Since 2005
Works in Brooklyn, New York United States of America

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Getty Images: Still Kinda Sexist?

I sent this article to listserve I was on, explaining that I thought it was notable. Rachel Sklar wrote back with some useful criticism and told me I should pass it along. Here it is:

I just read this and foundi t truly exasperating. I was expecting a really nuanced critique with examples for that kind of title. This was not it! (Not sure if I was supposed to watch the video embedded in the piece but I read articles for the words, and those words did not force me to watch the video.)(Also Paddy thanks for sharing and please don't be offended at how I am about to go off on this!)

This is the crux of the take on the images: "but mostly they're fine." Oh gee thanks for the tepid approval of 2500 images showing diverse women in diverse situations of strength and power! It seems the sole critique is that there are no photos showing a child with a nanny, or a parent and child with a nanny, or a babysitter - I am not sure exactly what is expected here. This piece, to me, is a retread of the same old critique of Lean In - that it's just meant for one type of woman, not for every single woman who could possibly live in the US or anywhere - and it is, as usual, directed with specificity and an impossibly high standard at one specific org instead of, say, at every single other stock photo agency which *also* surely does not have sufficient representation of modern-day child care.

I read lots of Lean In critiques and take seriously the ones which take critiquing seriously - granularly, with specific examples, addressed in context. This piece does not do that, at all - it just airily dismisses the actually pretty damn groundbreaking initiative here - and it's pretty impressive far-reaching consequences - and instead focuses on a small slice that is missing (with no evidence that there is a market for those images in the first place)(never mind that they are adding photos ongoingly).

And - do you want to be the person selecting those photos? What do the images of the childcare workers look like? What do the images of the parents look like? Are we looking for verisimilitude here or an ideal world in which private childcare workers and the people who pay for them are a rainbow of different colors? And while we are at it, where are the nursing home photos on Lean In? What color are the nurses changing the bedpans? That is certainly leaning in! I can't believe how ageist Lean In is!

Point being - it is NOT okay to headline this piece "Getty Images: Still Kinda Sexist?" then simultaneously say, "actually most of it is fine but one use case was left out." The right headline would be: "Missing From Lean In on Getty: Child Care Workers." But that wouldn't be half as clickable, right?

I am all for having these discussions but I grow really weary of them being constantly hooked on dissing Lean In - there are battering rams and there are scalpels, and that book was a frigging battering ram. And so is this Getty program! It drives me nuts at how much of the criticism around anything Lean In does is directed at how deficient it is at being a scalpel.

BUT - if you're going to throw shade for being a bad scalpel - then you'd best be bringing your best surgeon hands to the task. This article falls way short.



Breaking the Ice

I'd like to see more posting in general. Rhizome is a great resource, but not every post is going to appeal to me. I like new media art news and I don't see very much of it on the site. It's exactly the kind of thing that'd have me returning to the site frequently.


Tool Time: Cory Arcangel at The Whitney

I think it's unlikely those labels exist to appease curators. At least two new media museum curators I know based in New York thought the show was really bad and they weren't into the labels. To me, they read like gallery sales text and seeing as how those explinations didn't start appearing until after Arcangel joined Team Gallery in 2005, my bet is that that's what they are.


The New

I think it's important to say something publically. It's a persistent issue and of all the broken links that need to be fixed, I'd say the exhibition links should take top priority. These exhibitions tell people about the history of Rhizome and what they deem important in the field of net art. 
In other news, I very much like the new comment fields!


Means of Production: Fabbing and Digital Art

I actually hadn't meant to issue a whole scale dismissal of artist's use of the technology, though I can see how my prediction might have read as such. I've seen a lot of great art work made with 3-D printing machines, it just seems like there's a school of market artists out there interested in novelty over anything else.