WABI covers ‘Media and #MeToo’ panel discussion

WABI (Channel 5) reported on “The Media and #MeToo” panel discussion held at the University of Maine. Brett Anderson, reporter with the New Orleans Times-Picayune, took part in the panel as the 2018 Alan Miller Fund Visiting Journalist. Last fall, Anderson reported on sexual harassment in the business empire of celebrity chef John Besh. “The environment the story was released into was really different than the environment in which it was reported, and that I think has contributed to the response that it got,” Anderson said. “We were just reporting on a story that happened in New Orleans that we thought was important and it happened to strike a chord that it was ringing around the country.” “What’s really fascinating about ‘MeToo’ is that it is a purely social media movement. It was not originally connected to any other offline activity,” said Judith Rosenbaum, an assistant professor in the Department of Communication and Journalism, who took part in the discussion. “It’s a great example of how people can use social media platforms to, you know, change public consciousness.” The panelists said while the movement is not slowing down on social media, there is still change that needs to happen in the workplace. “I think if we promote more women, the more women that we have at the top, the less likely women will be harassed at the top,” said panelist Amy Blackstone, a professor in the Department of Sociology and the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center. Susan Gardner, director of the Rising Tide Center, moderated the discussion.