Since The 4thEstate Project published the Gender Gap Report on June 1, there has been a slight increase in female VoiceShare in print coverage of the election. In the month of June, female citizen newsmakers made up a large portion of the female VoiceShare and discussed Candidate Character and Campaign Strategy the most.
The 4thEstate Project’s Gender Gap Report that was published on June 1st exposed a glaring gender gap in media coverage of the presidential election. In print and television, female newsmakers received very little coverage in comparison with male newsmakers. Since then, percentage of statements from female newsmakers has increased slightly in print coverage. Statements from female newsmakers consisted of 15% of total VoiceShare in June, up from the 13% average of November – May. What is more noticeable is the decrease in male VoiceShare. In the month of June, percentage of statements from male newsmakers dropped 5% from the November – May average. Meanwhile, percentage of statements from organizations, corporations and other entities increased 3%.
The discussion from female newsmakers in election coverage during June has been primarily focused on the candidate and the campaign. The topics of Candidate Character and Campaign Strategy combined accounted for 45% of the statements from female newsmakers in June. Major policy issues that were discussed in June, such as Immigration, the Economy, and Healthcare, made up less than 30% of statements from female newsmakers in election coverage.
This topic focus seems more predictable when looking at the types of female newsmakers that are receiving attention in print coverage of the election. One-third of the statements from female newsmakers in June came from female citizens. Historically, citizen newsmakers (both female and male) discuss candidate character the most, as reported in The 4thEstate Project’s post from May 27th. It showed that 33% of statements from male and female citizen newsmakers in media coverage of the election from November – May were about Candidate Character. Therefore, it follows that with female citizens making up such a large portion of female newsmaker VoiceShare in June, that Candidate Character would be the most discussed topic.