“Work It” Cancelled After Two Shows

ABC’s entertainment chief must have experienced the world’s most rapid education over the weekend.

Although just last week he publicly declared that he didn’t “get” complaints made by transgender people about the network’s new sitcom “Work It”, it seems that media activists, critics, and a disgruntled general public somehow made him see the light- The ridiculously offensive sitcom has been cancelled after just two shows.

So what’s the takeaway here?

Well, for starters, it’s 2012. Corporate media execs – and everyone else – can “not get” trans issues at their own risk and peril.

Another takeaway is that even though the media landscape can feel overwhelming at times, ultimately our voices do matter in the fight for against hateful media representation.

The last takeaway could be the most meta of them all: how the media covers media, matters. That is to say, in this wild Internet era of ours, we’re all responsible for what we choose to draw attention to, and how we choose to do so. When the New York Times reprinted a story from the AP that used inaccurate and offensive language that failed to call transgender people, people, they were contributing to the very problem they were attempting to report on. Once again folks, from the GLAAD media reference guide, “transgender” should be used as an adjective, not as a noun.

Brooklyn, NY

Lori Adelman is a writer and advocate focusing on race, gender, and sexual and reproductive rights. In addition to serving as an Executive Director at Feministing, Lori is the Director of Global Communications at Planned Parenthood Federation of America. Lori has previously worked at the United Nations Foundation, the International Women’s Health Coalition, and Human Rights Watch, and has written for a host of print and digital properties including Rookie Magazine, The Grio, and the New York Times Magazine. She regularly appears on radio and television, and has spoken at college campuses across the U.S. about topics like the politics of black hair, transnational movement building, and the undercover feminism of Nicki Minaj. In 2014, she was named to The Root 100 list of the nation's most influential African Americans, and to the Forbes Magazine list of the "30 Under 30" successful people in media.

Lori Adelman is an Executive Director of Feministing in charge of Partnerships.

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