Women & Media

Cause and Effect: How the Media You Consume Can Change Your Life from Miss Representation on Vimeo.

I recently have been turned on to an organization that is creating change for women by opposing the sexism that appears on the internet. My eyes were made open to this by my friend YingYing who is an active feminist and remains feminine. I didnt really know that I also shared these feelings because I am often the paun in front of the camera doing whatever the photographer is asking me to do.

Recently I was appauled by the GO DADDY television commercials and embarrassed to say that I host my main domains with Go Daddy even though they have often made mistakes and made me loose domains due to messups on their system, like the one that drove my lost domain price up to 10,000 dollars (thank you go daddy) due to a "glitch" in their system that made me compete against myself with out to notify me. How can I keep my domains hosted at Go Daddy when they clearly demean and damage the image of women? It's complicated to move the domains to another host, but I shall indeed take the time to do it because I can clearly see that Go Daddy think that as a woman, I"m useless in technology because we have CARL, actually keeps everything running. That may be true for Go Daddy, but it's not true for my friend Heather Hobson who is one of the most talented network engeneers in the world (my statement) and keeps the T1 lines up on Times Square running day and night. I'd love to hear her opinion of the Go Daddy commercials.

 

Newest Miss Representation Trailer (2011 Sundance Film Festival Official Selection) from Miss Representation on Vimeo.

You can have a look yourself at them here:

Poor Charlene...I wish you would study computer science instead of just petting that otter and sending senators into early retirement. What about Selina? SHE gets all the attention and Wayne pays attention.

After seeing this movement "MISS REPRESENTATION" I cant help but feel responsable in part as a fashion model. Although I dont design the campaigns, nor shoot them, I am responsable for my actions in front of the camera. I admit it. I fall into the trap of playing the SEXY woman because that's what is required of me. The photograher says "More Sexy, Anina. Open your lips." and I do it. The other day on a shooting I suddenly becamse aware of myself kneeling and gripping the male model's leg...or caressing his hand with a fake kiss as he towered over me. Sure, I'm not really a SEXY girl--I'm like a high class power woman style, and yet, those power women in fashion seem to be dominatrix style characters who controll everything and are super smart with billions in the bank (how did they get them? Marry rich in the inference). I also can totally understand the model who plays the role of Charlene or Selina, because what they really are thinking (and I have thought it too!) is that the advertsing TVC residuals are going to be big and in her pocket!

At one point I'm becoming a brand--Anina.net--standing for women and technology, and I still work as a model (when they call with $$ in their hand why should I say no as a young entrepreneur) which I find a nice break from computers and business (contracts sometimes do my head in!). At which point do I become more concious of what I'm projecting in the media. If you have seen my most recent photoshoots, in Agenda Magazine, and this month's LIfestyle Magazine, you will see the type of images that I am making (literally putting the concept together and the photoshoot together with the photographer) they are projecting a positive self image for women and technology. Only by seizing the controll myself, can I controll the image. When I"m working for a client, I am at the beck and call of the brand. 

About Being Sexy. Yes, every girl (woman) wants to be considered attractive and for centuries we have dressed up, sung, needlepointed our way to show our talents like in the modern day talent competitions (can you tell I recently watched Marie Antoinette) in order to raise ourselves out of the economic crisis by "selling" ourselves to men. Most of the time I operate my energy levels as neuter central--not male or female--I'm just me. I dont think about what gendor I am because I"m focused on other things. When it comes to an event, suddenly I have to dress up and perform to people and then I'm made more aware that I am feminine against the masculine people I meet. It's a balance--but how to find the middle between being sexy/powerful/adored/admired and portraying a positive self image for women? What is the positive self image for women? Is it a neuter central or non-feminist way? Is it a no-sexy zone? What is it?

I dont have the answer.


The Web is Dead -- All Hail the Mobile King

Someone emailed me the other day telling me that I should "give it up" and realize that no one reads my blog. In many ways it is true--I am more on facebook now these days and building up my Anina Dress Up facebook page to promote my iPhone game and website (which has over 1500 people signed up to the newsletter and 20k registered and active users without any promotion--yeah!), along with really posting a lot on my Sina Weibo (9000 followers) and RenRen (5500 followers). The primary reason for this is because Sina Weibo is not blocked in China (I have a Windows Phone 7 device and to my knowledge there's no way to set a proxy easily or at all) and I've recently become super active on facebook thanks to my new favorite browser, ROCKMELT (I love you Rockmelt! Please integrate Chinese social media!).

