Title IX Twitter Chat: #fail
Another day, another unimpressive Twitter chat.
Tuesday’s Title IX tweetchat, hosted by the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) with Jon Carson, the Director of Public Engagement at the White House, proved to be a self-aggrandizing, fact-fleeting, accountability-lacking publicity stunt. “Submit your questions w/hashtag #WHTitleIX,” NWLC told the public. “Join the conversation at 3pm ET today #WHTitleIX!” encouraged Jon Carson.
But what took place was anything but a dialogue. Here’s what happened:
The forum had 105 tweets total. 33 advertised the event, telling people how and when to follow along. 18 throwaway “questions” were submitted from both identified and unidentified employees and interns from activist groups like NWLC, Equal Rights Advocates, American Association of University Women (AAUW) and the National Council of Women’s Organizations (NWCO). Jon Carson acknowledged 5 of those tweets with links, and the NWLC answered one. And finally, 17 tweets came from the same activists who took advantage of the public setting to promote their own reports and blog posts that provided no new insight.
So, in other words, approximately 70 percent of the tweets came from the hosts and activist organizations to push their similar agendas, reiterate the same old talking points and pat each other on the back.
But don’t think we didn’t try to get a response out of them. ASC submitted 16 questions or counterarguments, asking everything from why they were threatening booster clubs to whether it’s time to move away from proportionality after all of the opportunities it has eliminated for men. ASC communications director Jim McCarthy submitted 5 questions or rebuttals to elicit a response from the White House on whether Title IX enforcement has had some negative impact on sports and to get astroturf Twitter accounts in the forum to admit that they set up accounts because so few people showed up.
How many people answered us? ZERO.
Not that we needed a reminder, but the White House and activists have made it clear yet again that they do not welcome dissenting viewpoints. Their failed leadership has shown us that there currently are no discussions on Title IX that people can partake in — unless of course you work with them or support them monetarily (we’re looking at you, ESPN).
Their actions and words on the eve of the 40th anniversary of Title IX are offensive, but we will not be deterred. We are ready as ever to point out biased reporting, one-sided talks and disparate harms caused by enforcement regulations in the hopes of getting Title IX reform underway.