Media is continuing to portray women as sexual images

By Alice Lubwama

The chairperson Uganda women parliamentary association Pamela kamugo has cautioned women and girls against sending nude pictures as a sign of love, the people they take as loved ones will circulate them on social media.

Kamugo made the warning while launching the world girls’ report on equal representation of girls through media and film industry.

This report that was produced by plan international was made from 19 countries including Uganda and shows that online media has increased sexism and is becoming more hostile to women and girls as they are subjected to online violence.

The research also indicates that women and girls are portrayed by the media as sexual objects as their naked bodies are used in adverts to sell products.

The report indicates that the unequal representation of women in the media and film has had a far reaching impact on girls and young women, majority of whom are influenced by what they see, hear and read.

Speaking at the launch the interim head of programs plan international Uganda Jean Claude Angaye said that one million Ugandan women and girls have experienced sexual violence and this is due the way society perceives them largely influenced by the stereotypes depicted through media and film.`

Angaye says that the study was intended to look at how film and media stereotypes affect the lives and leadership ambitions of girls and young women, examine the behaviors, attitudes and beliefs that limit girls freedom and opportunities in specific environment and sectors. The report also sought to know what encourages and discourages young women and girls from their leadership aspirations.

Angaye called upon the Uganda communications commission to monitor and regulate the media including film industry to desist from producing content that undermines the dignity of girls and women.

Over 10.000 girls and women from 19 countries across the world including Uganda were interviewed, and some of the girls from Uganda ask the media to show more stories about women in leadership who will encourage them to become leaders.

They also plead with the media practitioners to stop showing girls and young women as sex objects and make sure that what is showed does not portray negative stereotypes.

The 1995 world conference on women made women and media one of 12 critical areas of the Beijing platform for action and called on media everywhere to make a far greater contribution to women’s advancement.