I hate to resuscitate the tired old subject of girls vs. boys, which last cropped up in the Jonathan Franzen/Jodi Picoult/ Jennifer Weiner flap and even stirred the pot here at dystel.com, but I was reading Lisa Belkin’s piece in the New York Times Magazine on “Queen of the Mommy Bloggers” and saw that Heather Armstrong, author and founder of the popular blog Dooce had been listed as number 26th on the Forbes List of Most Influential Women in Media. Said list was compiled in 2009 and I’ve not seen a more recent version, so it may be that her position has shifted. But I was pretty surprised. And I couldn’t decide whether I was pleased that a blogger with an entirely grassroots following and a domestic beat made it into this elite company (Oprah, Katie Couric, Barbara Walters, Ariana Huffington, Tine Brown) or dismayed that the pickings are so slim that a successful blogger can make the cut. Although her numbers are nothing to sneeze at—she gets 100,000 visitors a day and has 1.5 million Twitter followers–it’s hard to imagine that on a Most Influential Men in Media list (something Forbes does not actually compile) we would see her counterpart listed. Instead, we’d see the men who own the media: Rupert Murdoch, Roger Ailes, Sumner Redstone, Steve Jobs, and I can go on, and on and on… Unlikely that the guys behind Stuff White People Like would be included in that most exclusive fraternity of moguls, kingmakers and thought-leaders. I’m not a regular Dooce reader (with two small children of my own at home, I live the blog and read stuff with zero bearing on my life: Outside Magazine; movie reviews) so maybe I don’t properly understand her influence.
What do you think? Good that a mommy blogger hits the bigtime, or just another example that we have not Come-a-Long-Way-Baby.