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Big Brother : the Real Audience

Hill, Annette LU (2002) In Television & New Media 3(3). p.323-340
Abstract
In this article, the author focuses on Big Brother in relation to audience attraction. I outline the context of factual entertainment and its audience, and the specific experience of watching Big Brother. Seen in relation to factual entertainment as a whole, Big Brother is one of the least popular examples of “documentary as diversion.” Seen in relation to gamedocs, Big Brother is one of the most popular examples of new factual entertainment. The author's research, which uses quantitative and qualitative audience studies, indicates that attraction to Big Brother is based on the social and performative aspects of the program. The focus on the degree of actuality, on real people's improvised performances in the program, leads to a particular... (More)
In this article, the author focuses on Big Brother in relation to audience attraction. I outline the context of factual entertainment and its audience, and the specific experience of watching Big Brother. Seen in relation to factual entertainment as a whole, Big Brother is one of the least popular examples of “documentary as diversion.” Seen in relation to gamedocs, Big Brother is one of the most popular examples of new factual entertainment. The author's research, which uses quantitative and qualitative audience studies, indicates that attraction to Big Brother is based on the social and performative aspects of the program. The focus on the degree of actuality, on real people's improvised performances in the program, leads to a particular viewing practice: audiences look for the moment of authenticity when real people are “really” themselves in an unreal environment. This, the author argues, is the popularity of the gamedoc, evident in its early incarnation, and writ large in Big Brother spin-offs and sub-sequent series. (Less)
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author
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Big Brother, reality television, television audiences
in
Television & New Media
volume
3
issue
3
pages
323 - 340
publisher
SAGE Publications
ISSN
1527-4764
DOI
10.1177/152747640200300307
language
English
LU publication?
no
id
642ef509-2309-4652-a4a2-50401107fea0
date added to LUP
2016-05-14 15:46:04
date last changed
2016-06-29 12:56:33
@misc{642ef509-2309-4652-a4a2-50401107fea0,
  abstract     = {In this article, the author focuses on Big Brother in relation to audience attraction. I outline the context of factual entertainment and its audience, and the specific experience of watching Big Brother. Seen in relation to factual entertainment as a whole, Big Brother is one of the least popular examples of “documentary as diversion.” Seen in relation to gamedocs, Big Brother is one of the most popular examples of new factual entertainment. The author's research, which uses quantitative and qualitative audience studies, indicates that attraction to Big Brother is based on the social and performative aspects of the program. The focus on the degree of actuality, on real people's improvised performances in the program, leads to a particular viewing practice: audiences look for the moment of authenticity when real people are “really” themselves in an unreal environment. This, the author argues, is the popularity of the gamedoc, evident in its early incarnation, and writ large in Big Brother spin-offs and sub-sequent series. },
  author       = {Hill, Annette},
  issn         = {1527-4764},
  keyword      = {Big Brother,reality television,television audiences},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {323--340},
  publisher    = {ARRAY(0x88b49f0)},
  series       = {Television & New Media},
  title        = {Big Brother : the Real Audience},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/152747640200300307},
  volume       = {3},
  year         = {2002},
}