Dan Bernstein's Sexist Tweet Opens Conversation to a Bigger Issue in Sports Journalism

Apr 3, 2015

 Sports radio talk personalities Dan Bernstein and Matt Speigel criticized Comcast sports sideline reporter Aiyana Cristal's on-air performance, but ended up focusing more on her body and not her work. 

Missouri School of Journalism professors Amy Simons, Earnest Perry and Mike McKean discuss the issue on KBIA-FM's weekly media criticism program, "Views of the News." 

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  Simons said she is outraged that in 2015 women are still being treated like this. 

 

"Women are seen as sex objects before we're seen as journalists."

The sports journalism industry is overwhelmingly dominated by white males. Simons says a change from "frat boy culture" can't happen until doors are opened for more women and people of color. That change needs to happen from the top down. Perry said that sports radio is not inclusive and women journalists need to be added to the mix.

"They're not expanding in terms of bringing in people who are unlike them."

The question remains, how do we cultivate this change that needs to happen? McKean says employers need to start looking beyond the beauty and find the right talent. 

Both Bernstein and Spiegel issued apologies on the air, but neither are facing disciplinary action from the station. Cristal responded to their comments calling it a cyberbullying attack