The Passive Voice comments on Publishers Weekly‘s annual report on salaries.

Perhaps the most interesting revelations (pay didn’t change much) were their diversity revelations. 89% of 630 respondents described themselves as white/Caucasian (about 800 altogether responded to the questionnaire). “Meanwhile, the pay gap between men and women—the other well-known imbalance in the industry—continued in 2013, even though women accounted for 74% of the publishing workforce and men only 26%. The average compensation for men in 2013 was $85,000, the same as in 2012, while average compensation for women rose to $60,750 last year, up from $56,000 the year before. Women filled at least 70% of the jobs in sales and marketing, operations, and editorial, but only 51% of the management positions.”

A while back (28 August) The Onion commented on this gender gap:

Female Interns Earn Only Three-Fourths Of College Credit That Male Counterparts Do

700WASHINGTON—According to a study published Wednesday by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, female interns earn just three-quarters of the college credit that male interns receive for the same work. “Despite completing the same photocopying, collating, and other routine internship tasks as their male counterparts, women received an average of 2.25 credits, compared with men’s average of 3.0,” read the report, which found that the credit discrepancy existed across a variety of geographical regions and industries. “There definitely seems to be a credit ceiling for women. We consistently found that even women who fetched coffee, retrieved files, or ordered printer toner better than males in similar positions were nonetheless unable to advance beyond the 75-percent limit.” The study also concluded, however, that the sexual harassment gap between male and female interns had narrowed notably in recent years, with female interns now receiving 95 percent of improper sexual advances, down some 4 percent from previous studies.

When I started out in publishing there were so many more men than women. But that’s now been reversed. It really puzzles me that the minority should still be being payed more than the average (above average just like the kids in Lake Wobegone). The most common explanation I get is that women are just less likely than men to ask for a raise. I’m not sure I altogether buy this — publishing staff, male or female, are likely to be fairly reluctant to ask for a raise whatever their gender. After all, if money was your motivation, as we so often say, you’d never have gone into the business in the first place. I suspect that the situation may be a little less extreme than the numbers suggest — after all, we do I think agree that men survive disproportionately at the top: so if one or two male managerial types respond to the survey, they, with their historically bloated pay packages, may be distorting the numbers by pushing up the average. If we looked at the average pay for say production editors I wonder if we might not see less of a gender difference. Surely as senior males retire, we can look to an evening out of pay rates as they are more and more replaced by females.