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Gender in Media

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Ryan Losee

on 12 February 2013

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Transcript of Gender in Media

Reporters, Correspondents, and Broadcast news Analysts Statistics Womens Wardrobe Too Sexy? Top 10 Highest Paid News Anchors
Matt Lauer (Today): $21.5 million
Bill O’Reilly (The O’Reilly Factor): $15 million
Brian Williams (NBC Nightly News): $13 million My First Big Break
Diane Sawyer (ABC World News): $12 million
Anderson Cooper (Anderson Cooper 360 and Anderson Live): $11 million
Shepard Smith (The Fox Report) $8 million My First Big Break
Robin Roberts (Good Morning America) $6 million
Joe Scarborough (Morning Joe) $6 million
Scott Pelley (CBS Evening News) $4 million
Nancy Grace (Nancy Grace) $3 million Began with suit coats and pants to look more professional.
Has changed to short skirts and low shirts. Originally published Sunday, December 2, 2012 at 5:31 AM
Suits are old news for female TV anchors
Blazers are on the way out in newswoman attire, bringing about public debate about how much femininity in the news is too much.
By Katherine Boyle
The Washington Post

Dresses dangled on the racks at Neiman’s and Saks and all Norah O’Donnell needed was a suit.

Earlier this year, when the veteran news anchor was scouring stores for a suit jacket to wear for her “CBS This Morning” publicity photo, she discovered what her viewers have known for years: The women’s blazer is disappearing — from department stores and network news broadcasts.

“I couldn’t find a nice suit jacket that wasn’t black,” O’Donnell said. “You used to find all kinds in blues and hot pinks. They stopped making them. That’s when I thought, what’s changed?”

For her head shot, O’Donnell, 38, ended up choosing a six-year-old navy Giorgio Armani blazer out of her closet, one she rarely wears except when interviewing presidents or heads of state. Like so many working women in the news media and other professions, O’Donnell hasn’t bought a suit in years, a surprising admission given that the newswoman spent her 20s wearing suits so she “could be taken seriously.” The same can be said of seasoned anchors such as Diane Sawyer and Andrea Mitchell, who rarely graced the screen in the 1980s and ’90s without lapels shielding their chests.

For decades, the suit jacket transformed women into workers. With jackets required for entrance at male-dominated clubs and boardrooms, women bundled up their breasts to blend into a professional culture that predated their arrival. But in recent years, even as men continued to assume corporate uniforms of suits and ties, newswomen — one of the last vestiges of female suit wearers — have resoundingly dismissed them from their closets.

They now flank themselves in bright sleeveless sheath dresses and stiletto heels, renouncing the once hard-and-fast edicts of television news: no bare legs, no long hair, no feminine distractions from the news. The revision of the female anchor’s dress code happened swiftly and broadly on network and cable television. And if newswomen are the most visible barometers of workplace fashion, the women’s suit may one day go the way of the petticoat.

“Ten years ago, professional dress meant a Talbots suit for women,” said Dave Smith, president of SmithGeiger, a market research firm that consults with news networks. “What’s appropriate for female talent on television has evolved because of familiarity. The audience has equal regard for female and male anchors. It’s given women far more liberty to be feminine.”

O’Donnell agrees: “There has been an evolution of womenswear on television. Part of that is the changing times, but it’s also because there are more women in media who feel comfortable about what they want to wear.”

What women should wear on television is an ongoing debate. In a 2011 interview with Katie Couric for Glamour Magazine, Rachel Maddow called the look of cable news “unbusinesslike.” Couric concurred, saying, “Some newswomen dress like they’re going clubbing.” Critics point to 24-hour cable news as the catalyst for the changing uniform. But Fox News fashion director Gwen Marder says that workplace fashion was evolving before cable news started showcasing shoulders.

“When I started 12 years ago, anchors wore two-piece suits, a corporate uniform,” said Marder, who buys and styles the wardrobes for 140 Fox anchors and reporters. “About seven years ago, fashion trends started to change and dresses were readily available.”

