Saturday, May 01, 2004


This is the first annual Woman And Media conference, just held in Boston, Massachusetts. I participated as the only amateur (and only goddess, probably) among a large group of very intelligent and lively media women or future media women. I ought to have posted about the event before that took place, but that would have been much too sane.

The event began last night with an enjoyable speech by Katha Pollitt. She speaks as well as she writes, and yes, she did point out the odd omission of our media commentators on the question whether a moron can be the president of the United States. Then today we heard from many famous women, all experts in media. I am all revved up and ready to do battle, which is slightly misplaced as it's Saturday night and I can't apply for a job anywhere right now. Ah well, maybe it will keep until Monday.

Anyway, the point of the meeting was to get women's voices more audible in the media, to get all sorts of women into the media and to make the media finally take women's issues seriously which would mean seeing them as human issues. This is all very important, but it has been very important in the past, too, a sceptic might say. What makes this conference any different from what we have read before?

The differences are in the large number of young women participating, the role of the cyberspace and the freedoms it offers, and the palpable energy in the air during the conference. Maybe things will actually change now? Also, the participants were very knowledgeable and smart, and any television station or newspaper worth its salt would want to hire them immediately or suffer a serious drop in its market share if it didn't do so. Or so we all thought.

The event ended with a farewell speech by Julienne Malveaux. She had us alternately pondering deep truths and rolling on the floor laughing. A wonderful end to a good conference.

If you are interested in learning more about this conference and not missing next year's conference, check out this link for more information.