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A Comparative Analysis of television channels FIVE and BBC.

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Alenka Manley Comparative Analysis 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 person's 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 population's televisions could not receive it. The company offered to retune every TV that couldn't 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. ...read more.


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 BBC's 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 BBC's 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. ...read more.


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 don't 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. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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