UK: Ad industry blasts ‘sensationalist coverage’ of Jo Wallace and JWT legal case in Daily Mail

Article here. Excerpt:

'On Friday, July 23, The Daily Mail detailed the case, speaking to Chas Bayfield and a representative of Jenner about their fears of being discriminated against at the agency. Bayfield said: “There is a part of me that feels guilty that these laws, that were put in place to protect minorities in the workplace as they should be, have protected a couple of middle-aged, straight, British men. But it is also right the judge found in our favor because it wasn’t right. I definitely agreed that there had to be a way to address the diversity issues, but I don’t think it was gone about the right way.”

However, The Mail’s retelling of events heavily focused on Wallace and her diversity agenda, despite the workplace claim not being directed against her, or her having any hand in the redundancy process – a line that the Mail mentions at the conclusion of the report. It repeatedly mentions that Wallace is gay – the word is used seven times, including twice in the headline – and shared multiple images of her wearing a bikini. Furthermore, detailed is her “£1.2m house in trendy east London”.

These are among some of the elements that have been condemned in the industry. LGBT+ ad group Outvertising said it was “angered by The Daily Mail’s divisive reporting of the JWT sex discrimination case” and added that it “unnecessarily brings Jo Wallace’s sexual orientation into a nuanced and complex narrative”.

Holding company WPP also said it was “appalled by the reporting of this case by some media and the personal attacks on Jo Wallace are totally unacceptable”, and continued: “We continue to make clear to the press that Jo had nothing to do with the redundancy decisions.”'

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