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.

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.

Shooting with Meili Autumn

Meili Autumn has an air of ease about her, but when she puts that pencil to your eye, you are thinking it's a razor for the sharpness of her lines. She's also psychic, as for my Fashionista shooting I wanted to have a makeup that was black and sculptural--she said it first what was my hearts desire.

She's one of China's top makeup artists, born in America, but living in Beijing with her heritage. She's the editor of the China Weekly Fashionista section, a full 2 page centerfold spread featuring someone from the fashion and lifestyle industry in big and bold! Joanna Weidenmiller was in the spread with her Phoenix rising kimono that people still ask me about today (How to top that?! Only with http://Lu1228.360fashion.net ).

Meili has a way with her brush that is more like an eraser on a pencil that takes away all your little fine lines--physical retouching I'd call it. No wonder she's a 360Fashion Member, she's top in one of the biggest markets in the world!




Super pro, she didnt mind me blogging at all, cuz she's a blogger herself!

Anina Launches in Nokia Phones Ovi Store


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:


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?


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!