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Turkey’s top business body pushes for more gender equality in TV series

The top business body in Turkey finds gender bias in TV series that reproduces traditional stereotypes — and aims to help correct it.

Hundreds of millions of viewers across the world are watching Turkish TV series. With $350 million in revenue from foreign syndication, Turkey ranks second in the world, after the United States, in global TV series sales.

Within Turkey, studies regularly show that watching TV is the most popular social activity for youth ages 13-19, with 92.7% of Turkish teenage girls and 94% of boys. According to a study by Interpress Media Services, people in Turkey spend nine hours in front of a screen such as a smartphone, tablet or computer, including four hours watching television, though Turks are increasingly turning off TV to go online. In a striking finding, according to a recent Netflix survey spanning 22 countries, 47% of Netflix users in Turkey say it is more important for them to “watch films and TV series than have a conversation.”

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