Boob job: how The chives Empire from the bro-bait
Breasts are back. You will probably never leave. In the case of chives, a website devoted to “humor, sharpness, and humanity,” they are everywhere: Bouncing in slideshows on the homepage of the company, a spill of models push-up Bras. The Chive asks you to reconsider what you know about the cultural progress. Here, racy photos are always uplifting. Hottest comments knights are absolutely unthinkable.
Chivers (men, read, chives) are quick to emphasize that the site is more than hot women. It is a community of people, the prioritization of friendship and love above everything else — except, perhaps, that you have a good time. Chivers are veterans, first responders, Midwesterners. You could the Republicans, but you can’t say for sure, because The section talks about politics leek never.
The non-political, tit-centric aesthetic makes the views of The chives-sense, time-traveling in the early 2000s: pre-cancel, culture, pre-#MeToo, pre-President of the trump. Women (called “Chivettes”) to submit, seductive photos of themselves in the hope that featured recurring in a slide show with the title “FLBP” for the “future lower back problems.” The Chive says, which is “to strut, a socket for the attractive ladies from all over the world your stuff.” It is a mission that sounds almost humanitarian aid.
In your best years, around 2015, The chives, the go-to destination for college-age men who wanted to look at was something awesome on the internet. The content was too raunchy for a mainstream audience, but not slippery enough to porn. It looked like Tucker Max’s brain on steroids. a Bloomberg called it a “crowd-sourced, Internet-version of a buddy, the magazine Maxim of the 21st century.” And according to the founder, it was over 1 million unique page views a day. Today, the company is focused on maintaining its core audience and put on a new venture, such as a streaming TV service for bars and restaurants. The Breasts are the business model and scale.
When I visit leek’s headquarters in Austin, Texas-Cut, it’s the week of South by Southwest — or would were in the week of South by Southwest ” – had fucked with the novel coronavirus is not global, formwork company and cancellation of conferences. While other companies are banned from the elbow in-person interviews and told to trust the employees, chives executives shook hands, and encouraged people to try to stay positive. “The biggest disease of all is the fear is widespread,” I hear John Resig, The Chive is the co-founder and President, say his staff.
The receptionist, the help, the company is a TikTok account, is young and lively, one of the few people of color present in the office. I know I’ve seen a photo of her in a bikini. It was written on one of the editors’ Instagram accounts. A Comment Read “John Angel?”
John goes to collect, but it is interrupted for me by an avid Chiver. “Are you asking John?” the corpulent man in the middle ages. He is wearing an “original-chronic” T-shirt, with a picture of George Washington on the front. “Yeah, man,” said John, sticking out his hand. The visitor is also the name of John. “I drove all the way from San Antonio to meet you.” He seems nervous, even giddy. “Can you take a photo of us?” he asks the receptionist.
John Resig is unimpressed, but I’m with about the same reaction as John 2. My mind ticked, he laughs, maybe a paid actor, but if I were to ask John, 1, only. It is the first of many times in my week when I can’t tell if I was paranoid, or if I lied to me. John says that the readers show up on a regular basis. “It happens all the time,” he adds, while giving me a tour of the office. “It’s like Mecca to them.”
Chive headquarters in Austin has a decoration scheme, which is somewhere between “the Playboy Mansion” and “Southern frat house” — copper-bar, a bear skin rug, decorative AK-47s. Almost 100 young people busy at the Computer. It looks like a typical tech company, with the exception of the images of lubricating oil and semi-naked women on peoples screens.
The office is most known for the with a slide that looks like it could break a tailbone, oblique, from the second floor to the first. A camera at the bottom, is ready to capture all of the major wipeouts. (When I mention that this seems to be dangerous, John gleefully down slides.)
I ask John if I can participate in an editorial conference. “Sure,” he says. “We can do what we do for April Fools’.” I’m not saying that I want to do that in a meeting for me; I just want to go only when it happens, is planned. He assures me that it is. Once again, I do not feel reassured.
“Hey, editors,” John calls, when it is time. “April Fools’ Day meeting. Only takes 15 or 20 minutes.” The editorial team — 12 persons in total, three of them women — mix in a glass conference room.
April Fools’ Day is leek a big deal for The Cut. To start in the last year have pretended to Fyre Fest 2. The year before, it was to a North Korean news station. (“The people were mad,” says John.) This year, it is to do either in such a way that it will already say purchased by BuzzFeed , that rogue AI has taken over, from the side and tries to disguise itself as a human being, or you go with a medieval theme.
