MumsnetGuestBlogs (MNHQ) Fri 11-Oct-13 11:36:58

Malala is a fantastic role model for girls - but why aren't there more?

This week, Malala Yousafzai won the EU Sakharov prize for human rights. Here MN blogger Lynn Schreiber, who last year launched Jump! Mag, an online magazine which seeks to broaden the role models offered to girls in the mainstream media, explains why Malala's example is so important.

Lynn Schreiber

Salt and Caramel

Posted on: Fri 11-Oct-13 11:36:58

(141 comments )

Lead photo

Malala Yousafazi speaks at the United Nations.

Happy International Day of the Girl! We would have loved to have been able to congratulate Malala Yousafzai on being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, but unfortunately it was not to be.

But this is no way diminishes her extraordinary achievement. Threats from the Taliban couldn’t stop her writing - nor did the appalling, cowardly attack on her and her school friends. Standing tall at the UN earlier this year, she spoke powerfully and movingly for the rights of girls to an education. The fact that she was considered for the Nobel Prize for Peace – taking her place alongside Aung San Suu Kyi, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Shirin Ebadi – is, I hope, testament to the fact that global equality for women and girls is edging closer. What a fantastic role model she is to our girls - and to our boys.

And heaven knows they need it.

From a young age, children are given the message that girls like pink, dressing up, make-up and hairstyles, princesses and horses. Boys are pushed towards cars, tractors, planes and adventure. Campaigns such as Let Toys Be Toys have been successful in highlighting how damaging this is for children – but the media landscape in which our daughters are growing up presents just as many challenges to those of us who want our children to be whatever they want to be.

Our girls are bombarded with images of seemingly perfect celebrities, and feel pressured that they don’t live up to the images portrayed. They are as yet unaware that this perfection is only achievable with the assistance of a team of stylists, flattering lighting and photoshop to smooth the skin and vanish blemishes.

It's time to give all girls the confidence to stand up and speak up, and to know that their voice will be heard.


In March 2012, I started a thread on Mumsnet asking if anyone would like to contribute to a preteen magazine for girls. The idea was that the magazine would offer an alternative to magazines like Girls & Co, Go Girl and Hello Kitty, which offer such a narrow range of options for girls to aspire to. This magazine would focus on fun articles and creative craft ideas, personal and school/career advice, insights into careers that they may not have considered, articles about children around the world and interactive content, some of it written by their peers. We wanted to feature female role models – not celebrities, but sportswomen, archaeologists, engineers, counsellors and councillors.

With the assistance of dozens of Mumsnetters, Jump! Mag was born.

In the year since, we’ve published over 200 articles on a wide range of topics, hosted two writing competitions (the second is currently underway) and featured over 60 articles written by our young readers – everything from being a vegetarian to coping with bullies to what it is really like to live on a boat.

In the coming weeks we’ll be launching a Kickstarter crowd-funding project to develop the magazine further – so do keep an eye out on Facebook and Twitter for announcements. The new Jump! Mag will be a unique online magazine for preteens - a one-stop-shop to inspire and entertain kids, in a safe, girl-positive environment.

We’ll feature games and interactive stories, news and reviews, peer-to-peer counselling, advice on bullying and health and using social media safely – and we’ll be working with other organisations to inform our readers about science, technology, engineering and mathematics – traditionally subjects that are not promoted to girls.

Our hope is that we can be online mentors, guiding the way for thousands of girls around the world, showing them that there are fascinating careers that they might not even know about- and opening up the world for them by showing that there are many more roles available to them than the ones they see in the other girls' magazines on the newsagent's shelf.

In a world that celebrates the bravery of Malala Yousafzai - a girl who is determined to speak out about what she wants to be - we think it's time to give all girls the confidence to stand up and speak up, and to know that their voice will be heard.

By Lynn Schreiber

Twitter: @LynnCSchreiber

curlew Fri 11-Oct-13 11:39:26

And why have we (Mumsnet collectively or individually) not marked International Day of the Girl in some way?

VeeVandTeaDrinkYourBlood Fri 11-Oct-13 12:06:03

Yes to all that (great post btw) I help in the school library and this week a 6yo boy asked for a cookbook. All the cookbooks were "cupcakes for princesses" "baking for girl" or generally covered in pink sparkly shit. A girl wants a science book and they are filled with facts about the male scientists who changed the world. Years ago I didn't understand how ingrained these gender roles were.

Keep up the good work

I love this as an idea, you being 'online mentors'. smile

Keep up the good work.

LynnCSchreiber Fri 11-Oct-13 12:57:52

Veev
That is really sad - particularly at the moment, when baking is so popular. My kids adore GBBO and the kids version is fabulous too.

Curlew
I suppose inviting me to do a guest blog was in some way marking the day, but maybe MNHQ would like to work with Jump! Mag next year to do more.

VeeVandTeaDrinkYourBlood Fri 11-Oct-13 14:06:39

I can't see newest posts. How odd.

LynnCSchreiber Fri 11-Oct-13 14:54:02

I've asked MNHQ to have a look - if you flip the thread they are visible.

VeeVandTeaDrinkYourBlood Fri 11-Oct-13 14:58:50

Yes they are. How strange...

mumsdotravel Fri 11-Oct-13 15:48:04

Well said Lynn and well done for your fab magazine.

timidviper Fri 11-Oct-13 16:54:52

I feel almost like there are 2 different worlds here, parallel but never the twain shall meet.
Here we are trying to mentor and educate our sons and daughters to an awareness of gender equality using examples like Malala and yet the media send us an overwhelming onslaught of it's not cool to be clever, pink, princesses, WAGs, etc. You had only to watch this week's Educating Yorkshire to see the effects on young people, particularly girls. I am tired of the glorification of the "Haha, how fick am I?" Z listers that set such a bad example to young people who may not have role models or parents to encourage them to do better

LynnCSchreiber Fri 11-Oct-13 17:16:33

Thanks, Mumsdotravel.

TimidViper
I am in Germany this week so missed Educating Yorkshire, but have read many tweets about it. Will catch up when I get home.

I agree that it is sad that 'slebs' are our kids' role models.

nicename Fri 11-Oct-13 20:20:19

Helena Kennedy was my role model when I was a child. Sadly I didn't become a lawyer!

There was a phone-in earlier this week on the Jermey Vine show on radio 2: who is the better role Model: Miley or Malala. Interesting!

On another note, as a mother of boys, I am often left wondering who the good role models for them are (outside our family and friends). And what do the magazines available to them tell them how 'real men' should behave towards themselves, and women. Perhaps this could be your next project Lynn.

scallopsrgreat Fri 11-Oct-13 21:38:43

The new ideas sound great Lynn and congratulations on the success of Jump! mag. I've read loads of great articles on there.

LynnCSchreiber Fri 11-Oct-13 21:44:01

Nicename
I don't think that girls have to go to to the same career as their role model, but seeing a successful woman lawyer would make one think 'What else could I be?'

Cognito
Funnily enough, we have changed the focus of the magazine recently to be more boy-inclusive. I've come to realise that boys are damaged just as much by the pink/blue stereotypes that about.

Boys don't cry.

Boys are tough.

Boys don't show emotions

Boys will be boys

This is the reason that we are now 'Jump! Mag for Preteens' rather than 'Jump! Mag for Girls'. I think that boys would benefit from the messages we are sendin and might be turned off if it is seen as a magazine for girls.

We will be doing more on this topic in coming months.

The focus to all preteens sounds great. Looking forward to having a look. Thank you - there is hope!!!

VeeVandTeaDrinkYourBlood Fri 11-Oct-13 22:48:47

Lynn, I'm really chuffed (as mother to a feral boy) that you are trying to include them as well. Boys have as much to do with feminism as girls. they have so many stereotypes pushed at them, and are called girls as if that's an insult. I have sat down with him a few times and looked through Jump! (he likes it, btw) and he has certainly absorbed some of my rants ideals (remember the newsagent bollocking wink) but sometimes I feel like I'm pushing against so much!

