Week 4 - Live Television


Does live television increase viewership? Does it alter the entertainment factor of shows, knowing there may be a slip up at any point? Perhaps. But more importantly, should we be asking the question whether or not live television taps into the ideology of existing forms of social organisation?

Besides the familial routine of gathering around a television to watch a program, a crucial experience for viewers is to be able to talk to others about the content. Whether the program was broadcast the night before, or within the past week, television thrives off the collective experience each viewer has and the ability to share it with others. Social activity has become digitised especially on platforms such as that of Tumblr. Within a matter of minutes after, and/or during, episodes have aired, GIF’s are created alongside commentary of how fan’s “can’t even” begin to tell you all of their current emotions. They are also used as a catalyst for discussions, on forums, surrounding the program in general.

An interesting element of the screened breakfast show ('Sunrise'), in the lecture, is that these breakfast shows are able to create smaller communities within a nation while also bringing a nation together. The breakfast shows are only broadcast in certain areas, thus appeal to, and are created for, a particular audience. Used as a tool for identification, breakfast shows use particular stylistic elements to make for common ground between the hosts and every day Australians. This creates a prominent public sphere for individuals.

 For example in the cited Sunrise video clip, we are able to see the informal nature of the presenters addressing audiences at home. Talking about general dress attire for the Melbourne Cup, while casually pointing out to the rest of the crew on the show, a comparison made between breakfast shows and that of nightly news, is that breakfast broadcasts are more relatable to the Australian ritual of general conversations between people. The way the hosts speak to each other seems to be in an improvised manner, until they move on to the next segment, for the sake of the program’s agenda.

 As described by Orvar Löfgren, the role of cultural thickening of the “nation-state and geo-political space [transformed] into a cultural space” (Hepp, 2011) allows for public and private spheres to be exposed to content that instigates what the Australian identity is, or should be. Breakfast shows in this manner, are able to tap into the domestic sphere by linking national public content into the private lives of its citizens through every day news. In the Sunrise segment, the hosts were able to integrate conversation surrounding the Melbourne Cup and the presentation of men sharpening up and dressing appropriately, into casual conversation. There will always be national ideologies inserted into any broadcast medium, whether they are the views of the station or the presenter when merely improvising (such as the Sunrise example). 

Similar to breakfast shows, the 2012 London Olympics opening ceremony shares what David Morley describes as the “synchronized experience” (p331); people watching the same thing at the same time. Despite the difference in time zones, there was the option to rise at 3am for viewers on the opposing side of the world to watch the ceremony occur live from London. Though with the introduction of cable television, such as Foxtel IQ, TiVo and online downloads, users are able to record programs to watch at their own accord.

References:

Hepp, Andreas, “Media Culture as a Concept”, Cultures of Mediatization, 2011,page N/A, cited 19/08/14, <http://books.google.com.au/books?id=35VvAej8LgAC&pg=>

Morley, David. “At home with television”, Television after TV, L Spigel, J Olsson eds., Duke University Press, 2004. p303 - 319. Print.

Week 3 - Broadcast & Post-Broadcast Era’s

Broadcast and, the evolution into, post-broadcast television; some might argue that we are currently transitioning into the post-broadcast era and others may contend that we have already transitioned into the broadcast era. To obtain a clearer understanding between the two, Jinna Tay and Graeme Turner’s article ‘What is Television? Comparing Media Systems in the Post-Broadcast Era’ (2008) summarises how the two era’s differentiate.

  • The dominant role of broadcast television was to present information, addressed to a national “mass” audience. Used as a tool to educate and power the general public, there was a use of democratic promotions instilled to develop a sense of national character and a subsequent identity.
  • Post-broadcast television, in contrast, is more concerned with the commercial interests of media outlets. This may constitute as private networks of channels and/or advertisers and sponsors. There is a rapid emergence of narrowcasting, as opposed to mass broadcasting, which appeals to niche markets for individuals with certain tastes in regards to television genres and content.

