Wrestling With Ugly Voices

Question: What is an ethical dilemma you’ve faced?

Jessica Valenti: That's hard! I think -- when I started blogging, it was -- and the site's readership was very small -- it was really important to me that our comments were just completely open, right, and anyone who wanted to comment, whether they disagreed really strongly or not, could comment on the site. And it was really important to me as a feminist to talk to each and every one of them and to try to have a conversation with all of them. And even if they were completely anti-feminist or misogynist, I kind of had this idealistic point of view that if I just spent five minutes talking to them, they would understand why this work was so important. And as the site got bigger, we kind of ran into this problem of is this realistic, and is this the best way to serve our community? You know, to have this kind of complete openness in comments. And now I am of the opinion of moderating more and more and more. But that initial hurdle to make comments moderated and to kind of curb people's voices when they were hateful or anti-feminist or not progressing the conversation was a really difficult hurdle for me to get over. But now that I'm over it, I'm really over it.

December 11, 2009

The founder of Feministing.com had to make a tough decision to censor some of the more hateful comments on her blog.

Meet the Bajau sea nomads — they can reportedly hold their breath for 13 minutes

The Bajau people's nomadic lifestyle has given them remarkable adaptions, enabling them to stay underwater for unbelievable periods of time. Their lifestyle, however, is quickly disappearing.

Wikimedia Commons
Culture & Religion
  • The Bajau people travel in small flotillas throughout the Phillipines, Malaysia, and Indonesia, hunting fish underwater for food.
  • Over the years, practicing this lifestyle has given the Bajau unique adaptations to swimming underwater. Many find it straightforward to dive up to 13 minutes 200 feet below the surface of the ocean.
  • Unfortunately, many disparate factors are erasing the traditional Bajau way of life.
Keep reading Show less

New study finds the egg may actually 'choose' the Sperm

Here's the first evidence to challenge the "fastest sperm" narrative.

popular
Keep reading Show less

Scientists create a "lifelike" material that has metabolism and can self-reproduce

An innovation may lead to lifelike evolving machines.

Shogo Hamada/Cornell University
Surprising Science
  • Scientists at Cornell University devise a material with 3 key traits of life.
  • The goal for the researchers is not to create life but lifelike machines.
  • The researchers were able to program metabolism into the material's DNA.
Keep reading Show less