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An Analysis and Antidote for Misogynistic Language in News Media

The way women are discussed in public...

... influences both the way they perceive themselves and the way they feel they are perceived by others -- affecting female body image, ideas of self-worth and projections of confidence.

A social revolution is underway with some badass women leading the charge, but we still have a long way to go. Headlines like “The Great Cleavage Conundrum: should men look if it's on display?” and “Sorry Ladies, Equal Pay Has to be Earned” prove that women are often sexualized, belittled, commodified and criticized by many media sources.

As the classic AA line goes: The first step is admitting you have a problem. Or rather, we as a society have a problem.

But I need your help.

Through crowdsourcing and research, together we will examine the ways women are poorly portrayed in the media, explore the personal and widespread effects of this coverage, and produce guidelines to help newsrooms better represent women and avoid misogynistic coverage.

The guidelines will be developed and live on this site, which will include additional information about misogyny in media and, finally, a watchdog space for ongoing discussion and examples.

Women should be portrayed like the strong, bad-ass people we are, who use our emotion to propel us not hinder us. I don’t want it to be a shock in the media when a woman accomplishes something great, I want women to not be defined by the men they are with, and I want a sisterhood in the media to protect the interests, reputations, and portrayal of other women.
— Claire Fritz, Teacher, Austin, TX
Misogyny is intended to make women feel like second-class citizens, i.e., weaker, dumber, and less powerful than men. Since I know that to be wildly untrue - about myself or women as a whole - it enrages me and awakens a fierce resolve to stand in my power in the face of forces that seek to silence me. “
— Dr. Kristen Vierregger, M.D., Seal Beach, CA