May 052009

Time Magazine’s annual list of the world’s most influential people is finally here (you were waiting breathlessly, weren’t you?) and I’m pleased to say that women now comprise 28.5%* of the coveted slots despite  having been less than 20% of the choices on the nominated list and up from 25% of last year’s list.  Oh boy, can you hear the sound of sarcasm dripping?

The blatant misogyny of this list isn’t even vaguely debatable and is all too common.  What especially stinks is that that Time isn’t reporting a story here, they are creating the story which they have effectively contributed to by the regular, persistent under-representation of women on the pages of their magazine, both as subjects and as writers– the media silencing of women in other words is a de facto reason that women aren’t considered ‘influential’.  Until we start fully acknowledging the important work that women everywhere do every day by covering their stories in the media, then they will not be considered ‘influential’.
You can write to the editors of Time here.  Tell them you want media parity now!

*Figuring out this number is a little more complicated than it seems because some of the winners consist of more than one person–there were 3 entries that included  2 men, one with a man and a woman and all 5 members of The View were included in one entry.  The 28.5% is based on the number of entries.  Out of 108 total people on the list, women were 30.55% of the total, however I used the 28.5% number to be consistent with how I’ve counted this over the last several years. Regardless, the list is about 20% off from where it should be.

 May 5, 2009  Posted by on May 5, 2009

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