So much of humor lies in universal experiences, and female-orientated experiences are usually othered. What’s it like navigating that otheredness?
Women are more than half the population, so this idea that female-oriented content is niche is a myth. Even the more specific content we do about racial issues or LGBTQ issues are still representative of wide swaths of the population. And people outside those groups can learn more about other people by learning about how they may feel othered in different ways. We definitely get dismissive comments about the work we do, by virtue of being women, but we also have a lot of male readers. Even when those men don’t immediately “get” a joke, they often realize the truth in it by virtue of other people sharing the article, so it’s sort of cool to hear men be like “I didn’t realize that was a thing” and be open to having a broader perspective on it.
Can you tell us about your audience?
Mostly women, usually 18-35, but also a pretty decent chunk of men as well.
You were an unparalleled voice & Hillary supporter during the 2016 campaign. How has the current political and cultural climate — Donald Trump, Me Too, Time’s Up — affected your message and material? What influence are you hoping to have on your readers who might be outraged or anxious every time they read Real News?
We’re still trying to focus on the absurdity in which the media covers the news, and also focus on more evergreen topics about our own experience. While it’s definitely affected how we approach hot-button issues, our content hasn’t radically changed.
You’ve expanded into a community and a business very quickly. Were you modeling the approach around any existing media entities, or creating something you felt didn’t exist?
A little of both. We’re definitely operating as a self-funded, independent media company would, although our company ethos and culture probably differs from your average big box media brand (hopefully that shows).