Under representation, minimum coverage, negative portrayal of women and less visibility of women’s voice across the mainstream media were issues discussed at the three-day workshop on gender-sensitive reporting in the media held in Paro.
The workshop focused on understanding gender situation and its implications on women and highlighted the need for the journalists to be more sensitive while reporting gender issues.
The workshop that involved more than 20 journalist and bloggers saw the participants feel men were given 100 percent coverage and that the maximum issues covered were urban-based.
A study conducted by Global Media Monitoring Project in 2015 found that only 6 percent of stories highlighted issues of gender equality or inequality. “Stories by female reporters are visibly more likely to challenge stereotypes than those filed by male reporters and are also less likely to reinforce stereotypes than those reported by men,” according to the study.
The workshop highlighted the need to invest more on addressing gender issues and the media’s role in enhancing social accountability.
According to the same global study, in Bhutan men were the dominant newsmakers. “Women are dramatically under-represented in the news. Only 12 percent of the news subjects the people who are interviewed, or whom the news is about are female.”
It said women were rarely heard in dominant news topics and pointed out that in 2015, women made up only 24 percent of the persons heard, read about or seen in newspaper, television and radio news. “Male dominated as the sources of news and in categories like ‘Economy,’ ‘Crime and Violence’ and ‘Celebrity, Arts, Media and Sports’ women were totally absent.”
The workshop ended on July 26.