That doesn't mean that no one is listening to my blog when I do write--or that because my blog has been around for so long it has a high googl search engine ranking, or that the term "Model Blogger" doesnt call me up in the first position because I really was the first model blogger (Thanks to Marc Canter who is really brilliant--he explains everything to me in the tech world in fashion terms. I love it.) The person who criticized me said that no one is following my blog according to the alexa ranking--well that's just web views. Actually, all the traffic has switched to RSS followers, and then to all the mobile apps downloaded with my blog inside, and when I do blog something it posts on my facebook page (2500+ followers) and people comment--on the facebook post. The conversation has shifted, and that doesnt mean the blog is any less meaningful. It means that the replies and the views come from other places. 

Additionally, I am happy to say short things on facebook, but when I want to really talk about something, I do it on my blog. Although sparingly now, when I do blog something, it's because it's super important to me and I want to take the time to write about it. Back in 205-2006 I rapidly saw the bloggosphere take shape, in 2007-2008 everyone else in the fashion industry finally caught on, and I already moved on and predicted that the blog would evolve into a publication. I remember telling Imran Amed exactly that--and indeed, his blog, THE BUSINESS OF FASHION (my idea and point of view to him!) has evolved off the blog and into a online newspaper. Voilla right again, just way ahead of the times.

Although I don't blog every day mainly because Typepad doesnt have a mobile client that works for Windows Phone 7 and I can't make a proxy work on the phone to get to their mobile site, I do feel that when I want to say something long, it should be here.

Recently, I've starting writing my book about women and entrepreneurship with the help of my friend and interviewing lots of super (role) models. You can be sure that I'm looking back on my past blogs when I first started to get the idea to write about modelling and grab those posts to put into the book. I knew then that I would be writing a book, so I blogged certain chapters so that I could recouperate them later--thank you for the blog.

I read blogs every day, and I have seen a shift from long blog posts to shorter tweet style posts to pinterist style posts to full on photoblogs. I am not sure how I feel about this shift. First, I think there's a real lack of credting going on of photos, and sources. Second, I feel that if other people didn't have the possibility to write blog posts, I would really have a lack of information. Recently I wanted to find out how to create irrigation for my houseplants--I found so much information online thanks to pinterist that lead me to blog posts with the HOW TO explanation on them.

Yes, is facebook easier to jot down a short note and post a photo? Yes, because I can do it from my ROCKMELT--is it a hassle to login to Typepad and click 4 buttons before I can create a blog post? For posting videos, yes. Do I maintain my blog by email to blog? Yes, great. Could Typepad help me out by creating a blogging tool for my phone--I wish. Could I get a proxy working on my phone--in my dreams.

Maintaining social media and social connections and social contact is very hard in todays world because we give so much time to work, work, working for our dreams. Thanks to these great tools though, I'm starting to do better and keep better in contact across all my social medias spanning the globe. Do I wish RockMelt would integrate sina weibo--yes you betcha. Am I excited to upgrade my MACBOOK PRO to the new IOS so it will work with Chinese social media--I cant wait till all the bugs are fixed and I can install it.

Is the Web dead? Not sure about that. Is this the Mobile Era--absolutely.


Girls in TechCrunch

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Beijing, China - TechCrunch Disrupt Beijing Event - Women in Tech Coverage
I recently had the pleasure of being invited to the TechCrunch Beijing event on October 31-November 1st. It was quite epic as the French decided to participate in their favorite pastime and strike at the airport. I waited a lovely 8 hours until my flight, having woken up at 5am with no alert that there was a strike. I arrived half way through with a big luggage to the event. Trying to hide it behind the reception, I quickly made my way into the hall to listen to the presentations half asleep.

I quickly woke up as I saw a stunningly beautiful woman on the stage interviewing one of the speakers named Sarah Lacy. Confident, savvy, and with a dark red lipstick with long hair, she announced that she had just had a baby and had none the less left her family to attend to the TechCrunch Disrupt event.

During the break, I went to say "Hi" to some of the speakers and as I was over in the press section I started to see other beautiful, savvy, women walking around with clipboards and official TechCrunch badges. I approached one of them only to find she was not at all fierce and intimidating but rather lovely, kind, and helpful. As I thanked her for their invitation, I also mentioned how excited I was to have so many fashion focused topics to write about for 360Fashion Network's tech section. It was a surprize as 360Fashion Network has been so long the lone duck in that sector. She smiled at me and said that I should talk to another beautiful, sexy, woman typing furriously at her laptop who manned the fashion news on TechCrunch.

