Friday roundup: Gender diversity on NewsHour; nonprofits win IRE Awards

By Andrew Lapin

The new PBS Kids Wild Kratts app teaches kids about animals. (Photo: Kratt Brothers Company)

The new PBS Kids Wild Kratts app teaches kids about animals. (Photo: Kratt Brothers Company)

• The Women’s Media Center, an advocacy group for women in media, has released a report about gender inequality in media. It found that on TV news, men still report the majority of news — even on PBS’s NewsHour, which features two women as co-anchors. WMC found that 57 percent of news on the NewsHour is still reported by men, despite the show’s appointment of Gwen Ifill and Judy Woodruff as co-anchors in August 2013. The study reviewed reports made between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31, 2013. Read the full report here.

• The nonprofit newsrooms ProPublica and the Texas Tribune picked up journalism awards from Investigative Reporters & Editors for work produced in 2013. ProPublica won the organization’s Freedom of Information Award for “The Prescribers,” a series on doctors who prescribe unsafe doses of dangerous pharmaceuticals to patients. The Texas Tribune won the Gannett Award for Innovation in Watchdog Journalism for its live stream of the Texas legislature. The IRE Awards will be presented June 28 at the organization’s annual conference in San Francisco.

• Journalist Esther Armah is partnering with the African-American Public Radio Consortium on The Spin, a weekly program “bringing the perspectives of brilliant women of color into the spotlight.” Armah, who has worked for shows with the BBC and Pacifica, has designed the talk show to feature a panel of three women discussing topical matters. The panelists are pulled from a roster of 20 journalists, authors, scholars and activists that Armah has lined up. The show is scheduled to start airing May 9 and will be recorded at NPR’s studios. Producers are attempting to raise $40,000 in 40 days on crowdfunding site Indiegogo to cover production costs. 

• Morning Edition co-host Steve Inskeep recently returned from a multistory expedition along the U.S.–Mexico border, and NPR’s news apps team has compiled his reporting into an online “book” with text, photos and statistics detailing the experiences of immigrants who journey to the U.S. The stories vary from the weighty (asylum seekers from Ethiopia who have journeyed through 12 countries) to fluffier (a recipe for “tostilocos,” a Tijuana delicacy consisting of various snack foods stuffed inside a Tostitos bag). Read “Borderland” on NPR.org.

• Scott Finn, the executive director of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, appeared at a Wednesday meeting of his state’s Educational Broadcasting Authority and discussed his network’s plans to emphasize localism, the Charleston Gazette reports. It will launch two educational websites, West Virginia LearningMedia and West Virginia STEAM, and is beginning work to create an online video archive of WVPB’s flagship music program Mountain Stage. WVPB has invested heavily in digital since Finn became head of the network in 2013.

• PBS Kids has released the Wild Kratts World Adventure App for purchase on Apple’s iTunes store. The $2.99 app, based on the TV show, teaches children ages 4 to 8 about “the ways different animals live and adapt to their habitats,” according to a press release. It coincides with the third season of Wild Kratts, premiering April 7, and PBS Kids’ annual Explore the Outdoors initiative, which uses nature-themed on-air and online content to encourage kids to get outside. Previous Wild Kratts apps have included Wild Kratts Creature Power and Wild Kratts Creature Math.

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