What’s the Deal With Hip Lifestyle Companies and Their Asshole Executives?

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I was browsing over at Vox this morning and came across a piece by Rebecca Jennings about the “racial reckoning” in women’s media:

Black former employees at Refinery29 and Man Repeller are speaking out about the hypocrisy of feminist fashion websites.

The focus of the piece, obviously, is on race, but what really struck me was something simpler: the folks who run these companies are just assholes. I’ve seen this over and over in stories about hip new companies that appeal to millennials: regardless of how woke they may be when it comes to racial hiring and diversity, the one thing they seem to have in common is a CEO and an executive staff who are arrogant, cliquey, and nasty. To the outside world they project an image of lifestyle chic, but internally they pay young workers practically nothing and routinely demand 60 hour weeks or more—of which two or three hours seem to be spent being yelled at.

What’s up with this? Do I just notice it a lot because the occasional examples all get written up? Or are these companies really the hellscapes they’re made out to be?

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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