John’s cousin, Bob, (whose nickname is on the website “The bitch”) immediately the Veto of the BuzzFeed idea. “I don’t know whether we want to pick a fight with you,” he says. “I mean, fuck you, but…”
The team discussed various column ideas, generate like a rogue-AI — pickup-lines-in-binary -, a slideshow of dogs with the title “We don’t deserve it, the dogs! But please enjoy these photos of biological canines” — but you decide that people probably don’t get the joke. “Reddit would love to, but our audience is not a techie crowd,” says John.
you are left with the medieval theme. A young editor suggests that you have to win a post with the title “body-positivity: the virgin hardly shows, tan, fit body,” get grateful, to rants, all. Taylor Wood — marketing manager of the company for the past six years — reminds you that you did chair fencing a few years back, and someone has “really hurt.” “We have to be careful,” she says.
“The might strikes dark, but could we have someone, salting out, such as a bird-beak mask, like the plague, to ask people, your dead?” a male editor. “Or to prevent the sale of leeches coronavirus?” John shakes his head. “We draw a hard line at” bring out your dead.’ The plague is fair game, but not coronavirus.”
The editors don’t seem to hear. “We should ask salt to throw on random drunk girls and shout PLAGUE?”. Other laugh. “Okay,” says John. “All of the leeks from the medieval times of The Cut?” Everyone raises their hand. “Huzzah!”, he, and the editors are screaming chimes.
Chive is proud to remain outside of politics. It is not Trump’s comment as a reaction to the Corona Virus, or weigh in the presidential elections. John and his brother, Leo, not to collect political data on your audience, and they bristle at the suggestion that your readers can lean Republican. “We have never Pelosi posted a parody or a trump fun… and our audience would not want to see, either,” says John. “But, you have nothing to remembered, however, that it’s okay for an American to be. I understand that a bit of a tightrope between the pro-military and non-political, but it works for us.”
In 2016, to remember when trump is chosen, cousin Bob sent an E-Mail to the editorial office in mind, “keep the politics out of the content.” John responded with his own battle cry. “We are in a great position, this morning, as we doubled down on the average American in the last few years, I might even say, of Central America and our military,” he wrote. “We have won, not snarky or talk to our target audience. Now it’s time to claim our prize-bc-it turns out, it’s ok finally, an average American again. So feel free to post something if it comes from the heart and US-Americans. This is how we can take our audience in the coming months.” It sounded like it was ripped from Trump’s playbook.
Before the beginning of The chives in the year 2008, Leo and John Resig brothers from Fort Wayne, Indiana were famous for the pioneering work of misinformation. In 2007, the pair published a false report, by Donald Trump a $exit for 10,000 tip for a waiter at The Buffalo Club in Santa Monica. It went viral, getting picked up by the mainstream press. “How ironic is that,” muses Leo. “We have fake news.”
John was not a tech guy, but he understood what moves the internet. After his first brush with viral fame, he paid a engineer, by reverse Engineering the algorithm of Digg, a popular news aggregator. Instead of the traffic rules for their own content, he sent the audience to a larger Magazine. “I would show up on Hollywood Reporter and be like ” I Spike your traffic, the I was. I can do it again.’ It’s a handshake deal and a lot of money to was the round,” he says.
began When John and Leo, chives, their goal was you create a first-class website for viral content, you sell perhaps, to The onion. (She also tried, for $300,000. The onion flatly refused.)
This origin story differs from the one in the employee Handbook and the one you told Bloomberg in 2013. There, they said that The chives came from the combination of the letters of the city where they lived: Chicago and Venice Beach. If I were to ask you, this version of the story that make you laugh. “That’s a lie,” Leo says. “It’s only The onion was the attention.”
From the very beginning, have understood the brothers, that survival in the media-meant that industry getting a lot of traffic. More posts mean more eyes, more eyeballs meant more money. They went from publishing to 10 slide-shows on the day of the publication of upwards of 40, with a special look at the funny home videos, epic fails, cool tricks, and, of course, hot women. “What do you think guys, is entertaining, is explained to the lowest common denominator,” Leo. “Girls like to share, gossip and more … guys are like, ‘Dude, grab your beer. Check this out.'” The sentence “grab your beer and check this out” was an early mantra of our company.
A moving moment arrived in 2009, when Leo decided to pour all their money into the creation of a mobile app. John did not like the idea — he told me, half joking, that he wanted to spend the money on a truck, but, Leo insisted. It would
that was flooded in front of the App Store, with applications — the Golden age, when people posted a serious Status on Facebook and thought Twitter could trigger a revolution. When The Chive app is launched, it immediately became one of the first things people saw when they went to the entertainment section of the App Store. He got 16 million downloads in the first year.
