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Political Concerns

In: Social Issues

Submitted By malikjones
Words 1020
Pages 5
Terrence J. Bradshaw
Group 8

Political Concerns
Georgia Public Broadcasting is a state run network which is a sub division of the PBS membership television stations. GPB is catered towards Georgia and issues surrounding the state. Where that be in regards to politics, murder cases, entertainment segments, and or other things happening in the state of Georgia. GPB has been known for its very non-biased approach to reporting. In a way GPB is like C-Span. It reports heavily on news and issues however it tries not to sway in regards to being bias. A news station as large as GPB has to be careful when reporting on the news because they wouldn’t want to lose advertisers which subsequently brings in revenue. For example if they seem to liberal conservative companies might back out of supporting the station and vice versa. Thus, GPB tries to remain objective yet unbiased when reporting on news (Mendez 42).
April 20th, 2015 I sat down and watched two hours of nonstop GPB. I wanted to really grasp the political feel the network gave off. Despite my efforts there was not much to obtain from the programming. Strategically unbiased programming is what GPB specializes in. For example many of their segments are dedicated to sports. As reported by the Huffington Post in 2008, sports is the one thing that Americans seemingly agree on. Despite the different teams one might like there isn’t a political divide in the liking of sports itself. Sports is an easy way to get ratings up, and keep a key demographic intact. Sports also leave viewers wanting more. Thus, sports is heavily portrayed on the GPB network (Myers 35).
Upon further research I obtained information as to why GPB has so much neutrality in its covering. GPB when originally created had lots of lawsuits pending against them for slander and defamation. In settling those they created a legal department which overseas almost every telecast (Žilková 44). The legal team creates materials and unbiased phrases for anchors and reports to use to avoid legal action. In a since GPB is so scared of legal action that their freedom of speech is being taken away.
Industry and competitive trends
In a vast world where social media, entertainment, and sports is rapidly growing news is slowly drifting away. No more are the interesting news casts giving hard gripping stories. No more are the interesting discussions by news anchors about issues going on in the communities. Lastly, no more are the news stories discussing social issues in America today.
The world we live in today is focused on the now, the popular, and the relevant. If it bleeds it leads. News telecasts today aren’t concerned with the accuracy of the news more so as they are concerned with the ratings of the news. In fact violent crimes have went down almost annually over the past twenty years, despite what the news shows. Ratings are what keep networks going so if they have to falsify reality to make an extra dollar that’s what they will do.
Along with falsifying reality the need for celebrity gossip and entertainment have transcended what news used to be. In today’s society what someone is wearing and who someone is dating is more important than a war and or the hungry being fed.
With GPB, they’re sadly falling into this trend. As stated earlier the sports aspect is something they really harbor themselves on. From going to local high school games, to UGA sporting events the network really tries to cover any and every sport going on in Georgia. That’s wonderful if you’re a sports fan however the network is slowly losing its objectivity in regards to variety. Furthermore, the sports reporting done by GPB isn’t newsworthy. It’s mediocre at best.
GPB in the past ten years has also added more and more entertainment segments or reality segments to the network. Each Saturday morning they have young adults on the network talking about a plethora of entertainment issues. The segment is short, however it’s indicative of what society wants to hear and see today (Myers 33). The segment is still untitled because it’s merely a test run, however test runs indicative something is going to be changing soon due to a demographic demand (Myers 40).
GPB also has a radio component to the network, as well as a television network. The radio portion used to be very family oriented in the way it represented Georgians. It was catered to the things that people in Georgia liked. For example, outdoor talk shows and agriculture were two big components of the shows. In recent years those shows have been traded in for entertainment segments and or call in segments to get viewers options on topics. While it might be great to have feedback, it’s also a ploy to pull in more viewers (Žilková 40). Therefore, it’s got its good aspects, and its bad aspects. For example a hot discussion on the GPB radio as of late has been the legalization of marijuana. That is surely a topic that will bring in a younger demographic and get more ratings.
GPB does a great job of spotlighting local entertainment. On their home web page individuals can do to one of the major cities GPB services and canvas things happening in those location (Myers 35). Thus, the demographic and people in that location have specific issues they’re interested in being covered.
Finally, another interest to the GPB family as of late has been its social media component. With social media growing so rapidly GPB is trying to stay with the times. Thus, adding and creating social media pages such as twitter, and Facebook to get a younger demographic interested in the network as well (Žilková 45).
As one can see GPB is network that has been around for over fifty years. Throughout all the adversities they face they seem to manage their clientele, public relations, and consumers very well. Despite, letting some of their more interesting components of the network go they are definitely ushering in a new wave of viewers.

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