The High Council for Gender Equality calls for quotas, or a bonus-malus system in public aid to newspapers.

Indeed, the written press in France contributes to sexist stereotypes, he denounces in his third report on the state of sexism in France.

Women less often cited in articles, editors more responsible for culture than sport… "This bias is visible even within the editorial staff and in the way in which the published articles are written", affirms the independent advisory body.

About ten media examined, including "20 Minutes"

The authors of the report first looked at the proportion of women among the journalists of six dailies, two generalist weeklies and three women's magazines, but also their weight within the various sections and in management positions. The editors of Le Monde, Le Figaro, Le Parisien,

Ouest France, Sud Ouest, 20 Minutes

, Le





Elle, Marie Claire


Femme Today

were thus examined


Result: On average, there are only 30% women in the general press (but 50% if we include the women's press), and 20% in the political section.

The situation is heterogeneous, however, since at the Obs 77% of the journalists of the international column are women.

On the other hand, among all the journals studied, there is no publication director.

Note that 

20 Minutes

is the only major editorial staff in France, along with that of Le Monde, to be headed by a woman, Armelle Le Goff, since 2018, and that perfect parity has been achieved at the level of editorial management as well as within the management committee.

Within the company, the proportion of women to men is 45% -55%.

To make things better

As for the content of the articles examined for the purposes of this report on a single date, December 3, 2020 for the weeklies and monthly and December 7 for the dailies, women represent on average only 23% of those mentioned and 21 % of people cited. Overall, articles in which a woman is the main subject constitute less than 20% of the content analyzed.

"Flamboyant redhead", "petite blonde", "sexy actress": the physical appearance of women or their age are more often mentioned than those of men, the report further deplores. To improve things, we must "change the paradigm" because "counting women is not enough", asserts the High Council for gender equality. The organization calls for "quantified objectives of progress each year", accompanied by "an obligation under penalty of sanctions". He pleads for “quotas of women in decision-making positions” in the editorial staff, but also for a “progressive system of bonus-malus” in the aid paid to the press.

The newspapers should also equip themselves with "counting systems, computerized if possible, on the composition of the editorial staff, as well as on the articles published", and appoint from among them, as Mediapart has done, a "gender editor" which would become the “watchtower for a more equal treatment of information”.

In 2019, 20 Minutes was the first newspaper publisher to sign the Charter of Commitment "For women in the media", and other partnerships such as the one established with

the expert

 meet this ambition to promote fair representation women in the media.


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  • Media

  • Sexism

  • Hurry

  • gender equality

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