Combating the negative impacts of reality TV on girls' sense of self

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  • LValfre CHICAGO, IL
    May 29, 2012 10:18 a.m.


    "To Hutterite: Coming from a media background, I can tell you that television programming is designed to program the consumer. It's called socialization."

    Spent some time in the industry myself in Hollywood some years back. I believe you're wrong outside of product marketing. Shows, pilots, etc. are designed to fill the demand from the audience. If millions of teeny boppers will watch Jersey Shore, regardless of the content of the show and any social motives you have, the show will flourish and keep getting picked up season after season.

    It's just business. "Leave it to Beaver" shows will not get watched anymore and that's why theirs no air-time. Just like stand up comedy ... over time we've pushed the barrier on language and content. That wasn't the media pushing it on us .... we pushed it on the media.

    A long time ago I was speaking with an African American fellow who was training me on the job. I asked him about rap music and all the killing, drugs, and disrespect for woman (at the time). He said simply .... that's what sells.

    And the same with tv programming .... whatever sells.

  • CabezaMan Cottonwood Heights, UT
    May 27, 2012 11:56 p.m.

    To Hutterite: Coming from a media background, I can tell you that television programming is designed to program the consumer. It's called socialization. TV and Movie producers have known for decades the power of the big and little screen for altering our perceptions towards products they want sold and for shaping our concept of reality, including our understanding of how the world works and how we interact. The media, once thought to be the protector of freedom and liberty, the guardian of free thought, has become the greatest perpetrator of social manipulation and the "point man" in the destruction of our society. The fact that we continue to slide down the slippery slope at an increasing angle of decline and velocity, is symptomatic of our willingness to be led like sheep to the slaughter. The answer is not to sacrifice our 1st amendment rights, but we can exercise our rights to be more discretionary in our viewing selections. BTW, I can't stand "reality" television. It's so unreal.

  • jrgl CEDAR CITY, UT
    May 27, 2012 9:51 p.m.

    As I read this my 25 year old daughter is tuned into The Kardashians, an episode titled "Momager"(fights with the K clan Mom?). My daughters husband said to me that he is sad that she compares herself to others and is not happy with what they have in life. I wonder how much of this has to do with seeing reality TV? It's all status. Clothes. Cars. Fame. Makeup. Plastic surgery. Being famous for nothing more than being a reality star. Of course she's not happy with average life when she compares the fake wealth/fame of JErsey Shore, Model shows, The Bachelor, etc. As for The Bachelor, I have always been one to believe in girl power and I see nothing with 20+ contestants vying for 1 man and perhaps a dip in a hot tub. I wonder what I've done wrong as a mother, to have a daughter so caught up in reality tv & unhappy with her life circumstance. She is a college grad and we always tried to encourage education. It's frightening how much influence these shows have. bigv56: your so right, get over the fairy tale and grow up already!

  • bigv56 Cottonwood, CA
    May 27, 2012 4:07 p.m.

    Any girl who watches these shows and thinks they have anything to do with reality is an airhead who doesn't deserve a sense of self. How is this reality, get over the fairy tale view of life and grow up.

  • justhappytobehere Orem, UT
    May 27, 2012 9:34 a.m.

    There are plenty of ways to be socially aware without watching t.v. No, not everything on t.v. is junk, but a very high percentage of it seems to be. When I see ads for t.v. shows I usually find myself asking "Who watches this stuff?" Plenty of people get sucked in, and I agree with the article - young girls and women who get sucked in are negatively affected. It's sad.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    May 27, 2012 8:43 a.m.

    So called 'reality' tv is doing more harm to society than just to girls' seteem, but I'm not sure if it isn't more of a symptom than a cause. Either way, it's rubbish that shouldn't be allowed to perpetuate but there it is...

  • junkgeek Agua Dulce, TX
    May 27, 2012 7:53 a.m.

    Some of the least socially aware people I have ever met don't own TVs. Not everything on TV is junk.

  • Geebes TEMPE, AZ
    May 26, 2012 10:59 p.m.

    What I dislike about these kind of articles is that they imply that people should be entitled to hours of mindless entertainment that somehow doesn't warp your perception of reality. You know, you could just stop watching it at any time and find something better to do, or get rid of it all together (heaven forbid). Some of the most intelligent and respectable people I have ever met don't (gasp) own TVs.

  • MaryZ Logan, UT
    May 26, 2012 8:49 p.m.

    BMLT, are you for real? The show gives permission for the picture. Asking Deseret News to say they are sorry is really tacky. Those people agreed to go on the show so their pictures will be shown for better or worse. I agree with what people say you have to be crazy to go on that show. I understand that Tessa went on it for fun so I don't think that she cares. It does give a bad example of self image and love. Turn off the TV and read a book or at least watch something that will nourish your mind not pickle it.

  • srw Riverton, UT
    May 26, 2012 7:46 p.m.

    I agree with Red Headed Stranger. My daughters aren't affected by these programs because we don't watch them. There are many better things to do than watch the vast majority of TV shows.

  • A1994 Centerville, UT
    May 26, 2012 6:42 p.m.


    'The Bachelor' is kind of what's wrong with things right now. There must be at least 20 other T.V. shows that are better and at least 1000 other books that would be better still. 'The Bachelor' is sleazy.

  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    May 26, 2012 6:16 p.m.


    Are you serious? I don't care how smart these women are. Going on The Bachelor to find a husband is about the silliest thing I've ever seen. And when I see some unattractive people on this show...well, I have to say atl134 is right on this.

  • Red Headed Stranger Billy Bobs, TX
    May 26, 2012 6:09 p.m.

    Was John Carter a best selling book (series)?

  • Red Headed Stranger Billy Bobs, TX
    May 26, 2012 5:47 p.m.

    Best way to fix this problem? Don't watch reality TV. Better yet, don't watch TV. You will have a lot more time and will likely be in better shape and smarter. Don't let marketing executives in New York and Los Angeles tell you what to think or buy. Life is hard and hectic enough as it is.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    May 26, 2012 4:01 p.m.

    You think the Bachelor doesn't use attractiveness as a contestant filter?

  • BMLT Huntington Beach, CA
    May 26, 2012 1:01 p.m.

    Just need to post this , not cool to use this photo of Andy/Tessa in The Bachelor to illustrate your article. The ladies of this particular show have gone on to become successful doctors, lawyers and for Tessa,a doctorate......having their own families and really lasting friendships with each other for most of the ladies as well. Just an honest could have used another one of the show you blog about. Maybe donate o a charity of those 3 individuals would be commendable as a sorry! Thank you!