12 September 2022

You Don’t Want This Guy Monitoring Your Menstrual Periods

Peter Thiel, whose main business, when he is not trying to steal the blood of young people in a quest for immortalith (he is a literal vampire), is spying on people and selling that information to law enforcement and intelligence agencies. (Palantir)

Well now, he has  allied with a right-wing nutty anti-feminist publication to sell a menstrual period tracking app.

If this does not ring alarm bells in your head, you are not listening:

It’s a pretty suspicious time to start a menstrual cycle tracking app, with Roe v. Wade reversed and a new study revealing that such apps tend to leak people’s data! Nonetheless, Evie—the conservative women’s magazine that insists women shouldn’t “exercise like men”, maligns birth control as unsafe, and has argued that feminism is a grift that’s ruined women’s lives—has entered the chat.

Last week, Evie announced the launch of “28,” an eyebrow-raising, so-called “femtech company” that will give women personalized advice about fitness and nutrition that aligns with their self-reported menstrual cycle. And on Monday, Vice reported that billionaire venture capitalist Peter Thiel invested $3.2 million in it. As a quick refresher, Thiel’s more recent investments have included pouring tens of millions into Trump-backed, far-right political candidates.

If a period tracking app from a women’s magazine that grounds itself in conservative, anti-trans definitions of womanhood didn’t raise enough alarms for me, Thiel’s involvement is a pretty big red flag on its own. Thiel, you’ll recall, is the founder of Palantir—a highly secretive software company that’s played a significant role in helping the National Security Agency spy on all of us. His involvement in Evie’s 28 isn’t tangential, either: Gabriel Hugoboom, the husband of Evie Magazine’s TikTok influencer founder Brittany Hugoboom (she goes by Brittany Martinez in bylines on Evie), reportedly gave Thiel—not just his company Thiel Capital—a personal shoutout in an Instagram post announcing 28, before appearing to make his account private:
“Peter was Facebook’s first investor, founded PayPal, and his fund is one of the great American venture capital firms that has funded many of the world’s most successful companies, like SpaceX. It’s wild that he is now our lead investor at 28, the femtech company my wife and I started and have been working on for the past few years.”

All of this is very strange, but 28’s launch is also strangely timed, coming at a moment when many people have a heightened concern about how their menstrual data could be handed over to law enforcement and used to prosecute them in places where abortion has been criminalized, or else invade their privacy through bulk data collection by data brokers, something Congress has said it will investigate. In 28’s privacy policy, the company says it will turn over data from the app to law enforcement in response to a “court order, law or legal process,” but, it adds, “only to the extent legally required.

A collaboration between a right wing publication that wants abortion criminalized and a man who has literally said that it was a bad thing that women got the right to vote.

Thiel is a menace.


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