WIFT apologises for tone of ‘Tell us who is Australia’s Harvey Weinstein’ online survey

Industry body Women In Film and Television has apologised for an email to its members regarding alleged Hollywood predator Harvey Weinstein. The message led to some complaints from members that it triggered personal memories of previous negative experiences.

The email message, sent out late last week, had the subject line: ‘Tell us who is Australia’s Harvey Weinstein’.

The initial email sent out to promote the ‘Tell us who is Australia’s Harvey Weinstein’ survey

On Monday WIFT sent a follow-up email responding to concerns raised about the tone of the message used to promote the survey, and this time containing a trigger warning. It stated:

“The recent sexual harassment reports levelled against Harvey Weinstein have reignited the conversation regarding our own industry. In our urgency to address this we sent out an email inviting you all to respond to our yearly survey – which includes a small section dedicated to harassment and discrimination.

“We have received support for this from members and also some criticisms. To those who have raised concerns regarding the wording and tone – thank you. We appreciate your feedback.

“We know that speaking out about abuse is a deeply personal decision. We fully honour and recognise the journey of all survivors and apologise for any hurt that we may have inadvertently brought about in our email. To those who have requested trigger warnings, we hear you and are creating a protocol to protect you to the best of our abilities in all future occasions.

“We are very serious about addressing these issues head on. Our charter is to support and advocate for all women in the screen industry. Our intention is to provide a safe and anonymous place for all those affected by this issue to have their voices heard.”

WIFT was set up in 1982 with a goal of improving the position and representation of women in the film and TV industries.

In a statement to Mumbrella, a spokesperson from WIFT NSW, said: “We are learning how to deal with a confrontational subject without triggering the very women we are trying to support. Our apology was for the hurt that we caused.

“We are committed to continuing to listen and educate ourselves so that we can advocate for women in the industry in the most effective way possible.”

Details of how to complete the survey are available on the WIFT website.


About four years ago Australia’s screen industry had planned a three-day festival in Canberra to celebrate the career of Weinstein called “Body of Work: Harvey Weinstein”, which was abruptly cancelled with just a fews days’ notice, with a knee injury blamed for the move.

In something of an irony, members of the Women In Film & TV group, WIFT, were offered a 10% discount on attending the events.

The event which was officially postponed but never rescheduled was set to have Chaser presenter Julian Morrow as the host alongside a panel of Australian actors Rachel Griffiths, Guy Pearce and Geoffrey Rush. And ABC Radio National’s film critic Jason Di Rosso had been due to interview the producer in a session entitled “On The Couch”.

Canberra International Film Festival was unable to provide Mumbrella with any further information on the event or additional background on why it had not gone ahead at the time.


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