How race is represented online and in popular media is something that has become more and more of a discussion point over the last few years. You may have heard of #blackoutday which was a movement online to celebrate the underrepresented black faces across the world. The movement was most popular on twitter and tumblr.
Underrepresentation of race’s in the media is not just an online issue, with mediums like television also being a place where races are incorrectly represented. After doing a little research I found this study from 2008, that found while 32% of the US population was caucasian males, they were represented on cable TV 57%, while other demographics including Latino men, who made up 8% of the population, were only represented 1%.
These representations have been changing, particularly after 9/11 which lead to the creation of characters from Arab or Muslim decent, and emphasized highlight that Arab and Muslim Americans were not the enemy, that Arab and Muslim terrorists were. However, TV shows began to portray these minorities in America as the “unjust victim[s] of post-9/11 discrimination”. Now this is all well and good, except for the issue that this attempt to avoid racism brings out – that Arabs and Muslims still have to deal with discrimination.
This is why we need to make our representations accurate, and help use them to shape a society that isn’t full of d**ks.