An Open Letter to Eric Zinczenko: Science Isn’t a Men’s Interest

08.15.12

Dear Eric Zinczenko,

This morning I saw a press release from Bonnier Corporation in which you were elevated to Executive Vice President of the Bonnier Men’s Group. Mazel Tov Mr. Zinczenko (that’s cograts from a Jewish Mother in case you aren’t familiar)! I am thrilled for you personally and professionally I’ll have my eye on you.

My hope is that your first move as a critically important media executive will be to rename the Bonnier Men’s Group. You see one of your magazines is Popular Science. I know that there are women who enjoy Outdoor Life and Field and Stream… but I really have to focus on one battle at a time.

Today I’d like to talk about Science Bias for little girls. When I was on my amazing trip to Alaska with a bunch of scientists they uniformly expressed to me the import of getting my daughter into a single sex school as soon as possible because teachers subconsciously have a science bias. They (the scientists) didn’t think that science teachers actually believed that girls were less capable of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) than their male counterparts but in practice the teachers (male and female alike) showed prejudice to the boys in the classroom.

Calling Popular Science a men’s property is appalling in 2012. It was appaling in 1960 also but women had other fish to fry at that moment in time (sadly it involved frying actual fish). Today’s popsci.com’s homepage is full of content that’s fascinating for men and women. It’s a wonderful property that many of us love, you’re lucky to be leading the parade.

Mr. Zinczenko you have the opportunity to make a legendary decision today. If you rename the Bonnier Men’s Group to… well, to almost anything else…. you can make a public stand in showing men, women and girls that you believe in us all. I know you have a daughter, you don’t want her thinking that science is for boys, do you?

Respectfully,

Jessica Gottlieb (who has Bachelors Degree in the Sciences because a chemistry lab felt like home)