I’m pretty sure I complained about last year’s version too, but I didn’t write it down, so I’m saving this one for posterity.
The BBC has published four “Faces of the Year” articles this week: “the men” and “the women” for the UK and international markets.
Removing gender references, here are the lists:
|January||UK: An undercover police officer: infiltrated activists then changed sides.
Intl: A produce vendor: self-immolated when produce was confiscated, which sparked riots.
|A politician: was shot.|
|February||UK: An acting professional: won an Oscar.
Intl: A screenwriter: won an Oscar.
|A singer: achieved two top-five hits simultaneously.|
|March||UK: A rubbish collector: made a rap video that went big.
Intl: A prime minister: resigned.
|A protestor: spoke up about being assaulted.|
|April||A police officer: was killed in a sectarian bombing.||UK: A designer: designed a wedding dress.
Intl: A party planner: was part of a wedding party.
|May||An admiral: planned the attack on bin Laden’s compound.||A hotel worker: accused a politician of rape.|
|June||A golfer: won the US Open.||UK: A college administrator: had photos misrepresented as part of an identity fraud.
Intl: A tennis player: won a Grand Slam.
|July||UK: A news editor: was investigated for scandals.
Intl: A right-wing extremist: killed 77 people.
|An Olympic athlete: got married.|
|August||UK: A student: was mugged by people who had initially seemed to be helping him, after he was knocked off his bike by rioters.
Intl: A Tottenham resident: was shot by police, which sparked riots.
|UK: A campaigner against gang violence: spoke out against looters in the local community.
Intl: A politician: won a straw poll in home state.
|September||A farmer: suggested that Rihanna and her entourage acquaint themselves with God.||UK: A nurse: was arrested on suspicion of administering poison.
Intl: A politician: opened a debate at the UN.
|October||UK: A business owner: was accused of exercising undue influence over a politician.
Intl: A soldier returned home after being held captive abroad.
|A wealthy aristocrat: got married.|
|November||UK: A football manager: committed suicide.
Intl: An economist: became Prime Minister.
|A marine: went on a date.|
|December||A politician: was accused of sexual harassment.||A panda: was a panda.|
Now, I’m sure by now you’ve worked out which list is the men and which is the women. In case you haven’t, here are the original articles:
Faces of the Year 2011 – the men (UK edition)
Faces of the Year 2011 – the men (intl edition)
Faces of the Year 2011 – the women (UK edition)
Faces of the Year 2011 – the women (intl edition)
I’m not going to add much more commentary, because the rage is making me less than wholly coherent. But seriously, of the sixteen women featured, FULLY 25% of them are featured for their involvement in a wedding (and that’s assuming you accept the panda bear as a woman). That number is the same for both the UK and the international editions. And, in both editions, one more woman is featured for having gone on a date.
Despite the fact that all of these weddings (and the date), were between a man and a woman, and despite the fact that, across the two editions, more men are featured than women, not ONE SINGLE (or married :-p) man is featured for his involvement in a wedding or date. If you want to count sexual harassment, assault and rape in with those things, which I’d really rather not, we get one man (1/19), and another two women (making 7/16 in total, or 7/15 if you don’t count the panda).
Did I mention that of the 16 women featured across the two editions, 6.25% of them ARE PANDA BEARS!? There are more panda bears on BBC’s “Faces of the Year – the women” than there are women in Open Source. As Schwern pointed out last night, this stuff is much funnier when you don’t have to live it.
As a woman, I hate the idea of being applauded for something that’s just normal when a guy does it. I can’t stand the idea of special treatment. But if the women who are being lauded as “Faces of the Year” are being featured for their romantic lives, or their being a cute cuddly animal, maybe it is time for a women-focused “Faces of the Year: people who actually did cool stuff”.
Anyone want to put that together? I’ll send something nice to the first three people who compile one