In 2010, John and Leo realized they needed chives, to earn more money. To not pay advertisers were advertising always pleasant putting ads in addition to daring content, and college-student subscription fees. So the brothers began selling T-shirts.
The early designs were a black T-shirt that simply says “chives”, and a green shirt that says “Keep calm and chive.” John told me you were one of the first companies to bring this motto in the United States, which seems to me doubtful, but I decide to go with him.
The t-shirt strategy was an instant success. Each new design sold out within a couple of hours, and because The cut were leeks, not outside financing, John and Leo will be able to pocket all the funds. Since 2008, Leo claimed that it had over $350 million in sales of T-shirts and other Chive-branded objects.
Than I do, why Chivers were so ready to decorate, in Chive-apparel, Leo says it is because they treat the audience like real people, respond to your comments and invite you to come to live events. “We have always let the people behind the wall,” he says. “You are more likely to be associated with the brand, because you have experienced with us.” For a while, so many of the Chivers came to the office to see chives HQ, they had to limit the number of office tours to veterans and first responders. See John 2 only got the lobby.
The limited supply of T-shirts are also a status symbol. “As a Chiver, when the road went down and you saw a bright green T-shirt, you accelerate, and see if it had a KCCO on it, because they knew the hassle it took to get that T-shirt,” says Jen Holub, a founding member of The chives to the Chicago Chapter.
sold As the T-shirts, Chivers began forming Facebook groups to other fans to get to know the in your area. Holub was part of the group, which formed in Chicago, and she helped them throw the first-ever event. “This was the first opportunity for people to come together, with probably not much in common, except that they since you have a good time,” she says. “It was a room full of strangers, 600, the left friends.”
This dynamic, extending, perhaps, at some point in the Sands, had not started The chives, a charity arm in 2012 with a focus on veterans, first responders, and people with rare diseases. If The chives belongs to a family that is in need of a disabled vehicle for the transportation of their children with special needs, Chive charities, fundraised to get the car. “We’re like the Oprah Winfrey of the barrier-free vehicles,” says John. (Holub now works with cutting activities, organizations, leeks well.)
philanthropy within the local chives communities, as it is in fraternities in the United States. It gave the groups a common goal and a cover for their less noble activities, such as binge drinking. The meetups yet happened mostly in bars, but now the money went to a charity. Chivers call it the “Party with a purpose.”
Chivers also began notes and money to leave on random cars, if you have noticed, a Chive sticker on the bumper. “The next round’s on me,” she would say, in a bro-y-the form of pay-it-forward. “You have members who are strippers and surgeons, and everyone in between,” explains Holub. “We are all here for the same purpose: to have a great time and have a positive impact on the world.”
early Cut staff, the mission was not always so noble. Many of them were just out of school and fallen, felt the office as a party. If you also happen to be money for charity, which was nice, but it was not exactly the point.
say Two former employees, John would drink often start on the speaker in the late afternoon and announce that it was time. They also say, he had a policy that if an employee got laid tell of someone they worked on The chives, she owed him a bottle of whiskey. A table in John’s office is covered in bottles of Whisky. (In reaction to the speaker’s anecdote, John has a confused response: “Yes, but I want to add that the statement is completely wrong, actually. It was to start drinking at the time, but I have never announced, without saying, delete that feeling is to drink no pressure.'” On the question of whiskey-politics, he calls it an “urban legend”.)
Most of the tito me, the alleged antics were funny. But occasionally, you crossed a line. In 2015, John, called to announce an all-hands meeting that he is Dating his assistant. When the couple broke, the tension spilled over into the workplace. (Leo denied that a meeting was called, but John has admitted it, to say: “I called an all-hands-to announce a meeting, I was with my assistant, because that is the right thing to do, hiding an office relationship of employees would have been bad form.”)
“There were no boundaries between work and life,” a former male employee said. “It was all just a big party all the time. For me personally, I was single and 25 and I didn’t know any better. I thought it was a great place to work. I have slowly realized how toxic it was.”
if you are on an E-Mail chain to define questions, employees “douchebag” (probably not for editorial purposes), the employee sent a reply-all, which read, “an unappreciative, narcissistic man child that attention, craves and demands praise :)”. John answered with his own definition. “A blonde who is secretly a brunette and dying her hair every two weeks (check the roots), and is secretly addicted to painkillers and crystal meth.” In the case there was no doubt who he was talking about, he added: “aaaaand now that everyone knows that Jessie was not talking about me but just answering a question, you can to all stop. Nice one, Jessie :)”
In the year 2017, while a majority of the country, the settlement of accounts with the #MeToo movement, was chives continue with business as usual. Women are encouraged still sent in photos and chive men, respectful in the comments.
