The #WhoTalks 6-Month Review
The Who Talks? project has hit the six-month mark, and the data is in.
The Who Talks? project has hit the six-month mark, and the data is in. With half a year’s worth of accumulated stats regarding the gender ratios on the six top-rated morning and evening shows on CNN, MSNBC, and Fox, we think it’s safe to say that the shows have established a solid trend since the first month of the project.
Compared to the one-month and three-month reviews, the gender ratios on the morning and evening shows on CNN have remained consistent. Anderson Cooper 360 hovered around 47% and New Day stayed steady around 30%. Fox’s The Kelly File and Fox & Friends had a rough start in the first month with their percentage of women analysts coming in at only 11% and 16% respectively. They picked up to 15% and 22% in month three, but they have shown no improvement since then, with their cumulative six-month stats remaining at the low 15% for The Kelly File and 20% for Fox & Friends. MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show lacked consistency, ranging from 42%-33% in the first three months, finishing at 37% for the six-month total (though this often has to do with segments that only feature one or two guests, or don’t speak on the election at all). Morning Joe, on the other hand, has maintained a steady (although disappointing) 24% since the very first month of the project.
The absence of women analysts brought in to comment on the election is not a simple oversight that will correct itself with time.
So what does this all mean?
After six months of tracking appearances by women analysts, these numbers show that this isn’t just a fluke or an accident. The absence of women analysts brought in to comment on the election is not a simple oversight that will correct itself with time. If a show (or conference or panel) doesn’t think about gender balance in its planning stages they are always just playing catch up, and it rarely works. The relative consistency of the data from the first month to the sixth reveals that the shows that have had good gender ratios from day one are doing so by design and the shows that have continued to have poor gender ratios will not miraculously get any better without making conscious and consistent change.
It is on us to demand that change.
It is on us to demand that change. After six months, it is clear that they won’t do so on their own. GenderAvenger is counting down to the presidential election with daily stats on the Who Talks? shows on Facebook and Twitter to hold CNN, MSNBC, and Fox accountable every day. Share our updates widely and help us make some noise. GenderAvengers have created real change before, and we can do it again. Let’s do this!