For BuzzFeed's first hack week I decided to flex some skills that I don't often get to use on the tech team: writing and portraiture. Increasing the diversity of our tech teams at BuzzFeed is also something I care about a lot, so I came up with this project as a way to satisfy these various goals.
I offered to take portraits of anyone who identifies as a woman or non-binary in the tech department, with the idea that they could use the headshots in the future for speaking events or other professional purposes. I also knew that I wanted this post to have an angle on fashion and personal style because these are subjects I'm also interested in which are often dismissed as frivolous in male-dominated spaces like tech. Though style was the hook for the post, once I had the reader's attention I also wanted to highlight each person's professional accomplishments within the post.
This post was published on BuzzFeed.com's Style vertical and earned over 60,000 views. While this isn't a lot relative to typical BuzzFeed content, it did have an insanely high social-to-seed view ratio of 7x, meaning most of the viewers who read this piece did so from a social referral. While it was generally very positively received there was some fair criticism on the lack of people of color represented, which is an accurate reflection of the make-up of the tech team at that point in time.
Lastly, I don't mean to brag but Farhad Manjoo did call it subversive.
This buzzfeed post on how tech people dress, which is also a job ad and a subversive statement, is incredible. http://t.co/EJLaxZxyXd— Farhad Manjoo 🥜 (@fmanjoo) July 21, 2015