It reads like an Onion story: Successful male entrepreneur raises $6.5 million in venture capital to start a feminist website which, he says, he plans to "make a fortune" off of.
Sadly, it's not a joke.
Yesterday Bryan Goldberg, founder of Bleacher Report, announced that he has launched a new website called Bustle, which is going to do what "Jezebel, Refinery29, and PopSugar" do, but with a profit. He says he "aims to completely transform women's publishing" and has hired "talented women with experience at Entertainment Weekly, Glamour, Daily Beast, and Seventeen" to lead the editorial team.
He says, "Are there many great women's websites out there? Absolutely. Are many of them attracting huge audiences and mainstream advertisers? No."
Is that what's been missing? Pop-up Tampax ads with dancing ladies in colorful dresses? Finally! A man has come to rescue the feeble feminist blogging industry with his cutting-edge concepts!
Don't worry, he's not going to be a voice on Bustle—he's leaving that to the women. Goldberg says:
My job, as CEO, is to hire the right people. My job is to know a lot of engineers, editors, venture capitalists, and salespeople — and to bring them together. Knowing the difference between mascara, concealer, and eye-liner is not my job.
Oh for fuck's sake, dude. Seriously? Do you want us to hate you? Saying shit like that will really make us hate you. To make him even less likable, Goldberg has also gotten a kick out of working in a female-dominated environment. He's taken to Twitter to express just how kooky these adult "girls" can be:
Balloons and meatless pizza? Women! They're so quirky!
Seriously, though, while it's totally possible that Bustle will turn out to be something great (right now it's not; right now it's posts about who has the best Hollywood eyebrows and why Anna Wintour hates Kimye), it's absolutely absurd that Goldberg would find it necessary to march himself out onto the stage to congratulate himself for daring to transform women's publishing only because he was able to convince a bunch of rich dummies to give him money. By doing so, he's set Bustle up to fail—now its writers will have to work extra hard to overcome the burden of being looked at as the pet project of a clueless CEO who is clearly just trying to profit off of feminism.
Thankfully once Bustle's buzz wears off, and they run out of that $6.5 million (it'll take awhile—they only pay $16-$25 a post), there are hundreds of amazing, smart girls and women writing everyday at blogs and magazines like Rookie, the Hairpin, BUST, Jezebel, Maura Magazine, Feministing, the Nth Wave, Bitch Media, Salon, and so many more.