This house believes that television has a negative effect on society.

Although the internet is the main stream, televisions also widely be used in the world so I think the motion have enough value to debate. In addition, I started this debate by entirely citing from Pascual M. Garcia IV's draft of the speechs for tv debate, I intented to promote my debating skills by imitating and anayzing his style.

This house believes that television has a negative effect on society.

Yes because... No because...

I propose the motion. That means tv is more harm than benefit.

Let me start this debate by defining the key terms of the definition. By "tv" I mean an electronic device that allows the broadcasting of audio and visual content to a mass audience; in this debate, also all the programs shown on this device, either through regular channels or on cable, at any time of day or night. By "negative effect" I mean has many harmful effects, which outweigh whatever good effects there may be, so the net result of tv is bad. And by "society" I mean all tv viewers, as well as all citizens in countries with tv, but with special emphasis on the youth.

I in the Affirmative believe that tv is doing much more harm to our society than good, and I will prove that to you in this debate.
I will prove this by focusing on 2 key arguments: tv has unacceptable levels of sex and violence that cause harm to viewers, and is a significant tool of rampant commercialization, which victimizes its viewers.
As the 1st round for the Affirmative, I will focus on how tv has unacceptable levels of sex and violence, while in my 2nd round I will discuss how it is a tool of rampant commercialization.

I believe that tv causes harm to viewers because of its increasingly suggestive sexual and violent content. The viewing public, especially the youth, are susceptible to messages being shown on tv, and this kind of content is extremely damaging for our youth, in particular. According to Changingchannels.org, more than a thousand studies have shown the same thing: "media violence makes our kids more aggressive, less patient, and more fearful of the world around them."

I can see that tv encourages young viewers to commit acts of violence. In 1 study done at Pennsylvania State University in 1972, about 100 preschool children were observed both before and after watching tv; some watched cartoons that had a lot of aggressive and violent acts in them, and others watched shows that didn't have any kind of violence. The researchers noticed real differences between the kids who watched the violent shows and those who watched nonviolent ones. "Children who watch the violent shows, even 'just funny' cartoons, were more likely to hit out at their playmates, argue, disobey class rules, leave tasks unfinished, and were less willing to wait for things than those who watched the nonviolent programs." says Aletha Huston-Stein, Ph.D., now at the University of Kansas.

This is unacceptable because we are struggling to build a more peaceful society, and the media, especially television, is only aggravating a difficult situation. Studies by George Gerbner, Ph.D., at the University of Pennsylvania, have shown that children's TV shows contain about 20 violent acts each hour and also that children who watch a lot of television are more likely to think that the world is a mean and dangerous place.

Tv also encourages young viewers to have sex outside of marriage, and this has led to many social problems. The Kaiser Family Foundation(2001) has reported that 80% of the content presented on soap operas is sexual in nature. Bryant and Rockwell's study found that teens that had been exposed to a highly sexual TV drama rated descriptions of casual sex encounters less negatively than teens that had received no sexual content exposure. Brown and Newcomer found that students who think tv accurately portrays sex were more likely to be dissatisfied with their first experience with intercourse. This means that our children are being encouraged to view pre-marital sex as both natural and desirable, and that their expectations for sex are unrealistic.

Furthermore, according to Changingchannels.org, tv desensitizes viewers to the evil nature of pre-marital sex and unprovoked violence, encouraging young viewers to find them acceptable and normal in society. The University of Michigan Institute for Social Research found that "Televised violence suggests to young children that aggression is appropriate in some situations, especially when it's used by charismatic heroes... It also erodes a natural aversion to violence." The same study found that children who watched violent tv programming." ... were also more likely than other study participants in the previous 12 months to have shoved somebody in anger; punched, beaten or choked an adult, or committed a crime or a moving traffic violation." The University of California at Santa Barbara, on the other hand, says "In one study of soap operas, there was only one representation of a married couple engaging in sex for every 24 portrayals of unmarried characters performing sexual acts." It cites another study which finds that "The bulk of the sexual action and language occurs between unmarried characters... unmarried heterosexual characters engage in sexual intercourse 4 to 8 times as much as married characters." Several studies, including those by Brown and Newcomer in 1991, link increased exposure to the mass media with dissatisfaction with virginity among teenagers. There are many other studies that show a similar effect. Wingood's study of black women aged 14 to 18 revealed that adolescents who see X-rated movies have less favorable attitudes toward condom use than other teens.