Sorry, thats a v boy-centric post.

Growlithe Sat 12-Oct-13 00:59:45

Oh wow, are you really using the plight of Malala Yousafzai and her school friends to highlight the fact that you believe girls of this country having a limited choice of magazine to read and to promote your emagazine?

Here, let me plug this www.malalafund.org/ to highlight what she wants to, the right of every child in the world to an education.

The 'plight' of Malala?

You realize she is a fantastic, inspiring young woman who nearly won a Nobel Prize today?!

Women all around the world should be provided with good opportunities. I for one am proud to see a magazine in the UK making a start in providing some mentoring.

Growlithe Sat 12-Oct-13 01:19:57

Yes I do. And I realise why. Because she was more afraid of not being educated than she was of men with weapons who thought she shouldn't. And when she is talking about children of the world not being educated she is not talking about the choice of leisure reading.

The children of this country have access to education. Even the poorest amongst us have access to public libraries.

There is a 'plight' of Malala. She had to risk her life to go to school at all. She should not have been used to promote this.

I think it is quite patronizing to pretend she is a passive victim, as you do when you refer to her 'plight'.

If you read what she has to say, you will see that, even though she's only 16, she knows how important education is and she doesn't discriminate.

You are sadly mistaken if you really imagine that all children in the UK have access to libraries - you do realize that some children don't actually learn to read? And that many children who do learn to read are encouraged only to read books that tell them how to be a nice, passive type of person?

It is vital that we educate all girls to understand how much women can do. Malala is a brilliant role model for this, but it is limiting her impact to pretend she could only influence her own home country.

MrsDeVere Sat 12-Oct-13 12:36:28

I understand the points made about her 'plight'

But really, the girl is on the Taliban hit list and they will kill her if they can get near her.
She can't go home.
She has lost her country and her parents their jobs.

I would call that a plight.

NoYeastInMyMuffin Sat 12-Oct-13 12:43:19

But malala is a great example of what needs to change. We all encounter misogyny in different ways, For one woman its the way she is groped in a club, for another it's being unable to return to work after having children because the women are expected to be the homemakers, for another its being forcefed the belief that women and girls are inferior, and for another it's being unable to get the education they deserve. they are all different symptoms of the same thing.

Yes, fair enough I agree MrsDeVere, I just think that she shouldn't be trotted out as an example of some poor girl in a faraway country.

I think the implication that girls in the UK couldn't care about her, and she wouldn't be interested in girls anywhere but her home country, is just bonkers.

Growlithe Sat 12-Oct-13 13:12:36

No, that wasn't the implication actually. I have made sure my DD is very aware of her and what happened in her country, and is happening in other countries, because of the fear of education.

She is a role model, and has already in my opinion made her place in world history because she has made religious extremists afraid of her, and she has done that peacefully.

She makes me thankful that my daughters have just the same opportunities in education as their male counterparts, and girls in this country are doing a good job of taking that. And so is she, in this country.

She makes me think of all the many inequalities in the world, caused by poverty, ignorance and fear, which are stopping children in the world in 2013 from learning to read and write. This makes me angry. This drives me to make sure my daughter knows it is happening and compare and contrast it to her own life and opportunities.

It also makes me thankful I am able to take her freely to the Coop without having to pass by dead bodies strung up as a way of instilling fear, and that I am able to buy her whatever magazine she wants to read.

And the fact that her choice may be influenced by marketeers is in no way comparable to it being influenced by a religious extremist with a gun.

It's nice your daughters have exactly the same opportunities in education as their male counterparts.

But what is wrong with saying that not everyone does? I don't follow.

If I understand the OP rightly, she started her magazine precisely because her daughter couldn't buy the magazine she wanted to read - because the market was crowded out with things promoting gender stereotypes.

Yes, of course, this is not remotely comparable to the situation where women and girls around the world cannot access education at all - but there is a continuum. It's arrogant to assume that the UK is all fine and dandy, and the only countries where women suffer are conveniently located 'elsewhere'.

Growlithe Sat 12-Oct-13 13:48:17

You can buy this kind of magazine. National Geographic Kids. First News.

This problem isn't conveniently located 'elsewhere'. The absolute essence of Malala, what caused her to be singled out, is she has put it right there in everyone's faces, worldwide. My daughter told me she knew about her before I started to talk about her.

In the pink fluffy world of the UK female preteen, she had found Malala before I told her about her. And she doesn't read this emagazine. She also funnily enough learned about Mary Seacole and Nelson Mandela by picking up kids books from her school library when she was in Year 1 and into Disney Princesses.

And don't give me that twaddle about 'well that's nice for your daughters'. Because if they weren't getting a rounded view from home, or even from their peers, they would still be entitled to it from their teachers. Even in the free school fiasco the Al-Madinah School was not tolerated in this country.

Mmm. Not sure they are the same, really.

The whole point is that Jump! isn't a 'pink fluffy world'.

And yes, obviously no-one is saying it's the only source of information on world news. hmm

I have no clue why you're so cross with me or so angry about what seems to me a perfectly nice thread. It is nice for your daughters they get a rounded view at home and from their teachers. Like it or not, that makes them pretty fortunate, and not all children get that.

Surely it is good to discuss role-models for UK girls in as many media as possible?

Growlithe Sat 12-Oct-13 14:08:28

I'm not cross with you (except perhaps that you called me patronising and tried to twist what I was saying about Malala) I'm cross with this thread for using Malala as a way to attract people in what is clearly a promotion of Jump.

I'm making the point that girls who are in their pink fluffy world are still able to take in and process information from many sources, and that those sources are available to them - even if not at home, in schools.

It is good to discuss positive role models for ALL children, I thought that was what this thread was about, and I think they are everywhere actually, and that they are girls and boys, women and men.

I don't see what's particularly positive about the 'pink fluffy world'.

Can you really not see the connection between promoting gender equality for preteens in a magazine, and getting those same girls interested in an inspiring young women who ... um ... promotes gender equality?

I don't think I am twisting what you are saying. I just disagree with you.

Growlithe Sat 12-Oct-13 14:23:41

Those girls are quite capable of being interested in inspiring young women without it being suggested that they need this to save them from princesses and horses. I don't want my daughter to feel guilty about her choices because they are somehow being presented as the opposite of what good role models who she admires stand for.

confused

Ok - so what you're saying is, you think girls don't need 'saving' from princesses and horses (wasn't aware anyone had been demonizing horses, but there we go). Do you mean, you like gender stereotyping? But you also like women who fight against it?

My head is about to explode.

Growlithe Sat 12-Oct-13 14:58:04

I am saying that I will stand shoulder to shoulder with anyone protesting against the oppressing of any group or individual by political, religious or violent means.

I simply don't agree with you that Hello Kitty magazine falls into that category.

Of course, because gender stereotyping girls doesn't matter, and has no links to misogyny. hmm

Growlithe Sat 12-Oct-13 15:12:43

Well, let's just say it doesn't matter as much as girls getting shot for going to school.

I really don't think anyone suggested it did, and that's an extremely unpleasant thing to pretend they did.

lljkk Sat 12-Oct-13 15:32:38

Malala has been brave but she's being made out to be a symbol of women's rights which she really ISN'T, not by western standards. I'm so glad she didn't win the Nobel Prize. She is still a product of her place & culture. Many of her values are deeply conservative, she's no poster girl for the progressives. She wouldn't campaign without the full support of the senior men in her family. I often think it's her dad who deserves a world-size prize for defying cultural expectations he was probably deeply suffused with. Malala is young & easy to be foolish or idealistic when young.

Malala's mates have been making headlines, too. More brave dads behind them, too.

LynnCSchreiber Sat 12-Oct-13 19:51:45

Grow
I am sorry that you feel that I am 'using' Malala in any way. That was not the intention of this guest blog.

