Founded in March 2009 by Riese Bernard and Alexandra Vega and still run by a team of progressively feminist queer and trans folks, Autostraddle is a digital publication and real life community for multiple generations of LGBTQIA+ humans (and their friends). The driving fire behind what we hope to build at Autostraddle is a space for lesbians and queer people — especially people of color — to be our entire selves, to be known for the multi-dimensional ways we move in the world.
Autostraddle is a serious labor of love that started out as a group of friends trying to change the queer media landscape. Now it’s the world’s most popular website for lesbian culture that’s inclusive of trans and nonbinary people and all queer women, with over 2.5 million views per month. But popularity doesn’t lead to ad dollars for LGBTQIA+ or women’s media, which is why we still rely on the financial support of our readers to stay standing. Autostraddle has six full-time staff members (working from home all over the country), three part-timers and a whole bunch of independent contractors who contribute regularly to the site. Our business model involves multiple revenue streams: in the past, A-Camp was a primary source, along with our A+ Membership Program and merchandise sales. Secondarily, advertising and affiliate commissions.
We are also extremely proud to be the winners of the 26th Annual GLAAD Award for “Outstanding Blog,” the 2012 Bloggies’ Weblog of the Year Award and to have been a nominee for “Outstanding Blog” in the 24th, 25th and 28th Annual GLAAD Awards.
We are the ultimate authority on who we are and how we live — not anyone else. We’ve long been responsible for ensuring our own survival, for keeping and passing on our own histories and for showing each other how to imagine beyond the confines of what seems possible.
The shape we give to lesbian and queer culture in our mind is a network of mycelia fibers — invisible, powerful, ancient, connected on more levels that we can know. The heart of our vision is that we want to use this collective wisdom and resources to open up our community and make it a home for more lesbian and queer voices, so they too can become staples of Autostraddle. So our readers can get even more perspectives from weird, singular, real, queer people, who write that sentiment you always felt but never found words for; who challenge our status quo; who share thoughtful reflections on personal journeys; who make you laugh at hilarious bullshit; who remind us that we have every reason to be confident and empowered in who we are.
Autostraddle’s Company Values & Code Of Ethics
Autostraddle staff will tell the whole truth in communications with both our creative team and our readers. Autostraddle editors will be expedient and forthright in the delivery of information that is relevant or necessary for team members to do their jobs well and stay informed about the internal functioning of the company. Autostraddle’s CFO, Executive Editor, Marketing Director, and A+ Director will provide consistent data to team members and readers on diversity and inclusion, community growth and financial performance, long-term company goals, and timely updates on the status of those goals.
Intersectional Black and Brown queerness is the center, the norm, the future of our lesbian & queer culture — white gay culture is not the default, but one square of the fabric of our site. We actively work to manifest an explicitly intersectional feminism that centers the freedom and joy of queer, lesbian and bisexual women and all genders of trans and nonbinary people of color as well as people living with disabilities. We recognize and support the multiplicity of struggles and unequal, disproportionate impacts our community faces — our fights are not separate, we embrace them as a whole.
Autostraddle staff will model principled behavior and sound business ethics (including, but not limited to being truthful, fair, building goodwill, and considering whether or not business decisions are beneficial to the entire Autostraddle team and community).
Autostraddle staff will recognize the impact of our words and actions and accept responsibility for their consequences, including making amends or repairing harm where necessary and adjusting behavior moving forward. Autostraddle staff will abide by our 2019 Editing Guidelines. Autostraddle Senior Members will encourage and seek out upward feedback, and address concerns directly and appropriately.
Autostraddle staff will communicate directly and respectfully with other team members with whom they have an issue or concern, and encourage other team members to do the same. Autostraddle staff will maintain professional relationships in the workplace and ensure all out-of-workplace interactions with our creative team and readers are above reproach.
Autostraddle Staff will transparently communicate a clear vision and set clear timelines and deadlines for all projects. Autostraddle Staff will use honest, forthright, non-manipulative language, and foster an environment where team members feel comfortable raising concerns without fear of social or professional retaliation.
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