Lisa Wilkinson quits Today show

October 16, 2017

Lisa Wilkinson has left Channel Nine’s breakfast show, Today, effective immediately. Media personalities, fellow broadcasters, entertainment industry folks as well as fans have taken to Twitter to praise Lisa Wilkinson’s decision to walk away from Nine over pay parity, with almost everyone saying Nine Networks need to value female employees as well. The much adored journo will become part of Network Ten’s flagship panel show The Project from January 2018.This is a sign yet that Ten intends to compete with Seven and Nine by investing in content, rather than just slashing costs with network’s incoming owners US corporation CBS definitely making a statement. Wilkinson has your blogger support because she’d acted based over a pay disparity and I say good on her.I think she’s sending a very strong message to the community.I completely appreciate her position and congratulate her for taking that stance against Nine Network.Whenever the gender pay gap is mentioned there are always those who argue it doesn’t exist, either because of differences in the way men and women work, choices women make or legislation prohibiting it. Whatever the reason, this confused rhetoric stems from a couple of sources. For example Wilkinson’s male co-host Karl Stefanovic is said to be paid AusD $2 million a year, and Nine refused to give Wilkinson a raise large enough to meet him.The first is the belief that the gender pay gap is a synonym for direct discrimination and that’s what could have led her walkout. The other scenarios is where more general misunderstanding around what the gender pay gap at Nine Network can tell us about overall inequality in the Australian employment market.It’s time to clear up how media companies like Nine Network think about the gender pay gap. It also tells us about the current and future economic security of women and the lost opportunity in human capital investment and potential.

Wilkinson new job as a host on Channel Ten’s prime-time popular news show, The Project, alongside Carrie Bickmore and Waleed Aly will no doubt be game changer. There are indications also that she’ll also host the new Sunday Project program.Wilkinson has long been a campaigner for women in the media to be treated respectfully and remunerated appropriately for their work and thats why her move deserves support from all of us who believes in gender equality and making gender pay equality come true. No one can argue that Australian employment market is highly segregated and the overall gender pay gap is driven by the differences in the way men and women work. Men tend to dominate women like the case of Karl Stefanovic who has a higher pay.There is no single answer to this challenge and it depends on the objective, however Wilkinson debate will hopefully help employers to reconsider their gender pay inequality.Wilkinson’s headline indicators across the Nine Network’s workforce are useful because they illustrate the lack of structural change that is needed to bring men and women’s average wages on par. To understand and address the gender pay gap for the next generation of workers, there’s need for a different lens for understanding the gender pay gap.The important point with Wilkinson decision is that there are a number of ways to look at the gender pay gap and its drivers. Each has its place and more importantly, each can inform the policies and initiatives needed to eliminate it and hopefully Nine Network will figure it out.For the Australian Tv fans, no doubt that when history is written, the Karl Stefanovic and Lisa Wilkinson combination will be among one of the most successful combo on Australian TV. Wilkinson’s presence had set Today show apart being the key to its high competitive ratings position for the past decade. Those of us who have read Michael Bodey’s Broadcast Wars, knows that Today show was struggling before Wilkinson joined in 2007 to compete against Sunrise during the first two years of Karl Stefanovic’s time on Today show between 2005 to 2007.Ten’s chief content officer, Beverley McGarvey is spot on when he says Wilkinson is one of the most respected journalists and television presenters in Australia and he is right to be thrilled that she has agreed to join Ten’s on air talent. Wilkinson has established her reputation as one of the most popular figure in the Tv industry and her decision changes everything for women in Australian electronic media.

Contador Harrison