Influences of television

Has technological inventions such as the television been an influence on our lives?
It has even come to a point where when redecorating a room, the TV should be a focal point and all the other pieces of furniture are placed around to compliment it. As stated in Slack and Wise’s book, the television was said to be the reason why families come together to share a common activity. I guess that could be true, but from where I stand, the television has done the complete opposite. Instead of sitting around the dinner table and discussing our day and problems, we are sitting at different areas of the living room in almost an isolation bubble zoning in and out during the show and commercials. Instead of dinner being made at a set time where everybody can enjoy a hot meal, it is now made in consideration of the time a certain television show is on. Family life is not the only aspect that has been changed by the television. It seems as if children’s education may be geared more towards television shows rather than school. Steve Thomsen pointed out in his article, “Television’s Influence on the Family”, that more teenaged kids could name the hometown of Bart Simpson, but not be able to recall Abraham Lincoln’s hometown. And who is the Vice President of America? (Silence..) Yet they all know that Jack Dawson in the movie Titanic is played by Leonardo DiCaprio. I totally agree with Thomsen there because in highschool during my Biology 12 class, I could not remember the notes that were given, yet I easily recalled an episode of the show The Magic Schoolbus that was covering the same material. What ever happend to that show anyway?
Everything from the way families function to education, the television has inevitably shaped our culture. Classes are using more visual presentations to grasp the dwindling attention of students, and there has been more influence on beliefs when it comes to stereotypical opinions on certain genres of people. But what if we took it all away? Where would we be now without the pervasive influence of the television? Would something as simple as taking the focus point away from the television in the family room be the answer to deisolation?

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1 Comment

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One response to “Influences of television

  1. Yes, generally I agree with you about the negative influences of TV. However, what about other negative influences – lack of dicipline in particular. To take just one point you mention – sitting down to a meal together is NOT the direct fault of TV. Programmes can be recorded!! I could point out further instances but I won’t – I might get carried away on the negative influences. But please give some thought to the positive influences.

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