For the record, I was asked to contribute an article on the occasion of International Day of the Girl. I suggested that a post about mentoring would be good, as I had been reading Melissa Benn's book. As the Nobel Prize was to be awarded on Friday, we agreed that it would be appropriate to mention Malala, and we were hoping that we could congratulate her on receiving the prize. Sadly that was not to be, so we used the draft that I had prepared as a contingency.

Fwiw, we have featured two articles about Malala, one of them written by the young daughter of a MNetter who did a sponsored walk to raise money for Malala's fund. We have often promoted her fund on Twitter and FB, so I don't feel that we are using her in any way to promote the magazine.

The main intention of this post was to celebrate girls, and to let the many MNetters who have supported me and Jump! Mag. I have not made a penny from Jump! Mag, in fact I have invested a lot of time and money to bring it this far.

The site is being developed further for two reasons. First, to enable me to pay the writers who contribute articles. And second, to enable us to reach more young girls, and to widen the range of content we can offer.

As to your comment about there already being similar content on the market - all I can say is that I would invite you to have a closer look at what we offer. Neither National Geographic nor First News (both great publications) offer the range of articles that we already do, and certainly not those that are in the pipeline for after the redesign. These products are mainly print based, and we are completely online.

We are developing a magazine that I would say is a kind of Huffington Post for preteens (except our contributors will be paid!), with news, reviews, interesting content, and teaching/study guides.

We have plans to offer free subscriptions to libraries, for kids who can't afford to access the site at home, and are planning teaching English as a foreign language content, which we are hoping to offer to kids in developing countries free of charge.

This isn't a get-rich-quick scheme, and I am sorry if that was the impression that you received from this guest blog.

I am aware that this is a monster post, but trying to answer all points. Sorry about that.

To the 'pink and fluffy' comment - I absolutely don't think that we are making girls feel guilty about their choices, but by 8 or 9 years, most are growing out of the princess phase. I have actually been planning a 'In defence of pink' article for some time, but haven't got around to writing it.

There is nothing wrong with pink. I wear pink, I buy my daughter pink products on occasion. What I would like to see is it being relegated to just another colour in the spectrum.

Anyway, I am happy to answer any other questions that you may have.

mysticminstrel Sat 12-Oct-13 22:18:30

I'm with Growlithe all the way here - clicked on a thread about Malala and opened and advert to a pre-teen magazine?

Really surprised that MN would allow this - I'm completely used to ignoring the advertising on MN, but it's somewhat strange to encounter it in this way.

I agree with the off-colour comparisons - "Over in Pakistan, a girl is shot in the head for going to school...meanwhile back in the UK there's a dearth of choice in the pre-teen magazine market".

Not cool.

mystic, OP was asked to write the guest blog.

MN didn't just 'allow' it, they sought her out.

Bad form to make up a quote, too.

mysticminstrel Sat 12-Oct-13 22:27:24

LRD - I'm just telling it how I read it. I doesn't make a difference to me, who approached who, it's an advert for a product.

And apols for what you consider to be a "made up quote" that was not my intention - my keyboard is buggered, and that was the best I could come up with. I'm sure most MNers are clever enough to spot that I wasn't quoting anyone though.

I d

curlew Sat 12-Oct-13 22:38:10

It doesn't sit well with me either. I am finding it hard to articulate why.

LynnCSchreiber Sat 12-Oct-13 22:39:18

Ok, to be very clear about this.

I approached MNHQ and asked if there was any way that they could help me promote the relaunch of the magazine, since it was born out of a MN initiative.

They asked me to write an article for Day of the Girl, which I agreed to do. Initially it was to be a review of the book mentioned, and discussing mentoring (which we will be featuring on Jump! Mag).

Then MNHQ asked if I would add a reference to Malala, since she may receive a Nobel Peace Prize on the day of publishing, and that it would a) be odd not to mention such a massive point of discussion on such a day and b) make the blog post topical.

I am really sorry if this is being taken the wrong way, as it was certainly not intended to cause upset.

mysticminstrel Sat 12-Oct-13 22:44:53

I don't know if there is a "wrong way", really.

It's actually a bit of a relief to read that the OP is the result of two different agendas? Because it is SO clunkily put together...

"The fact that she was considered for the Nobel Prize for Peace – taking her place alongside Aung San Suu Kyi, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Shirin Ebadi – is, I hope, testament to the fact that global equality for women and girls is edging closer. What a fantastic role model she is to our girls - and to our boys.

And heaven knows they need it.

From a young age, children are given the message that girls like pink, dressing up, make-up and hairstyles, princesses and horses. Boys are pushed towards cars, tractors, planes and adventure."

Eek! What a mess.

Portofino Sat 12-Oct-13 22:54:21

It's not a product - it's a labour of love. Something not driven by profit. Lynn has used her own time to build an on line magazine for girls. Something positive. MN invited her here to comment on the Malala story and encouraged her link to Jump Magazine to celebrate Internatilonal Day of the Girl. I'd like to know what anyone else is doing to encourage the young girls of the future before they get pissy about it'

mysticminstrel Sat 12-Oct-13 22:57:24

Semantics, porto.

It's an advert dressed up as a guest blog.

Why not just start a thread entitled "hey, MNers, have you seen Jump Magazine"

I'd respect that much more, why the need to draw people in with a blog post about a Pakistani child that actually turns out to be a promotional piece for an online magazine?

Very strange.

Portofino Sat 12-Oct-13 23:00:46

Ok - for one Jump Magazine originated from Mumsnet and posters wanting something better for their daughters.

Secondly, MN ASKED Lynn to do this post. It is not all her being uppity and promoting her "product" They ASKED her to do it.

But the two issues are quite clearly related.

It's not as if the OP is the first person to make the connection - if you listen to Malala on the Daily Show, she isn't talking only about herself or only about Pakistani girls. She is talking about all girls.

It is important to combat gender stereotyping, however it presents itself.

Portofino Sat 12-Oct-13 23:09:47

Mystic, do you presume that Lynn earns a fortune for her online mag whist you snipe at her? Have you been on MN long?

mysticminstrel Sat 12-Oct-13 23:12:31

I have been on MN since 2007.

I don't presume anything about the editor of Jump magazine's financial state.

It's a product, which is being advertised on a thread in the 'guest blog' section of MN.

I haven't mentioned money, though.

Doesn't stop it being an advertised product.

Portofino Sat 12-Oct-13 23:20:18

And I repeat, Lynn was ASKED by MNHQ to do this. Do you get as upset about the other advertising on the site?

Growlithe Sat 12-Oct-13 23:22:00

I'd like to know what anyone else is doing to encourage the young girls of the future before they get pissy about it'

Well, my MP (who happens to be a woman) has visited the children of DD2s junior school to congratulate them on their achievements and talk to them about their concerns. She did not limit this to the girls though.

The mayor of our local council (who happens to be a man) visited DD2s infant school to present them with a Green Flag Award. He told the children, in a way which obviously struck such a cord that DD2 who usually will tell me nothing which occurred in school, that he attended the school. He made DD2 feel like she could be mayor, and she is only 5 and so didn't properly understand his position but only understood that he was An Important Person - and she could be one too!

Bloody amazing role models, for girls and boys, popping up in schools. This is happening without campaigning in this country today.

I feel such unpublicised little visits to children to make them feel listened to and special are a real tangable labour of love, accessible to all. You wouldn't know they happened if the children didn't mention them.

I appreciate those role models myself.

mysticminstrel Sat 12-Oct-13 23:23:49

Upset?

Oh my dear Porto, you are conflating me having a different opinion to you with me being 'upset'. Fear not! I'm not upset, I just disagree with you.

