Despite the pressures and discrimination enforced on journalists and women in Iran under the mullahs’ rule, in recent years the number of female journalist and editorial teams in newspapers has increased. Today half of the journalist and editorial team of newspapers are formed by women.
Based on statistics from the Ministry of Culture and Guidance, in March 2010, women comprised 44% of all journalists in Iran, while in 1992 the numbers were merely 13%.
A professor of communications in Tehran’s Sureh University stated, “Around 80% of my students are girls. Journalism in Iran is a low-income job with a high risk of job loss. However, what is …
important for these girls is to gain a place in society, even if it means a low income.”
Despite this increase, female journalists are faced with many problems. A female journalist working for ‘Ebtekar’ daily said, “As women we have very low administrative authority over key and critical issues. They use us mostly in the social arena, for incidents and city news, and our male counterparts are given the important interviews. Men write the political or diplomatic analyses. The number of female editors and editor-in-chiefs may have increased, but in comparison the ratio remains very low. I can say 1 to 10.”
Based on statistics from the financial horizon website, the number of women present in financial journals is as follows: Jahane Eghtesad 0%, hamshahry 0%, Iran 25%, Keyhan 0%, Shargh 33%, Fars 40%, Khane Melat 20%, Jaame Jam 0%.
A female journalist in Fars news agency complained about the corruption among those with ties to the Revolutionary Guards working in the agency, “Those in high editorial positions are perverted. Many times they propose unprofessional relationships, and if you don’t accept, it will cost you and if they are offended they can get you fired,” she said.
The director of one of the media outlets with close ties to the government says, “The working environment for women in the media is very unsafe. Sexual passes and demands made, deprive women of normal advances, while others reach the top ranks in one unprofessional step.”