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How Sydney Brownstone learned to be a ‘rape reporter’

Sexual assault is sometimes called an under-reported epidemic in the United States. In support of that assertion, a 2017 poll found that almost half of American women say they have been sexually assaulted.

The #MeToo movement has opened a door to more and better reporting on rape and sexual assault issues. Walking through and into that space comes with myriad complications. In this conversation, KUOW journalist Sydney Brownstone discusses her approach to making those steps carefully, ethically and professionally.

Brownstone spoke with Seattle University professor Sonora Jha, whose research focuses on the press, politics, the Internet, race, and feminism. Their talk covers the importance of thorough fact checking, the question of what role empathy plays in this reporting, why accusers sometimes tell their stories to journalists instead of the police and what impact sexual assault reporting is having on our culture and the law.

Sydney Brownstone spoke with Sonora Jha at Seattle University’s Campion Ballroom on February 26. The event was presented by SU’s College of Arts and Sciences and KUOW. Sonya Harris recorded the conversation.

Please note: This recording contains themes and unedited language of an adult nature.