But you forgot the passive aggressive smiley, here, have mine smile

Portofino Sat 12-Oct-13 23:32:38

Um, I am a bit hmm at anyone who has been on MN a while who could be funny about this and start talking about PA. Lynn has done absolutely nothing wrong.

mysticminstrel Sat 12-Oct-13 23:35:28

You are as entitled to your hmm faces as I am to mine, porto.

hmm hmm

Portofino Sat 12-Oct-13 23:35:37

Growlithe - so you mean you haven't done anything then...?

mysticminstrel Sat 12-Oct-13 23:38:26

"Um, I am a bit hmm at anyone who has been on MN a while who could be funny about this"

I really did want to start a "really, so you think MN is a homogeneous groupthink?" kind of post here, but I'm off to bed now so won't be around to discuss how marvellously in tune with each other we all are.

Portofino Sat 12-Oct-13 23:42:53

Fuck, you lot are amazingly rude. So Lynn goes out of her way to create a a magazine for girls. She is well known to MNHQ. She makes no money from this and when MNHQ want to do something for International Day of the Girl, they contact her and encourage her to post. MNHQ ASKED FOR THIS POST And certain posters come out of the woodwork to slag her off.

Portofino Sat 12-Oct-13 23:43:58

mystic, um you sound nice

Growlithe Sat 12-Oct-13 23:52:44

Porto well we understand that our greatest influence can be with our own two DDs, and so we encourage them to be the best that they can be. We don't do this because they are girls and therefore must need more encouragement. We do it because they are our children. And so, within our family unit, we are all able to input into decisions that we can understand, that will affect us and that we feel strongly about.

And now DD1 is getting older, we explain in a way she will understand (and believe me she has an impressive sense of justice for a person who has never had to fight for justice) issues that are outside our control but that will affect our lives and the lives of others, both locally and globally.

And of course that only affects two girls. But quite powerfully I reckon.

Growlithe Sat 12-Oct-13 23:56:53

I too did not realise I couldn't express disagreement with a poster who was well known to MNHQ and was invited to post. hmm

Portofino Sat 12-Oct-13 23:58:59

And you disagree on what point?

Growlithe Sun 13-Oct-13 00:57:31

Happy International Day of the Girl! We would have loved to have been able to congratulate Malala Yousafzai on being awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, but unfortunately it was not to be.

But this is no way diminishes her extraordinary achievement. Threats from the Taliban couldn’t stop her writing - nor did the appalling, cowardly attack on her and her school friends. Standing tall at the UN earlier this year, she spoke powerfully and movingly for the rights of girls to an education. The fact that she was considered for the Nobel Prize for Peace – taking her place alongside Aung San Suu Kyi, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Shirin Ebadi – is, I hope, testament to the fact that global equality for women and girls is edging closer. What a fantastic role model she is to our girls - and to our boys.

All good so far

And heaven knows they need it.

Hang on, who are you talking about here? Children of the world, or children specifically of our country. No matter, everyone could do with this kind of role model.

From a young age, children are given the message that girls like pink, dressing up, make-up and hairstyles, princesses and horses. Boys are pushed towards cars, tractors, planes and adventure.

Are they? Everywhere? Always?

Campaigns such as Let Toys Be Toys have been successful in highlighting how damaging this is for children – but the media landscape in which our daughters are growing up presents just as many challenges to those of us who want our children to be whatever they want to be.

Is the media landscape in which our daughters are growing up fixed? Do we all read the same things, watch the same things, interpret things in the same way?

Our girls are bombarded with images of seemingly perfect celebrities, and feel pressured that they don’t live up to the images portrayed. They are as yet unaware that this perfection is only achievable with the assistance of a team of stylists, flattering lighting and photoshop to smooth the skin and vanish blemishes.

Is just grown ups who can understand the power of photoshop, stylists, flattering lighting? Or do you think that today's more IT savvy children can more easily understand how those in celebrity magazines can look differently to their own grown ups - who are parents, teachers, sports coaches - all different shapes and sizes. Remember - the OP is saying 'heaven knows they need it' when talking about Malala as a role model. For this? Really? I think a quick play round with a few body shapes in PSHE would hit the spot here. Does that happen? If not can we target that as a campaign?

"It's time to give all girls the confidence to stand up and speak up, and to know that their voice will be heard."

I would argue, having a girl in Y5 and a girl in Y1, this is already happening in our country. I would be behind any campaign that would give both girls and boys this confidence throughout the world.

In March 2012, I started a thread on Mumsnet asking if anyone would like to contribute to a preteen magazine for girls. The idea was that the magazine would offer an alternative to magazines like Girls & Co, Go Girl and Hello Kitty, which offer such a narrow range of options for girls to aspire to. This magazine would focus on fun articles and creative craft ideas, personal and school/career advice, insights into careers that they may not have considered, articles about children around the world and interactive content, some of it written by their peers. We wanted to feature female role models – not celebrities, but sportswomen, archaeologists, engineers, counsellors and councillors.

With the assistance of dozens of Mumsnetters, Jump! Mag was born.

In the year since, we’ve published over 200 articles on a wide range of topics, hosted two writing competitions (the second is currently underway) and featured over 60 articles written by our young readers – everything from being a vegetarian to coping with bullies to what it is really like to live on a boat.

Hmm, looks like a plug, smells like a plug, what is it? Oh remember those 'girls toys' 'boys toys' you hated? Well it seems this site took the 'girls rights' sign down at exactly the same time as Toys R Us.

In the coming weeks we’ll be launching a Kickstarter crowd-funding project to develop the magazine further – so do keep an eye out on Facebook and Twitter for announcements. The new Jump! Mag will be a unique online magazine for preteens - a one-stop-shop to inspire and entertain kids, in a safe, girl-positive environment.

They want money.

* feature games and interactive stories, news and reviews, peer-to-peer counselling, advice on bullying and health and using social media safely – and we’ll be working with other organisations to inform our readers about science, technology, engineering and mathematics – traditionally subjects that are not promoted to girls.*

So does school (IME - even personally except for the social media stuff which wasn't invented, and the technology stuff was much more basic in the 80s but atill accessible to all - even in the predominantly working class comprehensive I went to).

Our hope is that we can be online mentors, guiding the way for thousands of girls around the world, showing them that there are fascinating careers that they might not even know about- and opening up the world for them by showing that there are many more roles available to them than the ones they see in the other girls' magazines on the newsagent's shelf.

Basic question, does anyone base their career choice around something they read as a preteen? Or do they do what most people do and see what happens through what is now KS3 and even KS4 before making firm decisions? Makes sense to me.

In a world that celebrates the bravery of Malala Yousafzai - a girl who is determined to speak out about what she wants to be - we think it's time to give all girls the confidence to stand up and speak up, and to know that their voice will be heard.

That woud be education then.

SconeRhymesWithGone Sun 13-Oct-13 01:20:18

I have just read the full thread and looked at the Jump site for the first time. The magazine is a really worthwhile endeavor, and I hope it can spread to the US; we need this sort of antidote to so much of the media drivel that is thrown at girls these days.

I have tremendous respect and admiration for Malala; she is a figure of Rosa Parks proportions. I see nothing exploitive about Lynn's post at all; in fact, the opposite. She honors Malala and makes the very salient point that girls do not have enough positive role models and are subject to much media content that encourages superficiality and conformity to disempowering gender stereotypes. That she wants to help correct that imbalance, in part by publishing a non-profit magazine that seeks to address it, I can only admire.

Growlithe Sun 13-Oct-13 02:01:49

Well, after Scone posted I had another look at the mag.

I love history so went with that. I saw the Margaret Thatcher article so because I grew up in Liverpool in the late 70s early 80s I felt I could comment.

I have to say that article looked like it was lifted from the DM. I would have hoped for a more balanced view of very recent history. I am stunned by the right wing slant on this particular article, because I would have expected a neutral view from this magazine given it's aims.

LynnCSchreiber Sun 13-Oct-13 09:37:39

I'll be back later after I've had breakfast with my long suffering husband who I ignored for two days while in holiday last week as I was researching and writing this post.

I just want to say that I wrote the Thatcher article and I couldn't stand the woman. The whole point of the magazine is to allow preteens to develop their own opinions. I was as neutral as I could be, because I was trying not to let my own opinions show.

