Home entertainment: The threat

With the introduction of 3D televisions, ultra high definition, wireless surround-sound speaker setups, blu-ray players and home consol systems, there is definitely some sort of risk present for the future of movie theatre attendance.


Over the past year or two, with the help of my external hard drive, my need to go to the movies has decreased substantially. A few weeks ago, on a Sunday night, my friend sent me a message asking me to go to Warrawong and see a movie with her. At this point of the night, I had taken off my makeup, put my hair in a messy bun, chucked on a hoodie and trackies and settled in for the night with a cup of tea. Even though she explained the plot, and it actually sounded like quite a decent film, all I was thinking was “I can’t be bothered to make myself look publically acceptable”, so I politely declined. Instead, I plugged my hard drive into the TV and watched a movie I’d seen 100 times, but it was convenient, so I watched it anyway.

These days, everything is trying to pull us away from the outside world and deeper into our sofas. As much as I support trekking outside your comfort zone and doing activities with friends, I am definitely guilty of preferring a quiet night at home sometimes. Whenever I do go to the movies, I notice there are many young teens and elderly. I do not believe this to be a coincidence. It is our generation, the generation that have the technical ability to download movies in good quality that are at home rather than the movie theatre.

I do believe that the future of movie theatre attendance will not decrease dramatically, as there are certain types of movies that will flourish in a communal setting. For example, a comedy by yourself at home will not be as funny as seeing it with hundreds of other people. There is definitely a social stigma that technology is turning us into antisocial hermits. Though this may be partly true as sometimes every one of us need to spend time away from the outside world, it is not fully replacing peoples social lives. In the end, every one of us has the urge to meet up with other people who are close to us, and do things together. This does include going to the cinema, where even though you are actively watching the movie, it is a communal experience and therefore you talk before, sometimes during, and afterwards.




Home is where the WIFI connects automatically

 A few weeks I ago I rang my father, who lives three hours away in a rural country town called Braidwood. In asking him about his memories of television in his childhood, to my surprise I was given a very detailed reflection of his experiences with TV growing up. A few days ago, I rang back home to ask about the internet. My father is quite a traditional man. Although for many decades he has been a bank manager, his consumption of media is limited. He only watches sport and wacky 70’s and 80’s television shows and was forced into getting a mobile phone last year for his work. His only internet  use would be checking his work emails, and that wouldn’t even be done at home, but at work. Dad pays the broadband bill every month, but fails to understand why the rest of us (mum, myself and two brothers) have the need to consume so much data when in turn he would much rather spend time as a family and save the internet for things more important things than spending hours on thisiswhyimbroke.com. 

Whenever I’m home, for the first few days I am usually in my room taking advantage of the unlimited internet by downloading songs, movies, TV shows etc. My older brother does the same thing as I do, and my younger brother just plays online video games in his room. Mum usually comes straight home from work at 5:30pm, sits on the couch and fiddles around on her phone for a few hours before she does chores then goes to bed. This just leaves Dad. He is constantly coming into our rooms saying things like “It would be nice if you spent some time out of your bedroom”. I do understand the concept of family time and how important it is, I just feel like the correlation between free WIFI and home is getting smaller and smaller. To say that our use of domestic broadband has been a continuation of earlier technological impacts on place is quite true. I remember a decade ago when I would use the internet and after playing a few games and signing into MSN and Bebo for half an hour, I would get bored and return to family activities. Part of this routine would be the fact that the only internet I had access to would be in a separate room, sitting on a chair at a desk. Now, you can lie in bed, go for a walk, even go to the bathroom with full internet access on several devices to keep you occupied no matter where you are. This advancement, though positive for those who hold a busy, working lifestyle and need constant access to the internet may be detrimental to the lives of many adolescents and young adults who now think that 12 hours a day of consuming internet is “normal”.


At home we have the one data plan. However, at any one time, if we are all home (as my brother and myself do not live at home full time) there would be many devices connected. Ipads, notebooks, mobile phones, laptops, Ipods and playstations just to name a few. I usually find myself scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed on my laptop, then close it and reopen Facebook on my phone just a few moments later. I do admit this seems a little extreme, but it is sad to say that the act is almost second nature to me, and I’m sure it is to many other people as well. In order to get a broadband connection in the first place was an effort with countless calls and emails to the provider as we live rurally. Therefore the concept of NBN would definitely be something of the not so near future. However, I do believe that if the NBN were to be available to us, my father would not allow it, and I understand that.





