Lemme Femsplain Something To You
“Men get so much further ahead when they’re risk takers. Women on the other hand can plan and overanalyze. Then when we come back around to it and we never actually do it.” – Amber Gordon, founder of Femsplain in New York Observer
When I discover cool ladies doing cool stuff online I get a shiver down my spine and a tingle in my fingertips. So IMAGINE my delight when stumbling upon FEMSPLAIN.COM: a new online community for anyone who identifies as female, a place where trolls are NOT allowed.
This isn’t like anything else I’ve read. It’s grittier than Hello Giggles, softer than Jezebel, more direct than Thought Catalog. It’s like loads of mates all tying their blog posts all together in one place. It’s honest. It’s full of articles that get all kinds of deep, like those sunset heart-to-hearts you tend to only have on holiday. But it also does not beat around the bush. The point is that the team behind Femsplain are sick of all the bullshit directed at women. It’s time to take back the control.
I’m also interested in Femsplain from an entrepreneurial point of view. The fact that it’s founders are creative and cool hustlers. Founder Amber Gordon would get no sleep working through the night on the project, and eventually decided to quit her job (she was previously a creative strategist at Tumblr) to go for it 100% with Femsplain. The site went live in October 2014, and then a Kickstarter was launched in order to raise the funds for Femsplain to continue running, aka “feminism full-time” and by pledging you were helping in “changing the way women are perceived”. Not a bad thing to pledge for.
This week, the Kickstarter had over 600 backers (that’s loads) and exceeded their goal of $25K! AMAZING right?
So over Twitter (obvs) I’ve been showing my support for this new and exciting project, and asked Amber if she’d answer some questions, because I think what she is doing is FIFTY SHADES OF AWESOME. <3
Safe, inclusive platform to speak.
2) What makes Femsplain different from other feminist sites and what’s it’s overall aim?
3) What’s your favourite emoji and why?
This is hard. Probably the girl with her hand to the side. Because she’s like “deal with it” and that’s the attitude I’m trying to have.
4) What sort of content will be on the site? And what WON’T you ever publish on the site?
Content can range from short stories to long-form, art to photography, music to videos. All type of content as long as it’s personal, first the monthly theme, and aligns with our beliefs. We will never publish anything that is in any way attacking another women. It’s all supposed to be sharing personal experiences that in turn create discussion.
5) In a sentence, what’s your Femsplain manifesto?
Our mission is to highlight all the amazing diversity of women on the Internet who might not have another outlet to share their experiences. We want to create a supportive and positive community for anyone to support.
6) Where did the name come from?? (ps: love it. )
Hahahaha. Well, one day a (male) good friend of mine and I were discussing about what I should call this platform I built but didn’t have a name for. He was like, why don’t you “femsplain” a name to me? And I was like, you know what? Maybe I will. So I did. The word “mansplain” is super negative and seen as bad (which it is) but our core is to redefine the way women are currently viewed and discussed so that’s what we’re hoping to do, starting with this word.
7) You’ve had shout outs from Lena Dunham to Tyler Oakley – how did they find out about your project?
8) Who are your biggest inspirations?
Can I say my mom? It’s my mom. She’s really always been there for me and cheering me on from the sidelines. I also really admire my friends. Ever since moving to NYC I’ve met so many inspiring people that have encouraged me to want to be a better version of myself.
9) How can other people get involved?
10) What are you most excited about now that you’ve reached your Kickstarter goal?
“In love with Emma Gannon’s Ctrl Alt Delete. So funny & smart, and reminding me of some of my own cringe teen Internet exploits!”– Anna James, former literary editor of ELLE
"Funny, honest, and nostalgic!"– The Debrief
“Emma Gannon is a bright spark of light in the world. I seriously dig everything she makes”– Elizabeth Gilbert, bestselling author of Big Magic