Frequently Asked Questions
What’s your story?
Bitch Media is a nonprofit independent feminist media organization best known for publishing the magazine Bitch: Feminist Response to Pop Culture. Our mission is to provide and encourage an engaged, thoughtful response to mainstream media and popular culture.
About the website
I have an idea for something you should blog about! Where do I send a tip?
You can send us your blog tips and suggestions here. We do read every tip, and we love hearing from you!
Can I re-post an article from Bitch on my own site?
It's great to share our articles! But our bloggers own the rights to republish their work—that means you cannot copy and paste an entire article on your site without asking us first. Instead, please post a short excerpt from whatever piece you want to share and link back to us. If you'd like to request permission to republish a long excerpt or entire piece, get in touch with our online editor. We are a small nonprofit that works hard to pay all our bloggers for their original work. Please respect that policy by not re-posting our content without our permission.
Can I blog for Bitch?
We are always looking for freelance bloggers. Feel free to pitch ideas for one-off posts to our online editor or apply to be a guest blogger who writes about one focused topic for eight weeks. We pay all bloggers. To apply for a guest blogger position, send a brief description of your topic choice and two sample blog posts to our online editor. Bonus points if you come up with a catchy name for your blog, of course.
Sometimes I see things on this website that I disagree with, or that seem to go against the Bitch Media philosophy. What’s up with that?
The opinions expressed on this website are those of their respective authors, not necessarily those of Bitch Media. Though we all agree on many things (cute animals, gender equality, cookies) we don’t agree with each other on everything, and we don’t expect you to agree with us on everything either. This website was made for discussin’, and we hope you’ll post your opinions in the comments section whether you agree with a blog post or not.
Say, I would like to post a comment. What are the rules?
Thank you for asking! Basically, our rules for commenting are the same rules you’d follow if you were out in public, or at a friend’s house for a party: Be nice, respect the purpose of the blog and the other commenters, stay on topic, and don’t spam people with ads. Please read our complete commenting policy here.
About the magazine
Tell me more about the magazine.
Bitch: Feminist Response to Pop Culture is a quarterly, nonprofit magazine about pop culture, feminism, and media criticism. Founded and housed in the San Francisco Bay area for 11 years, we relocated to Portland, Oregon, in 2007.
The first issue of Bitch was published in January 1996. The founding editors, Lisa Jervis and Andi Zeisler, were totally sick of both their day jobs and their love/hate relationship with pop culture. Inspired by publishing ventures from Ms. and Sassy to Pagan’s Head and Beer Frame, they decided to create a public forum in which to air thoughts and theories on what is all wrong (and the few things that are right) with the way women, gender, and feminist politics are treated in the media. The aim was to use feminism as a lens through which to view pop products—and to offer ways for readers to speak up and talk back to the culture at large.
What do you publish?
The magazine publishes columns, features, and interviews—all of which tend to be fairly wordy—as well as shorter, snarky pieces of media response and analysis. We also feature book and music reviews, a section called Love It/Shove It that offers short rants and raves, and an ongoing feature called the Bitch List that highlights cool media and pop-culture products/projects.
The website (which you are visiting now) publishes a bit of all of the above, and also offers blogs and original multimedia content.
Why does Bitch call itself a “feminist response to pop culture”?
Bitch looks at the media and its products through a lens that takes into account the historical and cultural representation of gender in pop culture. Movies, television, news magazines, fashion magazines, blogs, comics, advertising, music, computer games — all are media that have traditionally reflected a narrow vision of what women and girls are and can be, whether it’s the dumb blond, the needy wife, the castrating mother, “the I’m-not-a-feminist-but…” woman, or the heartless, man-shunning domestic media mogul (to name but a few). We seek to look at all pop culture through an analytical-yet-witty, sharp-yet-sympathetic lens, as well as to celebrate the feminist culture-makers who are transforming the media with their unique contributions.
Bitch aims to put a lucid, balanced face on feminism for all kinds of folks, including people who aren’t really aware that feminism refers to more than women who don’t want to shave their legs, or simply getting more women into positions of power. Similarly, we encourage people to consider feminism as a necessary part of the broader social justice movement.
You’re a nonprofit. How does that work, exactly?
The most important distinction between nonprofit organizations like Bitch and most magazines is that we’re mission-driven, not profit-driven. Any profits we make go back into the organization so we can expand our reach and otherwise better fulfill our mission; they don’t go to a couple of fat cats sitting at the top of a media empire. In practical terms, the biggest distinction is that most magazines make their hay by selling their readers to advertisers. So their priority—and their loyalty—is to their advertisers, not to you. Bitch, on the other hand, is loyal—and accountable—to its readers. We’re in this together, which is why we call ourselves a reader-supported magazine. Think of us as the print version of listener-supported radio.
Will you profile my band/performance art show/soap-making company?