The young people who write for us are allowed to express a political opinion. The adult writers are not.

LynnCSchreiber Sun 13-Oct-13 09:45:44

Oh, and thanks for picking my post apart Grow. That made me feel real good about myself.

I didn't make all this up. I have been researching this for over a year and there are hundreds of studies about girls and education.

Sierra753 Sun 13-Oct-13 10:02:17

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

KateSMumsnet (MNHQ) Sun 13-Oct-13 10:38:31

Morning everyone, thanks to those who brought this thread to our attention.

As other posters have said upthread, we asked Lynn to write this post as an active and contributing member of our Bloggers Network, and we're very happy with her work.

Growlithe Sun 13-Oct-13 10:47:18

Lynn I was asked what point I disagreed with, that was the clearest way I felt I could answer that.

GoshAnneGorilla Sun 13-Oct-13 11:06:06

Lljkk - "I'm so glad Malala didn't win the Nobel Prize. She is still a product of her culture"

What on earth? Is this because she has the temerity to still be Muslim and wear a headscarf? Or are there other ways in which she is not "Western" or "Progressive" enough?

Would she have to completely disavow her country and religion for her to be a "suitable" Nobel Prize winner?

I've read some offensive crap on here of late, but that takes the biscuit.

LynnCSchreiber Sun 13-Oct-13 12:39:55

Ok, am back. To answer some of the questions/accusations

Grow
One of the groups we are hoping to work with organises such visits to schools by inspiring women, and mentoring between professional women and girls from deprived areas. They told me that when they took a group of young girls in to the City of London, the girls asked them why the women were wearing suits, and what they were doing there. Don't assume that because your own experience is positive, that this is being done all over the country.

While it is fantastic that you are a wonderful role model for your children, many children around the country don't have the same advantages that your children do.

The report I referenced in the OP was explained here, and states

-Almost half of girls from a working-class background had a profound fear of failure that was seriously affecting their chances at school and work, it says.

The report, called Staying On, recommends improvements to careers advice, increasing the educational maintenance allowance for pupils from poorer homes in education between 16 and 19 to more than the current £30 a week, and improving work experience options.-

I can give anecdotal evidence of this - my daughter came home from school recently to tell me that she had a 'career quiz', which told her that suitable careers for her would be 'journalist, salesperson, gardener'. Funnily enough, that is EXACTLY the same advice I was given 25 years ago. DD is reasonably good at writing, but her real talent lies in her creativity, and her drawing. This was not reflected in the advice given. And there are hundreds of new professions around that didn't exist when I was at school.

One of the things I am trying to do on Jump! Mag is to show a variety of unusual and interesting professions, so that preteens can see that there is a lot more out there.

I strongly object to your comment about me taking the 'girls' sign down due to any kind of pressure or outside influence, or because I thought it would make more money. I changed from 'Jump! Mag for Girls' to 'Jump! Mag for Preteens' in order to make it more accessible for boys. I think that the message the magazine is sending, is a good one for boys and girls, and that if it says 'for girls' on it, then boys will be less likely to read it. I had been considering it for a long time, and in discussions with many other people, made the decision about a month ago.

I am not saying that schools don't offer kids much of what we provide, but they do it in a different way. You could say the same about National Geographic - why offer that, if they could learn the same in school or by going to the library?

Yes, I want money. I want money to pay for a site redesign, so that all the other stuff works.

I want money to pay for the development of teaching guides - by a qualified teacher, who until now has worked in an Ofsted Outstanding school and is currently on maternity leave.

I want money to pay for the informative and educational articles that until now have been donated by talented and experienced writers.

I want money to develop fun games and apps, so that our readers can have fun on the site, and it isn't all worthy and educational, and boring.

I want money to pay two talented cartoonists to create a weekly comic strip.

I want money to enable me to earn a living. Isn't that a good role model for my own children?

Why should I not make money from this venture? It is all very well to expect people to give their time and experience for nothing, but this means that only those with trust funds or wealthy husbands will be able to contribute long term to such a project. What kind of role model is that to my daughter?

I am getting defensive and snarky about this, and I didn't want to be. Part of that is being told that my site is as right wing as the Daily Mail, I will admit. On the basis of ONE article.

How can you compare a site which celebrates girls, with a newspaper that delights in pointing out the flaws of women, real or imagined? A newspaper which in it's 'Sidebar of Shame' talks of preteen girls being 'leggy' and 'provocative', while gleefully pointing out muffin tops, side boobs, and unshaved legs/armpits.

This is a project to which I have devoted over a year of my life, and I am doing it for two reasons.

One, to provide myself with an independent income, and to take some of the burden of being the sole earner off my husband's shoulders.

Two, to provide a magazine for preteens that they enjoy reading and taking part in.

You might think that I am all chuffed at the hits that I have received from this thread, but you are seriously overestimating the 'power of mumsnet'. I have received 10 hits from this thread today, which is nice to have but absolutely nothing compared to the hits I get from Social Media, and from the our subscribers.

To give you some kind of context to those ten hits - I have already had 5 hits from blog today. Talk about an excellent role model for our girls - she is fabulous.

At the end of the day, Jump! Mag is not for everyone. That is ok, and I totally accept that, but I won't sit back and be painted as a right wing, greedy person who is trying to capitalise on the work of Malala Yousaifza. I am trying to support what she is working towards, ie education for girls and boys around the world.

I just wanted to jump in and make the same point.

I teach in HE. I am quite new to it, and it has really shocked me how many stories I hear about women who didn't feel there were the same career options open to them as men, and how many young women get to university and suddenly hit a massive wave of misogyny they are not equipped to deal with. A lot of those young women were told by their parents or their schools that sexism is not really a problem any more, or is only something that happens in other countries. They struggle hugely when they realize this isn't so. And in fact, some of them don't realize it. They think the problem is themselves. sad

It is really horrible.

I think what Lynn is doing is a brilliant way to counter all of that, and we do need it.

LynnCSchreiber Sun 13-Oct-13 12:53:01

Thanks, LRD, and to those who have written nice things about me, and Jump! Mag. I do appreciate it.

thanks

NoYeastInMyMuffin Sun 13-Oct-13 14:21:34

Lynn, I think that the accusations aimed at you are hugely unfair. As an example, when I told DS about Thatcher, I was very careful not to let my own (very left wing) political beliefs colour his views. Children should make up their own minds based on their own moral compass.

Where were the complaints about the threads about B&Q? Or M&S? Or Pampers?

VeeVandTeaDrinkYourBlood Sun 13-Oct-13 14:54:55

I also don't understand why you shouldn't make a profit from Jump! Are we only allowed either an income or principles? When MN ask you to submit a blog post, then why shouldn't you talk about something that is such a big part of your blog? It's reciprocal and I think you should be very proud of what you have done so far. My niece loves Jump! (I showed it her) because it doesn't patronize her or have the usual shite that most girls mags do.

keep up the good work.

alexpolistigers Sun 13-Oct-13 17:46:22

I am very surprised by this thread.

I have contributed some articles to Jump. To those who think that these are subjects covered by education in school, I can assure you that my subject was never ever covered by even so much as one lesson in my school.

And even if it had been, would that make it less interesting? What is wrong with reading further articles on a subject you may have touched on briefly at school?

And as to the complaints about using Malala to promote Jump - I think her experience is entirely relevant to the point about providing girls with healthy role models. The fact that she may be a product of her culture does not detract from that.

Portofino Sun 13-Oct-13 22:22:34

I feel really sad that despite the comments from others and MNHQ some posters have been so negative about what Lynn is trying to achieve here. This is an initiative that sprang from MN and this blog post was aiming to celebrate International Day of the Girl. Last year for example the stuff that Lynn posted encouraged me to sponsor a girl in Vietnam through Plan International.

