I mean, I get it. I could read the internet all day and find people who do offensive things too. How does that help women? I would actually argue that it’s slactivism on an enormous scale because the good mental feeling of moral and intellectual superiority from reading article after article confirming your existing worldview prevents people from feeling motivated to do any actual action that Jezebel might endorse.
Here’s some things they’ve been offended by lately:
Controversial? Sure. Going to change anyone’s mind? No.
What’s funny to me is that the writer of this article, Kelly Faircloth, laughs at the person who runs the bar’s social media for standing behind their choice rather than espousing a corporate-speak apology. I thought every 20-something was familiar enough with bars that they knew these social accounts are run by waitress turned bartender turned manager types that aren’t as educated or digitally privileged as someone who runs, say, the Gawker social media accounts. It’s not notable to me that a one-off bar and the manager that happens to run their social don’t play by the rules we set for corporate PR, it doesn’t need to. No one in their target audience cares.
The blogger explained her reasoning behind the shoot, “The contrast of finding myself in a place I never want to be, in an outfit that I will wear for the rest of my life is slightly disturbing.”
I mean, that seems rational to me? You can disagree and say it’s disrespectful, for sure, but that’s not what’s happening here. Jezebel is calling her stupid and laughing at her for being proud that her Facebook page is verified, a sincere accomplishment for a lone blogger in the digital age.
This whole thing felt very “burn the witch”-y to me.
Slamming fake apologies is really interesting to me because the increasing presence of sincere and insincere public apologies is necessarily, at least in part, a result of blogs like Jezebel, who encourage dissecting actions and becoming outraged about them.
I would guess that the goal of a Jezebel writer would be to see someone doing something wrong, write about it, and by having a public conversation, influence the subject of their article to open their mind and stop being racist/sexist/homophobic/whatever. That could, absolutely, happen but those kinds of ideologies are deeply rooted. It takes at least some amount of time to grow out of it. On the internet, there’s no such thing as allowing time, you need to offer an instant response and it needs to be politically correct, even if you aren’t internally there yet. This whole situation demands that fake apologies exist.
I wonder if they worry on a meta level about giving people outrage fatigue so that when something comes up that people should actually be outraged about, they’re too sick of it all to care? I certainly can’t attain that high level of giving a shit, but I was never their target audience to begin with.