Woman who started the 's****y media men' list outs herself

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Harvey Weinstein

She added, "The anonymous, crowdsourced document was a first attempt at solving what has seemed like an intractable problem: how women can protect ourselves from sexual harassment and assault".

In a lengthy first-person essay for the Cut, Donegan, 28, said she created the spreadsheet in October so that women could privately share their stories of harassment "without being needlessly discredited or judged" and where they could warn each other about men who they perceived as abusers and harassers. "The hope was to create an alternate avenue to report this kind of behavior and warn others without fear of retaliation", she wrote.

She later tweeted that she had "a nice little stable of great ex-Harper's pieces - some reported, some not - that could use new homes", and invited editors from other publications to get in touch.

Last night, In a powerful first-person essay for NY magazine's The Cut, former New Republic editor Moira Donegan surprised everyone by revealing that she created the crowdsourced document. She says her life has changed dramatically in the aftermath. In correspondence with reporters, Roiphe claims that the article will not not name anyone who participated in creating the spreadsheet.

"[The list] was intended specifically not to inflict consequences, not to be a weapon - and yet, once it became public, many people immediately saw it as exactly that", she wrote. "Fundamentally, a whisper network consists of private conversations, and the document that I created was meant to be private as well", Donegan writes.

Within hours, the Google spreadsheet grew to include accusations against more than 70 men, with offenses ranging from "unsolicited drunken messages" to rape.

"This is what shocked me about the spreadsheet: the realization of how badly it was needed, how much more common the experience of sexual harassment or assault is than the opportunity to speak about it". It also preceded news outlets' investigations of some of the men whose names were in it. Media is well represented on USA Today's running list of allegations that have gone public against powerful men since The New York Times and then The New Yorker shined a spotlight on Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein's decades of misdeeds.

But Donegan also said that the document also had flaws and that she was "incredibly naive" when she started it not to anticipate what the ramifications could be. She is listed on the site of the New Republic as a former assistant editor of the magazine.

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"Take everything with a grain of salt", it added.

Still, a campaign went viral as women banded together on social media to protect Donegan's identity.

Donegan says she took the list down after being alerted that BuzzFeed planned to publish an article about it. Reddit later kicked the drama up a notch by publishing the controversial list uncensored. But since that was already their intention, I'm not sure seeing people publicly voice their disappointment can really be a negative.

Donegan wrote that she lived in fear of being exposed and the inevitable harassment that would follow. "I've learned that protecting women is a position that comes with few protections itself". Neither Donegan nor The New Republic responded to HuffPost's requests for comment.

The list's creator remained a secret until this week, when Harper's Magazine confirmed it meant to publish a story by writer Katie Roiphe that would expose the identity of the author.

The cycle moved so fast that I felt behind the times when, on the morning of January 10, I emailed Giulia Melucci, Harper's vice president for media relations, to try to confirm whether or not the piece contains the details that so many people find so objectionable.

The creator of the Shitty Media Men spreadsheet, which accused men in the industry of sexual misconduct, went public on Wednesday following rumors that Harper's Magazine was considering blowing her cover in an upcoming article. "If it is, I will pay you cash for what you'd lose by yanking it", Cliffe wrote on Twitter. "Recent months have made clear that no amount of power or money can shield a woman from sexual misconduct". "Among the most potent of these powers is the knowledge of our own experiences".

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