diversity

Beyond Tokenism – Cardiff

Creative Diversity Network and RTS Wales are inviting the Welsh unscripted production community to take part in an in-depth conversation about diversity and representation on-screen. 

Areas for consideration include casting diverse contributors (with a particular focus on disabled and BAME contributors), appropriate use of language and reflecting the whole of Wales.

This is an opportunity for everyone to share their own experiences and open up the discussion on the challenges and choices around representation.

Broadcast Hotshots shine at RTS Futures event

RTS Futures and Broadcast Magazine BAME Hotshots Christmas Party at the Hospital Club

RTS Futures turned the spotlight on TV’s diversity – or lack of it – at its final event of the year where a panel of young Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) talent revealed their struggles and triumphs in the industry.
 
The panel was drawn from Broadcast’s 26 BAME Hot Shots of 2015, which the magazine announced in August.
 

Defining diversity: More than a numbers game

ITV press advert published on 19 September (Credit: ITV)

If you thought that defining diversity was easy, think again. As the chair of a stimulating and thought-provoking RTS event, Aaqil Ahmed, formerly the head of religion and ethics at the BBC, concluded: “Diversity in itself is diverse. For me, that understanding of it isn’t there for a lot of people.… It’s not a numbers game… diversity is very complicated.”

Throughout the “Defining diversity? That’s easy” session, attempts to provide a definition that all the panel could agree on proved elusive.

Defining diversity - it’s more complex than a numbers game

“Diversity is all of us,” said Creative Strategy consultant Ally Castle, a former programme maker and audience insights expert for the BBC.  

“If you look at the nine protected characteristics under the Equality Act (age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual orientation, marriage and civil partnership and pregnancy and maternity) we all have those characteristics.  

“It’s just that some of us are under-represented in the TV industry, on screen and perhaps in wider society.  

The TV industry needs to appeal to broader audiences, says panel at RTS WoE event

“The [TV] industry genuinely is changing for the better, but we are where we are because lots of people have talked about stuff and not enough people have done anything,” added the CEO of Plimsoll Productions.

“We’re trying to appeal to broad audiences. How on earth can we do that if it’s all being seen through the prism of a bunch of middle-class white people? They should be part of the group, not the whole bloody group.”

Mansfield was part of a panel assembled for an RTS West of England webinar in late June discussing the health of the region’s TV production.

Seetha Kumar: Champion for TV talent

Seetha Kumar

It is the best of times: the television business is booming. It is the worst of times: there is a skill shortage, so wage costs are soaring. Yet shouldn’t that make it the best of times again? Won’t television be forced to find and train a new generation of programme-makers who won’t all be white and middle class? This, I tell Seetha Kumar, the ambitious chief executive of ScreenSkills, is a battle she can win.

Deborah Williams’ TV diary

Deborah Williams

It is always a pleasure to start the working week in your PJs and know that you can stay in them for most of the day, having meetings without anyone knowing or caring.

It is one of the rare weeks when I will spend the majority of it out of London. I am going to Manchester to attend an awards ceremony where I have been nominated for an Inclusive Companies award.

Creative Diversity Network tackles lack of regional diversity with RTS West of England

The series of events, which are taking place at RTS centres across the UK, are an attempt to find regional solutions to the lack of diversity in the television industry.

Representatives from a range of independent production companies and post-production facilities discussed diversity in the West of England production community. 

The discussion was led by the facilitator, performance poet and film-maker Alison Smith, the access and engagement coordinator of the Scottish Queer International Film Festival. She focused on how best to hire and retain diverse talent.