|Lord Hall (to be sawn in half and stitched together with half of Fran Unsworth by April 2019)|
Sophie Jarvis, Programmes Director & Head of the Female Founders Forum at the Entrepreneurs Network, isn't impressed with the BBC's latest initiative to have a 50:50 gender split on expert voices by this time next year:
- The BBC are introducing a 50:50 gender quota on the experts they have on their shows. How demeaning. I would never want to be asked on a show because of my gender. I want to be asked on because of my knowledge and ability to present ideas.
- We should strive for meritocracy not gynecocracy. We should also look at why there aren’t more female experts instead of imposing a quota.
- An unintended consequence is that it will be assumed that any woman that now appears on the BBC will only be on there because of her vagina not her brain. This is OPPOSITE of feminism.
- An interesting comparison is the caste quota imposed on doctors in India. It is assumed by many that those of a lower caste must be a sub-standard doctor because they only have their job due to their caste.
- And I’ll be discussing this on BBC World tomorrow at 13.30pm! Let’s hope I got asked on for the right reasons...
One of the replies she received asked an obvious question:
Does that include Woman's Hour every day on Radio 4?Well, the BBC has already thought of that:
It also rules out programmes “which already have a focus on gender”, such as Woman’s Hour, which “would not be expected to achieve a 50:50 balance because of the very nature of the programme’s editorial remit”.
Of course, it could (and should) be argued that Lord Hall and Ms Unsworth are actually failing shamefully on the equality and diversity front here and are guilty of appalling transphobia. (Maybe they should both be no-platformed as a result)?
Why not have a 10:10:10:10:10:10:10:10:10:10 split to ensure that transgender men, transgender women, bigender people, intersex people, genderfluid people, agender people, genderqueer people and other gender types not mentioned are featured as experts as well as just cisgender men and cisgender women?
Yes, the obvious downside of that is that studios for programmes like Match of the Day would be absolutely heaving with opinionated (if experience-free) pundits of every gender (and non-gender) imaginable, but at least it would prove the BBC's seriousness when it comes to transforming (pun intended) the range of voices across the BBC.