If anyone wants to think I am being sycophantic and overly nice, well I am not generally "nice" on MN. I don't suffer fools gladly. But Lynn has bloody good credentials re the MN Blogger thing. She has been to Africa with the Gates Foundation. She has spent months of her life trying to set up something for our tweenagers. MNHQ actually asked her to make this post. Bloody shame on you who do nothing, care nothing, for criticising her for it.

Hullygully Sun 13-Oct-13 22:34:18

How dare you try and improve the lot of gels, Lynn, AND try and earn a living.

You should be taken out and shot.

You are a disgrace to your SEX.

Isn't tatting good enough for you?

Portofino Sun 13-Oct-13 22:46:44

Hully, you always put it so well, damn you.

Growlithe Sun 13-Oct-13 23:13:05

Before anyone reports me to MNHQ, this is a voluntary, non-profit making blog that I am thinking about creating.

Sorry to be quoting another thread, but you linked to it on this one so it was obviously relevant.

Anyway, the focus of it has now clearly changed into a business. I thought this was clear in the OP actually and now you have confirmed your aim is to make a living out of it, and employ others. You have done research and identified a target market.

And that market obviously doesn't include my family, because we like other publications , well another publication - First News, which in my opinion presents news to the preteen market without extra agenda. And which has been around for years.

I can and will object to you using Malala in this way. You say you aren't, and that you were invited by MNHQ to write about International Day of the Girl and they suggested you mention her. I think this could have done this without mentioning the magazine. So I think she, and the occasion, are being used in the OP.

But, as MNHQ were happy with what you wrote, then it was promotion for the product and the need for investment around the venture, I suppose I can't blame you for taking the opportunity. I wouldn't have done it myself, but as I am not driven to launch such a site myself I suppose it is fair that I cannot comment on the motivations and actions of those that would.

You obviously have many supporters on MN, including MNHQ. But as your focus is to empower girls to become women who will not be afraid to stand away from the crowd and speak their mind, I will do so on this thread.

Ok, for the slow-of-thinking:

SHE WAS ASKED TO. MN KNOWS ALL ABOUT JUMP! AND SUPPORTS IT.

Crikey.

So, no, not sure how she'd have done that without mentioning the magazine. Also, could you explain to me how, precisely, it'd be helpful to Malala's own message about education to not post about a similar message aimed at UK children?

Sorry, but I think this is ridiculous.

And like porto, I don't think I am habitually sycophantic on MN. I've never met Lynn in real life. I just read what she writes.

GoshAnneGorilla Sun 13-Oct-13 23:26:22

"The fact that she may be a product of her culture does not detract from that."

FFS, would people stop describing her like that, it is hugely, hugely racist.

If anyone has bothered to read anything Malala has to say, you would see that she is proud of her culture, her religion and her country and that's why she wants to fight and oppose the Taliban for their misuse and mistreatment of all those things.

We're all products of our culture.

I agree with goth.

Growlithe Mon 14-Oct-13 00:07:21

Ok, for the slow-of-thinking:

SHE WAS ASKED TO. MN KNOWS ALL ABOUT JUMP! AND SUPPORTS IT.

Crikey.

So, no, not sure how she'd have done that without mentioning the magazine. Also, could you explain to me how, precisely, it'd be helpful to Malala's own message about education to not post about a similar message aimed at UK children?

Well, I'm not a writer, but I would have approached this by going back to Malala's own iconic UN speech. Lynn said she wanted to promote mentoring. Malala mentions in that speech a number of key recent historical role models that have shown her that peace and love should be her most important motivations, and that her own mother and father have taught her forgiveness.

I would have been enthusiastic about this. I have grown up with people like Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela in my own consciousness (which must have come from my parents) and tried to instil the same in my own children.

I'd have honoured her by talking of her own role models, not least her parents who must have been beyond many of us in terms of courage to not only send their beloved child to school in those circumstances, but to teach her it was her responsibility to get an education. All against the background against they were living.

That would have been my own take on it, because yes I think she should have been mentioned this year.

I am fairly sure you'd have criticised Lynn if she'd done that too.

It doesn't make the slightest bit of sense to claim you'd have been fine with that, and you weren't fine with what Lynn did.

In fact, I'm not entirely clear why you don't apply the same standards to your own posts, and feel shocked that you've just 'used' Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela to score points on the internet. How does that work, exactly?

Given you're clearly in the UK, don't you feel 'exploitative' citing King and Mandela as models for your own children?

AnyFucker Mon 14-Oct-13 00:19:35

Uggh, do some of you even understand what constructive criticism looks like. ?

ArtexMonkey Mon 14-Oct-13 00:38:45

What "extra agenda" are you on about fgs Grow? Are you wearing a tinfoil hat?

Mnhq, I think it is a bit of a poor show that you had Lynn working her arse off on something that you asked her to do and then just allow her to get slagged off six ways till Sunday for it.

Tremendously inspiring hmm

Growlithe Mon 14-Oct-13 00:40:04

Well, LRD, I did use those examples not to score internet points but because they had tied Malala's life to my own, Western upbringing. The fact she had mentioned them as relevant to her own life hit a cord with me, because they were relevant figures in my own adolescence and early adulthood, through to today.

I liked that she had mentioned them. She gave me a little point of reference and I think the fact that she can do that to a 45 year old in the UK when describing her own teenage life in Pakistan is actually quite remarkable.

Growlithe Mon 14-Oct-13 00:45:39

Oh, and I don't think it is exploitative to cite Mandela and King as models for my own children. Why would I not when I want them to be able to recognise injustice in the modern world?

Growlithe Mon 14-Oct-13 01:08:19

What "extra agenda" are you on about fgs Grow? Are you wearing a tinfoil hat?

From a young age, children are given the message that girls like pink, dressing up, make-up and hairstyles, princesses and horses. Boys are pushed towards cars, tractors, planes and adventure. Campaigns such as Let Toys Be Toys have been successful in highlighting how damaging this is for children – but the media landscape in which our daughters are growing up presents just as many challenges to those of us who want our children to be whatever they want to be.

This is the extra agenda. The fact that we are somehow wrong as parents because we allow our 5 yo the princess phase, and we let our 9 yo experiment with her hair in the morning before school. The fact that they are wrong for wanting to.

LynnCSchreiber Mon 14-Oct-13 02:34:43

Blimey.

I'm at a bit of a loss, tbh.

I don't believe I've said that girls shouldn't be allowed a princess phase or that they shouldn't be allowed to experiment with your hair.

I believe that it shouldn't be the default, or expected of them. You don't know me, or my family so you can't know that my daughter did indeed go through a very pink princess phase and that she now spends hours watching YouTube tutorials and copying them to do her hair.

She also just as happy climbing trees and her newest ambition is to climb Ben Nevis.

I'm not trying to stop any girl doing anything she wants to do. Or any boy for that matter.

I want boys to be able to wear pink without being ridiculed. I never want to hear 'boys will be boys' or 'big boys don't cry'. I want boys to be able to like drawing and ballet, football and adventure.

Do I have an agenda? Yes, I suppose I do. I want kids to be able to live and express themselves freely, without the confines of gender.

I quite like First News, but it also exists so I can't create another one. Do you get cross when someone starts a new chocolate brand cause there is already Cadburys on the market?

I do (kind of) get your point that I'm trying to sell something but don't see why it's so terrible. I'm just a woman from a small town in Scotland with a big idea. If you don't like that idea, I'm fine with that but I don't see why I should apologise for it.

I'm not some corporate monster and have constantly been looking for ways in which I can give back to the community (such as offering free access to libraries or in developing countries so that girls can use Jump! Mag to learn English).

Thanks to all who've spoken up in my defence. I'll go back to crocheting now, Hully. Sorry about that.

Growlithe Mon 14-Oct-13 06:09:19

It wasn't my point that you are trying to sell something, it was my point that on this OP you used Malala and the International Day of the Girl to do it.