My head started spinning, asking what was going on here--there seemed to be no men heading up the TechCrunch Beijing event--I was finally surrounded by beautiful, smart, techy women! So hats off to Mr. Arrington, who as baggy-eyed as he is from lack of sleep, bad diet, and surely the attacks he's gotten recently from the industry, for hiring such accomplished, successful, beautiful, smart, women to man up his portal and work within his organization. For this, he's done an great job--I can even find it in my heart to forgive him for calling me a clown on TechCrunch reviewing my Anina Dress Up Game and insulting my CMO for wearing an above the knee skirt (Go Arrington for painting a positive image for women and supporting them in such a crude way--sarcasm). So how does it come that he has had such a change of perspective, a revelation to hire so many wiked girls?

I'm really happy not to be alone and wish those beautiful women to come again soon to Beijing and meet the fantastic techy Chinese CEO's and entrepreneurs over here. I hope they will also be at Le Web this year to meet again. Thank you also for having so much great food for our tech portal with all the fashion focused start-ups! Bravo! Keep going!

Read the reviews of the event here.


Anina and Zanita shooting for M/P Magazine in Sydney

I was so thrilled when I finally got to shoot with my blogger and model soulsister, Zanita. After following her for many months she finally had a moment to shoot with me and the photos turned out so magical. Here is my backstage story with videos where I share with you the full scenario, and here is the post about the shooting on Zanita's blog.


Sea Shepherd Charity Fashion Show Amsterdam 2010

So what I tried to do was show BOTH perspectives LIVE!Streming on our facebook application and it turned out pretty well I have to say, Thank you to Yun Chen who is long time 360FAshion members and helped out the cause. Hempworks Fashion shows are always crazy and for a good cause. Makes sense because they are an eco fashion company producing eco clothing--and their hemp farm is in rural China where they farm the hemp, process it, and manufacture the clothing on an organic farm. Amazing isn't it? Sea Shepherd is a group of x-Greenpeace activists who became too extreme for the organization and were kicked out because they took a more "active" approach to stopping the destruction of the planet. Now they have their own television show on a Animal Planet TV Channel called, "Whale Wars". What they do is go to the Arctic circuit with huge ships and try to stop the Japanese whale harpooning that is going on illegally. The Japanese kill about 10-30 whales per year by harpooning them to death, and then they put them on a processing ship and take the whale oil and toss the rest in the ocean--such a waste and as you know, whales are endangered species. Anina-sydney2068

Little did I know when I said "Yes, count me in!" to the Hempworks team as they are 360Fashion members since a long time, how famous this organization was and how well known. Before I left for China, my new roomate happens to mention that his favorite show is Sea Shepherd, and then proceeded to show me how they use naval tactics to disturb the Japanese harpooner. their idea is to run them out of business and bankrupt them by keeping them from doing the farming of the whales. I certainly didn't mind hanging out with the Sea Shepherd Captain, Paul Watson, and the rest of the crew for a good cause. Not to mention the Sea Shepherd / Hempworks clothing is really top quality and so hot!

What I love about working with Hempworks is that they totally GET my Anina.net story. They specifically REQUEST me to walk down the runway with my phone and film and live stream. It means a lot to me, and no wonder they are members of 360Fashion since a long time. Check out the HoodlambMobile Catalog here and the rest of the footage of the show on their blog.

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There is a final story to this whole post, which is that 2 Sea Shepherd jackets would not arrive in time, so as they are made in China from their organic farm, they had them sent to my office. The jackets were so heavy that I would have had to pay insane amount in overweight! So I had to take them out of my luggage, put one inside the other and wear them sweltering to death the whole Beijing, Moscow, Amsterdam flight. Only on the Moscow to Amsterdam was I glad I had them cuz the heating didn't work so I was all snuggly warm for some hours. But MAN to 2 jackets weigh a TON!

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Many thanks to my friend Alec who got me to the venue on time cuz boy was I tired!

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ps he's a world renowned photographer in the "hemp" world.


Shoes, Fettishes, and Online Gratification

I was going to nix NAXMIX from my twitter when instead I clicked on a link and went to a review of a shoe exhibition.

NAXMIX: "a unique collection of more than 2700 pairs of shoes from more than 155 countries and regions. Amongst them are some very rare pieces of North American Indians, Eskimo's, African tribes, Berbers, Bedoeins, Mongols, the Ottoman and pre-Inca empire. Large parts of the collection find their origin in Japan, India, Iran (Persia), Tibet and Pakistan. The Chinese part of the collection cannot be found in any Chinese Museum. Europe is represented from Iceland to Russia, and from Lapland to Spain. 'Karara' shoes, made from emu feathers and human hair were worn by local Australian executioners during the Kadaitschi ritual. Magnificent bridal shoes come from Afghanistan, India, Syria and Turkey. As a real Dutchman he also collected many clogs. On the 19th of September 2006, Guinness World of Records confirmed that William (Boy) Habraken collected the largest collection of tribal and ethnographical shoes in the world."

