–AfterEllen editor-in-chief Trish Bendix, announcing on her Tumblr account that the site will shut down on Friday after 14 years. AfterEllen focused on the representation of lesbian and bisexual women in popular culture and Bendix wasted no time in blaming the site’s closure on “mainly white heterosexual men.”
“Evolve Media purchased AfterEllen from Viacom two years ago. They gave us two fiscal years to become their LGBT property and profit in that space, and they found we are not as profitable as moms and fashion,” she wrote. “Yes, ‘they’ are mainly white heterosexual men, which is important to note because not only is this the story for us, but for a lot of other properties. Large-scale media outlets, lesbian bars out-priced by neighborhoods they helped establish, housing in queer meccas like Portland that is being turned into condos and AirBNBs [sic].”
Bendix pointed out the “disconnect” between the closure of AfterEllen and the celebration of queer women and culture — such as at last week’s Emmy Awards and in the acceptance of Ellen DeGeneres (the site’s namesake) as the new queen of daytime.
“AfterEllen is just one of the homes lesbian, bisexual and queer women will have lost in the last decade,” she wrote. “It was a refuge, a community, a virtual church for so many. I’m not sure that some people outside of us can really ever understand that.”
Though Evolve will maintain the sites archives “for now” and publish occasional freelance pieces, Bendix won’t be assisting. She will step down Friday after 10 years at AfterEllen in various roles.
“I feel so grateful and so, so lucky to have been a representative for lesbian and bi women for a decade. I often joke that I’m the one asking “the lesbian questions” in a room full of journalists or reporters or critics that aren’t looking for the answers that I am, that we as a community deserve,” she wrote.
Finally, Bendix asked her readers to “support one another, because support from anywhere else is not guaranteed. Support queer women, women of color, trans women—give other deserving women your money, your eyeballs, your attention.
“Queer women are worthy. We are worthy.”
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