The Women’s Foundation denounces “sexism in freedom” in videos on YouTube

“Hyperviril” men, women “Seductresses” : Most successful videos on YouTube convey gender stereotypes, and nearly a quarter show sexist or sexual violence or insults, the Women’s Foundation was alarmed on Thursday, August 26. The foundation calls on the authorities to take up this problem, in particular by expanding the supervisory powers of the CSA.

In total, 68% of the 200 most watched videos in France over the last two years on the platform (100 in 2019 and 100 in 2020) contained such stereotypes, reveals a study carried out by the Fondation des femmes, in collaboration with Sciences Po Paris .

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More often than not, these problematic sequences have been spotted in music videos, which account for nearly three-quarters of the 200 most viewed videos. Many successful clips contain sexist insults or misogynistic remarks, denounce the authors of the study. In one of the clips viewed, the singer “Evokes the fact of alcoholizing a woman to have sex with her”, which is a “Rape culture”, according to them.

“The bed of violence”

In total, more than 20% of the videos feature women “Sexualized”, especially in “Erotic movements” or some “Lascivious poses”, and about 35% have “Degrading image of women” : they are confined to a role “Aesthetic and inactive”, experience street harassment, or are filmed with an insistent framing on their chest or hips.

“This violence and these prejudices go beyond what is tolerable”, commented to AFP Sylvie Pierre-Brossolette, former member of the CSA and coordinator of the report for the Women’s Foundation.

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These images “Are successful but do a lot of harm, because they give a biased view of the dominant male and the dominated woman”, so “Make the bed of violence” in real life, she insists.

The public authorities must seize the problem and fight against this “Sexism in freedom” on the internet, plead the authors of the report.

Towards a “charter of good conduct”?

Thus, the law could broaden the prerogatives of the CSA: it should now be able to ensure that the programs broadcast do not contain “Sexist words and images” Where “Degrading because of sex or gender identity”, they suggest.

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In addition, public bodies supporting production, such as the National Cinema (CNC) or Music Center (CNM) should commit to no longer funding works. “Conveying sexist, degrading or stereotypical words and images”.

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Digital platforms could also engage, via a “Charter of good conduct”, to watch the videos uploaded and remove the most degrading sequences, suggest the authors of the study.

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