This is a commentary on Marissa Mayer’s Vogue spread…
As someone who truly dislikes sexism, I can’t help but imagine the shocked look on Marissa Mayer’s face if, at the next Yahoo board meeting, someone responds to her dry, businesslike approach to whatever matter is at hand, (stock price, personnel layoffs, funding for Yahoo’s next big project, or resisting an unfriendly corporate takeover attempt) by saying, “Hey, that was a really cute spread you did for Vogue. It looks like you got your figure back quickly after the baby. Hey, what do you use on your skin?…oh sorry, you were saying..?”
When I see an intelligent woman using her intelligence to advance her career, I tend to acknowledge her intelligence. When I see a hot young babe showing off her figure, hair and cute face, I tend to acknowledge those.
And to answer your assumed question, NO, you shouldn’t be able to do both. Magazine glamour shots do not show off your substance and intelligence. The premise that you can “show both sides” is bull. You don’t get the power to dictate how I see you, only I have that power.
After Miley Cyrus’s performance on the VMA, I’m really not interested in hearing whether or not she’s also a good businesswoman. Her ability to twerk does not lend itself to my having any interest in her IQ. That’s not what she appears to want me to see. Ms Mayer, although certainly not as obvious as Ms Cyrus, is, in effect, doing the same thing. Both acts are for the simple purpose of showing me how hot these women are. The difference is simply a matter of degree. One had more clothes on than the other. One is static, the other was twerking.
I’m simply reacting to what I’m being shown without having asked for it. They both get to decide what I will see on my TV or on a magazine cover at the supermarket-and they both know it. They have each made their choice, so neither has the right to complain if I react to it in a way that they did not intend.
Although Yahoo’s stock price has improved during Ms Mayer’s tenure there, the jury is still out on her performance as CEO. I’m not a Yahoo stockholder, but if I were, I’d be damned angry that her focus is not where I expected it to be when my company hired her.