It is hard to imagine our lives without our daily installment of television programs; ever since television was invented in the 1920’s, it has been part and parcel of the entertainment scene. In fact, television sets which were crude, to begin with, were soon improved along with the color television making the rounds, during the 1960’s. Various companies compete with each other to telecast programs during prime time, including sports matches and soon, nearly every household had a television set. Given this, it is naturally important that we examine the positive and negative effects of TV.
The positive impact of watching television:
- Educational: several studies had highlighted the fact that television was influencing the behavior of young and susceptible minds. Given this, the government opted to use television as a medium to inculcate their citizens on the various benefits of several welfare programs as well as an effective tool to disseminate information. Soon, schools and colleges were roped in to develop educational modules for the television as a way to impress young minds.
- Advertising: Once televisions became popular, the ad companies were not far behind. Soon they started developing ads for television, two-minute spot ads and even less – geared to attract the lay customer. Since then, both television and advertising had morphed into something else altogether, for the ads you see on the television today are more designed for their shock value than anything else.
- Entertainment: During the early years, you were lucky if your favorite program was telecast that day, but today there are literally thousands of programs to choose from and you can opt to live to stream it to your TV. Even the way you used to watch television programs has hanged; you can now watch all your favorite programs right on your mobile phone.
- Information dissemination: given its popularity, it was only to be expected that television would be utilized by various political parties for information dissemination especially during the elections. If these parties wanted to run ads, they can do some research to study their target demographic and develop specific ads that have a greater chance of selling your products and services
The negative impact of watching television:
- Vision impairment: it has been found that binge watching television programs can impact the health of the viewer, often leading to eye strain, and eventually visual impairment. This is why it is important for parents to monitor their children to ensure that they watch their television programs at a distance of six feet or more, since sitting closer to the television set can affect their eyesight permanently.
- Hearing impairment: Most of the television sets manufactured today enables you to listen to the various programs with the help of Blue tooth. As a result of prolonged exposure to high decibel sounds, the risk of you developing hearing impairment goes all the way up.
- Violence: As mentioned earlier, television continues to play an influential role in our society even today. And regular airing of programs containing extreme gore and violence can cause young kids to act out, to become violent. Several child specialists have taken note of the link between violent programs and violent acts committed by these young individuals which is why it is vital that parents monitor the programs that their children watch so that they remain unaffected by the same.
These are some of the positive and negative effects of watching TV. Gratuitous violence is never a good thing and being exposed to such programs on a regular basis is bound to have a psychological effect which can be more pronounced in young children. This is a critical age for them; this is when they form their core values and being exposed to programs that glorify violence tends to set a wrong message. Television is here to stay and with current advances, it is only a matter of time before we can use the television for just about anything. While it is true that television does come with negative effects, the point is that we can take proactive measures and minimize the risk. At the end of the day, your TV is the most important piece of your household and unless you take effective action, your health stands to be affected.