Oct 13, 2017 | news

Introducing #ManListeningMonday

Hey all, it’s Brian, your former Fireside editor.

A lot of women have gone silent on Twitter today. It’s a reaction to a lot of things that have been smoldering for ages, set aflame by the past week of Harvey Weinstein revelations, emerging stories of shittiness by people in his orbit (Ben Affleck Fuck Off), and women in and out of Hollywood talking about their experiences of harassment, assault, and rape by men.

All of this is happening because women are speaking out. Whether or not they speak today, men need to listen, learn, and amplify their voices. This idea of listening is of course is not a concept I came up with, and a lot of women have been talking about this need for listening this morning.

Personally, it was this tweet (and the subsequent thread) from @sawdustbear

tbh I don’t really want women to remain silent on Twitter for a day, I want all men to say nothing and only amplify women’s voices.

— that got me thinking about pushing for a day of men being silent and boosting women. I was talking to Fireside’s publisher, Pablo, about it and we hit on the idea of making this a weekly thing: #ManListeningMonday. Every Monday, Pablo and I are committing to not tweeting ourselves, and only RT’ing and otherwise boosting women’s voices, especially the voices of women of color and disabled women, along with anyone who does not identify as male — genderqueer, intersex, and all the other people on our great big gender spectrum outside of male.

Here is the key thing about this though; this is not about virtue-signalling or ally cookies or any other bullshit. Yes, #ManListeningMonday is a hashtag, but don’t spend half your Monday using it to tweet about how you’re supporting women. Just do it. At most, pin a post Monday morning saying “It’s #ManListeningMonday, and today I will only be boosting women’s voices.” And then just shut up and Listen. Listening to, believing, and valuing what women have to say is vital to fixing the bullshit they have to put up with every goddamn day.

That’s it. That’s the plan. We hope you will join us, this Monday and every Monday going forward.

© 2017 Brian J. White

About the author

Brian J. White

Brian White started Fireside in 2012 with a Kickstarter and a whole lot of love. Over the next five years as editor and publisher – with the help of his amazing team and of Lauren, his wife and partner in crime – he expanded Fireside from a one-off magazine to a monthly publication to its current form, a site with weekly fiction and occasional nonfiction. Fireside published 150 stories under his tenure, as well as five novels and one novella. He is deeply proud to have had a part in bringing those stories into the world. He was gratified to have proved that writers can be paid more for their work than the industry accepted, and perhaps most proud of the #BlackSpecFic report that Fireside published in 2016. He stepped down as editor and publisher in the summer of 2017, but he remains an equity partner in the company.