VeeVandTeaDrinkYourBlood Mon 14-Oct-13 08:23:56

Mnhq, I think it is a bit of a poor show that you had Lynn working her arse off on something that you asked her to do and then just allow her to get slagged off six ways till Sunday for it.

Artex - I completely agree.

Grow, I suspect that you would have been up in arms about anyone lynn used as an example role model. She has every right to try to use this post to promote a site which is aimed at young girls. International day of the girl - check. Young girl who fought back against societys expectation/role model - check. Magazine aimed at young girls who don't wish to conform to gender stereotypes - check.

You have taken what couldve been an interesting discussion about role models for our daughters, and turned it into an attack on one poster and a whinge about advertising. Bravo.

Hullygully Mon 14-Oct-13 08:26:11

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Hullygully Mon 14-Oct-13 08:30:10

This is how it goes:

MNHQ1: oh look, it's international day of the gel, we should do something.

MNHQ2: Yeah what? I know, let's get thingy, that MNer who does the magazine aimed at gels that isn't sexist an that.

MNHQ1: Yeah, good shout. Get her to write something on that Malala and role models for gels cos that's what her mag is all about, innit?

MNHQ2: Yeah.

<calls Thingy and asks>

Thingy: Yeah, that'll work cos I want gels to have positive role models AND it's Gel Day And you've asked me AND I myself am then an example to gels AND it promotes the mag which can only be good for gels AND maybe I might earn a living one day.

win win

Everyone happy except Grow.

'Oh, and I don't think it is exploitative to cite Mandela and King as models for my own children. Why would I not when I want them to be able to recognise injustice in the modern world?'

<headdesk>

I'm terribly sorry it's only your children who're entitled to 'recognise injustice' by reference to figures not part of their own community.

I would be finding this all terribly sad, though hully scripting MNHQ as written by Jilly Cooper is brilliant.

LynnCSchreiber Mon 14-Oct-13 08:48:51

When reading Twitter last night, I came across a tweet that said 'What Malala Yousafzai teaches us about business'

Now, that I'd have huffed about perhaps, but it's actually not that uncommon for a company to take the news issue of the day and write a more or less article around it.

At least my company (it isn't actually even a company yet) has some connection with girls and education.

I don't think anyone at MNHQ would have expected this thread to go like this, but I do like Hully's screenplay.

Anyway. Anyone got thoughts on mentoring girls? And boys?

Did you see that Our Carrie MNHQ is involved in a project to send women into schools? That would be fab for MNetters.

LynnCSchreiber Mon 14-Oct-13 08:49:56

More or less relevant - that should be

Have you the link, lynn, or am I being dopey (no coffee yet), for Carrie's project? It sounds great.

With regard to mentoring - something that's been playing on my mind is how MN basically provides peer-support with DV. And every time we discuss it we end up agreeing that if children (boys and girls) grew up with a better sense of the signs of a healthy relationship/the red flags where they could say 'no', things would be better. I wondered what you thought about mentoring children with an eye to teaching them to peer-support each other?

LynnCSchreiber Mon 14-Oct-13 09:03:53

Miriam Gonzales Durantez on mentoring.

That was actually in the first draft of the blog post and got bumped in honour of Malala, as there were too many stories for one blog.

It's a really interesting concept - the other group I've been talking to are wonderful too. Will link. Hang on

LynnCSchreiber Mon 14-Oct-13 09:05:37

The Girl Network is run by two young women in their spare time and organises mentoring in schools in their area. They'd like to expand to other areas of the country.

LynnCSchreiber Mon 14-Oct-13 09:09:13

That's an interesting idea. I've been looking into peer to peer counselling on the magazine - with appropriate supervision

VeeVandTeaDrinkYourBlood Mon 14-Oct-13 09:17:37

I've just had a look at The Girls Network, what a brilliant idea!

RatherBeOnThePiste Mon 14-Oct-13 09:20:49

Ah. sad OK. Why does this always happen? Lynn, we have loved Jump since the very beginning, and all respect to you for all your endeavours.

Shall sift out the negative shite, and have a read.

VeeVandTeaDrinkYourBlood Mon 14-Oct-13 09:23:18

LRD, that's a really good idea. DV is a good example of people "learning" bad relationships. And this is another thing that is perpetuated by the media, films and books.

LynnCSchreiber Mon 14-Oct-13 09:34:56

We do have an article on Controlling Relationships - and have had good feedback from mums who've shown to their daughters, and it has helped to resolve conflicts at school.

I haven't flounced, or called Mumsnet a bunch of bullying bjtches yet, but there is still time ;)

ArtexMonkey Mon 14-Oct-13 09:39:02

Grow, i think you are fundamentally missing the point of Let toys Be Toys, Jump mag et al's objections to gendered toys and stereotyping of children.

No one is saying that the parents do it by themselves - it comes from advertising, marketing, shops etc - make 'boy lego' and 'girl lego' and BOOM! You sell twice as much lego, goes the thinking (i presume). Now THAT'S what i call exploitative.

No one is saying that parents are bad parents for buying girls pink stuff and boys camo skully swordy pirate stuff. Just that boys can like pink and girls can like camo skully swordy pirate stuff too, and that's ok.

You seem to think that this 'agenda' is a big ol fuss about nothing, but there is objective peer reviewed evidence that stereotypes projected on to children affect them, often in a negative way. Have you read cordelia fine's delusions of gender? It's v interesting.

I don't get why a (profit making) news website for children is ok, but a (non profit making) magazine for children isn't. It all seems a bit knee jerk to me. First News will be getting new clicks and new subscribers for any story they run about Malala, are they exploiting her too?

Ah, you're ahead of it already. Thanks lynn.

VeeVandTeaDrinkYourBlood Mon 14-Oct-13 09:42:09

Lynn, that's brilliant! DS and I look through Jump! from time to time. I feel it's our job as his parents to ensure that he grows up with healthy attitudes towards women and relationships, but it's also important that he knows about negative relationships too.

LynnCSchreiber Mon 14-Oct-13 10:18:50

Grow,
while I admire First News, and think the work they do is fab - you do know it was co-founded by Piers Morgan? And that they work with Sky News. Not exactly a struggling little-start up.

Don't really see why they are ok, and Jump! Mag is exploitive.

Growlithe Mon 14-Oct-13 12:00:21

And if Piers Morgan had have written the above OP, but promoting First News where you have promoted Jump, I suspect I wouldn't be the only one saying what I have.

Which would be a bit odd really, as that was never marketed as a 'girls publication' or a 'boys publication', and yet Jump originally was. But at least you have now taken the sign down on that.

I see now it is lamented on the thread that I have spoiled what was supposed to be a discussion on mentoring by whinging about advertising.

Well, have a look at the OP with a neutral eye and see how much of it discusses mentoring and how much discusses Jump magazine. On the other thread, you even link to this one not to encourage us to talk about mentoring but as an update on Jump magazine.

So I think the thread was having its own identity crisis before I came along.

LynnCSchreiber Mon 14-Oct-13 13:32:47

Ok, Grow. I am going to stop now cause I don't see what this conversation is doing other than going around in circles.

I don't know why you keep going back to the fact that I changed from girls to including boys, which I think is a sign that I have learned a lot over the past year. And that I want the site to be more inclusive.

I wrote about the magazine because I was asked to by MNHQ and I talked about mentoring because it was something that really interested me, and that I wish to use Jump! Mag to promote.

Piers Morgan doesn't have to be creative and write long articles for Mumsnet to promote a new project. He tweets it to his millions of followers. I can't say how I would react if he had written the OP, but I would probably have doubted his credentials in starting an girl-positive online magazine. Since he hasn't exactly got a great record in promoting girls.

Anyway, I am done discussing my motives and I am done defending my work and my magazine. If you don't like it, you don't have to read it. Or promote it.

kazuwacky Mon 14-Oct-13 14:39:23

This seems like marketing thinly veiled with a few sentences about Malala....

alexpolistigers Mon 14-Oct-13 15:04:29

Frankly, so what if it is marketing?? What is wrong with promoting a magazine that aims to inspire girls and offer them interesting articles to read??

