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Town Hall Meeting Thursday: Race, Gender & Media Post-Imus



For those of us who have criticized stereotypical images in media, Don Imus' dethroning was a watershed event.Imus

All of a sudden, everyone was talking about the impact of harmful images in media, and acknowledging that if such imagesecho historic stereotypes. they ought not be tolerated.

Tbabjlogo2006 To keep the discussion going locally, the Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalists has teamed with the Department of Journalism at the University of South Florida to present a town hall meeting bringing together area radio, journalism and academic figures within the community.

Scheduled for 8 p.m. Thursday, April 26, the town hall will take place at the Campus Activities Center at the University of South Florida, the corner of 6th Ave. South and 2nd St. South in St. Petersburg. Admission is free and all are invited to attend.

We are still asking area notables to join us for the discussion. But here are some of the people we've already lined up:

Bubba Bubba the Love Sponge, Sirius satellite radio

Charles Cherry, publisher, Florida Courier and co-owner, WTMP-AM

Ahmed Bedier, Council for American Islamic Relations

Jay Black, journalism ethics expert, University of South Florida

L.I.F.E., area spoken word artist

Birgit Van Houck, Community Tampa Bay

Deborah Hinds, WMNF-FM and Planet

We're asking you to do two things. First, spread the word about our effort -- we need to work hard to let people know what we're doing and get a huge crowd for a community discussion. Please feature this as a Public Service Announcement or notice in your media outlet if you can.

Secondly, we would love to have more panelists involved in our discussion, particularly from the radio industry. So feel free to email me back or call me at the number below if you are interested in sitting on our panel.

Here's an update from the pew center on attitudes about Imus according to race:

"Americans, both black and white, generally agree with the punishment radio host Don Imus received for the racist and sexist remarks he made about the Rutgers University’s women basketball team. Nonetheless, there are substantial racial differences in views of Imus’s punishment, and an even bigger gap in opinions about news media’s coverage of the story.

Roughly twice as many whites as blacks believe his punishment was too tough (35% vs. 18%). And while 62% of whites say that news organizations are giving too much coverage to the Imus story, just 31% of African Americans agree.

The latest installment of Pew’s weekly News Interest Index, finds that public interest in the Imus story was fairly modest, particularly when compared with news coverage of the controversy. The news coverage index for April 8-13, compiled by the Project for Excellence in Journalism, showed that Imus’s downfall was the second most-covered story of 2007, filling 26% of the overall newshole for the week. But the Imus story trailed the situation in Iraq was the week’s most closely followed story. About a quarter of Americans (26%) cited the situation in Iraq as the story they followed most closely, compared with 20% who cited reports about Imus’s remarks.

The survey is for immediate release, and is available on our website"

[Last modified: Wednesday, July 21, 2010 2:38pm]


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