3 April 2014
Society is so addicted to reality television that it has become an issue. People are not aware of the dangers that reality television can inflict on the human mind and because of this people are becoming socially unproductive. According to Herskovits, ethnocentrism is “to view your own way of life superior to all others.” This explains the behavior and reactions of the reality stars, but what we don’t realize is that, one can be ethnocentric when they watch this and judge. Reality TV shows have also evolved over the years as more and more TV shows resort to sex and violence to capture their audiences. These shows reflect negatively upon our younger viewers and it is becoming a problem. Despite all these aspects, however, there are both positive and negative aspects of reality shows. Reality TV is television programs in which real people are continuously filmed, designed to be entertaining rather than informative. It's not realist because even though it isn't scripted the situations the actors are put into are usually very strange and the fact that they know are on television makes them censor themselves. When people watch reality TV, they tend to think that what they are seeing is a true depiction of reality. Because of that, they tend to believe that what they see in TV is how life really is. This is problematic because reality TV, of course, is not exactly just real life on camera. Instead, the shows are edited to make them more interesting and exciting. On the one hand, some people believe that reality shows are very enjoyable. Furthermore, it is sometimes argued that these programmes can be educative. For example, reality shows may make us more sympathetic, because we learn more about other people’s problems. Reality TV has made a large impact on contemporary popular culture in a short time. It had allowed viewers to travel to be places and experience diverse cultures. Unlike many television programs, reality TV allows viewers a chance to experience the drama and emotion of real individuals in real life situations. The future direction of reality TV may be difficult to guess, but one can be sure that reality TV "is here to stay" (Huff 11). Reality TV is popular with views because people watch and they get mixed feelings about different characters and they find it entertaining. People watch these TV shows and they are entertained but they also try and figure out what they would do in the situations that the characters are in. They want to be a part of other cultures and because other people talk about this show they want to be able to talk about it as well. One the other hand, other people think that reality shows are too sensational. Another reason for criticizing the shows is that they are not always enjoyable for the contestants. It is well known that some contestants have experienced unhappiness or even depression as a consequence of appearing on a reality show. Reality TV is it is often cruel, exposing the participants to gross humiliation for our amusement. This makes it the modern equivalent of going to laugh at the lunatics in Bedlam. The present row over racism on Big Brother shows how nasty it can be. It exploits the vulnerable, and has been condemned by the Mental Health Foundation for doing so. Reality TV is vulgar and shoddy. By creating pseudo-celebrities it contributes to the debasement of popular taste (Edwards). The drawbacks of reality TV shows are that some of the TV shows are not setting a good example to teenagers, the characters swear, drink, and under the influence of alcohol, the characters may behave in a more aggressive way. And some may think that channels should not be feeding that to the younger generation. It gives the contestants little privacy and it may cause them embarrassment. There are many different issues with reality TV shows. The characters or contestants may be annoyed by how the cameras follow them around...
Cited: “Pros and Cons of Reality TV Shows.” The Week with the First Post 25 Oct. 2008: A3.
Huff, Richard M. Reality TV Has Some Positive Attributes. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2004.
Breyer, Richard. Reality TV Has a Negative Influence on Society. Washington, D.C.:
Praeger, 2004. Print.
Herskovits J. Melville. “Cultural Relativism and Cultural Values.” New York: Random
House. (1972): 11-34. Print.
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