After discussion in class today, I started to wonder…we’ve read all of these articles about the production process of television. The Thompson, Staiger, and Newman readings have especially enlightened me as to how not only does advertising shape the scheduling and disrupt the structure of television, but it also shapes it. The Newman article in particular was extremely interesting, since it basically claimed that the success of television shows comes from this industrial process in the first place.
I feel like I’ve been used. I mean, I’ve always known that networks look to bring in high ratings and advertisings over anything else, as well as willingly manipulate the writing process of the show to achieve this goal. But to think that the very structure of an episode of a show is highly dependent upon these network goals is kind of disturbing. I now feel as if whenever I watch a show, I’m not seeing it in its “true” context. Watching Homicide in a way is weird because of this, as well as all of the other shows I’ve been. Of course they’re still enjoyable, but know that I’m watching them commercial and network free, I’m not sure if I can evaluate a show in its “true” form anymore.
Maybe I’m just exaggerating…But does anyone else wonder about the manipulation of networks? Is there something we should do about it, or is it something to just accept in whatever way we find to be fit? Is it even really an issue?