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Feb 122012

International Women’s Day on March 8th is fast approaching and as we have in past years, the Feminist Peace Network calls for boycotting the corporate-run website.  The website is owned by Aurora Ventures, a private company run by Australian businesswoman Glenda Stone.  The corporate sponsors seem to vary from year to year, this year’s sponsors include:

Also included this year is a link to financial giant  Deloitte’s International Women’s Day  Global Retention of Women (GROW) Toolkit. And who you ask are the executive sponsors of the GROW council?  These guys, that’s who:

And here is the picture used in the toolkit to illustrate women’s history:

And because it is a GROW toolkit, there are lots of awesome plant pictures–a crop circle, a clove of garlic and an adorable little girl blowing dandelion seeds.  Really worth the read just for the illustrations, not to mention helpful event planning tips like hiring a caterer.  Inappropriate and self-serving?  Just a tad.

Nowhere on the site has there ever been any indication of editorial and decision-making input from women-run organizations or NGOs.  While the website does provide links to information on International Women’s Day, it is a blatant example of corporate cause branding that is completely inappropriate for International Women’s Day and as we have pointed out before, it is beyond inappropriate for the site to refer to itself (as it does in its metatags) as “The International Women’s Day Site”.

While considerably different in format, the site is also disturbing.  It is run by the Women’s Information Network and seems to be primarily geared  towards running for profit seminars about women’s issues.  While it does count a number of women’s organizations on its list that support International Women’s Day, these look to be primarily organizations that table at WIN events, rather than participating in decision-making roles for event planning. If there is any doubt about the commercialization of this website, as I write this, the top post on their blog reads as follows:

What do the Kindle and Nook have to do with you?

posted by

Writing an ebook for clients, friends and family to read on their Kindles or Nooks will be one of the most exciting gifts you can give yourself and others this holiday season. Who wouldn’t want to influence others for good using the hottest technology? On Wednesday, November 30th, we had a fabulous teleseminar where we shared cutting-edge strategies for writing an ebook.

Listeners learned:

  • The 3 Mega Niches for writing your ebook
  • The correct format and word count for ebooks
  •  Shortcuts to writing your ebook (even if you hate to write or aren’t a great writer)
  • How to partner with The WIN when you write your ebook
  • What to do to be part of the WIN Library of Resources
  • The value of having your book promoted by The WIN to maximize exposure

Listen to the recording here:

Don’t get left behind!

This is your time and the WIN has powerful vehicles to assist you in getting your unique message to your perfect audience. Our WIN database includes thousands of women with everyday questions and concerns, and YOU have answers and solutions. At the end of the call we offer you the option to be a part of this unique series.

To learn more and get involved now visit:

To a WIN filled Day!
The WIN Team


To say that is inappropriate would be an understatement. The bottom line is this–International Women’s Day is an international event that belongs to the women of the world. No one organization should control websites that hawk themselves as official websites for the day and it is beyond unfortunate that these url’s have been taken over for the primary benefit of private concerns.  The Feminist Peace Network encourages a boycott of both sites.

For more on International Women’s Day, please see our resource page.

 February 12, 2012  Posted by on February 12, 2012 Comments Off on Using International Women’s Day As An Opportunity For Corporate Cause Branding
Mar 092011

International Women’s Day is celebrated throughout the world by numerous organizations and women in a large variety of ways.  Sort of like Christmas.  As we’ve noted for the last several years, it is truly objectionable that the corporate-run website bills itself as ‘the’ International Women’s Day website.  Yes it provides some good resources, but so do a lot of other sites and because of the decentralized global nature of IWD, there simply is no such thing as an official site and it is misleading to claim to be such.

Yesterday, the site’s founder, Glenda Stone, took the usurpation to new levels with a press release about the website being hacked, referring to the site as “the global hub” for International Women’s Day.  To be very clear, FPN is opposed to anyone’s site being hacked, and if in fact it was done deliberately on IWD (which Ms. Stone asserts but does not back up with facts), it is worrisome.  We’ve been on the receiving end of that and it is expensive, time-consuming and no fun to recover from and not a productive tactic for fostering dialog or change.