Audience Measurement in Action

The 2014 State of Origin was the 34th time the annual best-of-three series between the Queensland and New South Wales Rugby teams was played. With the shock win by New South Wales, it was recorded as the highest rated game of Origin game 1 ever. With 4.058 million people tuning in to the game and a five-city share of 5.596 million viewers, the State of Origins’ dominance in the ratings took its toll on a number of shows. Network tens reality TV show Masterchef and quality drama Offspring didn’t even make the top ten.

Audience measurement is used to measure consumer patterns and media consumption. The business of selling audiences to advertisers and marketing agencies is big business, thus producers and advertisers are able to use the data collected in order to shape their markets. The NRL State of Origin dominates free to air television whenever there is a game on, therefore this gives advertisers a sometimes vital popularity boost. A lot of beer brands such as XXXX and VB are advertised as a large majority of viewers would be 18+ males who  love to have a beer whilst watching the football.

Though the numbers for the viewership of these State of Origin games are rather staggering, there are certain issues that need to be raised that question the validity of them. For instance, people usually gather together to watch television, sport being a major reason to be together. In one lounge room during a state of Origin match may be an entire family, a large group of friends etc but this only counts as one viewing as they are only watching it off the one television. Also, for those who may be at work or doing something productive during the match time and are unable to see it live, they will usually stream it or find another method to watch the game when they are able to. This means that again, the numbers that are documented will be false. These absences are quite substantial, even though there is not really any reasonable method to be able to count every single person that tunes in to a State of Origin game.


Turn down that infernal hideous racket

When the great invention of television was introduced to many homes across the globe, it comes to no surprise that many sat in awe as they observed this little box work its magic. My father was no exception to this. His brothers, sisters, mother and of course himself absolutely loved it. However, his father hated it with a passion. Dad recalls when his father would get home from work and say things like “I see they’re watching that damn idiot box again”, “turn down that infernal hideous racket” or “pay attention when I’m talking to you and look at me rather than the box”. Dad’s most notable experience with his father’s hatred of television is when he would do something wrong and his father would say “Nicholas, don’t get flippant with me or I’ll get rid of the box”.
According to my father, the thought of colour television had never really entered anyone’s mind until it was introduced in 1975. It had come to no surprise to Dad and his three siblings that when they asked if they could have it, the reply was a very quick “NO”. However, thankfully the neighbours were one of the first homes in the area (Cheltenham, Sydney) to get a colour TV. The highlight of each day was after school when they would go to the neighbour’s house and watch episodes of Gilligan’s Island and the Brady Bunch in colour. Eventually, with plenty of help from the mother of the household, his father finally succumbed to a colour television in late of 1978 after the old “idiot box” could go no further.
It has never crossed my mind to think about how the invention of the television was approached, whether it be with fear, caution, excitement or hatred. During the introduction of TV, values and attitudes of the adult generations were primarily influenced by depression and war. I believe there to be a link with this and the reaction of the general public to television. Reactions of mistrust, suspicion and uncertainty would have plagued the minds of those who witnessed or experienced the horrors of human nature during the first and second world war.
Since its inception as an integral part of family life in the 1950s, television has reflected and nurtured cultural values and mores.

Media, audience and place

Hi all, my name is Ashleigh and I’m in my second year of a BA/BCM double degree. As to what only feels like yesterday, I distinctly remember the emotions behind my first blogging experience. It started off as a very confusing and daunting task that I had no knowledge whatsoever about. However as the weeks progressed I grew somewhat fond to the idea of creating an identity of myself online that was not as forged as Facebook or Instagram.
During the holidays I had to pick my Spring subjects, I’m sure as did everyone else. My brother, a fourth year exercise science student looked over my shoulder and said “what kind of subject is called media audience and place?” I want to stress the fact this was not said out of curiosity.
During the first lecture, I was so intrigued into everything that this subject observed. A few nights later I was sitting at my desk thinking of a media space image that’s relevant to me, when I realised it was right in front of me. I sit at my desk every single day. Whether I ill be on my notebook, laptop, ipad, smartphone or Ipod, there is always something there that will guarantee to entertain me. These devices, as superficial as it sounds, are pretty much a part of me. I am definitely attached to my media space. Even though I have no issue of people being able to view my screen/s in my room, the first lecture made me realise that what I am attempting to hide from everyone in public is quite hypocritical. Most of the time all I’m doing is sending snapchats, posting to Instagram or Facebook etc, simultaneously allowing many people to view on their screens what I am trying to stop them seeing on my screen (if that makes any sense).

I am captivated by this subject and can’t wait for the remainder of the semester!