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Tweethearts? Oh Vanity Fair! You Slay Me!

I’m not trying to come off like some rant crazed wench or anything, but after seeing this article in Vanity Fair, and this brilliant response on CNET, I just…oh, you know…

Dear Ms. Grigoriadis,

I think it’s great that you took the time to write about some of the top female Twitterers (Tweethearts? Srsly?) and looked to offer some insight into how their celebrity (twilebrity? WTF?) has come about.

Except you didn’t do that.

You gave me eye candy, cutesy words that include “tw” (twagic, if you ask me) and manage to more than amply deride these women’s efforts even while writing about them.


Each day, these women speed easily across the Twitformation Superhighway on their iPhones and laptops, leaving droppings in their wake: “getting highlights before class,” “I hrd u had fun!,” “Wah, missing my twittr time!”

Between your choice of tweets to use and your use of the word “droppings?”, do I really need to wonder what you really think? Y’know, just because people on Twitter read and write in 140 characters or less, we do understand grander concepts like subliminal meaning and sarcasm. Like, fr srs we do! omgwftbbq!

“But when it comes to listening, well, that’s where these twilebrities shine. It so happens that they are nice girls—the Internet’s equivalent of a telephone chat line staffed by a bunch of cheerleaders—and it’s all free. Any tweep who wants to talk to them will likely get a reply to his tweets (“u r so funny!”). They may also re-tweet for you (that means referencing one of your droppings on their Twitter feed)”

That’s where they shine? They shine because they’re girls on a chat line? So, you’re likening women who have built followings in the millions — who work daily to network and empower others, who have built their own businesses, produced their own webcontent and who work tirelessly towards humanitarian efforts — to those “pick up the phone” babes I can see on my late night Fox affiliate and talk to for $2.99 a minute?

While I’m at it, allow me to include the Twitter names of the ladies you write about, since you FAILED to do so. This way, people can check them out if they so choose.

@DigitalRoyalty – Amy Jo Martin
@AdventureGirl – Stefanie Michaels
@JuliaRoy – Julia Roy
@FeliciaDay – Felicia Day
@PRSarahEvans – Sarah Evans
@Pop17 – Sarah Austin

I’m sorry, but I think you totally missed the point of what each and every one of these women is doing and, if I didn’t know better, I’d think you wrote the entire article as a “subtle” way to get the VF Twitter address out there.

So, let me help.


But, you may want to rethink that. Beause something tells me you may become more familiar with just how well liked, respected and popular each of these women are on Twitter once you start seeing the @replies.

(For you non-twitter types, that’s not “twiplies” or anything. It’s replies. Like we say in meatspace as well)

Oh and, are you on Twitter, Ms. Grigoriadis?


Addition at at 4:17 pm:

A few more responses to the VF article. Because they need to be posted. ::grin::

@mediateHot For Twitter! Vanity Fair’s “Twilebrities” Have Sexy Legs and @kiala over at @GeekWeekOnline Why Does Vanity Fair Hate The Women Of Twitter?

Oh and, turns out Ms. Grigoriadis is on Twitter. :;grin:: With protected tweets!


  1. len len

    Nevertheless, geekSheik is on it’s way out. The tone of the replies and the narrowness of them prove it. When you can’t take a puff piece for what it is and turn it into a vendetta against the old media old writers old people claiming somehow to be a new and different version of the same old whine, well, you’re done. You’ve sucked all the air out of the room for the sake of your self-image.

    Only an amateur does that.

  2. Anonymous Anonymous

    If I may reply to len.

    ‘On the other side, your brands will be weaker and the ‘take us seriously but we are fun anyway’ messages will morph into “we are over thirty, past our prime and becoming boring”.’

    I just couldn’t let this slide. If you look at the copious amounts of twitter entrepreneurs who are ‘over thirty’ and doing quite well (Amanda Palmer, Neil Gaiman, Stephen Fry), who while famous in their own right (as people such as Felicia Day would be even without Twitter due to their talent, innovation and creativity), have expanded their brands exponentially with great success.

    Age is not a factor in this. Twitter has been one of very very few online social networking tools that isn’t restricted by the ‘over the hill’ syndrome, like, say, Grandma on myspace. Grandma is free and welcome on Twitter- I’d say it’s encouraged.

    Oh and it is a common right in free countries for someone to negate or argue against what is written about their persons in the media.

    Also, I’m not certain what you meant by ‘sea change’ as that sentence was strangely worded, but if you mean what I think you do, then I’d argue it signals less of a sea change, and more of a personal vendetta that is likely to be quashed and sent to yesteryear.

  3. I didnt know anyone actually read vanity fair. I think that it should be used for burning to keep homeless people warm and toasty.

