Truth in Pictures: What Google Image Searches Tell Us About Inequality at Work
Gretchen Hellman
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Stock images are supposed to be stereotypical though. The whole point of them is to provide an image for a topic that instantly recalls the topic to the viewers mind without an explanation. That’s what they’re selling. If women are a minority in CEO roles, then they will show in a minority of images about CEO’s, because that’s what the market expects. You can’t expect image producers to make images, at costs to themselves, when nobody is going to buy them. I understand that it might help perceptions a bit, and I understand and sympathize with people who want to see things that encourage them, but I’m sure this is not exactly a high margin business, and people who make stock photos have to make sales numbers in order to stay in business. If they offer too many images that don’t look like what people expect to see, that just won’t happen.

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