In the spring of 2012, Courtney Martin and Vanessa Valenti approached BCRW with a message: the new digital environment, so critical to online organizing and feminist community in the last decade, was in crisis. As feminist writers focused on online spaces, they were increasingly alarmed by the severity of burnout they saw among their fellow feminist bloggers and online activists. They wanted to make sure the landscape that had given them so much would still be around a generation later. Martin and Valenti had a compelling vision to make the landscape of feminist writers and activists online stronger; to create a sustainable force that would build on existing alliances among feminist movements and between online feminists and their institutional counterparts; and to develop an infrastructure of support for these important voices.
In this report, Martin and Valenti build on a 2012 convening where 21 writers, activists, and educators who work in the online feminist landscape came together to discuss their needs, desires, and hopes for the online feminist future. Here they provide a cogent explanation of the power of online organizing, the risks and challenges of the current state of the field, and some possible solutions for creating a more sustainable system.