Discuss to what extent two television stations broadcasting to audiences in Western Australia succeed in informing the public about significant events, in a fair and balanced way.Television news is an entertainment medium intending to inform the public of current issues in society, but that is not its prime function. It also serves as a program that helps viewers to see issues from different perspectives. Some perfect fairness cannot exist, so bias of some sort must be present in all Television news. The news segments generally adopt a point of view and set out to convince the viewers to agree with that point of view. This persuasion is achieved through a number of tactics, the main two being the use of logic and evidence to support the idea, and persuasive language that the newsreader uses to help convince you to believe that idea.
Television news is less concerned with issues than with other mediums of news, such as newspapers and magazines, and more concerned with drama and entertainment. The excessive use of specific camera angles and shots and the way the segment within itself is presented prove this. For example, consider the presentation of the newsreader. The presentation of the newsreader would not be that important if the sole purpose of the news program was to inform viewers. The attention would be concentrated more upon the information presented rather than the way the presenter looks, but in today?s day and age, viewers aren?t satisfied with just the bare facts. They want some form of entertainment and viewing satisfaction as well, and this entertainment is supplied in the form of
Re-enactments and impressive camera shots of news stories on television, the presentation of the segment and news reporters and readers, and the use of graphics and visuals.
Some television station?s news programs are more concerned about important world issues than others. Take for example, on one Wednesday April 19th on ABC news, one of the headlining stories was concerning Cyanide leakages in the shared river systems of Hungary, Romania and Yugoslavia, showing the side effects of the spillage. This story was presenting a very controversial and important issue, yet the same story was not even mentioned to viewers that same night on Channel Seven News. This proves that ABC news is more concerned about important world issues that are likely to have some affect on people than Channel Seven is.
Channel Seven have proven to be more interested in the entertainment and gossip side of the news, with their headlining story being based upon the humungous crowd attracted to a pop group?s debut appearance at Karrinyup Shopping Centre. There was not a mention of this event on ABC News on the same night, which further proves the point that Channel Seven News is more interested in entertaining their target audiences than keeping them informed. Channel Seven still presented the main stories that ABC presented, though ABC presented the same stories In much greater detail and offered much more in-depth explanations of the situations.
Channel Seven News, being a commercial news station, offered the viewer more local conveniences, such as a countdown to the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, speed camera locations, and Easter trading hours. The ABC News station didn?t even mention Easter, let alone mention trading hours for shops. This is more evidence that the ABC concentrates purely on delivering the facts and informing its viewers. The structure provides further proof of this point, taking into consideration that the ABC, being a local television station, has few advertisements, so therefor its hour timeslot is concentrated entirely on the news. There are no interruptions and no breaks to split up the news, but a whole solid hour of news and delivery of the facts to the viewer. Whereas a look upon Channel Seven news sees every 10 minutes or so with an ad break coming up, breaking the program into segments, and distracting the viewer with all the excess information to take in, with the commercials advertising different products and programs etcetera.
Overall, the local television stations do the best job of delivering the hard facts and information on the current news stories and world issues without any of the ?gossip style? information being snuck into the program. In other words, local stations tell you the facts that you need to hear about the news and don?t get led astray by scandals and gossip that are always present in modern society. Local TV is more concerned with world issues that may directly affect people in society rather than feeding them with useless information about the latest pop group or celebrity that will not even remotely affect them in the slightest. The local stations provide the viewer with more in-depth and detailed explanations of whats happening in the news, so that they go away knowing more than they will gather from commercial stations. Commercial news stations like Channel Seven show fancy visuals and use catchy lines to attract the viewers attention, but not really provide them with much information that can be of any use to the viewer. It all comes down to the bare facts that commercial television news stations are out there to attract a wider audience and make more money, and local television news stations are out there to provide viewers with the facts and the knowledge of what is going on in the world by informing the public about significant events in a fair and balanced way.