Posts tagged with "Abuse"

The WMC Report: #MeToo

A year following revelations in The New York Times about decades of allegations against movie producer Harvey Weinstein, the #MeToo movement has led to a significant change in the way media covers stories about sexual assault and harassment, a new report from the Women’s Media Center shows.

Overall, the number of articles on sexual assault is up over 30 percent at the end of the study, in August 2018, as compared with the first month the research looked at (before the revived momentum for #MeToo), May 2017. When articles about just #MeToo are added, the total coverage is up 52 percent, according to the report, Media and #MeToo, which was released today.

“The world has permanently changed,” said actor and Weinstein accuser Ashley Judd. “We are in a new era. It is messy, imperfect, and urgent.”

The study found that even stories beyond those about sexual abuse, assault, and harassment—beginning with the Times story in October 2017—have been amplified by the #MeToo movement. After October 2017, media began to more commonly write about issues that particularly pertain to women—such as reproductive health and the wage gap.

“We’ve come a long way since Anita Hill’s courageous testimony in 1991, and it is women who have led the way. It took the explosion of the #MeToo movement to shift and increase coverage of women, sexual assault, and harassment. There’s no going back,” said Maya Harris, co-chair, Women’s Media Center.

The Women’s Media Center research took a close look at the press coverage five months before and in the 10 months that followed the Weinstein revelations and the rise of #MeToo. The report looked at whose stories were covered, what outlets considered sexual assault and harassment important enough to report on, and whether or not the media industry—and American culture as a whole—has changed as a result of the movement.

“In an era in which women are insisting that their stories of sexualized violence be heard—and believed—the media has a critical role to play in helping shift our culture, by credibly presenting accusations, doing its own investigations, and explaining the context in which an alleged attack occurred,” said Lauren Wolfe, director of the WMC Women Under Siege Project and co-author of this report. “It is beyond time that the media treat women survivors with the respect they deserve.”

By breaking down how coverage of sexual assault in various arenas of American life waxed and waned (specifically, the report looked at the church (instances of clergy abuse within and beyond the Catholic Church), Hollywood, media, and politics), the Women’s Media Center was able to clarify which institutions took precedence in the press. By looking at the gender of bylines on sexual assault/#MeToo articles, it found a surprising shift in who is writing stories on sexual assault and harassment. Examining the words most used in headlines for stories on each institution the report focused on (and, separately, for Trump and Weinstein) gave the researchers an idea of how media framed these stories.

“This has been a year when the media and truth itself are under siege,” said Julie Burton, president of the Women’s Media Center. “With #MeToo exposing horrible individual and institutional practices, we see an opportunity for a new transparency and permanent changes aimed at greater equality and power for women.”

“Naming sexualized violence makes it visible and subject to prosecution,” said Gloria Steinem, co-founder of the Women’s Media Center. “In the past, what happened to men was political, but what happened to women was cultural. The first was public and could be changed, and the second was private, off limits, even sacred. By making clear that sexualized violence is political and public, it breaches that wall. It admits that sexualized violence can be changed.”

The Women’s Media Center Media and #MeToo research was produced by the Media Lab at the Women’s Media Center and conducted by Eliza Ennis, media analyst and data manager of the lab. Eliza Ennis is also the co-author of this report.

The Women’s Media Center analyzed the content of headlines, bylines, and articles on 15,228 pieces of news produced from May 1, 2017, through August 31, 2018. The survey consisted of 14 of the nation’s most widely circulated newspapers. They are: Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, Newsday (N.Y.), Tampa Bay Times, The Arizona Republic, The Columbus Dispatch, The Denver Post, The Houston Chronicle, The Mercury News (Calif.), The New York Times, The Seattle Times, The Washington Post, and USA Today.

Izzy Escobar

Overcoming hardship and transforming it into triumph through music is nothing new, but it takes a unique talent to do it in a way that truly leaves an impact on one’s psyche. Such is the case with Singer-Songwriter Izzy Escobar, whose debut single “Broken Wings” (Available everywhere digitally on June 29th!) showcases her commanding attitude and powerful vocal prowess in very distinct fashion.

With “Broken Wings”, subtle synth work and a stomping beat lay the groundwork for an alluring lyrical journey of determination shining through pain as Escobar sings Right here in my place all these walls suddenly disintegrate // Into dust, into here, it flies away out of the atmosphere // And I feel like I can fly with broken wings”.


“I believed that music and song had the potential to change lives because of the way it is able to positively affect our emotions and perceptions”

WATCH: “BROKEN WINGS” OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO

Izzy Escobar’s music is about loving one another the way we want to be loved ourselves. And having FUN along the way! Rising from a “never ending circle of violence” from an abusive stepparent, where she was voiceless in protecting her own family members, she began channeling that pain into lyrics–and eventually songs–at a very young age. “I began to write words, and soon realized that I could synchronize the words in my diary with the tune in my head” says the Massachusetts native, whose latest singles show how far she’s come from that frightened girl to a strong, capable woman who wants to spread her message of hope and strength to those who may face their own struggles. “A few years later, as I read through that same songbook, I noticed that I had made a shift from finding my voice to helping those who couldn’t find their own”.

As she continued on her musical journey, Escobar took to not only writing and singing, but reading sheet music and studying music theory, as well as playing the violin, guitar, and piano. “I believe that to be a healthy human being, we must have an idea of who we are, and what our existence is. But the promise of a home safe from physical abuse and fear remains elusive for many millions of women and children in this country. Now an accomplished singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, she continues to channel her strengths into giving a voice to the voiceless, and helping those who face the same fate as she had in her youth.

Make Sure to Check Out “Broken Wings”, Available Everywhere Digitally (iTunes, Spotify, Google Play etc.)

Halle Berry Hosts 2018 Imagine Party

51-year-old Halle Berry hosted the 2018 Imagine Cocktail Party in LA on Wednesday for the Jenesse organization. The non-profit organization is a place that gives shelter and a variety of services to men, women, and children who are victims of domestic abuse and violence. For 17 years, Berry has been an ambassador and worked alongside Jenesse to bring awareness to this problem engulfed in our society. It is a huge concern as 1/4 women will experience domestic violence in their lifetime. The goal of Imagine is to increase the conversation of violence around women, girls, and men and influence healthier relationships, peaceful workplaces and home environments. Jenesse has been working towards this cause for 40 years and they are still thriving to bring attention to the impact of violence and how it can affect the lives of children, families, and communities while trying to communicate these messages to individuals, entertainment leaders, governments, businesses, and the media.

OXYGEN’S SNAPPED x AILEEN WUORNOS

America’s first female serial killer, Aileen Wuornos, captivated the nation’s attention when she was found guilty for brutally murdering six men, and confessing to a seventh between November 1989 to November 1990. In the two-hour “Snapped: Notorious – Aileen Wuornos,” premiering Sunday, March 25th at 6pm ET/PT, Oxygen Media takes a closer look at the turbulent trial that was the first of its kind. Was Aileen Wournos afforded a just trial, or did the media frenzy cause unfair bias among the jury? For a sneak peek, please visit here.

Aileen Wuornos was a self-professed “highway prostitute” who rose to infamy when she was arrested for the deaths of several men in central Florida. Aileen ultimately confessed to the killings as self-defense, but the jury unanimously convicted her on six counts of first degree murder and sentenced her to death. The special will uncover everything from the complexities of the case to the biased media reports. Through new interviews with those closest to Aileen and her trial, the special will delve deeper into two vastly different perspectives – was she the cold-blooded killer the country made her out to be? Or was she an abuse victim that was forced to protect herself?