2 Responses

  1. Tess Newton Cain
    Tess Newton Cain July 9, 2013 at 11:54 am

    Thanks Ashlee for your comment. The issues you and Francis raise are particularly pertinent when it comes to how women political candidates are portrayed in the media, how much coverage their platforms get as compared to those of male candidates and how accessible media outlets are to facilitate campaigning. The media can play an important role in framing wider societal perceptions about gender, power and representation.

  2. Ashlee Betteridge
    Ashlee Betteridge July 9, 2013 at 10:51 am

    Very interesting points raised in this interview. On gender, I think that is a challenge across the world for the media industry. When I worked as a journalist, many of my colleagues were female — many of my editors were male and at the managerial level it was predominantly male. I think that the pressures currently facing the media at the moment only exacerbate this — expectations of long hours, low levels of flexibility for women trying to balance work and family, 24 hour news cycles and increasing demands as journalists are expected to do more with less while operating across multiple platforms.

    In newsroom hierarchies, where editors have a guiding role over the tone and content selection for a publication, that lack of female voice at the higher levels really influences overall coverage. Like Francis says, it’s not about having women reporters around to cover gender issues as some sort of niche round beside the ‘mainstream’ coverage, it’s about equitably representing the perspectives of broader society and giving space to the perspectives of women and girls, whether they are writing on sport, business, politics or women’s health. So Francis’ point on the need to encourage women in those media leadership positions in the Pacific is really important.

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