But that does not change the fact that it is absolutely wrong to presume that a private site is so central to IWD.  It isn’t and I feel quite sure we would all carry on with our observances without the site, just as we did before the site existed.

Yesterday I also become aware for the first time that there is an website, run by the Women’s Information Network, and yes, you guessed it, it is also a private venture organized by motivational speaker Dr Paula Fellingham. The website seems to be geared towards getting participants to attend events that cost $35 per ticket.  And why would you pay that? Because the program included a “Buns of Steel” star talking about “How to Have the Body Your Body Wants to Be” and a soap opera star was on the agenda as well.  And move over Bread and Roses, they have an original IWD theme song.

It is truly unfortunate that a responsible organization, such as  the U.N., did not safeguard these urls, and even more unfortunate that they have been callously taken over by private parties. While wishing Ms. Stone and Dr. Fellingham the best in their personal ventures, FPN urges both of them to do the right thing and quit using these sites in privately directed ways.  Well intentioned though they may, at least in part be, both sites are self-serving and a true disservice to the women of the world.

 March 9, 2011  Posted by on March 9, 2011 Comments Off on Officially There Is No ‘Official’ International Women’s Day Website
Mar 032010

As any long term reader of the Feminist Peace Network blog knows, I have no patience with cause-branding for profit at the expense of women’s lives and rights.  Here a few of this year’s not so delightful IWD offenders:

This ad for a new LG Ice Cream phone gets our nod for misogynist bad taste this year:

It is international Women’s day (sic) coming up soon on March 8th, for those of you that didn’t know already.

LG have their LG KF350 otherwise known as the Ice Cream which is just in time for those of you that want to treat that special lady in your life. Whether that be your mum or your girlfriend, or whoever that special lady is.

This is a delightful phone which is available in lovely candy floss colours of either vanilla or pink. It is all girly and is a great lady phone for sure. Although this was launched in Korea back in 2008 the device is only just making its way over here.

However this year we bestow our lowest honor, the what part of sex trafficking do you not understand is wrong award, to for a press release for Hot Russian Brides that reads,

In an effort to help members develop their relationships further, leading International Dating service (aka “russian bride”)® is offering an additional 50% off the already discounted Video Streaming rate to Premium Members with active Intimacy Requests to celebrate International Women’s Day. The promotion takes places on March 8, from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Eastern Time.  Picture 35

International Women’s Day, observed on March 8, is a global celebration of women. Since empowers Russian and Ukrainian women to find love anywhere in the World, the day is widely used as an occasion for men to express their love for the special women in their lives.

The release goes on to explain that this is a dating service not a mail order bride service.  Uh huh. Oh and as for, you’ll be pleased to know that,

Because we aim to carry only quality releases, editors and journalists have come to rely on as a credible source of information. In fact, our troupe of editors manually reviews and approves each press release to ensure it has significant content, meets formatting and grammatical standards, and is newsworthy.

No, really, drippy pink phones and exploitive dating services aren’t newsworthy or significant, even if they meet grammatical standards (although our sensitive lady-eyes appreciate that gesture towards English grammar while hawking Russian brides), and do not celebrate the lives of women. In fact, they just look like crass, misogynist anything to make a buck business as usual to us.  In other words, go shove your crappy merchandising and keep your grubby little advertising campaigns off our holiday.

Finally, the Feminist Peace Network continues to call for a boycott (or more to the point woman-cott) of InternationalWomen’ which, while offering information on IWD is primarily devoted to pointing traffic towards Reuters news stories (Thomson Reuters, parent company of Reuters is one of the primary sponsors for the site).  Here are some of the IWD-irrelevant headlines they were hawking on March 2:

–Getting naked for art at the Sydney Opera House
–Pharma desire for “female Viagra” excites passion
–Children over-exposed to sexual imagery
–Women and men travellers tend to get different illnesses
–Britain sorry for shipping children to colonies
–Your old mascara may be spoiling your looks
–Exhibit lifts the skirts on feminine footwear

International Women’s Day is a human rights celebration not an advertising opportunity.  While the website does in part provide a service, more than half of it is devoted to driving traffic to Reuters and that is not acceptable.  You can read more about the boycott call here.

