The TV being dominated by American produced
The Americanization of Australian Television is a sad and terrible thing.
It is a process whereby ordinary Australians are bombarded every day with images of American lifestyle, so much that it merges almost unnoticed into their own lifestyle. It is a process whereby our home-grown entertainment industry is overwhelmed by the enormous powerhouse of the American economy, with drastic effects upon the modern Australian nation. Not only is Australian free to air TV being dominated by American produced shows, but a lot of the content on the Australian TV shows is sourced from America. American culture is part of Australian mass consumer culture, It dominates our television. If we look at the early history of Australian television, virtually all program material until 1963 was of foreign origin, of which eighty three percent was American and the rest British (Cited in an article by Cunningham Stuart ,History, Contexts, Politics, Policy.) Philip Bell discusses in his article that even in the first two decades of television American programs and formats dominated commercial channels ( Cited in an article by Bell Phillip, Television). So Americanization of Australian television is not just a recent development.
This problem has been there right from the beginning with American shows like Leave it to Beaver and I love Lucy dominating the TV screens of Australian households.Many are concerned with this issue, a good example is shown in an article written by David Dale, readers were asked if they were shocked by the revelation that all the most popular dramas and comedies on Australian television were made in America, and whether they thought TV stations should be forced to show more stories from other countries, including Australia. Carolina Peters talks about her concerns over this issue, she quotes, I am not at all shocked that so much of the drivel on our TV screen comes from the US. I am, however, deeply concerned that so much of our programming is either direct from or heavily influenced by the US. The influence is clearly seen in the way kids today are affecting US accents and using US terms. I have heard many kids lately referring to their mothers as ‘mom’ instead of ‘mum’.
( Cited in the Sydney Morning Herald, David Dale).Whilst people like Terry North disagreed, Terry North talks about how the Australian networks should not be forced to show more local dramas and comedies ,or at least, more fiction from countries other than the USA.I do not watch any local dramas and (?) comedies, or, for that matter any Australian program, except when channel-hopping during commercial breaks. I have tried. The only local program I could praise is Wildside ( Cited in the Sydney Morning Herald, David Dale). So whilst there are many Australians concerned over this issue there are so many more that do not see the affect the American TV culture is having on Australian television and its identity, the distinction between what is inside and outside Australian culture is slipping away.The influence of Americanisation upon Australian Free-to-air TV is clearly evident, If we look at the top 10 shows that are viewed by the Australian public today it would be obvious that the top two shows are both American produced, Lost and Desperate Housewives (Top 10 shows, Who Magazine.
).Lost and Desperate Housewives are doing very well, loading up the viewing figures in the US favour. But go back six months and the picture would be far more balanced. Jump eight years back, and Blue Heelers was holding its own against Friends (Bell Phillip, Television 1997 Twenty Most popular programs). The Australian audience is becoming more Americanised, as more and more prefer watching American TV shows opposed to the ones made in Australia. Shows like SVU, Law and Order, CSI (and its derivatives), NCIS, and the OC, dominate the TV screens of many Australian households today. Ordinary Australians spend many hours watching TV (especially Australian youth), with the result that we are subtly influenced by its content – whether we want to be or not, whether we are aware of it or not.
Due to the massive amount of American content on television, especially during prime time, Australia’s culture and way of life is being heavily influenced by American culture and its trends. The “reality shows” genre, originating in the USA, is another example of crass Americanisation that adversely affects our cultural mind-set. All these shows have a common theme of making people look bad, and of individuals being encouraged to stab each other in the back to win. Reality shows like Survivor, The Apprentice and The Amazing Race are viewed by millions of Australians. Globalisation has had negative effects on Australia. A major side affect of globalisation is the Americanisation of Australian Television. American culture is becoming more prominent in our society.
A lot of content on the Australian TV shows are sourced from America, and our life styles are becoming more American. Teenagers are particularly susceptible to this influence, and now talk and act like American teenagers. Australian television is threatened by the influx of American culture.
Phillip Bell talks about the rise of Australian soaps in his article, for example Neighbours which began in 1985, he talks about how the show deals with Australian issues. (Bell Phillip, Television), this isnt necessarily true. In fact many of the storylines in Neighbours are taken from American soaps like Day of our lives or Bold And The Beautiful. Our screens are increasingly filled with disturbing storylines which continually push the boundaries of human depravity.
Australian commercial television has imported American formats (Bell Phillip, Television). Even the Australian Logies are becoming Americanised. At the 2005 Logie awards, there were at least two American celebrity guests, CSI Miami actress was given a lot of attention at the Logies, because of her famous American celebrity status. The Logie awards which were supposed to be awarded to shows that are produced in Australia, this year awarded a Logie to the OC for the best overseas program. The influence of the American culture on Australian television was clearly evident at the Logies.