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This article was published on July 8, 2019

Byte Me #5: Facebook’s prude policies, ‘LinkedIn’ for LaDiEs, and #unwantedivanka

Byte Me #5: Facebook’s prude policies, ‘LinkedIn’ for LaDiEs, and #unwantedivanka
Cara Curtis
Story by

Cara Curtis

Former TNW writer

Welcome back to Byte Me, our feminist newsletter that makes everyone mad <3

Sorry we’re late this month… we had women stuff to do.

We have a new feature! Each month, our gloriously talented designer, Saïna, will illustrate one of the many shitty replies, comments, or tweets we receive from one of TNW’s misogynistic readers. Here’s this month’s featured comment:

So Saïna made this:

Muahaha! Onto the news…

the bloody news

that’s what she said: is “guys” sexist?

Because we’re all magical and unique snowflakes who don’t always agree on feminist issues — and subsequently feel like we’re “bad” women — we’re going to discuss something we found online in each newsletter.

For this month’s that’s what she said, we’re discussing whether or not referring to a mixed gendered group as “guys” is sexist. We’ve linked to our full discussion here, and included the TL;DR below…

Cara: Personally, I don’t think twice if someone addressed me in a group with “Hey, guys.” It’s not something I see as worth fighting over, especially compared to other issues in the workplace. But it’s definitely something I’m trying to remove from my vocabulary.

Anouk: But why do people argue we shouldn’t use “guys?” What’s their reasoning?

Georgina: That it’s exclusionary, especially in professional spaces which are typically male-dominated.

Cara: It comes down to the question of why men, or at least their pronoun, should be used as default in situations.

Georgina: My boss at a previous job was the only woman in the management team, and said she often felt talked over. She also said being referred to as “guys” increasingly made her feel invisible, so she asked them to stop saying it.

Anouk: So the broader issue here is semantics: everyone knows “hey guys” doesn’t mean “hey you people with penises” — it means “hey people in the room.”

Georgina: I also do think that while the three of us aren’t bothered, we can’t dismiss it as PC hysteria. Gender pronouns aren’t as sensitive a point for me as it could be for gender non-conforming people. “Guys” could be really triggering for trans women, and while there are articles written about this worth reading, it isn’t something the three of us can assume or really talk about.

You can check out our full discussion here.

Feel free to comment on the document with your thoughts, or send us an email!

the best and the worst

In this section, we ask women much smarter than us about the best and worst piece of professional advice they’ve ever received. This month’s are from, award-winning feminist adult filmmaker Erika Lust and Stack Overflow’s Data Scientist Julia Silge.

Erika Lust:

Best? DONE IS BETTER THAN PERFECT (I have this hanging in my office to remind me every day!)

Worst? Someone actually told me, “Women will never pay for porn, drop your business idea…. you pay women for sex.

Julia Silge:

Best? The advice I think about the most right now is to think about the *impact* of my actions instead of my *intent*. It can be easy for me to think something like, “But that’s not how I meant that person to interpret that graph!” but the impact of what I did is the thing for me to consider.

Worst? I grew up a girl in Texas in the 80s, so there was tons of bad advice that I think I’ve blocked out at this point, out of self-preservation. I grew up with a narrow understanding of my options as a young woman interested in math, science, etc, and I started university planning to teach high school physics when I finished. Teaching high school physics is a fantastic career, but I defaulted to it because it was the only option I saw as open to me, with my interests. It wasn’t until my senior (last) year in university that I thought about other options and decided to apply to graduate school.

tweets of the month

word of the month: Abropriation

Next up in our new and improved Dicktionary (sorry): Abropriation.

Also known as “bropropriation,” this is what happens when a bro appropriates something made by women.

So it’s like cultural appropriation? When white people dress up as Native Americans for Halloween, that kinda thing? Also shit, but no!

Men doing or wearing ‘women’ things, totally cool. Men making things that are traditionally female, male — like this guy who loves to draw male harpies (those mythical bird women) — also cool.

Abropriation occurs when a man takes an idea or thing created by a woman and presents it as his own. It happens all the time, and often the man in question doesn’t even realize he’s doing it. It’s just that when Karen brought up the idea ten minutes ago, no one was listening. Now that Keith is repeating the exact same thing, people are all ears.

What to do?

  1. Amplify ideas voiced by women, for example by repeating them, and give credit. “I think Karen’s idea to [INSERT SOMETHING FUCKING AMAZING] definitely has potential, we should look into this.”
  2. Call a man out for he-peating, but don’t be a total dick about it. “That’s a great idea, Keith, Karen already brought it up earlier this meeting — maybe you missed that?”
  3. If a woman gets interrupted while trying to get her point across — try to de-interrupt and move the conversation back to her: “That sounds interesting, Keith, but I think Karen was just getting to that. Karen, what was it you wanted to say?”

What do you think of Byte Me? Love it? Tell us. Hate it? Tell us — as female journalists we love hate mail.

Don’t forget…

<3 The TNW shrews

Cara ([email protected])
([email protected])
& Georgina ([email protected]

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