Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Meaner than fiction: Reality TV high on aggression, study shows

Date:
May 22, 2010
Source:
Brigham Young University
Summary:
Researchers looked at five reality shows and five non-reality shows and found 52 acts of aggression per hour on reality TV compared to 33 per hour for the non-reality programs.

All the gossip, insults and dirty looks add up fast on popular reality shows, far outpacing the level seen in equally popular dramas, comedies and soap operas according to a new Brigham Young University study.
Credit: Image courtesy of Brigham Young University

All the gossip, insults and dirty looks add up fast on popular reality shows, far outpacing the level seen in equally popular dramas, comedies and soap operas according to a new Brigham Young University study.

Related Articles


The researchers looked at five reality shows and five non-reality shows and found 52 acts of aggression per hour on reality TV compared to 33 per hour for the non-reality programs.

"The Apprentice" topped the list at 85 acts of verbal or relational aggression per hour.

Simon Cowell and "American Idol"checked in a little lower at 57 aggressive acts per hour -- but then again, backbiting is tough to do while singing.

"I knew the level of aggression was going to be high, but I had no idea it was going to be this high," said Sarah Coyne, a BYU professor of family life and lead author of the study. Coyne's findings will appear in the June issue of The Journal of Broadcasting and Electronic Media.

The researchers analyzed 120 hours of programming and coded every instance of physical, verbal and relational aggression. The 10 shows selected for the study are popular with audiences in Britain, although several shows are American productions.

And despite the "reality" label, half of the aggression appeared to be incited by producers. One common tactic is to put participants in a booth and bait them into saying something nasty about their competitors.

What's the big deal?

Numerous other studies, including one by Coyne, demonstrate that meanness rubs off on viewers. And that was using very contrived and clearly fictional scenes.

"Of any type of program out there, I would think that reality programs are the most likely to be imitated," Coyne said. "All audiences think it won't affect them, but we aren't as immune as we think we are."

Professor David Nelson from BYU's School of Family Life is a coauthor on the study.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Brigham Young University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Brigham Young University. "Meaner than fiction: Reality TV high on aggression, study shows." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 May 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100521191235.htm>.
Brigham Young University. (2010, May 22). Meaner than fiction: Reality TV high on aggression, study shows. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 25, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100521191235.htm
Brigham Young University. "Meaner than fiction: Reality TV high on aggression, study shows." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100521191235.htm (accessed January 25, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Science & Society News

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Florida Might Legalize Black Bear Hunting

Florida Might Legalize Black Bear Hunting

Newsy (Jan. 24, 2015) — A string of black bear attacks has Florida officials considering lifting the ban on hunting the animals to control their population. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Disneyland Measles Outbreak Spreads To 5 States

Disneyland Measles Outbreak Spreads To 5 States

Newsy (Jan. 24, 2015) — Much of the Disneyland measles outbreak is being blamed on the anti-vaccination movement. The CDC encourages just about everyone get immunized. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tim Cook Made 8 Times Less Than Another Apple Exec In 2014

Tim Cook Made 8 Times Less Than Another Apple Exec In 2014

Newsy (Jan. 23, 2015) — Tim Cook&apos;s total compensation more than doubled in 2014 to $9.2 million, but his pay was still less than four other Apple executives. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dramatic Footage Shows Coast Guard Rescue Off Scottish Coast

Dramatic Footage Shows Coast Guard Rescue Off Scottish Coast

Reuters - News Video Online (Jan. 23, 2015) — Footage just released by the UK Coast Guard shows a dramatic helicopter rescue off the Scottish coast, where five men were plucked to safety after their fishing boat sank on Saturday. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Science & Society

Business & Industry

Education & Learning

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins