Research paper 2011-04 Danny Junkun Yan The psychological effects from improper television programs A large proportion of teenagers who commit a crime express that they are fond of watching certain television programs that containing improper content in it. Today’s television programs are filled in variously violent and erotical scenes that are not suitable for teenagers. Because of teenagers cannot distinguish what is the suitable content for themself, for this reason, after watching improper television programs, the effects which influence them are often not easy to notice.
Otherwise, teenagers are in a stage of mental development, the sensitive character make them observe the environments more carefully than adult and also make them more easy to be affected. Therefore, the improper content of television inevitably put negative psychological effects on teenagers. Following will discuss the psychology effects that include self-image, behaviour, personality and social views. The process of building a self-image in early age is considered as most easy and settled.
Although this process continue to function in the entire life span, but the influence is differ in teenager and adult. The self-image likes a mental picture to inject in teenagers’ mind during they watch television programs. In this case, teenagers don’t have judgement about the figures. The figures which teenager choose from television, then put into their own self-image, are anamorphic and unrealistic. The television programs present a distorting mirror in front of teenager and all of the improper scenes which they look though are not themself, they just unintentionally put them into their own self-image.
As a result, self-image as an important role to balance the relationship between the reality and television programs, thus the wrong self-image which forms by improper figures make teenager mix up with reality in terms of leading to negative emotions (Braiker, 2006). In addition, Adult often receive various information from their daily life and the process of building and re-building self-image are more frequent and have less effects. On the other hand, to be different from adult, after repeated exposure into improper television programs, teenagers are often resistant to change self-image fter building. Even after a long period of time, when that familiar content appears in their daily life, teenagers are more easily to influence by them or to act improperly. Imitation as a human instinct especially occurs at early age. A wealth of information can be gained by watching TV (for instance TV characters can become a guide to behaviour), or television can stress the importance of topics and values which one consider important already (Boeckmann, K. , ; Hipfl, 1987).
Moreover, teenagers often appear a much stronger intent to imitate some performance from television characters. We all remember when we were child, some television figures are deeply attract us; and then, we always try to acted like those favourite characters. As a child, we put ourselves into the same context as the character in the television and we had imaged that we were the same people like them; to did the same tasks or spoke the same words. Television programs have significant effects and cause the common phenomenon of imitation among teenagers.
Teenagers learn violent and insulting actions from the improper television figures because television programs that contain unrealistic contents give teenagers an implication about behaviours of aggressions are quite normal for daily life. In fact, teenagers are unable to notice that some unusual scene which happen in television programs; it’s not real. Teenagers who imitate the television figures commit a series of crimes in terms of robbing, fighting, and stealing, and the consequences of thoughtless imitation also put a negative impact on today’s society.
The teenager’s intentions are made explicit—imitating what the person did in the television and made it as guidance for them. When teenagers watching television, it plays an important role of forming teenager’s personality and further affects their future life. It’s true that the formation of identity is a long-term process. Whatever recreancy or bravery; livingness and depressed, all the various personalities are formed in a person’s long time of life experiences. The improper television programs plant a potential seed which grow into eenager’s mind; followed by forming ill personality such as irascibility, fraudulence and apartness. Personality is regarded as an important attributes for a person’s social life. The mass media have an unnoticed but very central role to play in forming an increasing part of the personality pattern for the social role (Poulsen, 1991). When teenagers grow up and finally begin their social life; a good personality brings back admires from people around them; in contrast, bad personality brings disadvantages to their works and social communications.
Psychology of teenager is remaining in a process of development of socialization. Television (and, incidentally, the mass media) plays an increasing role in these social processes, which go make up the individual through socialization and the surrounding social network (Poulsen, 1975, 1980; Werner, 1986). Teenager’s families and schools with responsibilities for the process of development of socialization; in fact, the role of educator are overtaken by television.
Reported by recent survey, from preschool to high school, the total average time of watching TV by a teenager is at least 5000 hours, which much more than any courses that they attend from their school. However, television as a mass media which full of images and information gradually replaces teenager’s individual ideas, then prevents teenagers form their own social views. When your television is off, you may feel that you can control it; but, if you open television, it turns over to control you.
Once you sit in front the television, you just need to move your finger, and then you can travel around the world from west to east; learn things which happen in the world; experience anything you are fond of, or make all of your fancies come true. Teenagers often plunge into those illusions, and let the television thinking for them, upon that they become less words, lack imagination and creativity, live in an unreal world that isolate themself, and not be aware of their social views are opposite of main tendency. Nowadays, television invades almost all modern families.
The multiform construction and diverse contents make television programs being received by almost all different kinds of audiences that differ in gender, age or background. In addition, the improper programs are always intentionally or unintentionally watched by teenagers. Furthermore, teenagers cannot distinguish what is the suitable content for themself; then, they often mix up the improper scenes with the reality, especially when those content appear in their daily life. Otherwise, to imitate the character’s actions in the movie influence their behaviours significantly.
All of these make teenager’s future social life much rougher because of their improper self-image, behaviours, personality, and wrong social views. Therefore, proper policy which should be made by related department becomes a critical issue in order to force the TV stations to find a way to manage the TV programs effectively. References: Braiker, Harriet B. , Who’s pulling Your Strings? How to Break The Cycle of Manipulation (2006) Boeckmann, k. , & Hipel. (1987) How can we learn about children and television? Journal of Educational Television.
Poulsen, J. (1991) Television—challenge Threat to Social Identity in small language Communities?. Educational Media International. Poulsen, J. (1975) Samfundsforhold og medlestruktur i Grenland. Vol I-II, Kobvenhavns Universitet. Mimeograph. Poulsen, J. (1980) TV- og den farsoske kulturs fremtid. (Television and the future of Culture on the Faeroese Islands). With English Summary. Foroya Froaskaparfelag, Torshavn. Werner, A. (1986) Oppvekst i fjernsynsalderen. En studie av endringer i socialiseringsprocessen. Institut for Presseforskning, Oslo.