 

A large proportion of public broadcasting has since been side-lined, due to technological advances in regards to new (social) media, fragmentation of audiences and media convergence to name a few trends. Yet, by returning to the discussion of whether broadcast television is well and truly behind us, or if we are partially transitioning into a post-broadcast era, Tay and Turner’s article asserts that “consequently, where once broadcast television was everywhere the fundamental medium to which mass media theory had to address itself, now we need to address a much more complex mediascape where change has been vigorous but uneven, and where the local, national and regional media environments vary significantly” (Tay et. al, p73).

In summary, Tay and Turner believe that observing and analysing the effects of post-broadcast television is complicated due to the complex nature in which aspects of traditional media are disappearing and technological advances are being added to the model. For example, television news broadcasts will remain predominantly as a broadcast genre in aims to educate and inform mass audiences. Though it is evident that the traditional model of news has become increasingly interactive. This includes the way viewers can vote on news polls, where the results are shown in real-time, and the way in which audiences can have their own say on news matters on the news channels webpage.

An example of a post-broadcast television show is that of Twin Peaks (1990-1991, Frost, Lynch). During the broadcast era, television genre’s remained particularly conservative; only being associated with one genre (drama, horror, or comedy etc). Twin peaks reflected the shift from the broader perspective of mass audiences to micro cultural audiences; through the shift to hybrid genre television.

Twin Peaks was a world first, in the sense that traditional soap operas were usually self-contained; there would be an ending to each episode, yet Twin Peaks did not recycle the same melodramatic themes each week. There were elements of comedy, thriller, drama, and even horror immersed within the series.

By the second series, several shorter story arcs were introduced. Some say this is ultimately what let Twin Peaks down and caused the decline in viewership amongst audiences. Although that may be part of the reason, there is no denying that these shorter story arcs are seen in the majority of today’s current HBO television shows (Mad Men, Game of Thrones, House of Cards etc), and niche channels created for pay TV (reality tv on Arena, Channel [V] for music 24/7 or even documentaries on the History channel). 

  • References:
    Tay, Jinna, Turner, Graeme, ‘What Is Television? Comparing Media Systems in the Post-Broadcast Era’, Media International Australia, Incorporating Culture & Policy, Feb 2008, Issue 126, p.71-81
Week 1 summary. Basically demonstrating that the act of watching television takes no more effort than lifting a finger. Partially inaccurate in regards to its effect on the public sphere; raising questions surrounding national interest for example. And yet somewhat true in the sense you are fed information and entertainment without having to seek it out. 

Week 1 summary. Basically demonstrating that the act of watching television takes no more effort than lifting a finger. Partially inaccurate in regards to its effect on the public sphere; raising questions surrounding national interest for example. And yet somewhat true in the sense you are fed information and entertainment without having to seek it out. 

coolfeminist:

This is really fucking powerful.

(via qors)

reallylameblog:

oh my GOD i can’t wait to hear about how many kids are caught jackin it in the theaters for 50 shades

(via australian-government)

yimmyayo:

Prize Pins yimmyayo:

Prize Pins yimmyayo:

Prize Pins yimmyayo:

Prize Pins

blackdenimjeans:

bile7:

It’s in Gods hands now. He’ll know what to do. He always does.

Is it possible I’m actually carrying a foal?

(via rubmyhuevos)

machine-factory:

One of the many incredible photorealistic paintings by Pedro Campos.

HOW. machine-factory:

One of the many incredible photorealistic paintings by Pedro Campos.

HOW.

machine-factory:

One of the many incredible photorealistic paintings by Pedro Campos.

HOW.

(via nyctaeus)

so-pleasantly-strange:

acid-anarchism:

ny007ny:

Instead of killing an unwanted  tree , this machine makes it possible to move it to a new place instead.

woah

#HOW FUCKING COOL IS THIS THING#IT’S ALL LIKE#’GGRRRAAAAAAWWWWWWWW’#AND THE TREE IS ALL LIKE#’WHOOP!’#AND IT’S ALL LIKE SHIT YEAH GOT A TREE#this could also be used for murder.
surprisebitch:

ruinedchildhood:

has this been done yet

oh my god
surprisebitch:

ruinedchildhood:

has this been done yet

oh my god