Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity
Home
Yale University Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity Yale University Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity
.
.

Rudd Center Media Gallery:

Combating Weight Bias in the Media

Background

Obese people are highly stigmatized in the United States and suffer from inequalities in employment, education, and health care as a result of weight discrimination. Studies show that in addition to the mainstream media, the news media is an especially pervasive source of stigmatization against obese persons. A Rudd Center content analysis of videos that accompany online news found that 65% of videos paired with online news stories about obesity stigmatize overweight/obese adults, and 77% of videos stigmatize overweight/obese youth. Another Rudd Center content analysis of online images in new stories found that 72% of photographs paired with online news stories about obesity are stigmatizing toward obese individuals. News photographs and videos tend to portray obese individuals as headless (i.e. only from the shoulders down), from unflattering angles (e.g. with only their abdomens or lower bodies shown), and engaging in stereotypical behaviors (e.g. eating unhealthy foods or engaging in sedentary behavior). These images degrade and dehumanize obese individuals, while spreading false assumptions and oversimplifying the complex issue of obesity.

Purpose

In an effort to reduce stigmatizing portrayals of overweight and obese persons in the news, we have created a Media Gallery that provides a collection of brief, professional video clips and images that depict obese individuals in a variety of settings. These images and video clips provide a non-biased representation of adults who are overweight and obese, and are intended for use as background and b-roll video footage for the news media. Our Media Gallery can help promote accurate coverage of obesity-related topics in news reporting and challenge harmful weight-based stereotypes.

Uses

The news media can play an important role in reducing stigma toward obese individuals by improving the visual content of their news stories about obesity. Our Media Gallery is a free resource. Upon agreeing to the Terms of Use below, members of the news media are welcome to download any of the images or request free ProRes files of b-roll footage in this collection, in an effort to promote positive and fair portrayals of obese persons in their news reporting. Video clips may be used in full or edited to shorter segments to meet the needs of the news report. These images can also be used by researchers, educators, health professionals, and others (see Terms of Use below).

Read the Terms of Use and access the Video Gallery.

Read the Terms of Use and access the Image Gallery.