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Debate over sexist Clark coverage ramps up

Among the pre-election topics being debated in B.C. today is whether there is sexism in the media coverage of Premier Christy Clark.

The issue drew much attention in February. It started with the launch of Madam Premier, a Tumblr site that documents sexist coverage and misogynistic social media commentary regarding Canadian female leaders like Clark.

Later that month Sheila Orr, a former BC Liberal MLA, wrote a letter to the editor of the Times Colonist accusing the media of ignoring Clark's accomplishments because of sexism.

Coverage of Clark in the past has included Virgin Group founder Richard Branson's invitation to the premier to go naked kitesurfing, criticism for showing her cleavage in the legislature, and a radio DJ who asked how it felt to be a "MILF" in an on-air interview.

But is sexism the reason why media is critical of Clark? Or does the media report fairly on the premier?

[Editor: Check in on the debate today in The Tyee's cover story, where Katie Hyslop puts those questions to legislative reporters, academics, the author of Madam Premier, and female politicians. Find it here.]

Katie Hyslop reports on education and youth issues for The Tyee Solutions Society, and is a Tyee election reporting team member. Follow her on Twitter.

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