Female executives within the music industry are reportedly seething over an insensitive survey about sexual harassment.
In an effort to mine for more information about the entertainment industry’s rampant sexual harassment problem, Billboard sent a questionnaire to top female music execs.
Sources told the New York Post’s Page Six that questions included: “Have you ever witnessed or been made aware of the sexual harassment or assault of a colleague?” And more directly: “Have you ever been the subject of sexual harassment?”
Women bosses at Sony, Universal, Atlantic and Epic didn’t appreciate the tone, the Post reported. Especially given the casual nature of the surveys own follow-up questions, for example: “If your answer to Question No. 3 is yes, were you harassed by a ….” the question then offered a drop down mentions of options to choose from.
Drop-down menus and multiple-choice questions weren’t going to cut it for the female power houses.
“Perhaps Billboard should have sent it to its staff first?” a music industry vet told the Post. “All the female execs are furious about this — as if they are going to answer such personal questions like it was a multiple-choice test?”
Billboard has long been the music industry’s top entertainment brand, but is not immune to criticism or its own sexual harassment scandals. The music magazine’s chief strategist Stephen Blackwell recently resigned after a former intern accused him of harassment at a previous job, the Post reported.
Needless to say, Billboard was quick to quell any uproar over the survey and a company rep offered the Post the following statement:
“In an effort to address the sexual-harassment crisis sweeping through the entertainment industry, Billboard encouraged all levels of female executives involved in our Women in Music issue to participate in a confidential and optional survey. As the world’s largest voice in music, our goal was to better assess the prevalence of sexual misconduct within the music industry. As we develop more shared knowledge around this issue, we can better confront it and hopefully prevent negative experiences from happening in the future.”
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