OWN YOUR NARRATIVE
Earlier this year, Thando Thabethe took to social media to share her experience at commercial radio station 5FM, as well as what led to her abrupt resignation. What gave her the courage to go to battle with, or rather out, the radio station? And, did she not feel that doing so would be a career-limiting move?
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I ask these questions because we have seen many an entertainment talent getting vilified and often shunned for calling out unfair treatment. Without batting an eyelid, Thando confidently states that too many lies had been told about her regarding the whole saga, and that, “You either own your narrative or everybody believes the lies. Also, it was happening to just too many people. For me, it was about telling the truth.” That said, opening up about any industry insider information does take a lot of ourage, especially as a black woman in a male-dominated stage. But, in Thando’s case, we’ve only seen her flourish after the incident – think of it as a phoenix rising from the ashes.
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YOU WILL TREATED DIFFERENTLY BECAUSE YOU’RE A WOMAN
We’ve seen Thando’s popularity soaring in the radio broadcasting space. From a weekend lifestyle show on regional radio station YFM to hosting one of the most sought-after slots (drive time) at a commercial station. One is left wondering if she has encountered any prejudice from an industry that is dominated by men.
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“Absolutely, and in every sphere. You’re punished more; scrutinised more. Even your actions are exaggerated. You don’t ever hear the phrase ‘drama king’ being referred to any man. But, if a woman even says something as little as ‘ouch!’, then she’s referred to as a ‘drama queen’.” She continues to share on women fighting for their seat at the table. “Men are forgiven more easily, and don’t have to try so hard; that is evident. You can also see it in how women in South Africa, as a whole, are leading the entertainment space – they are owning their things because we have to. We haven’t been given an option.”