Q: Do children who don't watch TV do better in school than those who do?
A: The answer depends on socioeconomic factors, including the current income of the household and the educational and economic history of the caregivers. For the middle class, it can be said that increased viewing does correlate with lower grades in school, but for children from poorer families, the opposite is true: the more television they watch, the better their grades are. If the caregivers are not around to interact with the children or are not intellectually stimulating, then the kids seem to learn more from watching television.
Q: If children from poorer families benefit from television, does that mean that children from poorer countries might benefit, as well?
A: That may be true. An international 2001 study looked at the way children spend their leisure time, including TV-watching and computer use, and concluded that in richer countries where a larger percentage of kids watched TV every day, higher scores were achieved on reading exams. Researchers also implied that those kids also had higher IQ scores.
Q: Does watching television make you fat?
A: Although it doesn't seem like too much of a stretch to say that people who watch a lot of TV are getting less exercise, exposing themselves to more temptation (since $1 billion is spent annually on junk food advertising targeted at children and teenagers alone), and mindlessly eating more (junk) food, the actual studies do not always clearly support this claim. Although television watching is a strong risk factor for childhood and adolescent obesity, it's hard to pinpoint the exact cause, so it might be more precise to say that it's not television itself but inactivity and buying into ads for junk food that contribute to higher BMI.
Q: Does watching television ruin your eyesight?
A: There is no evidence to support this rumor that began in the 1960s, when General Electric sold TV sets that emitted excessive amounts of radiation. Although modern technology is safe, the rumor is still alive, probably because parents need a scary, persuasive reason to get their kids to go outside to play!
Q: Does watching television have an adverse effect on reading skills?
A: There is evidence to support this hypothesis. Studies have found that for some older kids, TV can discourage and replace reading. Children from households where the TV is on a lot are less likely to be read to, spend less time reading themselves, and are less likely to be able to read.
Q: How much television do people watch per day, on average?
A: Too much. According to the Nielsen report, the average American over the age of 2 watch more than 34 hours a week. According to a 2013 survey conducted by Nickelodeon, children under the age of 9 watch 35 hours of television per week. The average 12-month-old gets between 1 and 2 hours of screen time per day. Hard statistics for infants can't be found but in one survey, 90% of parents said that their children under 2 watch TV.
Q: How much television is too much?
A: The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that kids under 2 years not watch any (none!) and that that older kids watch no more than 1 to 2 hours a day of "quality programming."
Reality TV shows have become very popular after the never-ending era of daily soaps. Probably, the trend started with Big Brother and still continues with so many dancing and singing shows. They have played a very important role in making celebrities out of ordinary people. Audiences were introduced to a host of hidden talents that they never thought existed in the country. Although channels became more interesting to watch, the reality TV shows have their own advantages and disadvantages. Some of them are listed below:
Advantages of reality shows:
Ordinary men attaining stardom: We see real people performing daredevil stunts or showcasing their skills. Viewers come to know about them and appreciate their performance. In addition, reality TV stars become very popular within a very short period of time. They do not need any Godfather to become successful in the show biz but use their talent to achieve success.
Social issues: One of the most positive effects of the reality TV shows is that they address numerous social issues and introduce people to the ills plaguing the society. For instance, they have played a very important role in enhancing the women empowerment in society. With active discussion on the TV forums, the reality shows have made people more aware of what is happening in their vicinity.
Cost of the shows: Creating reality TV shows is not an expensive proposition and brings more bucks for money in comparison to the sitcoms and the soap operas.
Start of the successful career: Reality TV has given so many celebrities that have become big stars in their own rights. It was not possible in the past but now anybody can shot into fame within a very short period of time. In addition, audiences also become aware of the perils of different types of addictions such as alcohol and drugs in society.
Disadvantages of reality shows:
Scripted shows: The majority of so-called reality shows are scripted and everything is closely doctored. Initially, people fell for the bait but now audiences understand that stories are developed well in advance. Some of the fights on the television are staged to increase the ratings of the show.
Harmful effect on teen: The new generation of reality TV celebrity stars does not thrive on talent but use sensationalism to always be in the news. One of the worst effects of their action is on teens who try to emulate their behavior. Stunts that are performed on televisions under controlled conditions are imitated by the people in real life resulting in death. Some of the shows where contestants participate to win prizes show them in poor light as they use meanness and greed to outdo each other. The negative traits can manifest themselves in the audiences and create behavioral problems.
Abusive shows: Liberal doses of abuses are hurled on the shows because the directors think that more and more people will watch them. It is a huge mistake because bad words are caught by teens and kids affecting their personality as well as behavior.
These are some of the pros and cons of reality TV shows. Do share your thoughts on this topic in the comments below.
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