The Older People in the Media Awards 2014 are now open for nominations. Created by older people’s charity, Independent Age, and sponsored by Barchester Healthcare, the awards recognise and reward the best examples of media coverage concerning older people’s issues. They aim to encourage wider public debate about older people in society, and the issues affecting them.
Nominations can include coverage across the media, from hard hitting writing or programming which helps bring older people’s issues to the fore, to the best portrayals of older people in films or TV drama, to emotive or celebratory photography. The awards shine a light on those who are helping to make a difference to the way older people are portrayed and represented in the media.
The Older People in the Media Awards are now in their third year. Winners from previous years have included, amongst others, BBC1 Controller, Danny Cohen for his brave and groundbreaking season of BBC1 documentaries, When I’m 65, Dame Maggie Smith for her feisty, funny portrayal of the Dowager Lady Grantham in Downton Abbey, and Louis Theroux for his sensitive exploration of living with dementia in his documentary, Extreme Love.
The awards have also recognised the excellence of lesser-known names such as dementia care worker and social media enthusiast, Darren Gormley, who last year saw off a host of media heavyweights such as BBC1’s Panorama, Channel 4’s Dispatches and BBC News to be crowned the event’s champion of champions.
This year’s chair of judges, TV and radio journalist and broadcaster, John Sergeant, said of the awards,
“Older people are not a homogenous group, and no one, including the media, should make assumptions about them based solely on their age. I am proud to be a part of this year’s Media Awards, which recognise and celebrate those in the media who are working so hard to highlight just how astonishing older people can be, and who, through their work, are recognising the importance of the issues they face. These awards are important – they not only recognise and reward good journalism, but they will help offset the casual ageism that sadly is all too common throughout the media.”
This year’s categories are:
1) Best factual newspaper or magazine article about older people’s issues
2) Best factual radio programme about older people’s issues
3) Best factual TV programme about older people’s issues
4a) Best factual new media content (written) about older people’s issues
4b) Best factual new media content (video) about older people’s issues
5) Best coverage of issues around dementia (Barchester special award)
6) Best use of photography to illustrate older people’s issues
7) Best independent voice on older people’s issues (Independent Age special award)
8) Best older person’s character in a film, TV or radio drama (Gransnet special award, voted on by the readers of Gransnet)
9) The ‘Thorn’ Award: worst example of stereotyping, factual error or misleading information in the coverage of older people’s issues.
The awards will culminate in an overall ‘winner of winners’, selected from the winners of the other nine categories. All winners will be announced at a special ceremony in central London on the evening of Thursday 13 November 2014.
Submitting nominations is easy and free. We are also happy to accept self-nominations from journalists and photographers.
Nominate through the Independent Age website www.independentage.org (where you can also find further information about the awards and the full criteria for each category) or email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Nominations must have first appeared in the media between Thursday 15 August 2013 and Thursday 14 August 2014. The closing date for nominations is midday on Monday 18 August 2014.