Steven Johnson wrote an article for the New York Times in which he argues that back in the days, television shows use to have a very simple plot which was easy to follow without too much attention. It was just an other way to sit back and relax. However, throughout the years, viewers grew tired of this situation and demanded more complex plot lines with multiple story lines that related to recent news topics. He takes the example of the television show “24”. “24” is known for being the first show which its plot occurs in “real-time”, it is also known for not censuring the violence of its topics. It is a drastic change from what Johnson states as an example “Starsky and Hutch” where basically each episodes was only a repetition of the last one. Johnson also believes that there is a misconception of the mass culture nowadays where people think the television viewer wants dumb shows which in response makes them dumber. Johnson does not agree, for him, television shows such as “24” are “nutritional”. He also states that sm...
Steven Johnson wrote “Beneath the violence and the ethnic stereotypes, another trend appears: to keep up with entertainment like 24, you have to pay attention, make inferences, track shifting social relationships”(p. 214) in his article Watching Tv Makes You Smarter. So underneath all that violence and all that non pc like behavior in one of the highest rated television shows of my last ten years of living, I’m supposed to delve deeper, and see what’s really lying underneath all “that”. All the interlacing plotlines and developed characters will actually make me smarter. I don’t think so.
The "peek-a-boo" world of television is one in which the medium assembles disconnected facts in a "pseudo-context" (76) structure designed to make them more coherent and relevant. This structure is false creating a world that is "endlessly entertaining" (77) but does not allow for critical thinking. Information is shown to the audience so quickly that it does not allow them to think critically about it.
Television has long been a part of American culture. From its conception until today there have been people who believe that television is a waste of time and energy and there have been those in the opposite camp who believe that television should be a part of every American life. There is also a middle ground of people who watch television to keep informed on what’s happening in the world as well as entertained by the latest sitcom, or more popularly today, reality show.
Television has given each of us a podium to voice our ideas on all sorts of social and political issues and share information with one another. It has brought out stress-free ways of communication and provided us with simply accessible means to reach out to people in numerous parts of the world. Thanks to technological development, we have been capable to achieve a podium that allows us to present ourselves to the rest of the world. The negative influences of television that are a result of an overexposure to it, are most often talked about. It is accurate to a certain degree that television has affected the society in a negative manner. But, unquestionably, television has proved being an enjoyment.
One of the mediums by which this cultural shift has continually happened is through television. Not only does culture affect choices made by those in the television industry, but popular series and talk shows, whether intentionally or not, name what culturally acceptable regarding many social issues. Television, TV for short, is referring to the telecommunication medium by which ideas are transmitted into moving pictures. The Television industry will be defined as the group of brains behind the creating process of a television show of any genre. Genres each have their own purpose and effect on the audience; talk shows mean to engage, while sitcoms, drams, mini-series, and television comedies are meant to entertain. Regardless of its intentions, each genre of TV has an affect on the people who internalize what they are watching.
Television has become one of the major entertainment providers in our modern life. It sits in the living room of about almost every home in the world and it is the one thing that most people like to come home to after a long day of work or school. Not only does it give us something to laugh or get scared at but it also provides us with valuable information about what is happening around our local community and around different places in the world. But, as good as this sounds, Television may be affecting us without even realizing it. Being one of the major distractors in today 's society, it gets us attached to its content in which a lot of people spend a lot of their time watching. Being thus, watching too
Presently 98% of the households in the United States have one or more televisions in them. What once was regarded as a luxury item has become a staple appliance of the American household. Gone are the days of the three channel black and white programming of the early years; that has been replaced by digital flat screen televisions connected to satellite programming capable of receiving thousands of channels from around the world. Although televisions and television programming today differ from those of the telescreens in Orwell’s 1984, we are beginning to realize that the effects of television viewing may be the same as those of the telescreens.
When it comes to the topic of television, most of us would readily agree that watching television is a waste of time. Where the agreement usually ends, however, is on the question of “are there shows that increase our intelligence?” and what pleasure do some television show bring to us? I would say there are some great shows that increase our intelligence. Shows like “Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader?” this kind of show puts the brain to work; thinking. There are some other shows that tend to convince us that watching television seduces our mind. I find Johnson’s argument about his article “watching television makes you smarter” confusing because he was not actually picking sides in the article and Steven’s “Thinking Outside The Idiot Box” argument about how “it’s really good at teaching you to think… about the future episode” (Steven, 296). Although I agree with the author of “Watching Television Makes you Smarter” Johnson to an extent, I cannot accept that he overlooks how much time people spends each day watching television.
Through repetition, certain elements of television programming constitute an informal curriculum taught at home to all children, beginning at an early age, with the following themes: Consumption, sex, violence and anti-intellectualism. Children only spend five or six hours a day, five days a week, maybe 30 weeks a year in school. In the average home, however, TV is on six or seven hours a day, seven days a week, 52 weeks a year. As the first arm of organized society that children meet, it has the effect of "sanctioning" or socially certifying whatever and whoever appears on the screen. Its compelling complex of sound, pictures and text largely determines which issues, people and actions, we regard as "real" or important.