What’s Current: Moira Donegan comes out as woman who started ‘Shitty Media Men’ list

What’s Current is Feminist Current’s daily news roundup.

  • Journalist Moira Donegan comes out as the woman who started the “Shitty Media Men” spreadsheet, explaining the way it went viral and the backlash she encountered as a result. She writes:

“In the beginning, I only wanted to create a place for women to share their stories of harassment and assault without being needlessly discredited or judged. The hope was to create an alternate avenue to report this kind of behavior and warn others without fear of retaliation. Too often, for someone looking to report an incident or to make habitual behavior stop, all the available options are bad ones…In the weeks after the spreadsheet was exposed, my life changed dramatically. I lost friends: some who thought I had been overzealous, others who thought I had not been zealous enough. I lost my job, too. The fear of being exposed, and of the harassment that will inevitably follow, has dominated my life since. I’ve learned that protecting women is a position that comes with few protections itself.”

  • Women in Canada who work full time still earn 74.2 cents for every dollar that male workers make, and the country is losing ground in the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap rankings. Meanwhile, in Hollywood, Michelle Williams reportedly received one per cent of the $1.5 million Mark Wahlberg earned for reshooting scenes in a movie.
  • A seven year old girl, Zainab Ansari was raped and murdered in Pakistan. Her body was found in a garbage bin in the city of Kasur earlier this week. No one has been arrested, the police chief has been fired for negligence, and there have been protests in several cities.
  • Helen James was discharged from the U.S. Air Force in 1955 as “undesirable” because she was a lesbian. Now, at 90, she’s filed a lawsuit demanding that her record be changed.
Lisa Steacy
Lisa Steacy

Lisa Steacy is an Assistant Editor at Feminist Current. She has a B.A. in Women & Gender Studies from the University of Toronto. However, the women she met in her five years as a frontline worker and collective member with Vancouver Rape Relief & Women’s Shelter deserve almost all of the credit for her feminist education. She lives in Vancouver with her partner and their cats.

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  • Hekate Jayne

    From the article about Moira Donegan:
    “I think that the task at hand might be more rudimentary than I assumed: The experience of making the spreadsheet has shown me that it is still explosive, radical, and productively dangerous for women to say what we mean.”

    Moira Donegan attempted to help us in a real, tangible way. She attempted to get information to women that needed it and avoid hurting them AND the assaulters, rapists, and predators (MALES).

    So of COURSE, she had to be shut down. And the document discredited.

    That document was full of the stories from women that were trying to protect each other. They weren’t trying to get any males fired or into any kind of trouble. They were trying to warn each other. That was all they were doing.

    But those women are stupid liars, they were making shit up, you can’t believe women! Sure, they were just trying to help each other, but it hurts male feefees!

    And you know what else it does? It gives us a heads up. It gives us a warning. It gives us an opportunity to AVOID MALES THAT ARE UNSAFE.

    And that is the problem. Males want us to be uninformed about which ones of them that we need to avoid. The want us vulnerable. They want their choice of victims to be unlimited. And part of the “male protection racket” depends on us not knowing which ones of them are unsafe.

    So the male media shut this down. Saying the same shit that they always say about us.

    This isn’t about women making up allegations, or not being smart enough to judge information for ourselves. This is about males retaining power and control and sending the message that they will not allow us to find power in each other. They will not allow us to help and protect each other. They are insuring the continuation of their sexual violence. Because they want to. And because they can.

  • Cassandra

    From Moira Donegan’s piece:

    “Human-resources departments, in offices that have them, are tasked not with protecting employees but with shielding the company from liability — meaning that in the frequent occasion that the offender is a member of management and the victim is not, HR’s priorities lie with the accused.”

    And still, she lost her job for what she did. In case anybody out there reading this doesn’t understand how systemic oppression operates, here’s a perfect example.

  • Bleeps3

    I have decided it needs to become acceptable and normal for women and girls to wear modern suits of armor in their daily lives. Someone needs to make fashion for us that is made entirely out of Kevlar, and we should be allowed to wear outfits like this, equipped with body cams, to go to work and school, to go outside, and even to sleep, if need be:

    https://i.pinimg.com/736x/63/08/9f/63089f6b2279661fc021f8636b0a76b9.jpg

    If wild bears were hunting women and girls at this rate, it would be no question acceptable.

  • Hekate Jayne

    That is just fucking enraging.

    When I think about the jobs that I have had over the course of my life, at the bosses that asked me for fucking blow jobs, of the cop that offered to let me out of a ticket if I sucked his dick, at the sheer fucking terror that I have spent so many moments of my fucking life in……….

    And then i am supposed to feel guilty for sometimes wanting to kill them all????

    And I don’t have kids. To have a disgusting ass male standing between her and the help that she needs. And he is demanding “pussy”. And then he warns her about complaining to his boss????

