Get the Facts

News Stories- Lets Get the Facts

British newspapers in the 1880’s and 1890’s began making news stories “softer” in order to appeal to a larger audience including women (Carter, Branston, and Allen 14). This change started a monumental shift in the language of journalism that lead to more articles being published with females as the main character and a variety of stories all geared to appealing the readership of men and women. Today, when a female is assaulted, the story is twice as likely to be reported, even though males are assaulted more often and in greater number than women. This assault is usually sexual, or from battery. (Burke and Mazzarella 397) If the common citizen is watching the news, or reading the newspaper, chances are that they will get the impression that females are assaulted more often than the truth would back up. The problem is that news companies are more likely to provide interesting stories rather than conveying the truth of what is going on in the country. Table 1 shows the results of a study done by Women’s Studies In Communication by Clemson University.


When a story is finally written, it tends to include personal information about females, while leaving out information about their status and power. (Burke and Mazzarella 407) After this is presented to the public, people tend to understand women’s motives and even justify their actions. (Kamhawi 3). The idea that men and women are reported in untruthful numbers is acceptable, because in this case it is only the viewer who makes a false assumption, but when information about a story is left out on purpose that obviously conveys a different message than the truth, there is a problem. At this point, the news station is no longer looking to make money in an honest way. News stations should look to be more upright in their integrity. In order for a person to recognize these biases and not be hoaxed into feelings about men or women that are unnecessary, start to recognize them. The gender biases in news stories can be as simple as political biases. Messages usually hit hard to people who are susceptible to believing any information that is fed to them. If possible, the reader needs to remember to ask questions about the feelings that are being evoked when reading.

Women are less prone to violence, but when a woman
does commit a crime it is more widely
covered. Check out some famous female Murderers.

Works Cited

Carter, Cynthia, Gill Branston, and Stuart Allen. "News, Gender, and Power." Google Books. Web. 25 Oct. 2010.<>.

"CBC News - Canada - Key Events in the Bernardo/Homolka Case." - Canadian News Sports Entertainment Kids Docs Radio TV. Web. 02 Dec. 2010. <>.

Burke, Cindy, and Sharon R. Mazzarella. "A Slightly New Shade of Lipstick." Womens Studies In Communication 3rd ser. 31.Fall 2008 (2008): 395-413. EBSCO. Web. 26 Oct. 2010.

Kamhawi, Rasha. and Grabe, Maria. "Hard Wired for Negative News?: Gender Differences in Processing Broadcast News" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, Sheraton New York, New York City, NY, 2009-05-25