Looking for women to photograph

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A new study of the images accompanying news stories posted publicly on Facebook by prominent American news media outlets finds that men appear twice as often as women do in news images, with a majority of photos showing exclusively men. Researchers chose to study news images on Facebook because the site standardizes the presentation of news images and text across outlets.

News posts that appear in social media feeds like Facebook feature large photographs and contain only a small amount of text and a link to a longer article. In contrast to other formats such as print media, the photograph in a Facebook post occupies more screen space than the accompanying text and is the main object that Facebook users see when they scroll through the news feed.

research from the Center has examined how representations of men and women in Google Image Search can sometimes be at odds with real world data. And academic researchers have leveraged similar tools to study the depiction of women in the news. There are several ways to measure how often men and women appear in news photos. One way is to think about all the photos together as making up one Looking for women to photograph crowd of people and estimating what share are women versus men. Another way to look at the data is to examine the mix of people who appear in each image.

All 17 news outlets included in the study showed more men than women in news images on Facebook during the study period.

Looking for women to photograph

Yes, the U. But, for example, all the representational coverage of professional football teams would return overwhelmingly dominated by male faces. Coverage of the U. In addition, the analysis did not address Looking for women to photograph the content of the news stories that accompanied the images was more focused on men or women.

The analysis also reveals other ways that men are more prominent in news images on Facebook. In photos that showed two or more people, men tend to out women. The 17 media organizations included in the study were selected according to several criteria. These included: whether they conduct original reporting on general topics, whether they primarily covered national news rather than local news, whether the site was for a news organization based in the U.

The study does not include media outlets that focus their coverage on one topic, such as business, politics, entertainment or sports. The study also excludes local media outlets. The full list of sites included in the study appears in the Methodology. Across several different types of news content on Facebook, women appear in images at a consistently lower rate than men.

While the technology is not perfect — performance may not be as good as human judgment and could suffer from inconsistency across demographic groups see Methodology — it holds promise in analyzing a large quantity of data online, especially because researchers can measure how well these models perform directly. A sizable proportion of the Facebook news images posted by the outlets examined in this study exclusively depict men.

Overall, researchers identified 53, individuals across the 22, images from news posts showing people. Of those individuals, 35, were estimated to be men and 17, were estimated to be women. In photos that depicted multiple people, men outed women. The median post with multiple people showed one woman and two men. Calculating the percent of men or women who appear in news photos — among all depicted individuals — is a straightforward way of looking at the data.

However, some photos show just one person, while others show many people. Calculating the overall percent of men or women who appear treats a photo of a crowd the same as many individual portraits. Researchers wanted to be sure that the pattern of men appearing twice as often as women was consistent across photos that showed any of people. To do so, researchers calculated the average rate that men and women appeared across posts.

Looking for women to photograph

For example, consider a photo that shows two women and two men, another that shows no women and one man, and a third with two women and six men. These s match up with the based on the percent of all individuals shown. Men appeared more often than women across four of news content on Facebook researchers analyzed, but some featured relatively more women. Compared with otherwomen are more likely to appear in news photos for posts about entertainment — defined here as news about TV, music or movies — than in news photos for posts that mention the economy, immigration or sports.

However, even across these four topics, women never appeared more often than men within each group of news images. The four topics researchers selected include two specific policy issues rated as important by substantial shares of U. See the Methodology for more information about how the topics were selected. Researchers trained a text classification model to determine which news posts related to these four topics. This kind of model is based on human decisions about which words are associated with particular topics in a sample of posts.

Looking for women to photograph

The model then makes predictions about whether any of the posts mention those topics. All posts with news photos were included when Looking for women to photograph the content of the posts — those that showed people and those that did not.

The model used text that appeared alongside the post, including its title, caption and comment. Researchers validated the of the models by asking human coders to examine a subset of posts. The gender gap in posts mentioning entertainment was notably smaller than other topic.

Women appeared much more often in news photos accompanying these posts than in those accompanying posts that mention other topics. By contrast, posts that mentioned the economy showed the largest gender gap among topicand people depicted in those photos were much less likely to show women.

were similar — but slightly less pronounced — for posts that mentioned immigration. These differences also appeared when examining the share of people who were women across posts mentioning each topic. The average male face occupied 3. On average, none of the media outlets examined in the study showed more women than men in news photos. Each outlet created 2, posts in the three months between April 1 and June 30,on average, including all posts, whether their photos showed people or not.

The outlet level total varied from to 3, posts. A total of 1, posts — 3. Out of the 17 media outlets, six showed women more prominently than men, on average, in terms of how large their faces appeared. In times of uncertainty, good decisions demand good data.

Looking for women to photograph

Please support our research with a financial contribution. Pew Research Center now uses as the last birth year for Millennials in our work. President Michael Dimock explains why. Born afterthe oldest Gen Zers will turn 23 this year. They are racially and ethnically diverse, progressive and pro-government, and more than 20 million will be eligible to vote in November. The U. Border Patrol reported nearlyencounters with migrants along the U. Today, more than 40 million people living in the U. The term Latinx has emerged in recent years as a gender-neutral alternative to the pan-ethnic terms Latino, Latina and Hispanic.

However, awareness of Latinx is relatively low among the population it is meant to describe. About Pew Research Center Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping the world. It conducts public opinion polling, demographic research, media content analysis and other empirical social science research.

Pew Research Center does not take policy positions. It is a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts. Newsletters Donate My. Research Topics. Why Pew Research Center studied news photos on Facebook Researchers chose to study news images on Facebook because the site standardizes the presentation of news images and text across outlets.

Looking for women to photograph

Selecting media outlets The 17 media organizations included in the study were selected according to several criteria. Measuring how often men and women appear across photos with multiple people Calculating the percent of men or women who appear in news photos — among all depicted individuals — is a straightforward way of looking at the data. You are reading 1 2 3. Facts are more important than ever. Migrant encounters at U. About One-in-Four U. Follow Us.

Looking for women to photograph

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