“It’s harder for a women’s site to raise money… no question”


Back when Bustle launched, the Internet exploded that Bryan Goldberg– a young Rodney Dangerfield who previously built a site for armchair quarterbacks— would dare to take on a women’s site as his next challenge. 

The rage machine was in such tilt that Goldberg would up buying back his shares from one investor.

Amid all that hand-wringing, it seemed lost on many pundits that one of the most successful women’s media sites in the digital era, Refinery29, is also run by two men. Those two men– Justin Stefano and Philippe von Borries — were our guest at last month’s PandoMonthly. They’ve raised some $ 80 million to date and are one of just six content companies valued north of $ 100 million.

In the clip below, we talk about how two dudes who met at 16 wound up leading a women’s site that was– in fairness– also co-founded by two women, who don’t share the CEO title.  We also talked about the distinct challenges of raising money if you are a female founder, versus a founder of any gender building a company for women…

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers slammed for women’s outreach program


The New York Times didn’t pull any punches in its assessment of Red, the new women’s outreach program from the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Its headline calls the so-called “movement” a “lesson out of the ‘50s.”

The Buccaneers launched the program Thursday with a press release that reads, in part:

RED will provide female Buccaneers fans with year-round educational experiences focused on providing a better understanding of the game, along with unprecedented access to their favorite team. In addition, RED will re-invent the female fan experience by providing insight into topics such as: what goes on behind the scenes on gamedays at Raymond James Stadium; how to maximize their gameday experience; how to blend personal Buccaneer pride with the latest NFL fashions; as well as tips on sharing their experiences and ideas via social media platforms such as Pinterest.

The Times’ Juliet Macur wrote that the team’s approach is insulting, pointing to videos in which players condescendingly explain what they do. She wrote:

Maybe the Bucs haven’t heard what’s happening out there. Jen Welter recently became the first female N.F.L. coach, teaching inside linebackers at the Arizona Cardinals’ training camp.

Welter, like many women who follow the N.F.L. as a sport, doesn’t need an explanation of how the game works or which positions do what on the field.

Macur wasn’t the only columnist to slam the program. The Tampa Bay Times had two separate columns about it, and USA Today, The Washington Post, and The Denver Post were just a few other publications offering takes.

There’s plenty of outrage on social media, too. The comments on the team’s Facebook post announcing the program are largely critical, and many are outright angry.

The program has its defenders, though. CBS Sports’ Ryan Wilson wrote that the program “means well,” for example, and several Facebook commenters said people are overreacting. SB Nation’s Sander Phillipse made this observation, though:

The very few columns written to half-heartedly defend the Bucs were all written by men. The people who are not a part of the audience for RED. When the only folks who think you’re doing okay-ish are not part of your target audience, but the people you are targeting are writing op-eds that you’re clueless, that’s a really solid indicator that you actually got a lot of things wrong.

As of Friday, the Bucs haven’t officially responded to the criticism and seem to be pushing ahead with a Sept. 10 launch party for the campaign.