Ocasio-Cortez is a 28-year-old Latina who is a member of the Democratic Socialists of America. She beat the candidate once considered to be the shoo-in for future leader of the House Democratic Caucus when Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) retires. Ocasio-Cortez is widely expected to win in November, which would make her the youngest woman elected to Congress.
Some people responded to the news with head-scratching, wondering how they had missed the rise of such a powerful force. A New York Times piece noted that media coverage of Ocasio-Cortez had largely been from websites “associated with millennial and female audiences.” In a sentence that has since been amended, the Times then contrasted those outlets with “national publications.”
“Before Tuesday’s victory catapulted her to the front of the political conversation, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez seemed to find readier audiences with outlets such as Elite Daily, Mic or Refinery29 — websites most often associated with millennial and female audiences — than with national publications,” the piece, titled “Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: A 28-Year-Old Democratic Giant Slayer,” originally read.
In response to reader backlash, the Times changed the phrase “national publications” to “traditional publications.”
“The article stated incorrectly that Elite Daily, Mic and Refinery29 — popular among millennials and women — were not national outlets,” a correction note on the article reads. “They do, in fact, reach a national audience.”
The issue with the Times’ original wording is that it suggested “millennial and female audiences” are mutually exclusive from national ones. It also intimated that millennial and female audiences are not as significant or influential as others. Additionally, it ignored the elephant in the room: Millennials, aka people born between 1982 and 2000, number well over 80 million and represent more than one-quarter of the nation’s population.
Plus, the outlets the Times mentioned were clearly clued into a trend that many other publications seemed to miss.
Many people on social media took issue with the phrasing when the story first came out, suggesting that the publication needed to get, ahem, with the times.