 March 3, 2010  Posted by on March 3, 2010 2 Responses »
Feb 222010

It’s hard to know where to begin this week, so many fabulous events being planned all over the world, but first, from the vaults with gratitude to, check out this amazing footage of IWD in Iran in 1979:

You can see Part 2 of the footage here.

And how better to celebrate  IWD than 3 women, some cooking and a tub?

And from Spain:

They sing, they compose, they write, they paint, they dance, they act… In short, they create (Ellas Crean). Once again, and for the sixth consecutive year, the most important female festival of Spain celebrates the International Women’s Day. In this way important female figures of music, theatre, poetry, art and dance are going to lead us through different artistic and cultural proposals.

The festival will be included in the cultural programming of the Spanish Presidency of the European Union and will reach 20 cities on the five continents through the Instituto Cervantes. It is organized by the Ministry of Culture and Equality, and it will be held in Madrid from February 17th to March 30th.

In Nepal:

An FM radio station is to be operated for the first time in Parvat at the initiatives of women.

The Society for Uplift of Women is going to operate Radio Didibahini 95.2 Megahertz which will be totally operated by women journalists and RJs.

Chairperson of Society for Uplift of Women, Kalpana Chapagain said the managers, program presenters, technicians and employees of the radio station would be all women.

Radio Didibahini 95.2 Megahertz is starting its test transmission from February 27. This will be the second radio station to be operated by women after the Mukti FM of Butwal.

The FM radio station will be formally inaugurated on March 8 on the day of the International Women’s Day.


Honoring the lives of feminist Haitian leaders who died in the massive earthquake on January 12th, will be the focus of International Women’s Day on March 8, 2010, which is also the 100th anniversary of this annual celebration…Women’s groups around the world are asked by the Haitian women’s movement to organize a memorial activity as part of their celebration of International Women’s Day in their countries and communities.
“The main activity will take place that day in Plaza Catherine Flon in Champ de Mars in the center of Port au Prince, a park that symbolizes Haitian women’s participation to the war towards independence two centuries ago.

It is being organized by the Haitian women’s organizations locally to acknowledge and honor the human suffering of the catastrophe in Haiti, promore feminist values based on the human rights of all, the struggle for well being of all in Haiti and urban planning, reaffirm feminist struggles despite the loss of significant feminist leaders, strengthen solidarity and display a MEMORIA which will take the form of testimonies, a mural and a slide show.

Local activities in other countries for March 8th have already been announced by women’s organizations in Chile, Argentina, Honduras, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Canada, etc.

The Feminist International Camp is also requesting a statement of solidarity from the Nobel Women’s Initiative.

The initiative to commemorate the 8th of March by honoring Haitian feminists emerged from a Haitian women’s meeting on January 24th in Port au Prince, which was then adopted at a Latin American and Caribbean meeting of the International Feminist Solidarity Camp Myriam Merlet, Magali Marcelin, and Anne Marie Coriolan, held in the Dominican Republic on January 26-27.

Finally, for all you bloggers, Gender Across Borders invites you to blog for International Women’s Day:

International Women’s Day [IWD] is on Monday, March 8, 2010. As set by the United Nations, this year’s theme is Equal rights, equal opportunity: Progress for all.” While we  here at GAB believe that equal rights for women should be celebrated every day, this particular event is a day for people to come together and blog about the progress of rights and opportunity for women worldwide.

This is the first year that we’re asking you (yes, YOU) to blog for IWD on March 8, 2010. Please take a moment to sign up using the form here and you can also download a Blog for IWD graphic to let readers know you’re participating. We ask bloggers to think about any of the following questions in regards to the U.N.’s theme for IWD:

  • What does “equal rights for all” mean to you?
  • Would you describe a particular organization, person, or moment in history that helped to mobilize a meaningful change in equal rights for all?

Once you sign up, a link to your blog’s URL will appear on the Blog for IWD blog directory page. Also remember to tag your posts as “Blog for IWD” or “Blog for International Women’s Day” so that we can identify your posts!

