Juliet McKenna on “Waterstones and Gender Equality: the good, the bad, and the business case for doing better.”

Juliet E. McKenna has a hell of point to make regarding the amount of business sense it makes for book retailers to increase the diversity of their promotion tables:

So setting aside issues of natural justice between the genders, the significant thing here from a business point of view is surely the disconnect between what people actually choose to read and what they’re being offered. So where is the possible downside in offering readers a more balanced choice – and with women writers being more visible at the top of these emails rather than being relegated to the bottom?

…Yes, gender equality is a feminist issue. When it comes to bookselling it is also a commercial issue. If Waterstones wants to offer customers the discoverability which they’re not going find elsewhere, surely extending the range and rotation of books promoted in their genre sections, by male and female authors alike, to equal the choices they already offer in general fiction, is simply good business?

It is well worth reading the whole thing.