27/09/2014

A Female Award Is Not Sexist

Last year I received the "Best Female Blog" award at the Football Blogging Awards. Before the awards ceremony, I wrote a blog titled "Is Division Sexism?" The purpose of the blog was to clarify my views on whether having a separate award for females, and males, was sexist - as opposed to having a singular best blogger award.

Some people believed that having a specific female category was sexist towards females, in that it implied that perhaps women were not capable of competing for a singular best blog award.

As the blogging awards season is upon us, I have decided to write another piece regarding my decisions to enter the female category.

As many of my website readers will know, I try my very hardest to tackle issues of sexism within the football industry. Some of these pieces have been criticised by those who believe that sexism is not a huge problem within the industry.

However, as an aspiring sports journalist I can honestly say it is a huge problem - specifically in the blogging sphere. This is because I believe that there is an underlying sexist tone within our society, which in turn affects readership of blogs.

By this I mean, that occasionally readers of websites may be subconsciously sexist. Due to the nature of the football industry being considered as a "mans world", it is actually understandable that some people still hold the belief that women do not know a lot about football, and therefore these people may not choose to read pieces written by female journalists or bloggers.

It is for this reason that I think the female blog category within the Football Blogging Awards is an absolutely excellent set-up which deserves high commendations.

The fact that the awards recognises that women are not only capable, but excellent at blogging about football, means that the highest achieving female bloggers get the opportunity of recognition from a wider audience than they would otherwise be exposed to.

The best male category of the awards has been scrapped this year, however I do not feel that this is sexist. As predominantly most bloggers that achieve recognition are male. For example, having explored the winners of last years Football Supporters Federation awards, I found that all finalists for both the blogger award and the sports writer award were all male. That is, no females were finalists for either awards.

While some people may argue that this may be because women are simply not writing about football at a similar standard to males, I would completely disagree. 

I know many women that write excellently about football - and you can find some of their blogs on my "Blogs I Like" page. 

The reason I choose to enter the female category in these awards, as opposed to the "new" or "club" categories, is because I believe that the female category actively contributes to solving the problem of sexism within football journalism.

As I have said, this is because it gives female writers a far greater exposure, and a far greater chance of recognition, than if they were to enter other categories where the male candidates are likely to have a greater following and greater readership, due to what I believe is a subconscious sexist undertone in football blog readership.

I also believe that my blog directly tackles sexism within football. The female category epitomises what I as a person, and what 90 Minutes More is about as a website. I do not blog about clubs, and although I am a new blog, my aim as a website owner is to encourage recognition of other female writers, such as @Yicetor, @LFCKirstyLFC and @BantamsBlogger - who are all absolutely superb writers.

Therefore I choose to enter the female category, because I want females to be recognised as excellent football writers. I don't find the category inherently sexist because I believe that it gives me, and other female writers, an opportunity for greater exposure and recognition - which I believe we, as a collective, completely deserve.

So no, I do not think that a female category within the Football Blogging Awards is sexist. I believe it is a fantastic, and progressive choice that the awards are making to recognise female football writers.

If you would like to vote for me in the football blogging awards then you can tweet: "I am voting in @TheFBAs for @annalouiseadams as best #Female football blog"

Thank you for reading.

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