These Badass Female Journalists Talked About Dealing With Sexism Within The Industry And I'm Legit In Awe

By Sajeer Shaikh | 7 Apr, 2019

Before you dismiss this as a boring curation of quotes, hear me out. We all tend to think that Journalism is the boring, easily overlooked child when it comes to the parental unit of media, with Production being the cooler, and Advertising being the more exciting sibling. I know, I get it. But when you have a panel that contains a bunch of badass female journalists who’ve contributed immensely to the field and in a pretty kick-ass way, you can’t help but be pulled in.

ZAB Media Festival ’19 invited some incredible women to speak at the Femme Fatale: The Inner Circle of Women In Journalism panel. And for a student of journalism such as myself, the panel was EVERYTHING.

On the panel, we had Manal Faheem Khan – an absolute rockstar

Fangirled over her after the event. No regrets.

Fatima Niazi graced the panel as well

We had Zoya Anwer Naqvi

And Zoha Tunio moderated the panel

Now, while they shared some absolute pearls of wisdom, I’ll talk about what I mainly took away from the panel discussion.

When you talk about women in journalism, it’s not too hard to picture the challenges female journalists face. Therefore, the existence of an inner circle of women becomes all the more imperative. Talking about this inner circle, the panelists concluded that an inner circle of women definitely exists within the field. However, it isn’t like your usual “boy’s club,” which comes with its own set of challenges.

Source: MangoBaaz

Talking about sexism within the industry, Manal Faheem Khan pointed out how a lot of the sexism she’s experienced has come from women in positions of power who came from a place of immense privilege.

Zoya pointed out how a woman, in a position of power, must be loud and assertive to have herself taken seriously. Even Fatima weighed in on how, if you’re a female journalist in a circle of men, they will try to pamper you or treat you like an idiot.

Source: MangoBaaz

While adding on about sexism in the industry and how female journalists can be targeted, Manal (who, in my opinion, dominated the panel) talked about how she’d written a review on a movie by Shaan Shahid. While her review was pretty tame compared to how others had trashed the movie, Shaan chose to post her picture on his public accounts, calling her “Miss Piggy” and reviewing her instead.

Manal highlighted how she, not being a public figure, was caught off guard by this. However, it definitely sheds some light on how women are seen to be the easier targets, even bullied by men within the industry who may otherwise portray themselves to be pillars of righteousness.

Source: MangoBaaz

Moving further along, Zoya highlighted how a lot of sexist behavior is propagated by male reporters.

She gave an example of how she covered an event that pertained to the transgender community, and how male reporters kept uttering slurs when it came to getting down to reporting.

To cap it off, the women insisted that journalism does not pay, and you should only think about pursuing it if you’re passionate about it, or have a second job. However, Fatima Niazi stating that journalism is something that helps you sleep at night really tied up the session together really well. The ladies walked off stage amidst a heavy round of applause.

Source: MangoBaaz

Personally, I’m glad I got to attend this panel, and it’s pretty cool of SZABIST to hold this festival in the first place, since it’s quite expository and serves as a guiding light for students who may otherwise be in the dark when it comes to the industry. What do you guys think about this? Let me know in the comments.


Guys At LUMS Are Being Called Out By Female Students For This Disgustingly Sexist Closed Group

Cover image via MangoBaaz

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