Want to Understand Women's Issues? Ask Men
[Editor's note: Women’s issues have been a huge deal in this election campaign. Yet who have reporters been talking to about birth control, Planned Parenthood, and abortion? According to a staggering new study by 4thEstate.net, a project tracking election coverage, the answer is men. They also dominated what I consider these “women’s issues”: stories about the economy and foreign policy. Libby Copeland has a great breakdown of the results at Slate’s XX.--Mona]
Major print outlets like USA Today, the Washington Post, and the New York Times were even lousier about including women in those types of stories, quoting them 13 percent of the time. Even in stories about “women’s rights”—a category 4thEstate doesn’t define but which presumably involves less of a religious dimension than the abortion issue, and is therefore less easily construed as a topic about which men might offer special insight—actual women are quoted less than a third of the time.
What can we do to get more women's voices heard in the media, especially on women's issues?