Sunday, January 10, 2010

That’s One Naïve Social Media Valley Gal

I am no prude when it comes to topics for this blog.

I’ve scolded out-of-work journalists for clinging to the sad notion that the good old days of well compensated employment would return. I wondered if social networks are inherently racist. And I have acknowledged my belief that physical appearance plays a meaningful role in a person’s corporate success.

I walked into each of these topics well aware that my opinions would elicit a response from the blogosphere – both positive and negative. Sure enough, retweets were made, comments arrived, and a primarily productive and healthy debate ensued.

Felicia Day sure doesn’t share this self-awareness when it comes to stoking a controversial fire. One of Vanity Fair’s “America’s Tweethearts," Day was shocked and outraged at the condescending portrayal of her and the other social media valley gals profiled in the magazine’s article about how Web 2.0 platforms like Twitter are used to shape popular opinion.

Day writes:

“But what really ENRAGED me what (sic) the general tone, which artfully made intelligent, articulate women sound vapid and superficial.”

Spare me the horror, Felicia.

What direction did you think the article was going to take when you arrived at the photoshoot to learn all that you’d be wearing is a rain coat and stilettos? Did you actually believe Vanity Fair planned to portray a group of dolled up babes as insightful, cutting-edge social entrepreneurs?

The truth is that your mental warning sign should have started buzzing the moment the Vanity Fair photographer asked you to disrobe.

In the end, this article turned out exactly as Vanity Fair promised. Drop the naivety.


**** said...

Perhaps VF took the same road as Newsweek did with it's "runners world" cover shot of Sarah Palin?

Maybe the original shot was taken for "Inspector Gadget Monthly," and used out of context ;)

Anonymous said...

Though these women were wearing nothing but a trench coat in the photo, it's unfair to expect them to have known the direction Vanity Fair would take in this article. The fact of the matter is that the the article completely missed the mark. If anything, it makes Vanity Fair look stupid.

Maggie McGary said...

I could not agree more. I have been amazed at the huge glut of posts by people blaming Vanity Fair for portraying these women in an unfavorable light. My favorite was the post titled "Why does Vanity Fair Hate the Women of Twitter?"

Chris Parente said...

Good post, Marc. The VF piece made me sad -- how will I ever compete in social media without a set of gams like those gals?