Taylor Swift: Named Woman of The Decade, and how her speech was empowering.
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Taylor Swift recently achieved the unthinkable for women in the entertainment industry.
Further, she honored women everywhere for their hard work.
Sharing how important it is to support one another because sometimes there are “snakes,” in your workplace.
With that in mind, it’s important to remember, whether you’re a woman working in the industry or a woman in healthcare, her speech applies to you as well.
For example, Empire, a very popular hit on Netflix. It shows the deals, and negotiations that happen behind the scenes.
Despite Swift sharing some personal details about her life and her current trials, she did not mean harm.
More importantly, Swift is not shouting “go and harass the crap out of this person.”
She is merely stating women and men within the industry have felt the effects of power-hungry investors, studio contracts and managers.
As mentioned, Swift was given a rare award “Woman of the Decade,” and it’s true, she has seen a lot including problems with other females and their managers.
Admittedly, Kesha Sebert has faced many trials within her time working in the industry.
As a result, Swift merely wants to encourage all women to know their worth, to never settle for less than you deserve.
Prove to every person who doubted you they were wrong.
Swift hopes we all can stand together, supportive men and women to help more and judge less.
Let’s take a peek at the real statistics.
Women Behind the Scenes in 2008
Top 250 grossing films:
- Women comprised 16% of all directors, executive producers, producers, writers, cinematographers, and editors.
- Women comprised 9% of directors.
- Women accounted for 12% of writers.
- Women comprised 16% of all executive producers.
- Women accounted for 23% of all producers.
- Women accounted for 17% of all editors.
Women Behind the Scenes in 2010
Top 250 grossing films:
- Women accounted for 7% of directors.
- Women wrote 10% of the films.
- Women comprised 15% of all executive producers.
- Women comprised 24% of all producers.
- 18% of all editors were women.
- 2% of all cinematographers were women.
LGBTQ Characters on TV
- LGBTQ series regulars on broadcast television reached a record high of 10.2%. That’s 90 out of 879 series regulars on broadcast scripted primetime TV.
- LGBTQ women in series regular/recurring roles on broadcast TV outnumbered LGBTQ men, 53% to 47%.
- 52% of the 120 LGBTQ regular and recurring characters on broadcast networks were people of color. 48% of the 215 LGBTQ characters on cable TV were people of color, as were 41% of the 153 LGBTQ characters on streaming networks.
- Between Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu, there were 109 regular LGBTQ characters on scripted originals and 44 recurring LGBTQ characters.
- Netflix had the highest number of LGBTQ regular and recurring characters on scripted originals. The CW was the most LGBTQ-inclusive broadcast network, with 15.4% of series regulars identifying as LGBTQ, while Showtime was the most inclusive on cable.
Women on TV as of 2019
- Females comprised 44% of characters on broadcast programs, 45% of characters on cable programs, and 45% of characters on streaming programs.
- Females comprised 45% of major characters across the broadcast network, cable, and streaming programs.
- Across platforms, 70% of female characters were White, 17% were Black, 7% were Asian, 6% were Latina, and 1% were of some other race or ethnicity.
- Overall, female characters were younger than males. The majority of female characters were in their 20s and 30s (56%), whereas the majority of male characters were in their 30s and 40s (59%).
- 75% of male characters but 66% of females had identifiable occupations. 56% of males but 44% of females were seen in their work environment, actually working.
- Across platforms, female characters were more likely than males to play personal life-oriented roles, such as wife and mother. In contrast, male characters were more likely than females to play work-oriented roles, such as a business executive. For example, 53% of female characters and 39% of males were seen playing personal-life roles.
Women Behind the Scenes
- Women accounted for 31% of individuals working in key behind-the-scenes positions.
- Women working as creators, directors, writers, executive producers, producers, editors, and directors of photography reached historic highs on broadcast programs (31%), and cable programs (31%). Women accounted for 30% of behind-the-scenes individuals working on streaming programs.
- 52% of programs employed 5 or fewer women in the behind-the-scenes roles considered. In contrast, 17% of programs employed 5 or fewer men. 3% of programs employed 14 or more women in the behind-the-scenes roles considered. In contrast, 38% employed 14 or more men.
- The employment of women working in key behind-the-scenes positions on broadcast network programs inched upward, increasing from 27% in 2017-18 to 31% in 2018-19.
- Across platforms, women fared best as producers (40%), followed by writers (35%), executive producers (30%), directors (26%), creators (25%), editors (21%), and directors of photography (5%).
- 96% of the programs considered had no women directors of photography, 79% had no women directors, 77% had no women editors, and 77% had no women creators.
- Women accounted for 25% of creators, up from 22% in 2017-18.
- Across platforms, programs with at least 1 woman creator employed substantially greater percentages of women in other key behind-the-scenes roles and featured more female characters in major and speaking roles than programs with exclusively male creators. For example, on programs with at least 1 woman creator, women accounted for 65% of writers versus 19% on programs with no women creators.
- Across platforms, programs with at least 1 woman executive producer featured more female characters in speaking roles and major roles, and more women in other key behind-the-scenes positions, than programs with exclusively male executive producers. For example, on programs with at least 1 woman executive producer, women accounted for 38% of writers. On programs with exclusively male executive producers, women comprised 12% of writers.
Can we do better as women in the industry?
Whatever happens, the answer is yes, there is always room for improvement.
In the same way, we lift weights and get stronger, we can improve our lives in the industry by working more, doing what people say you can’t and creating magic from hate.
Are women trying to kick men out of the entertainment industry?
Ahh, the million-dollar question.
No, if you have any integrity that isn’t the goal. The goal is to be able to work together as a team with the same respect as one manager would have for say Lana Del Ray, Shawn Mendes, or Justin Bieber.
Our personal lives, the people we date and our sex should never determine our success in the future.
For this reason, the trend of women in the industry seems to wax and wane. But, we have the power within ourselves to work hard, to never give up and to do exactly what Taylor Swift shared at the 2019 Billboard Music Awards.
Isn’t it true, the more we speak up about challenges in the world, the more we are heard, even if that accounts for a mere 10 people who stopped, listened and supported, that’s a positive insight they may share with others?
Facts, and at times those facts can feel biased because maybe you really love x celebrity and that’s okay, you can love them and support your favorite talent however you please. But that doesn’t mean you become toxic.
Not only does it show intelligence, but it also shows you’re a respectful person. And with that in mind, celebrities really enjoy those who don’t over idolize and can have an actual conversation about the world rather than just their life or a selfie with no memories attached, aside from…
“I saw them on the street and got a selfie.”
As previously stated, women have been doing a great job of supporting one another in the entertainment industry. And those who work other jobs should be influenced by this and treat others with integrity.
Lastly, loving all people is what will make the world a better place.
So, the process starts with you, love yourself and you’ll shower others with support. The only time a person feels threatened and begins to hate on you is the moment you know they have an internal battle which in turn is taken out on those they see daily.
Taylor Swift’s full speech from the 2019 Billboard Music Awards.