My philosophy toward media attention on dads has always been – “most press is good press.” As long as the media attention is positive, enlightens viewers, and doesn’t raise any red flags – I am usually not shy about participating. To be frank, I was a bit hesitant to involve our NYC Dads Group in a recent segment because the news station was Al Jazeera English.
On the one hand, this organization is known by many as an outlet for anti-American sentiment in the Middle East. On the other hand, I liked the pitch by Al Jazeera English about the segment on “the status of men.” Thanks to a few trusted friends who helped in this decision making process!
This news organization were referring to well documented trends and seemed to have done their homework. At this point, I believe our dads group is about more than just bringing attention to being an involved father as a growing trend. We want to make men feel comfortable taking on this role. Therefore, I decided to involve our dads group with an international news network that reaches over 180 million households worldwide.
That said, Al Jazeera English caught up with a bunch of dads in our group to capture us in action at a popular local children’s venue. The segment turned out slightly different than I expected, but was pleased to see a spotlight on one of our “dad”-icated group members: Josh Kross. Josh is a dad I admire, not only for taking the time to spend so much quality time with his three kids, but also because he makes the role look effortless. Gotta love an at-home dad who is quoted on international tv saying he is in the “most fulfilling job he has ever had.” Additionally, the segment includes a focus on the commission on the status of women meetings that took place at the United Nations last week, responsible for promoting gender equity, as well as a brief interview with Norway’s first male Minister of Gender Equity. Sure, the piece includes some of the same old story about the economy and recession affecting dads roles – but, isn’t that the current reality?
The clip is up on YouTube as it was initially edited before graphics were included (thanks to Al Jazeera reporter, Kristen Saloomey for sharing it)…that means it is missing all of the graphics (the names under the people interviewed, a chart about men during the recession, etc). Is this just another fluff piece? Are the segments out there on dads starting to show more depth? If not, how can news stations highlight involved dads displaying more depth in a brief 2 1/2 minute segment? Feel free to share your thoughts/comments…