We’re pleased to bring you “While You Were Out”—the Verily editors’ quick takes on the happenings of this week.
Everyone Is Talking About Hillary Clinton’s New Book
Hillary Clinton’s much-awaited book, What Happened, was finally released on Tuesday. According to Clinton, it’s the story of her campaign mistakes as well as opposing factors that led to Donald Trump beating her in the presidential race. While many supporters were excited to hear her post-mortem thoughts and worries for the future, others braced for the media spotlight on What Happened, worrying that it might detract from more pressing Democratic issues. Meanwhile, Republicans anticipated the book to be a nail in the coffin for Clinton, assuming it would be a clear display to all that she cares more about herself than her party.
Within hours, supporters and critics, alike, left more than a thousand reviews of the book on Amazon, prompting Amazon to delete nine hundred negative reviews the same day—reviews that Amazon claims violated its published community guidelines. Critics are suggesting that Amazon is bolstering Clinton and What Happened with its 4.8/5-star rating. —Mary Margaret Olohan
Kate Hudson Angers Moms with Insensitive Comment in Cosmo
In a questionnaire for Cosmopolitan, this month’s cover star Kate Hudson drew fire for answering the question “What’s the laziest thing you’ve ever done?” with “Have a C-section!”
Hudson later explained that she had gone to the hospital thinking her son Ryder was ready to be born but discovered that she wouldn’t go into labor for much longer. Hudson opted for a C-section to avoid the challenge of going home and then returning to the hospital at a later time, all the while being hunted by photographers.
Her flippant answer brought heavy backlash, with fans renouncing their former admiration for her and stressing the severity of giving birth even through a C-section. Other fans, though, recognized that Hudson’s words may have been a quick joke. Either way, Hudson’s joke certainly ruffled a few feathers and reminded us that the mommy wars are alive and well. —MO
Major Editors Step Down, Citing Family Time as a Motivator
It was a big week in media industry news. After a 25-year run at Vanity Fair, Graydon Carter, father to an 8-year-old girl, announced he will be leaving his post in December. Shortly after, Elle editor in chief Robbie Myers also said she is stepping down after seventeen years with the famous fashion magazine.
In an email sent to her staff, which was shared by The Cut, Myers eloquently shared her feelings about leaving in order to spend more time with her children, as well as a heartfelt thanks for the magazine. She writes about her daughter, on the cusp of college, and her high school–age son, saying, “And as much as I love going to Paris for the collections . . . I want to spend the next seasons as available to my children as I can be, and so I take my leave of ELLE now: a magazine, a website, a brand, and above all an idea of how a modern woman might move through the world with all of the passion and authority she deserves.” She ended her note with a simple reminder: choose kindness. Myers’ successor will be Nina Garcia, current creative director for Marie Claire and longtime Project Runway judge. —Victoria Rabuse
Babies Don’t Wait for Hurricanes
Ever had any nightmares about giving birth? Well, a Miami woman went into labor at her boyfriend’s house Sunday morning in the midst of Hurricane Irma. When her 911 call revealed that paramedics couldn’t reach her, doctors walked her and her boyfriend through the birthing process over the phone. According to ABC News, the heroic mommy gave birth to a healthy baby girl, Destiny Watkins, and her boyfriend actually tied off the placenta with a shoestring.
Later that morning when Irma had subsided a bit, firefighters were able to get to her home and take her to Women’s Hospital at Jackson Memorial. Destiny’s parents said they were traumatized by the experience but very thankful for the doctors’ help over the phone and for their healthy daughter. —MO
New iPhone—But More Importantly, a New Outlook on Community
This past Tuesday, tech mammoth Apple held their latest, highly-anticipated special event, where more than just the newest iPhone was released. Besides sharing new products, Apple executives introduced their plans to redesign Apple Stores—now referred to as “town squares.” Head of Apple’s retail operations, Angela Ahrendts, mentioned that the company “[doesn’t] call them stores anymore. We call them town squares because they’re gathering places where everyone is welcome.” The newly designed Apple “town squares” are expected to resemble outdoor plazas, with the Genius Bar now rebranded as “Genius Groves.”
Will it work? Critics are skeptical, but chief executive Tim Cook promises that the company is “about learning, inspiring and connecting with people.” It’s a smart move on Apple’s part to create a space where people can bring some of the most personal, occasionally alienating devices, and still foster a community. —VR
Hope Hicks Named to Senior Position at the White House
An original staffer of the Trump presidential campaign, 28-year-old Hope Hicks has been officially named as the new communications director at the White House. Hicks formerly worked in PR for Ivanka Trump’s clothing line before jumping to politics. She is the third person, but first woman, to hold the title of communications director under Trump’s administration. Hicks previously held the position as an interim following the dramatic leave of Anthony Scaramucci in August. Hicks certainly has her hands full. Trump has reportedly said of her, “She gets a call a minute, probably.” —Megan Madden
New Research Looks at the Evolution of Stock Photography Featuring Women
This week the New York Times looked at the changing look of photography featuring women over the years. In 2017 the most-purchased Getty stock image for the search “women” was one where a woman was climbing a mountain. In 2007, it was a naked woman lying on an apparent massage bed, draped in a towel.
The director of Getty, the preeminent source of images used in media today, told The Times that they’ve seen a real shift in how their clients perceive females in imagery. Looking at the lineup of annual most-bought images from 2007 to now reveals an obvious shift from a looks-based aesthetic to an abilities perspective. Early photos show glamorous hair and eager smiles, whereas more recent images show women working and achieving things. Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In foundation is at least partially to credit for the change. The nonprofit partnered with Getty to produce more images of women shown in light of their aptitudes, not their beauty, using the motto, “You can’t be what you can’t see.” —MM