One thought on “Report Your Thoughts: Why does it matter?

  1. Joy Bacon August 28, 2011 / 10:40 am

    I think this is the question that I get most often when I explain the Gender Report to friends. They ask, “why does it matter how many women are sources and participants in the creation of news?” The answer I come back to is usually two-fold. First, without enough women as sources, the women who are represented, especially as experts or political leaders, become the representative voice for women, rather than just another voice in the larger discussion on that news topic. For example, if only one female Congresswoman is included, her voice is automatically considered the “female perspective,” and devalued because of this pigeonhole approach, rather than just including her as yet another commentary in Congress.

    My second answer is a bit more complicated. One of the reasons we started this project was to have some hard data, even in small samples, beyond just saying we thought women were underrepresented. If women are 51% of our country’s population, it should worry us that they are represented as sources and reporters at such a discrepancy to this number. We haven’t necessarily gotten to the “why” of this yet, but at least are starting to show that the discrepancy does in fact exist.

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