Where are the Women
by Adam Goodwin | 2014 | Last Updated: June 27, 2014
Where are the Kids
You may or may not be familiar with Okanagan Elite Athlete’s Where are the Kids campaign? The campaign asks parents, families, and communities where are our kids? Wherever they are at physically, developmentally, socially, health-wise, is it positive, ethical, and beneficial to them?
You can view more about the Where are the Kids campaign by visiting Okanagan Elite Athlete’s website.
Where are the Women
While working on Where are the Kids with the Okanagan Elite Athlete team, a question was raised. Where are the women?
This isn’t meant to ask the same question per se. While Where are the Kids is meant to ask are kids inside watching TV vs. outside exploring nature and friendships while benefiting from play, Where are the Women asks a much more subtle question in the area of sport/exercise.
Where are the women in TV sport studios?
National Football League
Using the National Football League (NFL – North America’s professional football league (American football, not soccer)), how are women playing a role in the televised aspect of the games? Most fans watching a game are watching it on a TV rather than in the stadium (capacity of unlimited vs. seats for 60,000 in a stadium). Between halves, viewers are beamed to a studio for analysis. Likely, the in-studio analysis are men.
Between plays or when a player is injured is usually when a women plays a role in the televised aspects. They comment on specific plays. Rarely do you see a woman involved in a televised NFL game providing broadcasting functions or in-studio analysis.
The question begs, why? Is North America still sexist? Is this a sign of an issue that threads itself through many aspects of society, culture, and the values of many of the fans? If broadcasters survive by giving viewers and fans what they want, then do fans/viewers not want a woman providing analysis?
This would not be an adequate blog post if we didn’t look at the other side of things. One example that came to mind is the Olympic Games (likely as the 2014 Winter Olympic Games hosted by Russia recently wrapped up). Many of the in-studio hosts are female. In sports such as speed skating, females can be common place when it comes to providing in-game/-sport broadcasting play-by-play functions.
A Call to Action
If you think this is an issue that needs to be addressed/discussed further, feel free to download the graphic immediately below, and ask your friends/family/colleagues/hockey-pool-pals, where are the women on mainstream sport TVs in North America?
Based on your reading of this blog post, you may also be interested in: Okanagan Elite Athlete.
These are one person’s thoughts and opinions. We welcome your feedback and own thoughts. Feel free to comment below or connect with us via social media.
Adam Goodwin is a Canadian working in the United Kingdom and virtually in Canada, and is a proud introvert and silent leader. He has travelled to nearly 50 major and global cities around the world, and has worked with universities, non-profits, consulting firms, and sports organizations. He has family and friends in Canada and around the rainbow nation’s only home. Follow his travels, work, projects, and thoughts on Twitter (@adam13goodwin) and on this blog (click on the bottom right-hand corner to sign up for weekly email notifications). For more about some of immediate day-to-day work, visit www.okanaganathlete.com.