We are convinced that media are cornerstones of a democracy. They watch the democratic principles in societies and can help people who are not able to defence themselves. But they can also discriminate or exclude some groups. We are convinced that media participate in discrimination of women by giving men more possibilities to communicate and perform their opinion, analyse society and explain important issues through the media contents.
How the democratic societies and media came to this model?
The media is a reflection of a society but if opinions and explanations of fondamental topics are communicated primarily by men how to reflect the reality of our society? Does media really reflect our society and its issues then?
Every european media is familiar with the expert´s figure. It is someone who is specialized on certain field, is able to analyze it and explain but also it in an interesting way to recipients. Media invite and show expert´s opinion every single day. You can see them talking on TV channels, hear them in radio and read their articles in daily press and magazines. Even though in France (and the Czech Republic too) live as much men as women, only eighteen percent of women experts appear in the media contents. There are no specific numbers about Czech media contents but according to university researcher there are two times more men experts than women experts.
Women experts are under represented and media usually choose from the list of few selected specialists. The main arguments of media staffers for choosing the same opinion leaders, usually men, are: required speed of transmitting information in news, the role of decision makers, but also economical and cultural reasons. And yet, media plays a key role in promoting diversity and it starts with the choice of participants : who speaks ? Which parole is important ?
Our aim was to compare the situation in France and the Czech Republic. We decided to ask six people to explain it and to suggest ways to change it – two university teachers and researchers from two prestigious universities in the Czech Republic (Jaromír Volek and Lenka Vochocová), a woman chief script editor of the publicistic debate programme in the Czech public service television (Hana Andělová), a woman journalist from the private Czech TV (Daniela Drtinová), a famous French woman expert- journalist (Arlette Chabot), and a woman specialist from the French institution for equality (Brigitte Grésy).