Towards the top of the list of things the world definitely does not need: Hot Tech Today, a new tech magazine that also features women in bikinis. And yet, much like "How to Get Your Teacher Fired" tutorials and a children's books series by Rush Limbaugh, it's something we have, whether we like it or not. That creative energy couldn't have been put to use on, say, a Gilmore Girls movie instead?
Today marks the launch of the magazine, self-described as a "technology news hub with a twist," that brings you all the latest news in the tech world — along with pictures of women in bikinis. What do these two things have to do with each other, you might ask? Answer: nothing at all. Well, except for the fact that the tech world oftentimes acts like a sexist boys' club where women are treated poorly, when they get to participate at all, so objectification of women in that sense fits right in.
In describing their "Hot Tech Hotties," the site says, "Some will see this a sa [sic] gimmick but it's not!! Ok...maybe a little, but isn't it sexy?" Which pretty much sums up everything you need to know right there. They are aware that there is no reason to have half-naked women featured amongst tech news. They just don't care, because, sexy.
As Kia Kolderup-Lane writes at The Bold Italic, the new app might have wanted to be innovative and forward thinking but instead just "reinforced all the accusations that the tech industry is creepy, misogynistic, and deludedly out of touch." Amen.
Now, I'm not saying that people can't enjoy looking at scantily clad attractive people. They are, I will agree, rather nice to look at. But there is nothing new or innovative about objectifying women to attract viewers. In fact, it's about as hackneyed as you can get. And at a time when the tech industry is coming under increasing fire for being sexist to the point that some companies create a downright hostile work environment for their female employees... well stuff like this just reinforces that and then some.
If the tech industry is serious about changing their image (and, you know, their reality) as a bastion of sexism and hostility towards women, then they really need to start encouraging women in tech, changing corporate attitudes, embracing the idea that women can be nerds, and making the whole field more open and welcoming. And to do that, stuff like Hot Tech Today — and all that it represents — has got to go. Because stuff like this is just gross.