TIME’s Person of the Year title is given to the person, group, or idea that most influenced the culture, for good or for bad. I guess that’s how you end up with Lady Gaga and Sarah Palin on the same list. This year’s list also included Glenn Beck and the Tea Party, as well as the Chilean miners. Not surprisingly, Mark Zuckerberg (the founder of Facebook) and Julian Assange (the founder of Wikileaks) were on the list as well. And Zuckerberg is this year’s winner, despite Assange receiving the majority of the popular votes for the title. TIME’s managing editor Richard Stengel explained the selection process earlier this week on the Today Show.
There were only seven women on this year’s list of twenty-nine finalists. Since TIME began the award in 1927, only five women have graced the cover as Person of the Year. Which leads me to wonder: what to women have to do in order to get the recognition they deserve?
It is just me, or do other people find it repulsive that the most popular men on this list, Zuckerberg and Assange, have both been accused of sexual harassment and rape? I realize that the Person of the Year award can go to someone who has had good or bad achievements, but it would be nice if we could stop applauding people who hurt women on their scramble to get to the top of the heap.
So here’s your open thread question of the day: If we were to honor a Woman of the Year, who would it be? And what would your selection criteria be?