Children Now sez TV still under-represents minorities
A new study on race and gender diversity on television has found that networks aren’t making the grade when it comes to fair and accurate representation in their programming.Among the findings of “Fall Colors 2003-04: Prime Time Diversity Report,” issued by child research and action org Children Now:
- The presence of Latino characters on this season’s primetime TV rose to 6% from 4% last season, and more than half of all primetime shows include at least one Latino character, but Latinos are still two times more visible in real life than on television;
- male characters outnumbered their female counterparts nearly 2-to-1; females are more likely to be ages 19-29 while males are more likely to be 30-39;
- representations of Asian and Pacific Islander characters have declined in the past year; the U.S. Asian population is more than double the percentage found on primetime TV;
- 46% of Middle Eastern characters were portrayed as criminals, while both Latino and Middle Eastern characters are more likely to be criminals than hold a professional job; and
- Native American characters were completely absent from the episodes studied.