Sunday, October 1, 2023

Brother, why are reality shows so addictive

Dressing in period costumes, training as soldiers or living a life on the farm, reality shows have taken over Chilean screens since the early 2000s. And the fever has not stopped, since Big Brother premiered in Chilevisión in early July. where 18 people have to live together in one house, isolated from the rest of the world.

However, the new program has something unique, and that is that, for the first time in history, the viewer is their own director: they no longer have to wait for the evening show to see what what happened at home, but can be observed. participant 24/7, from any device, at any time you want. Yes, even when they are sleeping.

But what is it about Big Brother that makes it so addictive? How healthy is it to follow a reality show, especially one that can be watched all day? Can it negatively influence the viewer?

Specialists from different areas spoke to La Tercera to find out the mystery behind the percentage of the population that spends time observing 18 strangers.

—In the reality show there is something unexpected. Anything can happen, because there are no scripts-Rodrigo Larraín, sociologist and academic of the Central University, began to explain La Tercera.

The expert believes that the characters of this type of programs are “heroes like any of us,” because they are not artists or idols in music or sports who dedicate a lot of time to reach their position. Thus, it is easier for a person to feel represented by one of the participants and, therefore, want to follow their story.

Sebastián González, film critic and academic of the Faculty of Communication of the Universidad de los Andes, also agrees with the aforementioned, who in a conversation with LT added that morbidity is also part of the equation when wanting to watch a reality show.

—Basically, the reality show plays on the false illusion that anyone can be on television, anyone can become a star for leaving the reality show-González pointed out.

—There is a little sickness, knowing what will happen. It has to do with cahuín (gossip), people are interested in that. For this reason, seeing people locked up 24/7, seeing their daily and nightly activities gets attention.

In addition, in the case of Big Brother, Chilevisión chose multiplatform content. In other words, viewers will not have to wait until 10:30 pm to turn on the television to find out what is happening in the house and with their favorite contestant.

Instead, you can see everything they do, without a filter and as if you were another protagonist (through Pluto TV) from any device and wherever you want.

—Being able to watch this program permanently matches an audience connected to social networks throughout the day. This is the unexpected thing that can happen and of which I am a direct witness. I have “first-hand knowledge” and I can share it early with my contacts. A kind of “news coup”—explained the sociologist Larraín.

Carolina Masson, psychologist at the Universidad de Los Andes Clinic, explains that reality shows create a desire to form a world that we do not belong to.

—It makes us reflect on what we do or not do in situations, how we respond to certain experiences. When I start bonding with a reality show character, I get deeper into their lives. “I’m starting to understand and worry about what he’s going through,” the specialist told LT.

Along these lines, the specialist assures that the emotionality or perception of young people or adults who watch these programs can be affected. Masson shows that if a person who is in the reality show does not adapt to “my system of values ​​or beliefs”, it is likely that rejection, resistance will be created and certain behaviors of that participant will create situations of anxiety. . , sadness and anger.

—There, deep down, you have to ask yourself what I enjoy about these reality shows and what they challenge me. Is the content something that makes me calm? Does it contribute to me? Or does it really bother me?

González, for his part, argues that, living in a time where there is a lot of tension due to conflicts in Europe and the economic crisis around the world, watching lighter content like a reality show can have a positive effect on “relaxing and getting out of the everyday.”

And there are very common emotional situations that, while some can be positive and fun, others have a more negative charge, such as discussions, fights and crying that are abundant in the narratives of the protagonists.

In this way, the psychologist explains that, although not all people react in the same way when seeing external problematic situations, there are those who receive a very strong emotional impact and are not in a position to eat this content type.

—Some people may be going through very complicated situations and want to watch a reality show to distract themselves, but they will encounter problems that will bring them back to their stressful state.

In addition, Masson recognizes that there are viewers who have to watch reality TV all the time, because of some emotional situation: there are people who have a concern and need to know what happening, and also more obsessive and controlling people. .

—The recommendation is that people use platforms at appropriate times, that they are limited, and that there are areas for conversation. It’s something positive, talking about the situations that are happening and bringing up different points of view to have a debate and not stick to one view of what happens in a reality show. Create a vision with analysis, critical thinking and reflection.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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