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Fisher Alumnus Contributes to TIME’S UP Now Report on Bias in Media Coverage

October 18, 2020

Earlier this fall, TIME’S UP Now commissioned Edelman Data & Intelligence (DxI) to analyze media coverage of the announcement of Senator Kamala Harris as the Democratic vice presidential candidate, and compare it to announcements of candidates Mike Pence and Tim Kaine in 2016.

Evren Durmaz ’18

St. John Fisher College alumnus Evren Durmaz ’18, an associate research analyst with Edelman Data & Intelligence, contributed to the analysis, which was released online ahead of the vice presidential debate held earlier this month.

For the report, DxI analysts compared the ways in which the three candidates were positioned and described by top-tier U.S. media, looking at both overt and coded language around potential racist, ethnic, religious, or sexist stereotypes. As a member of the research team, Durmaz analyzed a sample of Harris’ media coverage, manually coding (or tagging) articles for race, gender, key topics, policy, descriptors, and influencer commentary mentions.

“Having my contributions to this project be delivered to an impactful client whose mission is to help change culture is extremely rewarding,” said Durmaz, who majored in media management while at Fisher. “Being a part of this project is definitely a highlight of my career so far at Edelman DxI.”

The project is part of the We Have Her Back campaign, an independent, non-partisan, rapid response movement that seeks to disrupt sexist and racist coverage and conversation about women candidates of both parties.