18 May 2022


The Rise of a Culture of Reality Television

Format: APA

Academic level: College

Paper type: Essay (Any Type)

Words: 538

Pages: 2

Downloads: 0

For many, the interaction between legacy media, where the receiver does not contribute or interact with the source of the content or the content itself (including radio, television, newspapers, movies, and others), and human culture has been symbiotic, since each one has influenced the development and existence of the other in the most epic way. Between the 1990s and 2000s, Reality Shows, such as Big Brother, Survivor, and others, have been shaping our culture in the most profound way, with a majority of viewers preferring it to the traditionally scripted movies or television series (Hill, 2005). Reality television, in particular, features the unscripted daily lifestyle of amateurish and unknown people rather than professional actors. In the late 2000s, the rise of reality television programs, including popular shows such as Keeping up with the Kardashians and Power, have significantly transformed people’s culture, customs, and believes towards movies and films. Similarly, there are those who feel reality television has also created a culture in itself. It is, therefore, clear that our culture has not only created reality television through an increased appetite for unscripted and engaging content, the desire to lower production costs, and the need to produce more celebrities but also reality television has formed its own culture by forming new and different genres. 

Firstly, our culture, customs, beliefs, and traditions have contributed significantly to the rise of reality television series. For example, the recent desire of content producers and media houses to produce a substitute for scripted stage dramas as well as less costly television content has given rise to Reality Television shows. There has also been an increasing appetite among viewers for more engaging and authentic content compared to scripted dramas. According to Hirschorn (2007), the liking towards reality television has been the argument that scripted movies are often predictable and often fail to give that liveliness and sense of realism. 

It’s time to jumpstart your paper!

Delegate your assignment to our experts and they will do the rest.

Get custom essay

Our culture has also bred to more reality television shows with the desire of producers to create more instant celebrities at a cheaper cost. Putting aside the enthusiasm associated with digital streaming media, such as YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram (which also provide viewers with real-time content, reality television can potentially transform the names of little known individuals to international household names within a fortnight. This is the case for talent search programs, such as America’s Got Talent, the X-factor, and many others. Furthermore, the rise of a more active youthful television audience, powered by the growing technology in terms of accessibility of the internet and cheaper smartphones, has created reality television. For example, according to a 2006 study conducted by Patino (2011), approximately 40 percent of famous programs watched by youths aged below seventeen were reality shows. 

Besides just people playing a pivotal role in creating reality shows, there is also evidence that reality television has formed a culture in itself. Notably, reality TV shows today reflect on different aspects of human life. This has prompted experts to classify them into different sub-categories, including informational, crime, romance, talent, game/competition, and reality-drama (Nabi et al., 2006). Most of these shows have formed a culture in themselves by depicting specific information that targets a particular audience. For example, a few shows such as Big World and Push Girls specifically focus on people born with abnormal physical conditions. We also have shows, such as Sisters Wives, All-American Muslim, and others, that focus on specific religious and ethnic cultures. Therefore, from this analysis, it is clear that whereas our cultures have built reality television, these shows have also built their own cultures by focusing on specific cultural customs, themes, topics, as well as issues.


Hill, A. (2005).  Reality TV: Audiences and Popular Factual Television . Routledge

Hirschorn, M. (May 2007).  The Case for Reality TV. The Atlantic Monthly, https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2007/05/the-case-for-reality-tv/305791/

Nabi, R., et al. (2006).  Emotional and cognitive predictors of the enjoyment of reality-based and fictional television programming: An elaboration of the uses and gratifications perspective. Media Psychology , 8  (4), 421–447.

Patino, A. (2011).  The Appeal of Reality Television for Teen and Pre-Teen Audiences. J ournal of Advertising Research , 51  (1), 288–297.

Cite this page

Select style:


StudyBounty. (2023, September 15). The Rise of a Culture of Reality Television.


Related essays

We post free essay examples for college on a regular basis. Stay in the know!

What Makes an Effective Executive?

Contrary to popular opinion that all executives are leaders, Peter Drucker presents a different view pointing out that not all executives are leaders, but most of the executives are only made effective through eight...

Words: 705

Pages: 2

Views: 418

Student Satisfaction in Higher Education

Advanced educational institutions are perpetually keen on the improvement of instruments that empower them to assess and deal with the desires of their students with the reason for drawing in and keeping them...

Words: 1336

Pages: 5

Views: 125

Importance of friends in an individual’s life

Friends are seen as vital components of an individual’s life because they come to the rescue when one is in a crisis by providing emotional and physical support. The relationships made between lovers, friends, and...

Words: 580

Pages: 2

Views: 62

Regulatory and Imaginative Functions of Language

I use the regulatory and imaginative functions of language mostly when I am at home. The regulatory function applies when I am asking someone to do something. For instance, statements such as; pass the salt, turn on...

Words: 258

Pages: 1

Views: 156

Quality Journalism Ridiculed as Fake News

All Fourth estate institutions have a level of biasness when it comes to different stories that are disseminated to the public domain: this level of bias dictates whether a media house will take a conservative or...

Words: 1346

Pages: 5

Views: 413

Mean Girls: The Movie That Defined a Generation

The Victorian era saw the start of feminism that would proliferate in the 1970s. Feminists were fed-up with the continued gender discriminations that depicted them as inferior to their male colleagues (Han, 2017)....

Words: 1508

Pages: 5

Views: 157


Running out of time?

Entrust your assignment to proficient writers and receive TOP-quality paper before the deadline is over.