Taylor Wood, marketing manager, says that they were more than suspicious of the pictures, if you learned that women send pictures of themselves. “I was like, ‘If you are to judge the presentation of their own photos, and you want to see on the Website, who am I to be?'”
Sitting in Leo’s office, under a painting of Snow White holding a pistol, I ask the brothers, if you have the current cultural moment, you have to rethink your behavior in the past. The former employee had told me rumors about John’s settlement of a sexual harassment lawsuit with a former female employee that I had was able to check, and I wanted to ask, how you prepared, how you talked about the treatment of women with respect.
The conversation has been comfortable up to this point, it turns suddenly hostile. “Very carefully, his face stern, that one,” said Leo. “It is not a pattern,” John added. “We are trying to create a really safe environment here. I think most people would agree with that, but not a single time we have done something that is sexual harassment in this office, in any way me or my brother.”
The conversation moves, and a few minutes later, Leo gets up to go to the toilet. “By the way, I didn’t want to you. And my brother is not my person,” says John. “Do you understand?” he looks at me pleadingly, and I nod. I understand. I’m just not sure if he’s doing it.
Despite remained largely untouched by the movement, John and Leo have been disturbed, such as Facebook and Twitter, dealing with content moderation were. “They were very warped mentality… how to keep you try always, the level of free speech,” says John. “While we, man, were like, ‘this is our site! We know that if a line was crossed, or not.'”
In the typical Chive fashion, the site has a partially crowd-sourced approach to content moderation. If a comment is flagged enough times, it will be reduced automatically. Chives editors also monitor the comments to ensure there is nothing inappropriate, the banning of users, which exceeded too often. A former editor told me, anonymously, when they published images of women of color, the comments had to be monitored almost around the clock to stop, racist remarks in casting.
Than I do, what kind of comments to get to the bottom of a typical post, John flips to show his screen to me. “Hey you have a hot ass,” reads one. “Simply sexy as fuck,” says the other. “Hey, man, this is not the place for you,” says John, his screen. “Go you will experience 4chan.”
It was a little refreshing to John ‘ s hardline approach to the comments. In a way, it felt more honest than Facebook, the hands-off attitude pre-coronavirus, which seemed to negate responsibility. If I have the comments on the last post with the title “Beautiful Latina-lines ‘n sexy hot curves,” but there are many, to break the seem to be there, his purported rule. “Thank You, Latina. In this pandemonious time, we are prompted to blow into our elbows. I blew it all over my chest,” it reads. Another says: “I’ve never understood, as you say, if you are Latina, only body pics. I can understand perhaps if you zoomed in on your taco, but………” If I of weeks later, the comments are still there.
Leo and John have no intention of selling The chives. You tell me you refused an offer of Playboy in 2015. Do you have a photo in the Playboy Mansion to prove it. Leo is even a PDF-file from the Villa to the plan that he has saved on his computer.
If your new venture is successful — to sell the TV-streaming service by the name of atmosphere, you do not have. Atmosphere is your Golden ticket. You are betting on the fact that the majority of businesses — restaurants, bars and doctor’s offices — play filler content, most of the time. Why not get a free Apple TV and you can taste the atmosphere of the channels? It is not a quarantine of proof, but as long as the pandemic ends, it makes sense.
atmosphere has viral videos, cat videos, Red Bull videos, and drone videos. It was developed to have the game without sound. And, best of all, at least from John and Leo, which is the perspective that it is often in front of people, the advertising, the purchase of alcohol, which makes it a simple platform for liquor companies.
This is The chives to grow. In the old days, when it found a photo she liked it, it just has just stolen. Now, it pays for licenses and ask influencers if you can take your content. Most of the time, they say Yes. Who would not want free advertising?
“We will never use any of the content we do not own or have the rights to,” says Leo. Perhaps he has forgotten the old days. Or maybe, once again, he’s rewriting unsavory moments from the past. A couple of iterations from now, all that will remain is the leek The Cut-the believer, the unshakable appreciation of the Breasts.
Released on Tue, 28. Apr 2020 13:00:00 +0000