Why reality shows are so popular

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Every day, millions of people turn on their televisions to indulge in a wide variety of shows, the most popular choice being some form of reality television. This catch-all genre is somewhere between information and entertainment and contains all types of programming involving everyday individuals. Some debate that this type of programming is senseless and debased, where others view it as amusing as well as enlightening. Regardless of which side a person may agree with, there is still one undeniable fact: reality television is here to stay. The target audience, the cost of production, and the ability to give the viewer an outlet are three main reasons why this is possible. Though many people of all ages enjoy viewing different reality television shows, the majority are marketed towards teenagers and young adults. Shows like the Real World, American Idol, and Dancing with the Stars and many others are all supported by hundreds of websites regarding hidden facts, merchandise, news about certain cast members, as well as other fan activities. (Hill 5) There are even episode summaries for those who may not have been able to catch it at the time in which it was aired. By utilizing other aspects of communication, reality television is able to keep a firm hold on the younger community who thrive off of all things internet-accessible. In addition to being able to access reality television via internet, research has shown that many of the preteen to teenage viewers base most of their decisions and prioritize things based off what they see every night on their favorite shows. In 2011, a survey of over 1000 American girls between 11 and 17 was held. Those who viewed more reality television most often put a higher value on things emphasized on... ... middle of paper ... ...ratings are, the more there will be a need for cheap production ideas to sell. Because reality television doesn’t require the extra production crews or writing staff, it will always be the first choice. By casting regular, everyday people, viewers will always have that next best character to relate to or emulate. So will reality television be phasing itself out anytime soon? The facts speak for themselves. Works Cited Hill, Annette. Reality TV : Audiences And Popular Factual Television. London: Routledge, 2005. eBook Collection (EBSCOhost). Web. 10 Apr. 2014. Weller, Chris. "Welcome To My Un-Reality." Newsweek Global 162.6 (2014): 106-110. MasterFILE Elite. Web. 10 Apr. 2014. "Reality Television." Issues & Controversies On File: n. pag. Issues & Controversies. Facts On File News Services, 11 Jan. 2008. Web. 14 Apr. 2014. .

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