Subject: [fem-women2000 590] Media code of conduct report Feb2001
From: lalamaziwa <>
Date: Tue, 20 Feb 2001 12:47:41 +0900
Seq: 590

the recent Isis dialogue with media practioners where Isis is pursuing 
discussions on media codes of conduct. (from isis website - www.isiswomen.o=


The campaign for women-friendly and gender-fair media takes another big 
leap forward as media practitioners and advocates from Malaysia, Nepal, 
Thailand, Philippines, Fiji, Kyrgysztan, Laos, Vietnam, China, Australia, 
Pakistan met and shared experiences, ideas and commitments in a dialogue 
held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from 1-3 February 2001.    Also present to 
provide vital inputs to the dialogue is UNIFEM East and Southeast Regional 
Programme Director Lorraine Corner.

One of the highlights of the dialogue is the identification of gender 
principles for media at the regional level, which will be contextualised 
and will guide the making of gender-sensitive codes of conduct at the 
country level.

Such principles include:
*  Not placing undue emphasis on gender;
*  Resisting and not reinforcing stereotyping along gender, race, 
   religion, ethnic, language, sexual, age and class grounds;
*  Ensuring that the portrayal, reporting and representation of 
   women, respect the dignity of women;
*  Recognising the changing roles of women and men in today's society;
*  Endeavouring to achieve a balance in the availing of women and men 
   as news sources, experts, authorities and commentators on the full range=
   of issues covered in the media;
*  Giving equal prominence to the achievements of women and men 
   across the full range of issues covered in the media;
*  Not including materials that condone, incite or misuse 
   representation of violence against women;
*  Not reporting and discussing incidences of violence against women 
   which overemphasize and sensationalize violent details;
*  And in the portrayal, reporting and representation of women, the 
   media should include comprehensive analysis of underlying issues.

Participants were also unified on the stand that internal or =93self 
regulatory mechanisms would be more effective=85=94 and that  =93in countri=
where the state attempts to enforce its own version of morality, a state 
imposed code could actually reinforce gender stereotypes.=94

Specific strategies suggested and personal commitments made in the 
dialogue comprise of: piloting media literacy programmes, organising 
consultative meetings with colleagues in the media, government ministries 
on information and/or women, non-governmental organizations working with 
media and watch groups; conducting training activities for the enhancement 
of journalistic skills; initiating research, review and monitoring and 
evaluation of media codes of conduct and  presence of gender-reporting; 
and, lobbying for and advocating a gender-responsive media  through the 
use of various information tools such as a gender kit and/or orientation 
for new media recruits, gender glossary, a mapping or compilation  of 
related reviews  by the academe, educational posters and calendars, etc..

Follow-up meetings to further concretise and coordinate strategies and 
commitments are being planned.

The on-line discussion initiated in December 2000 and held in conjunction 
with the dialogue will continue.  Organisations and individuals interested 
in sharing ideas and experiences and obtaining updates on gender advocacy 
in the media are invited to participate.  To join, contact Tan beng 
hui  at:

Full documentation of the dialogue will be made available by Isis 
International-Manila by March 2001. It will include papers presented by 
the Professor David Birch of Deakin University Melbourne Campus in 
Australia, Li Xing of the Capital Women Journalists Association in China, 
Susan Loone of the on-line newspaper Malaysiakini  in Malaysia 
and  keynote speaker Melinda Quintos De Jesus of the Center for Media 
Freedom and Responsibility in the Philippines.

A full list of dialogue participants can be requested through E-mail: (

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