LLYC’s “Nameless Women” Report Finds Link Between Labeling Women “Female” and Not Using Their Names in Media

  • The more times “woman” or “female” is used as an adjective, the less likely the article will report the subject’s name.
  • There is still a wide gap in media representation, with 2.5 times more articles about men than women.
  • LLYC’s Deep Digital Business unit developed the report after analyzing over 14 million news items in the 12 countries where LLYC operates.

MIAMI–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#Communications–International communications consulting firm LLYC has released this year’s annual report on gender equality, Nameless Women, analyzing how the media portrays women in 2023. It found that women are often written about using “woman” or “female” as adjectives, and that the more this is done, the less likely the subject’s name is to appear in the article. For example, the study found that headlines such as “A woman could become the next President of the United States” are more common than “(Woman’s Name) poised to run for President of the United States,” a practice that erases individual women’s accomplishments and reduces them to their womanhood.

“Women’s image in the media is improving, but there is still a long way to go,” shares Luisa Garcia, Chief Operating Officer (COO) of LLYC and coordinator of this report. “How women role models are depicted to new generations and future decision-makers is often distorted. Little is said about women, and what is said is often biased. I truly believe that increased visibility of women, both in the workplace and in general, will accelerate equality.”

The report highlights nine key findings on women’s treatment in the media:

1. Women are underrepresented. There are 2.5 times more articles about men than about women in the media.

2. Women are often left nameless. Women’s names appear 21% less in headlines on average, and up to 40% less in articles on topics like sports, science, leadership, or film.

3. Gender marking is common. Gender is explicitly mentioned 2.3 times more often for women than for men, reinforcing the view that it is not normal for women to take on the gender marked role and othering those who do.

4. Men sign more articles. 75% of articles on economics, politics, technology, and sports are authored by men. Even in the areas of culture, health, and society, where women write more frequently, they only author 45% of articles.

5. Women and their families are still inseparable in news. Families are mentioned 36% more often in stories about women. Business articles on women mention their families 366% more often than those on men. In science articles, this percentage stands at 191%.

6. Image is still important. Fashion choices are reflected in 1 out of every 25 news stories about women, which is 20% more often than in coverage about men.

7. Coverage on gender-based violence revictimizes women. Reports on gender-based violence continue to focus on victims rather than aggressors, with women victims named almost three times more often than their male aggressors in stories about violence and twice as often in stories about harassment.

8. Sports is still a man’s world. Only 1 in 20 news stories on sports mention women. For example, reports on soccer that do not mention gender assume the subject is male 95% of the time.

9. Being good is not enough; women must be exceptional. Media mentions of women frequently focus solely on them as successful and outstanding. News about women politicians highlights their successes 50% more often than news on their male counterparts does, while also minimizing their mistakes. This feeds into imposter syndrome, insecurity, and burnout among women.

LLYC’s Deep Digital Business team developed this report after analyzing over 14 million news items published across Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Portugal, Spain, and the United States within the last year. The team used Transformer-based models and Large Language Models (LLM) in conjunction with Natural Language Processing (NLP) techniques to identify these trends.

About LLYC

LLYC is a global communication, digital marketing, and public affairs consulting firm that assists its clients to make strategic decisions proactively, always offering the appropriate creativity and experience. It also minimizes risks and takes advantage of any opportunities offered, always considering the reputational impact. In a disruptive and uncertain environment, LLYC helps its clients achieve their short-term business targets while setting a course guided by a long-term vision of defending their social licenses to operate and improve their reputations.

LLYC is listed on the Spanish secondary stock market, BME Growth. The firm currently has 20 offices in Argentina, Brazil (São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro), Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Spain (Madrid and Barcelona), the United States (Miami, New York and Washington, DC), Mexico, Panama, Peru, Portugal and the Dominican Republic. LLYC also provides services through affiliated companies throughout Latin American markets.

Two leading industry publications rank LLYC among the world’s top communications companies. It is ranked 36th by revenue worldwide according to PRWeek’s Global Agency Business Report 2022 and 42nd in PRovoke’s Global Ranking 2022. LLYC was named the Top Communications Consultant in Europe at the 2022 PRWeek Global Awards and Communications Consultant of the Year in Latin America at the 2021 International Business Awards.



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