Please also visit FPN’s International Women’s Day webpage for more information about IWD and click here to learn why we are calling for a boycott of Thomson Reuter’s website.

 February 22, 2010  Posted by on February 22, 2010 Comments Off on International Women’s Day Events Calendar 2/22/10
Feb 152010

Laughter is always a good way to celebrate, so if you’re in London, check this out:

Some of the best and most innovative female comedy acts will take to the stage for the seventh year running in support of Funny Women’s annual charity gala, Funny Women Stand Up, on International Women’s Day, Monday 8th March.  The show brings attention to the issues surrounding violence against women both home and abroad.

Box office proceeds raised on the night will be donated to V-Day: Until the Violence Stops, which is currently focusing on a campaign to stop the physical violence and brutality that women and girls are suffering as a by-product of war in the Democratic Republic of Congo: Stop Raping Our Greatest Resource.

When my birthday rolls around, I usually ask for world peace, but I love this appeal from Sean Triner who was born on IWD.  Happy Birthday Sean!

My mum  had me forty years ago, on International Womens Day in 1970.

Women, like my mum, in countries like the UK have excellent care – they even did in the 70s – that make giving birth a fact of life. But in many communities things are not so good and giving birth is a matter of life and death.Marie Stopes Foundation works with women and their families in the Asia-Pacific region, and with Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities on issues around family – including sexual and reproductive health.

It is tough to fundraise around this subject but it is vital.

What I wanted for my birthday was BioShock 2 for my Playstation 3, which costs about $100. I reckon $100 donated to Marie Stopes is a lot better. Please will you donate $100 by clicking here, or, if you are a volunteer or not in a rich country, whatever you can afford.

And from Poland:

Women’s organisations are planning a big demonstration in Warsaw on 7 March ahead of the annual International Women’s Day, traditionally held a day later.

Together with trade unionists they will demand the respect of women’s and workers’ rights.

It is to be held under the slogan “Demonstrating solidarity during times of crisis” with the participation of, among others, the National Trade Union of Nurses and Midwives, the Solidarity 1980 Trade Union and the National Trade Union of Teachers.

The demonstration is to start at noon in front of the Palace of Culture and Science. The organisers expect that several thousand trade unionists will participate in it to mark the 100th anniversary of establishing the International Women’s Day.

Six thousand protesters gathered during a similar event last year.

In Louisville, KY/US:


Meanwhile, in the we don’t get it department at a bank in Azerbaijan:

Azerbaijani bank decides to protect men from International Women’s Day.

Long before International Women’s Day, which is celebrated  on March 8,  the  Bank of Baku (BB) OJSC declared its willingness to help all client-men and has started the action «In support of men!.

The bank informed that the action is held from February 9 till March 6 within loan product Money in cash» and spreads to all clients, having credit history in BB. Loans within the holiday action of BB are granted for the term of 1 year and sum of loan makes up to AZN 500.

BB prepared in parallel for them incredible financial bouquet for the holiday.

Gifts wait for all representatives of weaker sex, who are going to take loan in the bank, to become depositors of BB, as well as avail of urgent money transfers. BB will tell in detail about gifts for future clients closer to the International Women’s Day.

We’ll keep a lookout for those details.

An awesome website to check out:  Towards International Women’s Day 2011.

Finally, from India:

A painting exhibition, showcasing the works of famous women artistes, is underway in Himachal’s Shimla district to mark International Women”s Day.The exhibition, which started on Sunday (Feb. 7), has paintings by over 20 women artistes hailing from different parts of India. The paintings represent the female form in sundry imaginative ways.

It’s a month-long exhibition, which has been jointly organized by National Lalit Art Academy and the Language and Culture Department of Himachal Pradesh state, to mark International Women”s Day, which is celebrated every year on March 08.

Please also visit FPN’s International Women’s Day webpage for more information about IWD and click here to learn why we are calling for a boycott of Thomson Reuter’s website.

 February 15, 2010  Posted by on February 15, 2010 Comments Off on International Women’s Day Events Calendar 2/15/10