Television Facts

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By the time most Americans are 18 years old, they have spent more time in front of the television set than they have spent in school, and far more than they have spent talking with their teachers, their friends or even their parents.” Quote from Abandoned in the Wasteland: Children, Television and the First Amendment, by Newton Minnow, former chairman of the FCC, and Craig LaMay, 1995. photo• There is a direct correlation between the amount of time a child spends watching TV and his or her scores on standardized achievement tests—the more TV watched, the lower the scores. Source: 1980 study by the California Department of Education, which studied the TV habits and test scores of half a million children. • “We suspect that television deters the development of imaginative capacity insofar as it preempts time for spontaneous play.” Quote from a publication distributed by the Group for the Advancement of Psychiatry. • Crime is at least 10 times as prevalent on TV as in the real world. Source: 15-year study by Dr. George Gerbner, dean of the Annenburg School of Communications at the University of Pennsylvania. • The typical American child will witness 8,000 murders and 100,000 acts of televised violence in his or her lifetime. Source: American Psychological Association. • More than 3,000 studies over the past 30 years offer evidence that violent programming has a measurable effect on young minds. Source: Christian Science Monitor, July 6, 1993. • Half of North America’s murders and rapes can be attributed directly or indirectly to television viewing. Source: Seven-year statistical analysis study by Dr. Brandon Centerwall at the University of Washington. • “Living with television means growing up in a world of about 22,000 commercials a year, 5,000 of them for food products, more than half of which are for low-nutrition sweets and snacks.” Quote by Dr. George Gerbner, dean of the Annenburg School of Communications at the University of Pennsylvania. • Body metabolism (and calorie-burning) is an average of 14.5 percent lower when watching TV than when simply lying in bed. Source: Study by Robert Klesges at Memphis State University Source:

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