    I had to stop reading. I have to finish it later. I don’t know how she stopped herself from clocking him.

    Male systems at work. Doing what they are designed to do.

  • Hekate Jayne

    I need you to have a blog. Seriously.

  • Can’tUnseeIt

    Some “choice.” Of course they choose their victims from the most vulnerable population. Men should not be allowed in the world. Just send their bodies all hurtling out into space.

  • Can’tUnseeIt

    I agree that she shouldn’t do this alone. She needs a big network of support.

  • Unree

    In support of your point, a 2005 news story about a woman in Germany who faced just that when she applied for unemployment benefits:
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/germany/1482371/If-you-dont-take-a-job-as-a-prostitute-we-can-stop-your-benefits.html

    • Hekate Jayne

      This is from the link:
      “The government had considered making brothels an exception on moral grounds, but decided that it would be too difficult to distinguish them from bars. As a result, job centres must treat employers looking for a prostitute in the same way as those looking for a dental nurse.”

      Only patriarchy cannot not tell the difference between a bar and a FUCKING BROTHEL.

      Germany is so progressive, though, amirite. Their patriarchy is lead by a woman. And she is doing the business of the fucking males. But WIN FOR THE FEMINISM.

      And why are women over 55 not being forced into prostitution?

      Oh. Wait. Nevermind. I think I know why.

      I hope everyone reads that link. Thanks for sharing it.

      • Can’tUnseeIt

        This article made me so effen mad. It was 32 years ago that I went to Germany to visit my former college roommate. Sure seems like it has spiraled into a “shithole” much like the US.

  • Hekate Jayne

    So much this.

    I would teach avoidance first. And if she can’t avoid the actual male person, then to be aware (which we all already do, anyway).

    Teach enough girls, maybe we can reverse it. Maybe males won’t be able to tell which one of us can take his dick off, one handed, in a second. So he will have to fear ALL of us.

    You made my night with that happy thought, corvid. Thank you.

  • melissa

    Yeah,I’ve gotten the whole “financial rape/wallet rape/ divorce court rape/” crap so many times its unreal. Every woman is by default a prostitute to these men. And not just them. Libfems bizarrely use the same arguments of prostitution just being like “traditional marriage”. Hell I’ve seen gazillions of “sex workers” making arguments on twitter like “every-time you buy her a drink its paying for sex. This is just being upfront”. I mean fucking hell, how are they different from regular MRA misogynists? As if traditional dynamics of men buying women suddenly justify more similar dehumanizing bullshit like this. There’s just no end.I recall in another channel MRAs defending beating up prostitutes that back out of sex after taking money, because that’s essentially property theft(and you’re allowed to beat people for attempting to steal from you in some states). Some women simply don’t care or aren’t paying enough attention to what the hell they’re actually defending in the name of feminism.

    • Hekate Jayne

      As far as I know, I have never had transactional sex.

      There are a lot of reasons why I chose to have sex, and why I chose the males that I did.

      NOT ONCE WAS I TRYING TO GET ANYTHING.

      At least those handmaidens are consistent, though, in viewing all women as prostitutes and all males as ATMs.

      What a patheticly sad worldview. And view of yourself!

  • Hekate Jayne

    So much this.

    I don’t know one woman that can’t say “me, too”, either.

    It is ALL of us, regardless of age, race, religion, fuckability, class, etc. NONE of us are safe.

    There is only one category of “rapeable/assaultable” for males.

    WOMEN.

  • Tinfoil the Hat

    How any woman could be “horrified” or surprised, as opposed to validated, angry, and resigned, is beyond me.

  • I know. It’s so seedy and horrible and women have to work in that environment. But the scale of it is mind blowing. I suppose other places of work don’t give out figures on how much porn they watch, or try to watch. It is certainly an interesting insight into men ‘at work’.

  • Hekate Jayne

    Males choose to be brutal.

    And they demand us to be kind, smiling, and placating in response.

    What the fuck kind of sense does that make? It makes sense for predatory males, it makes victimizing easier. It makes no sense for us, though.

    I don’t believe that strength is in size, at least, not all of it. And training women in ass kicking is a great idea.

    But I think that it is important to get rid of the “be nice, don’t piss him off, or he may hurt you” training that we all get. It isn’t true and it doesn’t work. If a male wants to hurt you, he is going to try to hurt you. No amount of kindness will stop him.

    Maybe we need to be teaching girls and women that if a male is hurting or threatening you, meet his force with force. It isn’t going to be perfect, but males are so used to getting us to roll over with lies and manipulations, that more than a few of them will be taken off guard enough that they cease, or they may decide that a fighting woman is too much trouble. And some of us may successfully fight them off.

    And it may be more of us that succeed than we ever would imagine. I think so, anyway.