Tuesday, October 15, 2019

A Comparative Analysis of television channels FIVE and BBC Essay Example for Free

A Comparative Analysis of television channels FIVE and BBC Essay Television is a powerful media source, bringing stories to billions across the globe. It has been called the most awesome God-less force in the modern world and it is now seen as a major part of everyday life. The average person spends 4 hours a day watching TV becoming roughly 1/3 of a persons typical waking hours. Television is a constructed view of reality, sometimes exaggerated extremely, solely to create entertainment. In the UK, there are five major terrestrial television channels, (four organisations) with some being vastly more successful than others. The BBC is the only organisation not to make money from advertising. Their money is generated from the TV Licence fee, and this type of broadcasting is known as Public Service Broadcasting. Channel 5 is perhaps seen as the least successful of the five TV channels, possibly due to the fact that it is the youngest. The channel began in 1995, but it was not able to broadcast nationally as many of the populations televisions could not receive it. The company offered to retune every TV that couldnt receive it, before the big launch in 1997. A long advertising campaign was launched, known as Give Me Five in an attempt to draw in viewers. On the 30th March, 1997, Channel 5 was launched at 6pm, attracting an audience of 2. 4 million people, a figure higher than the launch of Channel 4, fifteen years earlier. This new channel neither had the money or reputation to buy and broadcast potentially successful material. Perhaps getting off to a bad start, the main schedule consisted of home and cookery programmes, cheap US exports, and late night pornography. However, Channel 5 did receive praise for its news programming, and soon the ratings became consistently acceptable. The channel gained more money, and was soon able to buy better quality shows, such as Home Away. In 2002, Channel 5 underwent a major image modification. The name changed from Channel 5 to simply, Five, and progressed itself as a serious rival to the other 4 channels. However, the channel has not been without its flaws. For example, Friends spin-off series, Joey, was bought by Five in 2005. Despite a high-profile launch and ad campaign, the program received poor ratings and was eventually cancelled. Similarly, other shows such as Robot Wars and CD:UK proved to be a flop for the channel. These unsuccessful shows have seemingly increased the channels poor reputation. In the channels first year of broadcasting, five receives its lowest audience shares of 2. 3%, but this can be expected from a debuting channel. Fifteen years earlier, Channel 4 received even lower audience shares on its opening night, although it could be argued that people watched less television in the 1980s. The audience shares increased, and peaked in 2004. The channel has the lowest audience share of the terrestrial channels, but, in its defence, Five is not received in all of the UKs homes. Like all of the other terrestrial channels, Five now has sister channels, Five US and Five Life. These two channels are both somewhat successful, but other sister channels, such as ITV2, E4 and BBC Three are proving to be more viewed. Nowadays, Five is able to branch out and buy successful US shows such as Prison Break and House, as well as buying programmes from other channels in 2008, Five bought Neighbours from the BBC. The BBC was established in the early 1920s, but it was not until 1936 that the channel began its regular television broadcasting as a public service TV channel. However, it was further suspended after WWII began, until 1946 when the permanent service was established. The BBCs mission was to inform, educate and entertain and is still taken into account today. The BBC broadcasts a wide variety of programmes on both of its channels, BBC1 and BBC2. The BBCs major programme is EastEnders, the popular primetime soap. On a weekly basis, the soap receives the highest rating of all terrestrial shows, with only the ITV1 soap, Coronation Street, (and occasionally reality shows such as The X Factor and Dancing On Ice) playing as its rival. Other BBC shows, such as Top Gear, Doctor Who and Little Britain have all been a success throughout the last decade, further improving the channels ratings and reputation. In an attempt to branch out and widen its audience, the BBC has recently made some unlikely purchases. In 2007, the channel brought the successful US show Heroes to BBC2. The show quickly became a phenomenon, and is different from what would usually be broadcast on BBC2. The BBC continues to dominate terrestrial TV, by finding ways to bring in more viewers. The programmes vary from food, to lifestyle, to documentary, to political. The BBC is now contending with ITV in the reality market, as it now features shows looking for new west-end stars, and the ever popular series, Strictly Come Dancing. BBC1 receives the highest audience share of the 5 channels, with an average of 26%. It is seen as the main channel, and regularly receives high ratings. This major organisation has the money to do whatever it pleases, and this has shown over the last decade. The BBC now has 8 channels BBC1, BBC2, BBC Three, BBC Four, BBC News 24, BBC Parliament, CBBC and CBeebies. These 8 channels prove to cater for everyone. BBC Three is the most popular of the sister channels, frequently receiving new material such as Lily Allen and Friends and Gavin Stacey. The channel is a lighter version of BBC1, with a more comedic element. The BBC now broadcasts internationally. A new channel, BBC America, was launched in 1998, and has carried programming from the BBC to the USA, such as Torchwood and The Graham Norton Show. BBC America is part of two international channels, the other being BBC World. A recent feature of the BBC, BBC iPlayer, has recently been introduced. It has become an on-demand online video player, with unlimited access to BBC shows. The iPlayer is proving extremely popular, with more than 3. 5 million programmes downloaded in its opening week. However, despite the BBC being a major empire, the company relies on the licence fee. It is the only channel not to rely on income through advertising. The core belief of public service television is that it is free from the pressures of commercial TV, and, as its income is guaranteed, public service TV is freer to explore. But this does not mean it can become complacent. High audience shares are still needed because, if they were to fall, the licence fee would be in serious jeopardy. For years, there has been a debate as to whether public service broadcasting should continue. Naturally, the BBC wishes for it to continue, whereas others disagree. The BBC has very little to do to secure its funding, whereas the commercial companies have to work to get their income. The opponents of public service television argue that it is simply another form of taxation. With the arrival and expansion of satellite and cable, some people have no interest in the public service channels. For the BBC, public service broadcasting means that certain pressures are put upon them, but their income is fixed. The BBC could be said to have better quality shows due to them receiving easy money, and it also means that their programmes can be longer, due to the fact that they dont have to make time for advertising. However, for Channel 5, public service television means that there are no pressures. The channel can show what they want (within reason) but their income is variable. Unsurprisingly, the commercial channels are against the licence fee, as it seems unfair. It seems as if the media are in constant debate over whether the licence fee should continue, as many people pay considerable sums for services in which they have no interest in.

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