Center for Domestic Violence Prevention

Press Releases

Can the Media Be Objective?

Can the Media Be Objective? - CEDOVIP
This document serves as a resource for media personnel on communicating gender in the media. It has been adapted from the materials that CEDOVIP uses during trainings on reporting about gender.

Journalists often believe that their role is to provide an objective perspective on news or current events. However, objectivity is more of a myth than a guiding principle. In reality, a person’s biases, opinions and beliefs will likely show through in the way that the journalist writes or asks questions. Rather than attempting to be objective, it is best to produce a balanced piece that demonstrates awareness of their own gender biases.

This occurs by:

  •  Including more than one perspective or voice in a story
  • Including more than just the views of men, and more than the views of men and women in positions of power/formal authority.
    Seeking out the missing voices
  • Being conscious of language that reinforces stereotypes
  • Tagging women and men according to traditional gender roles
  • Thorough research to understand the myriad of aspects of the issue reported on.
  • Including the gender perspective in coverage of all issues.

To do these things, it is important to observe the ways that people may be marginalized or treated differently because of their gender as well as their race/ethnicity, class/caste, age or any other such factor.