  4. len len

    It signifies a sea change in media treatment of the web and those who’ve chosen to be the avatars of a generation of web users.

    The angst generated is the precise effect it is intended to and should generate. Have at. On the other side, your brands will be weaker and the ‘take us seriously but we are fun anyway’ messages will morph into “we are over thirty, past our prime and becoming boring”.

    Lighten up ladies. You put those trench coats on willingly and signed the forms.

  5. It was a disgraceful article for which VF should be ashamed. It was a snarkfest that I read with ever increasing disappointement and anger that I imagine was felt a hundred fold by the women featured in said article.

    The irony is that the people speaking out against it, including your good self Diva, are writing lengthy and eloquent articles of significantly more than 140 characters. This goes some way to demonstrate what a load of nonsense the article is in the first place.

    Great post!

  6. Well put. I couldn’t believe the state of the article when I got round to reading it. The main reason why I clicked through to it was because Felicia Day promoted it (before reading it) and I thought, “Wow. Someone is finally doing a piece on Felicia and the other strong women who I admire on Twitter”.

    Oh, how wrong I was.

  7. Anonymous Anonymous

    Perfect letter.

  8. Anonymous Anonymous

    Vanity Fairs Twitter article is simply the worst article I’ve ever read. I can’t actually fathom, in this day and age, somebody likening @feliciaday to a cheerleader.
    This isn’t the first kick in the teeth pulp-media has given itself in respect to the already emerged internet-class, and it won’t be the last. But I have to say it’s certainly up there with the most offensive.
    It’s an extreme example of a completely un-researched, shallow and bias article that does not belong in any form of media, period.

    Anyone who thinks that twitterholics speak like tweety bird is obviously a twat. (Oh the alliteration possibilities).

  9. @GGD This is what I was getting at in the podcast on what I hate about twitter and won’t self-promote myself like that, not sure you heard that part, but it spilled INTO twitter I’m sure. I feel like the mainstream sees twitter as a popularity contest *sigh*

  10. I think, besides the lovely picture the journalist (and I’m using the term a bit loosely in this case) painted on some very smart and successful women, my favorite part is just how she described Twitter users in general.

    Apparently, we are ADHD-ridden idiots who are so obsessed with ourselves that we spend all day “talking to the world” and ignoring the real people in our lives. It’s not that we’re all smart people who like to spout out witticisms and thoughts when we have a few moments to do so. Come on, it’s 140 characters! It hardly takes all day to throw one out.

    It’s not so much the ignorance that bothers me. All fringe groups get this kind of negative attention. The fact that a respected publication let this one get published is what throws me off. I mean, really? No one bothered to research? Or fact check?

    Well, I’m not going to get overly upset about it. I’m sure by now Ms. Grigoriadis has heard enough by now. Maybe next time she’ll think before she types.

    You made some excellent points, GGD. If only VF could employ more people who think like you do! And like Felicia and @kiala.

  11. Anonymous Anonymous

    Oh, Codex can drink out on this story for a looooong time.

    The author with protected tweets? That’s probably a mercy. TO OUR EYES. Would not enjoy her “droppings” I would wager.
    And she must be a total killjoy at a party. Probably rambles on and on, in a pathetic attempt to appear like she knows what she is talking about. (Seriously. Has no one ever tweeted her a link to an interesting video, song, or opinion piece? Does she not follow the tweeters of CNN? [shout out: follow @marypcnn she rt’s the good stuff]

    I am @VeniceRiley

  12. @Codex

    Darlin’, know what? Maybe they missed the point, but anyone who’s paying attention knows what you’ve made happen.

    One of these days I’ll buy you a drink and tell you just how cool I think you are.


  13. Love this post. I can’t tell you how much I had to reflexively control my rage Tweets today after reading that article, which came out of nowhere for me(I was just excited to have my picture taken by a famous photographer, haah).

    The other women they’re honoring in the same issue are 7 actresses, mostly with Nickelodeon and Disney and big studios behind their names. Awesome for them, but we 6 entreprenurial business women deserved at least the respect those girls were shown for their careers.

  14. Wonderful letter to the author!

  15. Complete rubbish on Vanity Fail’s part.

    1. (in Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress) a fair that goes on perpetually in the town of Vanity and symbolizes worldly ostentation and frivolity.
    2. (often lowercase) any place or group, as the world or fashionable society, characterized by or displaying a preoccupation with idle pleasures or ostentation.

    I would just call them useless. Way to marginalize, VF, and promote one of the worst examples of pointless 21st Century writing.

  16. Here here, and more here! Very well put, and ranty enough to make me cheer you on :D

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