Colorado Public Radio Assistant News Director Judith Smelser's new blog Scribbles and Scruples:
There’s an interesting piece on the Poynter website today called How to pitch (stories) like a girl. Author Jillian Keenan is bemoaning a report from a group called the OpEd project, which tracks gender representation in print editorials. Not surprisingly, women wrote only 20% of Op-Eds in traditional papers like the New York Times and the Washington Post during the group’s 2011 survey period. Women were more active in so-called “new media” outlets, like the Huffington Post and Salon – but they still authored just 38% of Op-Eds in those outlets.
This prompted a discussion of the persistent male dominance in print bylines overall. Keenan reports on a packed event held in Brooklyn last night that addressed the issue and posed a fairly obvious remedy – female journalists need to pitch more stories. She says the panelists – editors and freelance writers – talked about how women are more likely to view a rejected pitch as a personal rejection and be discouraged from pitching the same editor again, whereas men often take that same pitch rejection as a challenge and respond with a slew of new pitches.