Good morning, Broadsheet readers! A 25-year-old female entrepreneur scores big with tech investors, a Facebook exec writes about the power of letting down your facade, and Carly Fiorina lands a spot in the first presidential debate. Have a wonderful Thursday.
• No makeup, no problem. In this touching and inspiring post, Facebook product director Fidji Simo writes about working while on bed rest due to pregnancy complications. Simo says she was surprised to discover that taking video conference calls “in a horizontal position with no makeup on didn’t seem to lessen the impact of my words.” In fact, allowing co-workers to see her sans dress-and-heel armor reminded Simo that it’s inner strength, not image, that counts.
ALSO IN THE HEADLINES
• Charged idea. Meredith Perry, the 25-year-old co-founder and CEO of uBeam, is looking to score big with her device that can charge a battery from across the room. While she’s drawn plenty of doubters, investor Marc Andreessen says the skepticism is “highly unfounded,” and Mark Cuban calls Perry’s product “a zillion-dollar idea.”
• Team Yellen. As Janet Yellen approaches the 18-month mark as Fed chair, the WSJ pulls out a few key numbers in order to compare her tenure so far with that of predecessor Ben Bernanke. Yellen fans will be pleased to see that despite inheriting a weaker economy, she outperformed Bernanke on most metrics.
• Speaking out. Sandi MacPherson, founder of Quibb, a community for tech professionals, believes more women should be speaking at industry conferences. To help make that a reality, she’s launching the 50/50 Pledge, which includes a database of 1,100 qualified female speakers from companies such as Square, Slack and Twitter.
• The race gap. The hashtag #BlackWomenEqualPay trended this week as Twitter users tried to bring attention to the racial dynamics of the pay gap. To drive home the point, the U.S. Department of Labor provided a factsheet showing that black women typically make 33% less than white men.
• Carly’s in. Fox News has announced that it’s relaxing the entry requirements for its forum for the lower-polling GOP candidates, which will air before the main Republican debate on Aug. 6. That’s good news for presidential hopeful and former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, who is unlikely to meet the original requirement of polling at least 1% nationally.
New York Times
• Basking in big data. VC firm First Round Capital is celebrating its 10-year anniversary by crunching the numbers, and the firm came to a gratifying conclusion: Its portfolio companies with at least one female founder performed 63% better than the all-male founder teams in terms of increasing value.
• Godfather of the IUD. Over the past decade, the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, the family foundation of billionaire Warren Buffett, has quietly become the most influential supporter of research on IUDs and expanding access to the contraceptive. Essentially, Buffett is funding the biggest shift in birth control in a generation.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
• Kicking into high gear. National Women’s Soccer League commissioner Jeff Plush talks to Fortune about how he plans to leverage the excitement around Team USA’s World Cup win to grow women’s pro soccer into a sports powerhouse.
• Crocodile tears? This New York Times story argues that the fuss over Jane Birkin’s request to have her name removed from the famous Hermès crocodile Birkin bag is overblown. Birkin, who is upset over a PETA video showing abuses on a crocodile farm, asked the designer to take her name off just the croc version of the purse—and only until the company’s skin supplier can be properly vetted.
New York Times
• Fantasy vs. reality. Erika Lust, founder of feminist porn company Lust Films, writes that virtual reality has the potential to make porn more women-friendly.
• Campus counselor? Hanna Stotland is an admissions consultant with a very interesting specialty: She helps students who are punished for sexual misconduct reenroll at other universities.
• The write stuff. Five American writers, including Marilynne Robinson and Anne Tyler, have been nominated for the Man Booker Prize, one of the most prestigious literary awards.
New York Times
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ON MY RADAR
Men are the fastest-growing group on Pinterest
Teen girls and the persistence of gender stereotypes
A man who said he’s built a museum about women made it about Jack the Ripper instead
JCPenney employee sent home for wearing “too revealing” shorts she bought in the store’s career department
|I think I'm just a girl who hosts a funny, goofy sports show.|
| -- ESPN host Michelle Beadle, named one of the Hollywood Reporter's Most Powerful Voices in Sports Media |
The Hollywood Reporter