Tolerance and Diversity Institute

Joint Statement of Non-governmental Organizations Concerning Sexist Fragment of TV Program on GDS TV

We would like to react to a fragment from the TV program "Bina -18," aired by GDS TV Studio on July 9, which contained humiliating visualization of a female body. We believe that aforementioned footage represents openly sexist interpretation of roles of women and men in society and further reinforces negative stereotypes among the society. Therefore, this fragment requires adequate assessment.
No doubt that the freedom of expression implies the right to express any idea and opinion; however legal guarantees of the freedom of speech and expression do not relieve media from responsibilities and duties inherent to this profession.
In modern society media has an immense potential to facilitate social changes. It is able to either hinder or hasten the structural changes towards gender equality. In the cultural context wherein women often become victims of sexist attitudes and stereotypes, the presentation of a female as an object by TV channel and thus strengthen traditional perception of the roles of men and women, is totally unacceptable.
We believe that for the TV Company which has the ambition to practice responsible and not tabloid journalism, planning to produce social and political programs in the future, broadcast of sexist content encouraging gender inequality should be unacceptable. Public attitude towards the GDS TV Company will largely depend on how adequately the editorial board will reconsider the case and how the public criticism of the program will affect the future editorial policy of the company. A modern understanding of the role of media is much broader than it being perceived as a mere business project. We hope that the GDS will be more focused on media's social responsibility than its commercial interest. This means being accountable to every social group and reflecting their needs and interests.
Media Development Fund
Georgian Democratic Initiative
Tolerance and Diversity Institute
Article 42 of the Constitution
Human Rights Monitoring and Education Center
Media club Frontline Georgia
Rusudan Gotsiridze, Bishop of the Evangelical Baptist Church
Georgian Church of Evangelical Faith
Open Society-Georgia
Gender Equality
Society for Positive Changes
Women Information Center
TASO foundation
Women's Fund in Georgia
National Violence Protection Center
Gender Equality Network
Georgian Young Lawyers Association
Georgian Regional Media Association
Association Tolerance
Civil Council on Defense and Security
Georgian Institute of European Values, GIEV
Partnership for Human Rights, PHP
Civil Development Agency, CIDA
Association of Germans of Georgia Ainung
Media Monitoring Center of Georgia
International Center of Women's Education and Information
Association LGBT Georgia