With producing reality shows comes producing inaccuracies in portrayals in order to reach as many viewers and gain as high ratings as possible. Every day life is boring, yet people tend to be attracted to the relatable shows that portray real life in eccentric ways – ways that they believe could be imitated. In many cases, these shows could remain harmless, as it is entertainment. No matter how crude or erroneous, it is just television. However, what happens when these sources of amusement actually start being damaging? Crime shows like the ever popular CSI:Crime Scene Investigation have started becoming significantly detrimental to criminal cases, influencing their perceptions of what should realistically be going on. This includes mostly jurors with acquittal rates and wrongful convictions, but researchers have also started to find a rising fault in the prosecution.
In the following literature review, scholarly and peer-reviewed journals, articles from popular news media, and surveys have been synthesized to contribute to the conversation pertaining to forensics in pop culture in the courtroom. This conversation has become a growing topic of interest over just the past few years since these crime shows first started appearing on the air.
Forensics in Pop Culture.
What exactly are these shows that are causing so much controversy in the criminal justice and forensic science fields? The more well known CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, reeling in almost 60 millions views a week (Cole & Dioso-Villa 1), and all its spin offs including CSI: Miami and CSI: New York, as well as video games emulating episodes, but also rising in the ranks include Bones, Castle, Criminal Minds, The First 48, Forensic Files, Law and Order...
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...Michael D. Mann, Comment, “The 'CSI Effect': Better Jurors through Television and Science?,” 24 Buff. Pub. Int. L. 211 (2006)
4. Roane, Kit R. “The CSI Effect: On TV, It's All slam-dunk evidence evidence and Quick Convictions. Now Juries Expect the Same Thing – and That's a Big Problem.” U.S. News & World Report (2005)
5. Shelton, Hon, et al. “ Study of Juror Expectations and Demands Concerning Scientific Evidence: Does the 'CSI Effect' Exist?.” Vanderbilt Journal of Entertainment & Technology Law 9.2 (2007): 331-368
6. Stevens, Dennis J. “ Forensic Science, Wrongful Convictions, and American Prosecutor Discretion.” Howard Journal of Criminal Justice 47.1 (2008): 31-51. Academic Search Premier. Web. 5 Feb. 2014.
7. Tyler, Tom R. “Viewing CSI and the Threshold of Guilt: Managing truth and Justice in Reality and Fiction.” The Yale Law Journal (2006): 1050-1085
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- Introduction. With producing reality shows comes producing inaccuracies in portrayals in order to reach as many viewers and gain as high ratings as possible every week with each new episode. Every day life is boring, yet people tend to be attracted to the relatable shows that portray real life in eccentric ways – ways that they believe could be imitated by the average person. In many cases, these shows could remain harmless, as it is entertainment. No matter how crude or erroneous, it is just television.... [tags: criminal justice, forensic science, juror]
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