The Guardian has a write-up on the All Party Parliamentary Group last night on women in the media. It’s about 33% accurate — because the journalist has faithfully reported what two of the six panellists said, and completely ignored the other four.
The last four paragraphs are a case in point. “No matter that the media’s laceration of women might have something to do with the fact that just 17% of David Cameron’s 121 ministers are women; that women make up just 15% of UK board members; or that contributions from women on Radio 4’s Today are so few and far between that, on any one day, listeners can go two hours without hearing a female voice.” Amelia Hill, the author of the article, concludes that the APPG’s answer is “if you can’t stand the heat, just get your kitten-heels out of the kitchen”.
Except that that wasn’t what the APPG said. That was what two of the three media representatives on the panel said. That’s what Janet Street-Porter and Anne McElvoy said, while Louise Mensch MP, Angie Bray MP, Emma Reynolds MP and Sophy Ridge from Sky talked about the lack of media coverage for women.
What the three MPs (two Conservative and one Labour) said was that women were marginalised by the media. They talked about the disproportionate amount of coverage given to Theresa May’s shoes, and how the media should take women more seriously. I’m writing a longer piece for Platform Ten, so look out for that tomorrow.
Normally, I quite like the Guardian. (I buy the Saturday Guardian and the Sunday Telegraph — it gives me a balanced view.) But in this case, they are straight out wrong. I was there, I heard the MPs speak. The Guardian is failing to listen.