Then I was off dreaming of shoes, shoes, shoes, and stumbling upon the Bondi Market, I discovered Shoes of Prey.


Life is Boring Without Blogging

so i'm using typepad mobile from my phone to let you know i'm still alive and waiting for sixapart to solve the email to blog and also symbian application to work with new n95 phones so i can blog again. It is such a bummer not to blog. So many exciting things are happening. Like i went to this great party last night- a new art complex opening. So great dance and theater in the Houton area of Beijing. Lily our european coordinator has set up the framework for the 360fashion.cn and now we are looking for someone who can do css and word press templates good. Please apply if you know how to info(at)360fashion.net. Exciting news we are near completion of the 360fashion facebook application bringing you live fashion news and also written news from the industry. Comment, install, and support fashion with your point of view. I'm really counting on all people who wish to support me and who appreciate the 360fashion efforts to install it on their facebook accounts and please help us promote it. The 360fashion mobile applications on nokia and blackberry get great reviews and i'd love it if you'd please take a min to rate and download them. I'm also nominated for nokia champion again and would appreciate your votes for me. On the 3rd of september listen, comment, and watch as 360fashion members le divan (http://ledivan.360fashion.net) are interviewed for beijing radio. Check out my chinese blog to see the last broadcast. (blog.sina.com.cn/aninanet That's all the steps so far. Hope sixapart can fix the email so i can blog backstage photos again. On their mobile site there's no way to post a photo, and their mobile symbian app's not worked in a long time on my phone. Thank you for your patience and understanding! I wish i'd hear more from readers of my blog. I'm lonely in china! I need some dialog besides just spam.

Anina Launches in Nokia Phones Ovi Store

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It is a glorious day today, sun is shining and I'm on the front page of the Nokia Ovi store! Get up and get your phones out and support me with some comments and ranking for my Backstage Fashion Model Application. Download it and follow along with me on my next adventures! I'm off to China for a job on Saturday so stay tuned to your mobiles for some backstage action. No idea what will happen--off the plane and into action! Hopefully there will be wifi along the way in Narita Airport and Detroit (doubtful) but all my roomates and friends are waiting for me on the other end (you should see my luggage coming back from the states with tons of healthfood products to stave off the smog).

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Entering an app in the Ovi store is no small feat--I have to say it's the least friendly of the 3 platforms out there. I am very grateful to my friends Robin and Flash at mippin, without whom I would never have gotten approved (so many settings in that store! To be expected since there are so many devices in so many countries). I'm very excited to see what this will do for me in terms of visibility, I"m not sure how many downloads I will get from the guys and I'm not sure how many women there are in Ovi.

Features I really like about the Ovi Store: Website online is excellent, clear and clean. The ability to send sms to your friends to download the application sure beats all the other platforms. The mobile site is also in classic excellence for mobile devices. Very clear, very good search and very easy to navigate to.

When searching for keywords in the Ovi Store for "Fashion" rendered Marie Claire and Shoewawa, "Lifestyle" was nothing, "Style" nothing, "Clothing" nothing, and "Hot" rendered New Magazine and Vringo.

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However, when I return in my phone to the Ovi homepage after downloading my application, I see "SEX" written everywhere which was quite shocking and offensive as a woman:

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Although it is on the front page of the mobile site, the sex is not on the website front page. I went back and forth for half an hour after downloading my application, and this was indeed the front page served up to me. I feel like Nokia are thinking I'm a horny guy and if I download the Anina Backstage Fashion application, the server automatically thinks I"m interested in other HOT SEXY SENSUAL items to download into my phone. Why did the system not serve me up some fashion mobile applications? Some female games? Some love? Some dating? Some fashion news?

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These keywords did not render any results either, yet I know that there are a lot of muslim and christian applications out there for the Koran and Bible. Perhaps Match.com should consider putting an application in the Ovi store, as there seems to be (from the front page) a lot of erotic content in the store or some very lonely guys. Funny, I wonder what apple would consider with SEXY SENSUAL wallpapers?

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It still seems like there is a lot of content opportunities for "Women" out there in the Nokia Sphere...lets hope that some good girls find my app and enjoy to download it!

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Leave me a comment and let me know what you think about this! I'm looking forward to hear from you!