Fashion labels such as Diane von Furstenberg, Hugo Boss and Anne Klein started producing sheath dresses in solid colors that double as work and cocktail wear. The dresses showed up on cable news anchors around the same time, making it hard to pinpoint whether cable news caused or reacted to the retail trend. But among newswomen, at least, 24-hour cable news networks became the laboratory for a grand makeover.

“We decided to push the envelope,” Marder said. “Everyone was wearing cardigans, and [we] said, ‘Let’s just try the sleeveless dress.’ It started to feel natural to everyone.” Duties
Research topics and stories that an editor or news director has assigned to them
Interview people who have information, analysis, or opinions relating to a story or article
Write articles for newspapers, blogs, and magazines and write scripts to be read on television or radio
Review articles to ensure their accuracy and their use of proper style and grammar
Develop relationships with experts and contacts who provide tips and leads on stories
Analyze and interpret information to increase their audiences’ understanding of the news
Update stories as new information becomes available Education Most employers prefer workers who have a bachelor’s degree in journalism or communications. However, some employers hire applicants who have a degree in a related subject, such as English or political science, if they have relevant work experience. Barbra Walters
First Female co-anchor
1970's Her deskmate, Harry Reasoner, was not only insulted at having to share the spotlight with a woman but openly hostile to Walters on air as well. Gender In The Media NEWS Are Women in the Media Only Portrayed As Sex Icons? Statistics Show a Massive Gender Imbalance Across Industries
A recent report by the Women’s Media Center has provided dismaying statistical data on the status of women in U.S. media. The report draws attention to the striking underrepresentation of women who determine the content of news, literature, and television and film entertainment, as well as the negative portrayal of women in entertainment television and film. As a consequence, the role of women has had major societal effects, including gender inequity. MissRepresentation.org, an organization that “exposes how American youth are being sold the concept that women and girls’ value lies in their youth, beauty and sexuality,” is campaigning to shed light on this issue and empower women and young girls to challenge the limiting media labels and recognize their potential.

In news and entertainment media, women have frequently been underrepresented with minor changes in proportions over the past decade. The female characters often depicted in film and television cast gender stereotypes and the likelihood of women, specifically young women, to be hypersexualized in film is far more expected than men. American teenagers spend an average of 10 hours and 45 minutes absorbing media in just one day; this includes the amount of time spent watching TV, listening to music, watching movies, reading magazines and using the internet. The images women — particularly young girls — are shown inevitably affects the way they are seen by others and themselves. It is highly unlikely for females to excel and pursue leadership in a society where that reality is rarely visible and MissRepresentation.org’s attempt to raise awareness and break the negative stereotypes of women in media is the right direction to change the future for women in this country. Sex Sales Before After THE END How much is too much? WHY? Television News First broadcast was in 1930
Hosted by Lowell Thomas No bona fide Occupational Qualifications Conclusion
The newsroom has come along way.
Statistics from 2005 show that women are underrepresented in almost every job position in the news. Even though the majority of college Journalism majors are women, this does not translate into the real world, “women make up the journalism workforce as follows: they represent 43.5% at newsmagazines; 37.4% in television; 36.9% in weekly newspapers; 33% at daily newspapers; 21.8% in radio; and 20.3% at major wire service” (Statistics on Women 2). Women are a minority in the normal workforce, but even more so in positions of power, “Women hold 26.5 percent of television news director jobs; women hold 39.3 percent of all television news jobs” (Statistics on Women 2). When we look at the world of sports news, with the majority of viewers being male, the disparity is even greater, “women are just 6% of sports editors, 10% of assistant sports editors, 6% of columnists, 9% of reporters, and 16% of copy editors/designers” (Gibbons). According to statistics from the American Society of News Editors (ASNE) Newsroom Census, the percentage of female newsroom employees was about 37% between 1999 and 2010. In 2011, the percentage increased slightly to 40.5%. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that only 36.9% of women comprised of newspaper reporters, photographers, copy and layout editors, and supervisors. The same statistics also reported that 40% of total television news force and 28.4% of television news directors were made up of women in 2011. Although women represented about half of television news positions including assistant news directors, assignment editors, executive producers, producers, news reporters, writers, anchors and assistants, women were underrepresented among news photographers, sports anchors, and sports reporters. In radio news, women only comprise of 29.2% of the total workforce.
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