UN Women, IOC launch guide to avoid sexist media coverage at Tokyo Olympics

Buenos Aires, Jul 22 (EFE).- UN Women and the International Olympic Committee have launched a guide aimed at avoiding sexist media coverage of female athletes at the Summer Games in Tokyo and other sporting events.

“Its main goal is to contribute to the development of sports media coverage with a gender perspective and integrate that perspective to produce more just, more egalitarian and more equitable coverage with respect to women,” Lisa Solmirano, coordinator in Argentina of UN Women’s and IOC’s “One Win Leads to Another” program, told Efe.

That initiative aims to leverage sports as a tool to help reduce gender inequalities and build and maintain self-confidence among adolescent girls.

A very common mistake when covering female athletes, according to Solmirano, is “to mention aspects outside of the realm of sports.” “There are comments related to their sexual orientation or physical appearance. They are treated like children and described as ‘the girls,'” she said.

Solmirano also noted that women tend to be defined in relation to a man – for example, as “the Messi of …” – and that much less attention is paid by journalists to female athletes and teams due to a false notion that “women’s sports don’t sell,” adding that more equitable media coverage would encourage more women to play sports.

The 30-page guide, which was produced by the “One Win Leads to Another” program and launched in Argentina, is available on the UN Women’s website. EFE


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