Primetime Coverage Of Female Olympic Athletes On NBC Was Almost Equal To Men's

Source: Matthew Stockman/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images

It's no secret that portrayals of women on television are very limited, so we're happy to find out that NBC's Olympics coverage pushed back against this trend. According to data analysis by the University of Alabama, NBC's primetime telecasts featured female athletes 41 percent of the time. That's almost as much as they featured male athletes, who took up 45 percent of the telecasts. The other 14 percent was for mixed-gender events. 

While that's still a minor gender gap (4 percent), this is huge progress from 1994, when the average Olympic gender gap in primetime telecasts was 20 percent. So what prompted the near-equity in this year's telecasts? In short, figure-skating: This year, NBC televised 5.5 hours of women's figure-skating. Men's figure-skating, on the other hand, had 2 hours 42 minutes of coverage. We're guessing Ashley Wagner, Gracie Gold, and Yulia Lipnitskaya heated up the competition.

While NBC has (almost) caught up with the Olympics coverage, we're still waiting on several others: the tech industry, the publishing industry, and Hollywood, to name a few. For now, though, let's celebrate the female athletes that we had the chance to see so much of these past weeks. 

We can watch Yulia Lipnitskaya's first amazing performance that earned her the media spotlight...

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Or, Czech Republic's Eva Samkova winning the gold in Women's Snowboardcross...

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Or we can just have some fun with Ashley Wagner's viral Olympic-face meme.



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