The Talking Back Feminist Media Conference—Call for volunteers and save the date!

July 25th, 2019     by Team Shameless     Comments

Illustration: Saul Freedman-Lawson

We have some big news from Shameless HQ! In celebration of our 15th year of independent feminist publishing for teens, Shameless will host the first ever Talking Back Feminist Media Conference. Save the date! This conference will be held on November 16th and 17th at the Toronto Media Arts Centre. This conference is funded by the Toronto Arts Council.

Like all things Shameless, it’s important to us that this conference is community-centred, accessible, radical, and fun; and that’s where we need your help. Shameless is currently looking for volunteer steering committee members, presenters, exhibitors, and casual volunteers, to help us envision and bring to life the most exciting and wonderful gathering we can. No experience necessary! Read below for more info:


The conference theme is the future(s) of feminist media (this feels especially relevant to us right now given the most recent arts cuts in the province). This will be a space to collaborate, to talk about where we’ve come from, and to scheme and dream about where we can go from here. We imagine a world in which there are many possible futures of our own making.

Presenters, exhibitors, and vendors are invited to submit proposals (call for proposals coming soon!) in a number of creative formats. The specific prompts will be confirmed by the steering committee (so, stay tuned!). However, the conference will definitely include: an art exhibition, a marketplace for all your amazing wares, and open-format sessions - think talks, discussions, workshops, etc. If you’re interested in presenting, we will be releasing a call for proposals. We will also be available to help first-timers through the submission process - no prior experience is required!


There are a number of ways to get involved between now and November:

Join our steering committee!
We are seeking volunteers to join our steering committee. This committee will decide on the themes of the conference tracks, help draft the call for proposals, and select presenters. Committee members are asked to attend two in-person meetings, as well as be available to review presenter applications in-between. Members will require access to the internet in order to review applications.

We want this committee to represent folks of a variety of identities, backgrounds, and experiences. All ages (including youth!) are welcome, and we strongly encourage applications from folks who are historically under or mis-represented by mainstream (and feminist) media; BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Colour) women, trans, and non-binary people, queer and gender non-conforming folks, d/Deaf and/or Disabled folks, etc.

While this is a volunteer position (as all positions as Shameless are! If you happen to be a moneyed person who would like to help us change that, click here for info on supporting our work!), we can offer the following in exchange for your time and expertise:

  • Free admission for you and a guest to the Talking Back Feminist Media Conference
  • A one-year subscription to Shameless magazine
  • Free advertising space (print or online) for a like-minded organization/project of your choice^
  • Reference contact
  • TTC tokens and snacks for in-person meetings

^must be in-line with the editorial mandate of Shameless

To apply to be on the steering committee, please fill out this form on or before August 5, 2019. If you have any questions about the application or the committee, please contact us at

Become a conference volunteer!
In addition to looking for steering committee members, we are also looking to build a database of rad conference volunteers to support with the event. Conference volunteers are needed for very important support, like working the registration table, documenting sessions, and providing active listening if folks need to chat. Click here to add yourself to our volunteer database!

Submit a proposal!
We will be releasing a call for proposals at the end of August! If you’re interested in joining our mailing list so the call comes to your inbox, click here. Remember there will be lots of ways of presenting—submitting artwork for an exhibition, tabling your rad feminist wares in our arts marketplace, or planning a session by yourself or with others! We will also be available to support with the application process if you’re new to conferences, so don’t let that hold you back!

Plan to attend!
The Talking Back Feminist Media Conference will be held on November 16th and 17th at the Toronto Media Arts Centre. SAVE THE DATES!

Tags: all about shameless, event listings, media savvy

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