for it.”
Two points and then I’m done. I swear.
1) By posing in that fashion, in a magazine known for provacative artwork, they’re suddenly selling their sexuality above all else? If Vanessa Grioriadis had taken the time to highlight the fact that each of these women have brains as well as looks, there would have been less of a backlash.
But she didn’t.
She chose comments and tweets that made each of these women look like they gain followers by offering nude pics and a good time.
2) I would bet serious money that if any of the women in this article had known that Ms. Grigoriadi intended to “poke a little fun” at Twitter and their use of the service, they would have declined. Which means, in essence, the author misled these women by asking them serious questions (and they’ve mentioned they were asked serious questions) and then cherry picked quotes that would fit her angle.
Oh and, y’know what? It’s not unusual to say “girl” instead of “woman” on a Twitter profile. If you’re going to take the feminist view, then doesn’t an empowered female have the right to call herself what she prefers without it somehow reflecting on her empowerment as a female?
Look, I’m going to say it one more time. Quit bitching about the fact that these women are “bitching” and try reading what it is they’re angry about. Judge them on their content, not your opinion of the surface.
That’s really all any of them are asking for in the first place.