On the day Roe v Wade was overturned, many of us were thinking about technology.
Should you delete your period tracker app? Is it safe to search abortion pills online? Will social media companies allow abortion misinformation on their platforms?
Similarly, when Elon Musk bought Twitter, marginalized communities wondered whether the platform would still be an effective place to build movements like #BlackLivesMatter or #MeToo that can challenge traditional power structures.
There are so many examples demonstrating the ways that identity is at the heart of conversations about technology and the Internet; you simply cannot tell a full story of technology without including the voices of women, communities of color, and LGBTQ folks whose experiences are so directly shaped by and tied to technology.
But, you wouldn’t really know it if you looked at most media about technology.
Coverage of technology routinely fails to meaningfully center the voices of the marginalized people who both shape it, and are disproportionately impacted by it. And this doesn’t just discredit the marginalized people who are overlooked; it harms everyone. It keeps us all less informed about the full, rich, frightening, delightful reality of the technology that shapes so much of our lives.
Marginalized communities face unique threats online that don’t just harm us; they threaten the very fabric of our democracy.
There Are No Girls On The Internet aims to right this wrong by providing thoughtful coverage of tech and the Internet that centers voices which are traditionally overlooked and left out.
There is a cultural misconception that if you don’t have technical expertise, you don’t get to have a voice or take up space in conversations about tech, or that you might not understand those conversations even if you did. This attitude is as persistent as it is harmful. It allows tech leaders to skirt accountability for the harm their platforms cause, and it allows for those harms to persist unexamined by the communities most directly impacted. In reality, an equitable digital ecosystem depends on far more people taking up space in conversations about tech and how it impacts us as individuals, our communities, and our democracy. Overcoming the cultural misconception that only “techies” get to have a voice, and empowering more women, Black and brown folks, and other traditionally marginalized internet users to take up that space, is both a challenge and also the central plank of There Are No Girls On The Internet’s strategy.
We achieve this by amplifying the stories of marginalized people who have shaped technology in their own words, and creating accessible content that highlights what marginalized people need to know about the tech landscape. There Are No Girls On The Internet aims to shift the culture around who sees themselves reflected in technology and create a more informed, aware, and empowered digital citizenry.
Few technology media outlets are equipped to consistently cover the critical intersections of technology and identity for a general audience, and important research findings often fail to gain transaction outside academic circles. For example, there are platforms that cater to communities of color, but primarily focus on earning personal wealth from technology. We strive to help the public connect the dots between seemingly unrelated events, to give them new frameworks for understanding the impact on their own lives, and to demand better from tech leaders who feign powerlessness.
Our strategy is to provide consistent, practical and accessible content about the intersection of technology, the Internet, and identity. When Roe v Wade was overturned, we spoke to digital security experts to provide practical and accessible guidance on navigating the risks facing people seeking abortions. When Elon Musk bought Twitter, we talked about what it meant for the safety of marginalized communities on social media platforms. Ahead of the midterm elections, we spoke to digital security experts about doxxing, why it harms our democracy and keeps women and other marginalized people from running for office and participating in civic life. And in our miniseries Internet Hate Machine, we explored the ways online harassment against women harms our democracy.
Research is clear that the climate for traditionally marginalized people in digital spaces has real world consequences.
Marginalized communities deserve platforms exclusively dedicated to thoughtful coverage of technology that centers our voices and experiences in service of creating a more equitable digital ecosystem.
There Are No Girls On The Internet successfully brought thoughtful discussion of internet culture from inclusive perspectives to more people than ever before. We have armed almost two million listeners, mostly women, with a practical understanding of how technology directly impacts them. The compelling storytelling and insightful analysis in our most recent season won critical praise from major national publications including Vulture, The Guardian, LifeHacker, Refinery29, and MSNBC. The show was spotlighted by Apple multiple times during the season, and the show is consistently ranked in the top 20 of the iTunes tech charts. The resulting visibility, in combination with our marketing strategy and many guest appearances by host Bridget Todd on other shows, helped us reach new audiences and new listeners.
There Are No Girls On The Internet is continuing to shape national conversations about how we understand technology and online culture. We are challenging assumptions about who gets to have a voice in decisions about the tech products we all use and depend on every day. We are amplifying the voices of inspiring artists, activists, creators and entrepreneurs from communities that have traditionally been excluded from narratives about “tech,” and we are documenting their contributions to prevent them from being erased.
Every week, There Are No Girls On The Internet brings unique perspectives on critical issues to a wide audience.
We are elevating the conversation, and making the Internet a better and more equitable place for all of us.
Fill out the form below and we'll work on connecting you to the entry creator!