Good morning, Broadsheet readers! Vice puts two top execs on leave, tech bros are throwing regular sex parties, and a record number of women are expected to run for governor this year. Have a productive Wednesday.
• The time is now. My colleague Claire Zillman takes a closer look at Time’s Up, the action plan for tacking sexual harassment launched this week by Hollywood A-listers including Reese Witherspoon, Shonda Rhimes, and Eva Longoria.
What’s unique about the initiative, writes Claire, is that despite the boldface names attached, its legal defense fund will help women who are largely without power or prominence. (For a sense of what women in blue-collar jobs too often experience, please check out this NYT story from last week.) Time’s Up “comes at a time when initiatives aimed at bettering the working lives of women have not only lacked universality, but have effectively siloed women into two classes, haves and have-nots,” she notes.
That split can be seen in everything from the concerns raised at last January’s Women’s March to the generous leave policies that apply only to certain employees to the celebrity-driven aspect of the #MeToo movement. There’s no denying that the fight for gender equity too often leaves out women who are not white and middle- or upper-class. So it’s gratifying to see some of Hollywood’s biggest names not only call attention to the plight of their less glamorous sisters, but to actually use their wealth to help them make change. Let’s hope this is a sign of things to come in 2018.
ALSO IN THE HEADLINES
• Tip jar. The New Yorker’s Dana Goodyear looks at the ways Hollywood is responding to the post-Weinstein/#MeToo world. She describes an industry where—almost overnight—everything has changed so dramatically that no one is quite sure what comes next. (One thing they do know: “No one wants to get caught on the wrong side of history.”) Interestingly, the story also notes that the Hollywood Reporter has created a sexual-misconduct beat and “assigned seven reporters, who are fielding ten to fifteen tips a day.” A related and important reminder to all you Broadsheet readers: My inbox is always open for any tips related to sexual harassment—and anything that comes in via the “send tip” button at the top of this newsletter remains anonymous.
• On time out. Vice Media president Andrew Creighton and chief digital officer Mike Germano have both been placed on leave as the company conducts investigations into the sexual harassment allegations laid out in last week’s New York Times report.
The New York Times
• All hail Iceland. As of Jan. 1, Iceland became the first country to make it illegal for companies with 25 or more employees to pay men more than women. Those that cannot show that they provide equal pay will be subject to fines.
• Sex lives of Silicon Valley. In this adaptation from her forthcoming book, Brotopia, veteran tech journalist Emily Chang describes regular “drug-heavy, sex-heavy” Silicon Valley parties attended by “powerful [male] first-round investors, well-known entrepreneurs, and top executives”—as well as scores of younger, less rich, less powerful women. The larger problem here isn’t the sex parties themselves, writes Chang, it’s the way these men’s sex lives seep into the larger tech world. One investor puts it this way: “You could say it’s disgusting but not illegal—it just perpetuates a culture that keeps women down.”
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
• She’s a trip. Tiffany Haddish, the breakout star of Girls Trip, talks about becoming the first black female comic to host SNL, getting advice from Whoopi Goldberg, and earning a best supporting actress award from the New York Film Critics Circle.
New York Times
• Madame governor. At least 79 women—49 Democrats and 30 Republicans—are running for governor this year, or at least seriously considering it as filing deadlines approach, according to the Center for American Women in Politics at Rutgers University. That’s more than double the number from four years ago and on track to surpass the record 34 women who ran for governor in 1994.
• Like a bad penny... Just three months after SoFi founder Mike Cagney was ousted from the company amid allegations of sexual harassment, he is already angling to get back in the Silicon Valley scene; Cagney has reportedly been approaching investors in a bid to raise $25 million for a new fintech startup.
• Last dance. Peter Martins, who resigned from City Ballet and its School of American Ballet on Monday amid accusations of sexual harassment, reportedly “reigned with impunity for nearly 30 years despite reports of inappropriate behavior and complaints about his leadership….because board members and executives were enamored with or fearful of” him.
New York Times