Friday, 29 November 2013

Reality TV is the Modern Day Colosseum

Recently a couple of my friends appeared on Snow, Sex and Suspicious Parents. They were girls from my uni rugby team, who were approached and asked to be part of a new BBC Three program. They got an all expenses paid skiing holiday to Tinges, on the basis that their time there was filmed. They had a great time and did just what I used to do; drink too much and misbehave. Nothing on that program was out of the ordinary; it looked like great fun.

The episode was aired on Tuesday at 9pm, and hundreds of people tweeted about the programme in the hours after it went out. It was crazy to see my friends being talked about and judged by the whole of twitter.

They recieved some great tweets, people wanting to be friends with them, be on holiday with them. It even inspired some to join a rugby team...

That was lovely. The fact that their holiday was promoting the small sport of Women's rugby was a great thing. However, many of the tweets weren't as nice...

It was hurtful to see such horrible tweets said about people that are close to me. I think people forget that there is a real person behind the remarks they make. Luckily, I don't think my friends are too bothered, but some people could be.

Reality TV targets vulnerable people, and can often draw attention to many of their insecurities. I stopped watching the likes of Big Brother, The X Factor, I'm a Celeb many years ago for the same reason. Too many young people and mentally ill people are being paraded around for the world to see for the purpose of 'entertainment'. 

I believe that this sort of car crash TV is designed to keep the public from caring about each other, from supporting each other against this sort of manipulation and corruption that comes from the government and the media. This is the sort of stuff that prevents revolution, and prevents ordinary people from uniting against those in power. As a result, I don't believe we have have enough trust and compassion for each other to put a stop to it.

This sort of thing is a very clever tactic, but how long can it last?

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