How Do Reality Television Shows Affect Children?

There has been a lot of discussion lately on the relative merits of reality television when it comes to different people in society. There are a number of people that will argue that reality television is not good for children and there are many reasons that are forwarded to prove that point. Most of these reasons do not seem to be well thought out or logical however and to prove that point it is definitely possible to play Devil’s advocate and argue the reverse point. Namely, the point that reality television shows can affect children in a positive sense is one that is definitely worth considering and it is worth considering for the reasons that are given below.

Education

Reality television shows can often be an education, both for the people that participate in them and for the people that watch them. Of course, in most cases reality television shows are not really open to children and this means that children are left to watch the shows on television. These shows will show how people can react when put in high stress situations and the shows themselves can also show exactly how people can react when they end up scheming and plotting against other people in order to get to the top and be the last person standing.

People may scoff and put on a shocked demeanor when they come across these types of events in a reality television show, but only the most nave person would really think that none of these things spill out into real life. Reality television is given the name reality specifically because of the fact that a lot of these things go on in real life too in areas like schools, workplaces and offices. Watching the shows now will expose children to this type of behavior in a relatively controlled environment that will not directly affect them and therefore will give them a better chance of noticing and preventing such behavior when it starts getting directed against them later on in life.

Alternatives

What is available on television nowadays for children to watch? For children that are of a very young age there are of course cartoons and for children that are older there are the normal adult sitcoms and other shows that they can watch. But for children in the middle there really isn’t that much else on television for them to watch. Movies have become very violent and laden with sex and the same can really be said for many of the television shows that you can see today as well. Cartoons do not have the intellectual content necessary to hold the attention of most middle-age kids and therefore one could argue that there is a big void in their lives on this particular issue.

Then consider reality television. Since there are humans interacting with other humans in a real way of speaking, there is going to be a minimum amount of violence in most cases and in shows where there has been real violence a lot of it has been edited out. The same can be true of sex and if the show is on a cable network this is definitely going to be true in terms of the editing. So reality television is a relatively clean show when compared to many of the other things your kids could be watching and since kids want to watch television, reality television in many cases is going to be your best choice to give them something positive and educational to watch. These are both very powerful reasons to consider reality television as having a positive effect on your child.

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