I have never been paid for my own contributions to Jump - I wrote them because I wanted to and I thought it was a great project to be part of. I promote them because I write fantastic articles and you should all read them because I want to interest people in the subject, and because I want to give girls something different to read, something they're unlikely to find in other magazines aimed at pre-teens. Not because I'm getting rich by doing so! It's not like Lynn has a multi-million-pound industry that is being promoted here - I really fail to see what the issue is with it!

alex, it's obvious kazu didn't read the thread that explains, at exhaustive length and with much repetition, what the OP was asked to write ...

TheSporkforeatingkyriarchy Mon 14-Oct-13 15:37:50

Lynn - I think of possible interest is looking into people who could have been international role models like Malala and were then silenced (as well as how even Malala's messages are censored in the media - she talks about education and problems with the Taliban get all the airways, her discussing the issues of Imperialism, drone bombing and those who fear to go to school because of that is completely ignored by mainstream media).

Malalai Joya also fought for the right of girls to go to school, teaching at secret underground schools during the Taliban’s rule in Afghanistan. She survived assassination attempts and got as far as being elected to the Afghan parliament and was then kicked out of her elected seat - and the world remained silence, the US refused her entry for a speaking engagement for a very long time.

People need role models and potential models and to see themselves and others reflected in the world in important ways - sadly, particularly for those outside of the mainstream idea of normal - it is often in the mainstream media to only be as one dimensional victims fighting the Other, not people who could challenge our own rhetoric. Same reason why our civil rights for race heroes always seem to be people from other countries while the UK's own struggle and heroes who fought for racial equality (and the UK's own bus boycotts) are so heavily ignored.

Just passing thoughts for your work, it looks very good!

LynnCSchreiber Mon 14-Oct-13 15:39:09

[snorts] at a multi-million pound industry.

I wish.

Anyway. To the GIRLS.

Have you lot heard of ScienceGrrls? I am meeting with them later this week. They are amazing, and do fabulous work encouraging girls into science.

TensionSquealsGhoulsHeels Mon 14-Oct-13 16:00:49

I'm just marking my place, going to have a read at the links later.smile

SconeRhymesWithGone Mon 14-Oct-13 16:15:27

TheSpork This was widely reported in US media:

politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2013/10/11/obamas-meet-with-malala/

TheSporkforeatingkyriarchy Mon 14-Oct-13 16:21:26

Reported in a manner where what she says is cut down to the basics in one event - not her repeated fight against them - that was then handwaved away in a manner with how "needed" they are and nothing that touches what she's said about the issues with imperialism. A pat on the head then ignored, that's the message that kind of media gives.

spork, I did not know of that history - thank you for posting about it.

LynnCSchreiber Mon 14-Oct-13 17:58:28

Spork
Thanks for that - sorry I didn't see your post earlier.

That is very interesting. It is certainly something that I would like to take a closer look at, and perhaps commission a series of articles on.

MmeLindor Mon 14-Oct-13 20:36:36

Oh, that is great!

Well done you.

MmeLindor Mon 14-Oct-13 20:52:33

Much as I'd love to take credit for this, I think it was planned for a while.

smile

ScaryFucker Mon 14-Oct-13 21:07:45

thlgrin

Zhx3 Mon 14-Oct-13 21:11:31

Thanks for posting the link about Miriam Gonzales Durante, Lynn. Thanks also for Jump! I enjoy reading it, and hope that dd will want to write a few articles for it, when she's a bit older.

KatherinaMinola Mon 14-Oct-13 22:05:11

FWIW, Grow, I agree with you. And you, mystic, and the couple of others who have expressed their unease about this guest blog. I suspect there would be more of us (and more reasoned debate) if it weren't for the personal attacks and patronizing comments aimed at those who object to what reads as a rather cynical marketing exercise (however it came about - and the account of how it came about explains a lot). Some of those comments are unreasonable on all kinds of levels.

Anyway, I'm posting now because I don't like the treatment you've come in for here.

I also took a deep breath at the comment about Malala being "a product of her culture" and this somehow disqualifying her for the Nobel Prize (that'd be why Muslims are so underrepresented then, Dawkins?)

PortoFiendo Mon 14-Oct-13 22:19:55

MUMSNET ASKED HER TO DO IT!!!!!

ScaryFucker Mon 14-Oct-13 22:21:58

Porto, don't let the truth get in the way of a good ole green-eyed wallow will you ?

FGS, what are you thinking, bringing the facts into this ?

KatherinaMinola Mon 14-Oct-13 22:28:37

MUMSNET ASKED HER TO DO IT!!!!!

Indeed. I have read the thread. That's why I said "however it came about". I think it was an unfortunate conflict of agendas: OP wished to promote her mag; MN said yes but include something about Int'l Day of the Girl etc.

Scary, do you think I am jealous of the OP? confused I've given my reasons for posting.

MmeLindor Mon 14-Oct-13 22:49:40

Actually, the initial draft didn't even mention the magazine at all, as I was trying not to sound like an advert. MNHQ suggested I add more about the magazine since that was (part) of the reason for the blog post.

Do you think that Gok and Alastair Campbell come on Mumsnet just cause they like to chat? They come on to chat about their new book/project.

Doesn't mean their advice or answers are rubbish although Gok's were

Anyhow. I'm not going to continue to argue about it. <sits on hands>

Tbh, I'm so busy at the moment finding utterly amazing content for the mag and having a ball putting it all together. I have a terrific team who are working for nothing, in the hope that we pull this off. They are seriously talented women, and I'm so chuffed to have found them all.

spookyspoonrulestheworld Mon 14-Oct-13 22:54:27

MmeLindor, are you LynnCSchreiber ? confused

MmeLindor Mon 14-Oct-13 23:32:11

Whoops. Sorry. Forgot I'd namechanged.

VeeVandTeaDrinkYourBlood Tue 15-Oct-13 07:28:32

I think it was an unfortunate conflict of agendas: OP wished to promote her mag; MN said yes but include something about Int'l Day of the Girl etc.

Clearly you haven't read the thread properly. MN asked her to write about IGD, Lynn agreed, MN were happy. Job done.

I haven't seen grow being mistreated in any way. Maybe we are reading different threads after all.

KatherinaMinola Tue 15-Oct-13 22:00:26

A few examples, Vee:

If I were to put it succinctly, in an attempt to encapsulate the obfuscation, muddled thinking and general nonsense of your position, Grow, I would say "You're nuts."

Are you wearing a tin-foil hat?

Ok, for the slow-of-thinking

I think these comments are questionable on several grounds. And everyone who has agreed with Grow (in her objection to the blog) has come in for some kind of insult. Whereas the racism on the thread was ignored by most posters.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 15-Oct-13 22:24:01

Katherina - I am saddened that Malala is good enough to be lauded as a role model, but the attacks against her were barely challenged.

KatherinaMinola Tue 15-Oct-13 22:31:42

Yes, Gosh - it was almost like that post was invisible.

KateMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 16-Oct-13 09:27:26

Apologies for tardiness - we should have come back onto the thread a while ago.

Just to clarify, Jump! is a great venture which was 'born' on MN - and we were happy to be able to promote it on International Day of the Girl. When we briefed Lynn, we were aware that shortly after the blog was to be published, the world would have just discovered whether Malala Yousafzai had won the Nobel Peace Prize; we thought it was reasonable to make reference to that remarkable fact in the context of a post about a venture which aims to empower girls.

We can see that it's possible to read this as a slightly awkward combination - but any awkwardness can be ascribed to our brief, and not to Lynn.

MmeLindor Wed 16-Oct-13 12:24:29

Katarina/Gosh
Apologies. I should have commented on that post.

Thanks for clarifying, Kate.

PortoFiendo Wed 16-Oct-13 20:42:01

Oh hurrah! At last!

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