Alas, their efforts have not translated into gender parity in the digital media landscape. As [Emily] Bell wrote for the Guardian last week (and then reiterated for CJR), the people labeled as rockstars on the frontiers of journalism are almost entirely men like Nate Silver, Ezra Klein, and Glenn Greenwald. How, Bell asks, can this kind of journalism be truly revolutionary if the key players all look like the newspaper barons of old?
The gender discrepancy Bell describes isn’t limited to these high-profile startups. Women in digital media are both under represented and less likely to receive credit for their work. Bell’s observation that ‘the new micro-institutions of journalism already bear the hallmarks of the restrictive heritage they abandoned with such glee’ echoes what I discovered during nearly two years of counting and interviewing women involved in the new media landscape. Despite early prominence in digital journalism, female leaders are the minority in virtually all its corners today, and the women who do launch innovative publications aren’t getting the same attention as men. That has implications both practical and rhetorical, making journalism’s future seem as homogeneous as its past.