We get a lot of requests to review people’s projects, and though we would like to accommodate as many as possible, we have limited space, limited resources, and, yes, limited patience. So here are a few guidelines: All emails regarding products for review should be sent through our contact form, and all products to be reviewed can be sent to our general mailing address (4930 NE 29th Avenue, Portland Oregon 97211). The product to be reviewed should fall under our purview: Books, CDs, comic zines, t-shirts, handmade crafts, handmade menstrual products, pet accessories, and yummy-smelling lotions made from all natural ingredients are all things we are likely to review or give a shout-out to; canine pregnancy tests, personal lubricants, and men’s grooming products with the word “Xtreme” in the name, not so much. Please don’t send samples that need to be returned; our office is really understaffed and we probably won’t be able to get around to it in a timely manner, and then you’ll hate us, and nobody will be happy.
Okay, well, I also have a record label and make cool crafty things. Can I get the word out through a Bitch sponsorship?
You sure can. We even have special sponsorships available for small businesses, since we love to help support independent folks like you. All the particulars about sponsoring with us can be found in the sponsorship page of this site, or you can contact us to request a media kit.
About subscriptions and merchandise
How much is a subscription?
So glad you asked, because subscriptions are our bread and butter. (Figuratively speaking, for all you vegans out there: “Bread and Earth Balance” just doesn’t have the same ring to it.) Bitch subscriptions in the United States are $24.95 for one year (four issues). Canadian subscriptions are $34.95 in US funds for one year (four issues). International subscriptions are $59.95 in US funds for one year (four issues). To order, go to our webstore.
I ordered a subscription, and only received one or two copies. Then I got a renewal notice saying my last issue was coming up. Seriously, people—what’s up?
Yikes. We do apologize. It’s possible our renewal notice crossed in the mail with the third issue in your subscription—we mail the first renewal notice one month after your second issue is sent. There might also be a misunderstanding on when exactly your subscription began. You can send us a message to clear things up, then we can send you any issues you should already have enjoyed. We always appreciate your patience, as we try to make things run as smoothly as possible.
I’m moving. What do I need to do?
Hopefully, you’re thinking of this at least six weeks beforehand, since the postal service does not forward magazines, nor do we have the money to replace issues lost due to unreported address changes. To ensure uninterrupted delivery, let us know your new whereabouts by filling out this form.
I always buy my issues at Barnes & Noble. Isn’t that better than subscribing, because I’m showing the big chains that they should continue to stock the magazine?
While we totally appreciate this noble urge, it’s actually much better for us in the long run if you subscribe rather than buying Bitch on the newsstand. Here’s why: When people buy Bitch at a bookstore, we eventually (four to five months later) get about 7 cents on the dollar for each issue sold through a retailer. If you subscribe directly however, we get nearly 100% of the money and that means a stronger magazine with a brighter future, which is good news for everyone involved. Of course we’d rather have people buying it in the bookstore than not buying it at all, but stores will continue to stock the magazine, and new newsstand buyers will always come along (and eventually become subscribers too!).
About getting involved
I’d love to write for you. How do I do that?
We are always looking for new contributors with great ideas and mad skills. Please see our writer’s guidelines—http://bitchmagazine.org/guidelines.shtml—and our current call for submissions for more information on what we’re looking for and how to pitch us. No phone calls, please!
If you’re sending the same submission to multiple outlets, do let us know. And, not to sound like your mother or anything, but please proofread your cover letters—maybe we’re petty, but nothing bums us out more than getting a submission that ends “…and I think this piece would be perfect for BUST.”
I’d like to illustrate or photograph for you. How do I do that?
We’re always looking for new illustrators to work with. We commission people with various styles appropriate for each individual article.
If you’re interested, please send a link to your portfolio to Art Director
Or send either a postcard/mailer of some kind (no originals!) to:
Attn: Art Director
4930 NE 29th Ave
Portland, OR 97211
Can I have a job?
We are a very small staff, and rarely have openings for staff positions. We do have internships, for which we hire on a rolling basis. People interested in applying for an editorial, publishing, outreach, new media, or design internship should send a résumé and cover letter—and if you’re applying for the editorial internship, please add one or two nonfiction writing samples—to our general address. Please indicate in your cover letter which internship you are applying for. The internships are, sadly, nonpaying for the time being, but are flexible and can be structured easily around a day job or school schedule.
How can I help out at Bitch?
Check out our get involved page for information on internships, volunteering and more!
I'm doing a research project and I need more information about Bitch.
We get numerous requests for interviews for high-school and college classes, and are usually able to accommodate them. The best way to make this happen is to send us your questions—if possible, at least two weeks before you need the answers. And those of you with more in-depth projects on feminist publishing, keep in mind that Bitch’s archives are housed at Duke University’s amazing Sallie Bingham Center for Women’s History and Culture.
Have an idea for the blog? Click here to contact us!
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