October 16 2009

CobWEBs Daily Edition – Sexism is alive and well in social media & blogging


Welcome to another week of the daily edition of CobWEBs, the flagship podcast of The Cynical Bastards!

For those who don’t remember from the other episodes, this is a new format for the show as we are going to try giving you daily bite sized chunks of our patented brand of cynicism over everything in the tech universe. The show will have a rotating host schedule between Steven Hodson, Mark ‘Rizzn’ Hopkins and myself. You’ll always get two of us, you just never know which two!

Steven Hodson and I discuss how social media seems to not only be full of sexism, but people looking to deny free speech to others as we look at what happened with Penelope Trunk, Meghan McCain and Jan Moir.  (thanks to Steven for digging up the following relevant links)

Penelope talks miscarriage – gets slammed, Pulver talks penis – gets patted on back
Don’t Call Me a Slut
Meghan McCain twitter photo is hot, draws haters
Jan Moir, the Web, Free Speech and the Wisdom of Mobs

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  • I think you and Steven are missing the fundamental difference between the McCain situation, the Trunk situation, and Jeff's situation…

    McCain and Trunk both have a political component. Many people, myself included in with pro-abortion advocates, were very offended by Penelope's cavalier attitude towards the life of the unborn child. Similarly, with McCain, she's trying to position herself as a serious political pundit. Can you imagine the uproar if Ann Coulter, Rachel Maddow or Michelle Malkin did something similar to what McCain did?

    On the other hand, Jeff Pulver wasn't involved in political punditry, nor was he saying something that offended the moral sensibilities of a clearly polarizing issue (some would say that the '04 election was won on that very polarizing issue).

    Look at your example of the douchebag chick from the Daily Mail – another polarizing political issue.

    When politics gets involved, people go to the ends of the spectrum, no negotiation. I think that's where our outrage should be focused, not necessarily on sexism.