The kit (2012) is the result of collaboration between the World Association of Christian Communication (WACC) and the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) to redress gender disparities in news media content.
The IFJ launched the Ethical Journalism Initiative to confront on-going discrimination in the news and reconnect journalists to their mission by enforcing core ethical standards. Challenging sensationalism and stereotypes, checking facts, abiding by codes of conduct, supporting independent self-regulatory bodies are some of the actions identified to uphold media quality and rebuild the public’s trust in the news. Fair gender portrayal is one of the issues to be given priority if media hope to fully reflect the role women play in society. The widespread use of social media, blogs and the development of online news should not be overlooked. Numerous cases reveal a failure to portray gender issues fairly and accurately and very few initiatives exist to develop ethical standards and avoid unfair and outdated stereotypes.
The kit aims to provide an answer to the gender gap in news content and lack of self-regulatory mechanisms - where these do not exist - to confront gender bias. It is organised in two books that may be read independently of each other. Book 1 discusses conceptual issues pertaining to gender, media and professional ethics. Book 2 presents gender-ethical reporting guidelines on several thematic areas.