Geena Davis’ Easy Steps to Make Hollywood Less Sexist | The Hollywood Reporter

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This is fascinating. Actress/Producer Geena Davis has crunched some numbers about depictions of women in family-rated films (i.e. the kind of movies that young kids see), and discovered some shocking stats. This story relates to the representation topic, of course, but also to the media effects debate, because the underlying argument is that exposure to these kind of representation over time has a long-term effect on values and attitudes. This latter idea, by the way, has a name: Gerbner Cultivation theory.

The basics are that for every one female-speaking character in family-rated films (G, PG and PG-13), there are roughly three male characters; that crowd and group scenes in these films — live-action and animated — contain only 17 percent female characters; and that the ratio of male-female characters has been exactly the same since 1946. Throw in the hypersexualization of many of the female characters that are there, even in G-rated movies, and their lack of occupations and aspirations and you get the picture.

It wasn’t the lack of female lead characters that first struck me about family films. We all know that’s been the case for ages, and we love when movies like The Hunger Games: Catching Fire and Frozen hit it big. It was the dearth of female characters in the worlds of the stories — the fact that the fictitious villages and jungles and kingdoms and interplanetary civilizations were nearly bereft of female population — that hit me over the head.

Read the rest: Geena Davis’ Two Easy Steps to Make Hollywood Less Sexist (Guest Column) | The Hollywood Reporter.

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Blurred Lines: the most controversial song of the decade | Music | The Guardian

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This week, University College London student union (UCLU) took the unusual step of banning a single song, Robin Thicke\’s Blurred Lines. It joins around 20 other UK student unions to do so. This is the latest development in the story of how the biggest song of the year became the most controversial of the decade: an unprecedented achievement, though not one that fills Thicke with pride.

via Blurred Lines: the most controversial song of the decade | Music | The Guardian.

“Sexism in the music industry ain’t nothing new.” Why aren’t female artists getting their due? – FACT Magazine: Music News, New Music.

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Knowles is not alone in not receiving credit where credit is due. Claire Boucher, who is single-handedly reinvigorating pop music as Grimes, faces similar challenges. Despite being credited as the sole writer and producer of her three albums, Boucher has been dogged by sexism, taking to her Tumblr last week to address a variety of grievances, from press faux pas to sexual harassment. Standing out from the list was a castigation of men who dismiss her skills as a musician.

via “Sexism in the music industry ain’t nothing new.” Why aren’t female artists getting their due? – FACT Magazine: Music News, New Music..

In Tinseltown you’ve got to fake it to make it (The Independent)

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As Kirby Dick’s 2006 documentary This Film Is Not Yet Rated revealed, the “anonymous group of parents” in southern California who help decide ratings for the MPAA are intensely suspicious of imagery showing female sexual pleasure. Kimberley Peirce, director of Boys Don’t Cry, commented after her own tussles with the censors that “in a culture where most movies are written men, directed by men, they (films) are mostly the male experience”. Pierce suggested that “if you are a woman who understands female pleasure and understands it from the woman’s perspective, you’re probably going into terrain that is unfamiliar – and unfamiliarity is what breeds these NC-17s”.

via Trending: In sexy Tinseltown you’ve got to fake it to make it – Features – Films – The Independent.

New Statesman – The angry fundamentalists of the church of gaming

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You may have read something about the abuse received by a blogger/researcher looking to get some Kickstarter funding to research the representation of women in video games. If not, read all about it here. Here’s a follow-up blog in the New Statesman about the conservatism of gamers.

In the face of this orthodoxy the arrival of women on the scene, carrying with them an agenda of change, it is inevitably greeted with vitriol and anger by gamers who perceive their precious stream of the same thing as last year to be under threat. Worse it is not just the women who openly have an agenda who face this wrath; female gamers are also abused merely for the crime of being female. Female gamers are seen as harbingers of some sort of oestrogen induced end of days for gaming, a spoilt little sister who has climbed the rope ladder to our clubhouse and is intending to paint it pink.

via New Statesman – The angry fundamentalists of the church of gaming.

Sometimes it’s hard to be a woman. Especially when you’re made out of pixels | Charlie Brooker | Comment is free | The Guardian

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I say “shout”. I mean “type”. And not in person. Whenever there’s an actual woman in the room, they stare intensely at their shoes, internally composing their next devastating online riposte to uppity vaginakind. “WHY MUST THEY TORMENT AND BEWITCH ME SO?”, they think, in tearstained capitals. Just as rubberised assassins represent a tiny proportion of women, these idiotic pebbledicks represent a tiny proportion of men. The trouble for the games industry is that on some level it believes it has to pander to these monumental bellwastes. It doesn’t, and it’ll only gain widespread acceptance when it learns to ignore them. In 30 years, it’s scarcely improved on Ms. Pac-Man. Time to push forward.

via Sometimes it’s hard to be a woman. Especially when you’re made out of pixels | Charlie Brooker | Comment is free | The Guardian.

If you think sexism’s OK in games, you may be in the wrong century | Technology | guardian.co.uk

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Those grim little bottom-half insults are inspired by the same top-half sexism that leads to model arse tweets; they’re just magnified by the anonymity of the internet. Some top tips for companies? Don’t tweet anything about an employee you wouldn’t want someone saying about your little sister. Come up with a new gimmick for trade shows that doesn’t involve human buttocks. […]

You might think you’re bored of seeing this debate. Guess what? As a woman covering the technology industry I’m bored of having to have it. The sooner we stamp it out, the sooner we can go back to talking about Facebook, the new Call Of Duty and how much we’d have to sell a kidney for to get that new MacBook Pro.

via If you think sexism’s OK in games, you may be in the wrong century | Technology | guardian.co.uk.