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Name it. Change it. Statement for Briefing on Women Candidates

September 23, 2010

The Women’s Media Center works to amplify women’s voices and women’s representation in all media platforms – in newsrooms, on air, in print and online as sources and subjects.  We are proud to be a partner of the Name It Change It campaign, shining a light on examples of sexism in the media vis-à-vis women candidates that often go unnoticed. Just as sexism diminishes voter confidence and harms campaigns of women candidates, these attacks negatively impact all strides towards equality.

The Women’s Media Center is committed to ensuring accountability in the press regarding coverage of candidates in the 2010 midterm elections and beyond.  Our rapid response network is poised to respond to unfair portrayals of women candidates, and is proactively working with outlets to ensure sexist coverage is prevented before it is aired.

The Name It Change It campaign will release a post-election analysis of how women candidates were covered and highlight specific reporters, broadcasters, news outlets and online media who have written stories that have demeaned women candidates and their campaigns.

The Women’s Media Center highlights the best and the worst in media coverage of women.  We look forward to adding a category for media coverage of women candidates in the 2010 elections. It took 144 years for women in America to get the vote. We’re here to ensure that it won’t take that long to get sexist characterizations of women and women candidates out of our media and news coverage.

We urge media outlets to join us in shining a light on those who use sexist language to describe women candidates, and sign our equality pledge to demonstrate their adherence to fair journalistic standards, to play their role in ensuring all candidates have an objective media landscape during election season in our democracy.

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Women’s Media Center (WMC) was founded in 2005 by Jane Fonda, Robin Morgan, and Gloria Steinem to positively impact the visibility of women in the media, amplify women’s voices on key issues in the national dialogue, fight sexism and bias against women in the media, and increase professional opportunities for women across all forms of media. Through training, advocacy, and the development of original content, WMC is breaking through the status quo so that media more accurately represents the perspectives, positions, and priorities of women.

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