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The Broadsheet: July 23

Good morning, Broadsheet readers! Twitter commits a party foul, Nicki Minaj stirs up a tweetstorm, and Apple is hoping women will help lift its Watch sales. Have a productive Thursday!

EVERYONE’S TALKING

Frat party fracas. Twitter, the target of recent gender discrimination litigation, hosted a frat-themed party at its San Francisco headquarters. Not surprisingly, a photo of the party set off an online ruckus and the company quickly apologized. Fusion

ALSO IN THE HEADLINES

• Meg’s on the money. Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman is now co-chair of Republican presidential candidate Chris Christie’s national finance team. Bloomberg

• Women and the Watch. In the wake of apparently tepid Apple Watch sales, the tech giant is ramping up its marketing of the device to women. Fortune

• Team leader. This Rolling Stone story argues that after winning the NBA Summer League, San Antonio Spurs assistant coach Becky Hammon should get her shot as an NBA head coach. Rolling Stone

• Off target. Target is in hot water for selling a women’s shirt with the word “Trophy” emblazoned on the front. Shoppers have taken to social media to call the shirt sexist, and a petition on Change.org is calling for the retailer to remove it from its stores. USA Today

Balancing act. The youngest generation of women in the workforce is redefining career success. Unlike their moms, many Millennial women are building family needs into their career ambitions and expecting their priorities to shift over time. New York Times

• Etsy’s a she. A report released by the online handmade goods marketplace revealed that 86% of sellers are women.  Wall Street Journal

• Giving victims a voice. Microsoft launched a new page on its website for victims of revenge porn to report violations. Fortune

MOVERS AND SHAKERS: Marcia Morales-Jaffe joins PayPal as chief HR officer. She was previously SVP of people and performance at World Fuel Services Corp. Teri Everett, the former EVP of corporate communications at Time Inc., Fortune‘s parent, has been named EVP of global communications at Universal Filmed Entertainment.

BROADVIEW

Who won the Nicki Minaj – Taylor Swift VMA Twitter war? We did.

Oh, MTV Video Music Awards. Every time I try to write you off as an artifact of an earlier age, you serve up some new controversy that takes over the Internet for a day or two, reminding me that, believe it or not, you do still hold some cultural currency.

This time, the dust-up came over a snub: Rapper Nicki Minaj was not nominated for Video of the Year, despite having created two videos—“Anaconda” and “Feeling Myself”—that were widely considered strong contenders.

Minaj hopped on Twitter to air her frustration, saying that the awards celebrate videos featuring “very slim bodies” and that black women are rarely rewarded for the way they influence pop culture.

Apparently this comment irked Taylor Swift, who felt “slim bodies” was a shot at her Video of the Year-nominated “Bad Blood,” which stars a pack of waifish supermodels. Swift responded to Minaj, saying, “It’s unlike you to pit women against each other. Maybe one of the men took your slot.”

At this point, it’s worth taking a closer look at the two stars’ arguments. Minaj’s stance—that she was overlooked because of her race and body type—is complicated by the presence of another massive pop persona: Beyoncé.

Beyoncé’s “7/11” was nominated for Video of the Year. And while no one would argue that Bey isn’t one of the biggest and brightest stars in the pop universe, she is still a black woman. What’s more, her physique is pretty far removed from the stick-thin runway models of Swift’s video.

On the other hand, Swift’s expression of female solidarity seems a little rich given the subject of her nominated video. “Bad Blood” is entirely based on a fight between two rival gangs of women. And then there’s the rumor that Swift wrote the song as a kiss-off to ex-friend and fellow pop star Katy Perry—an irony that Perry herself tweeted about yesterday.

 

So, where does that leave us?

To read the rest of my story, click here.

• Code words. Former Airbnb engineer Amy Wibowo has created BubbleSort, a series of ‘zines designed to get teen girls hooked on computer science.  Re/Code

• A portentous year. Will the title of Swift’s latest album—1989—cause drama on her upcoming Chinese tour? 1989, which is Swift’s birth year, also happens to be the year when the Tiananmen Square protests took place.  Fortune

• Banks go bust? Elke König, chairwoman of the Single Resolution Board, warns that low interest rates are a growing risk for European banks and may result in closures. WSJ

• Gender cardsBetween a Daily Mail story that described British Labour MP Liz Kendall as a “slinky brunette” and Sen. Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) accusation that Hillary Clinton is relying on “the gender card,” it’s been a tough week for female pols. Fortune takes a look back at some of the most notorious cases of political sexism in recent years.  Fortune

Cait’s debut. Caitlyn Jenner’s reality series, I am Cait, premieres this Sunday. Chronicling Jenner—and the sensitive and potentially explosive issues that surround her—will present unique challenges for the producers of Bunim/Murray, which also brought us Keeping up with the Kardashians New York Times

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ON MY RADAR

Amy Poehler to star in Balls  Variety

Sandra Bland is not the first black woman to experience police violence  Time

Somehow teen girls get the coolest wearable out there  Wired

I’m the mom whose encounter with an angry Maine diner owner went viral  Washington Post

QUOTE

I'm not going to shut up. And I think people only want women to speak for so long. They build you up, and then they're just ready to tear you down. Like Hillary—when it's really go time for her, I'll definitely be active, and that'll make people hate me.

Actress Amy Schumer, on why she expects backlash after her success