Fresh off the heels of #AskHerMore, the hashtag meant to make the red carpet more welcoming to women by requesting journalists not ask superficial questions of professional women actors, a similar campaign has begun for women in sports. #CoverTheAthlete is a hashtag and a campaign that demands journalists take female athletes seriously: no more comments on hair, looks, bodies, or boyfriends. Only questions and articles that actually talk about athletics. Doesn’t seem so hard!
Not convinced that this kind of thing actually happens? Cover the Athlete’s site references several sources where everyone from Serena Williams to Eugenie Bouchard to Gabby Douglas are interviewed or written about regarding things completely unrelated to their athleticism, their sport, or their careers. And a handy script-flipping video shows what would happen if men were asked the same questions about their love lives. Watch it if you are still not a believer. It’s fun.
The campaign requests that dissenters tweet #CoverTheAthlete at media outlets like ESPN and Fox Sports in order to draw attention to the unfair way women are treated in the athletic world. As the great Michelle Payne said last week, people who can’t treat female athletes equally can go ahead and get stuffed.