Getting addicted to reality shows

Getting addicted to reality showsGetting addicted to reality shows

Subsequent to the incessant era of soap operas, reality shows have emerged out as widely held television shows amongst the viewers. For fairly a long...

Subsequent to the incessant era of soap operas, reality shows have emerged out as widely held television shows amongst the viewers. For fairly a long time, reality shows have been in operation either in the layouts of dancing, singing or any other talent evidencing shows.

However, most profoundly, reality shows have taken the hoist after the success of Big Brother — a television reality game show. It is centred on an originally Dutch TV series of the same name created by producer John de Mol in 1997. The series commenced on July 5, 2000, to an effectual start.

As the approval of the Big Brother show has grown by leaps and bounds, producers of many national and regional television show got enticed to the format of the show. The never before buzz created by the reality shows that mushroomed in the big brother concept has been remarkable.

The present-day reality shows rely on showcasing melodrama, either to be in news or to acquire the highest TRP ratings — as it is evident through various analyses. As usual, the media conglomerates whose main focus is to make more profits out of their shows, never bother about the ill effects of these reality shows.

Predominantly, the worst effects are seen in teens who seek to vie with their behaviour. Without ever realising the reality behind the shows they watch on the television screen, the amateur teens imitate those performances to achieve nothing more than angst.

Some of the reality shows are meanderingly shattering the talents of the students. In a recent episode of one of the reality shows, as part of their task, few questions were posed to the participants. The so-called celebrities could not even answer such simple questions as the highest civilian award in India.

Such let-downs from popular figures would yield negative traits among all the audiences in general, and children in particular. Thus, they construct behavioural problems for the reason that children tend to draw inspiration from their role models. Even their anti-climaxes become a sort of inducement to the masses, as found in many studies.

If we clearly study the reality shows (as such not considering the singing and dancing shows), most of them are provocative due to the sensationalism created by these shows. Of course, there is always a possibility of the flip side of this viewpoint. However, as most people would admit, these shows of reality gyrate around competitions or the lives of the most celebrated personalities — the very purpose is to entertain the people. Of course, entertainment is implored. Nevertheless, such entertainment should also educate people.

Whether or not there is some good in reality shows, it is a proven fact that abundant doses of abuses are hurled on these reality shows. In all probabilities, the programme makers think that such actions would popularise their shows, which ultimately make their show top on TRPs. As such, it is not the success — rather a great defeat, morally!

As mentioned previously, the effect of these shows is seen more on children than any other programs for the reason that the reality shows construe the real-life situations, whose impact is obviously colossal. It is very true to have a debate on this issue that the reality shows being discussed herewith might not be intended for the watching of children.

However, in the present nuclear set-up of families, even without any intention, the children might get exposed to these shows — resulting in their misleading. It is quite common that children who watch these shows can habitually be perplexed at the display and can take them as behaviour expected from everyone — especially themselves and their peers.

Despite the fact that there are many disadvantages of watching certain reality shows on television by the children, there are equal advantages too. For example, it is not an overstatement to say that many children start learning music, dance, and various other fine arts, drawing inspiration from these reality shows.

It is an established fact that the largest part of human beings, if not be in awe, are parallel in their thought process. In this world of the survival of the fittest, until the end of time, beyond doubt, there will be an incessant veiled fight back for supremacy. It is the human propensity that people hook up their own personal lives and behavioural prototypes to the people they have high regard for.

In the foregoing occasions, there was no much scope for such activities as chirping from beginning to end of the personal lives of the celebrities. But there was constantly a hidden longing for the same. In the contemporary media enriched world, now there is a cosmic province for such possibilities, wherein the audience gets a hold of access to the personal lives of the celebrities.

For example, Bigg Boss show, which is originally based on the popular Big Brother show format, has surely established leeway of peeping into the personal lives of the celebrities on a day to day basis for a good number of days. Such coverage not only paves a way for the extensive audience to correlate their individual lives with the private lives of the celebrities but also set aside them to make a person of their choice as a favourite.

Thus, the audience let their favourites plod in the show for a longer time through the voting process. Simply put, it is the anxiety to know about the personal lives of the celebrities that make reality shows like Bigg Boss more popular among the masses!

(The author is an Air Veteran, a mass communicator and an author of more than 10 mass media books)

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