New Project Seeks Gender Data in Journalism Jobs, Bylines

The Poynter Institute’s Meg Heckman recently authored an article about a new online effort dedicated to tracking how many jobs and bylines women get in the journalism industry of today. The Open Gender Tracking Project is a collaboration of Boucoup and the MIT Center for Civic Media to create software that gathers and analyzes gender equity in the newsroom. Heckman writes:

Gathering this kind of data is just the start for journalists committed to greater diversity, said Kelly McBride, a senior faculty member at the Poynter Institute who specializes in ethics. Newsroom managers must use these new tools as platforms for deep analysis of institutional biases.

McBride finds the gender gap in front-page bylines especially troubling because of what it says about broader newsroom inequalities.

“That’s just evidence of a system that clearly is not giving women the same opportunities that are given to men, and that has huge implications,” she said. “We know that leaders in newsrooms are chosen from people who are good at doing very specific things.”


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