What They Need to Add to PBS Programming To Make a Better More Understanding World
by B.J. Delas Armas
on 11/14/2007 06:28:00 AM
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[Originally posted one of my "other" blogs: deconstructthat.blogspot.com on December 19th, 2006 and now edited for the date above. The feeling that I got watching MJ playing for the Wizards is the same feeling I got posting on any other blog than this. The feeling I get watching you and whoever the fuck the other guy is the same feeling I get posting on any other blog than this.]
Daniel once said that PBS is a liberal white people's television.
I wasn't a big PBS watcher at all back then, but that statement has forever "colored" my view of the way I see PBS and I still believe in it.
We got BBC News, British comedies, the European Journal, Rick Steves Europe. I enjoy BBC News and the European Journal, but still even if we are finding out about other countries outside of the US, we still haven't put a face and/or story to people anywhere else other than Europe and North America.
Why isn't there an African Journal or Asian Journal or hell even an Australian Journal? (Well, maybe not so much about that last idea, but you get the point.)
Obviously, people would say there isn't any market for the news kind of television, usually as a lazy way to block it, but it's not like there's a market demand for stuff like Deal or No Deal, or American Idol. The producers just find a way to make it interesting and then create a market for it. Perhaps someday I could be part of that for real news, news about international, national, local affairs.
But back to PBS. Whatever specials/documentaries on other countries they do have, it's still quite distant-feeling. These specials/documenatries are neatly packaged into one or two hours, and try to cover ALL the customs/ways of life of one particular region. The participants still come off as "the Other." The Exotic. Humans, but not ones you can relate to. No one you're going to have a conversation with, you can hope wins or loses something, you can have a relationship with. We the audience get the outsider, sociological view of people, which usually does not have an en masse appeal because it's just more data for people to process, devoid of meaning and different from "us."
[Edit: P. to the fuckin' S.
I also REALLY, REALLY hated their one special that played a few nights ago... the Ultimate Resource...a neoliberal one hour diatribe on the benefits of capitalism around the world.
Saying that capitalism is helping people is like chopping off someone's fucking legs, and then telling them that it's a great idea to go and get a wheelchair]
Labels: Media Discourse, Neoliberalism, TV