All of this is conclusive proof that tv leads to greater violence and pre-marital sex in society, and this is leading to further erosion in the values of our youth that will cause greater social problems for society in the future. If we truly want to build a more mature, responsible society, we must provide our youth with messages that affirm this kind of maturity and responsibility. Showing unacceptable levels of sex and violence on tv will only harm our efforts to improve society in the long-run.

I urge you to agree with the Affirmative, and to let this motion fall, for children's sakes, and the and the future of our society.
Thank you.

(The argument also cited from the same sample written by same debater.)

I accept the definition on the Affirmative, but would like to clash with him or her head-on by stating that tv provides so many positive benefits to society that far outweigh any potential harms he or she say it may cause.

I on the Negative have two major points to present. tv is an essential tool for information, providing the viewing public with critical news and acting as a watchdog against government and corporate abuse; and it is also a dynamic tool for education, providing young viewers with another medium for learning that enhances their academic and real-world education.

Before I present these points, however, allow me to rebut the points of the 1st Affirmaitve argument. It said that tv encourages young viewers to have more sex and commit more violence against others. I contend these points, because there is no empirical evidence to suggest a direct relationship between television viewing and crime, either of a violent or sexual nature. In fact, evidence shows that there are societies with high levels of televised sex and violence, yet with very low crime rates. US studies show that there is no established relationship between pornography and crime. A study commissioned by then-President Lyndon Johnson showed that no relationship existed between pornography and crime among adults and juveniles. Subsequent studies conducted in 1987 showed that this still holds true (Baron sand Straus). A review report by McKay and Dolff(1984) for the Department of Justice of Canada essentially says similarly: "there is no systematic research evidence available which suggests a causal relationship between pronography and the morality of Canadian society . . . [and none] which suggests that increases in specific forms of deviant behavior, reflected in crime trend statistics (e.g., rape) are causally related to pornography." But the most telling fact is this, according to a study by the University of Hawaii, "Within Japan itself, the dramatic increase in available pornography and sexually explicit materials is apparent to even a casual observer. This is concomitant with a general liberalization of restrictions of other sexual outlets as well. Also readily apparent from the information presented is that, over period of change, sex crimes in every category, from rape to public indecency, sexual offenses from both ends of the criminal spectrum, significantly decreased in incidence." This clearly proves that there is no direct, causal link between television and crime, and that the 1st Affirmative's points are not valid.
What is true is that tv is an essential tool for information that provides viewers with critical news that serves to protect, promote and enhance their quality of life. The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa states that, "This is especially true for developing countries where the media have a huge role to play in getting the message(of the Millennium Development Goals) out. Effective action depends on effective information." The information the media provide is just as critical for intelligent economic and personal decisions as for good political choices. There is a strong relationship between open media and free and effective economics. In fact, recent studies conducted by the World Bank have shown that free media are essential for successful economic progress in developing countries.

The importance of television in terms of informing the general public cannot be over-emphasized. Most of us learned of significant events over the course of our lifetimes through television. The Apollo 11 space landing; the fall of the Berlin Wall; the "shock and awe' of the second Iraq war; all were broadcast over the tv. Without tv, these defining images of our lives would never have been made possible.

Apart from this, tv, specifically the news, provides a necessary check and balance that prevents abuses by government and big business. Even before the 20th century began, Joseph Pulitzer, perhaps the most famous name in newspaper publishing was saying that journalism is more than just a way to make money or provide entertainment. It serves a public trust. Effective popular government, he had written, depended upon a "disinterested, public-spirited press, with trained intelligence to know the right and courage to do it." Tv, by its very nature, makes the general public understand the issues more clearly, because they show images, sound and videos, and therefore provide a very comprehensive information package for everyone. When the Abu Chraib prison scandal broke out, the pictures of abuse that were flashed on tv did more damage than any words describing them, and that was when the American people started to question the disposition of the war. According to William F. Woo, a Professor from Stanford University, "Before tv and the Internet, not all of journalism was public-spirited, and cynics and mercenaries were easy to find. But in the many decades in which the press was privately owned, an ethic had developed: Journalism existed to serve the people. Often this was disregarded, but nonetheless journalists came to think of themselves as a Fourth Estate, independent of public or private power centers. Their mission was disclosure; their canon, objectivity; their discipline, verification; their credo, the people's right to know."

Nowhere was this more evident than in the countless scandals that television covered, which gave the public an opportunity to hold accountable its public servants, and the men and women who control big business. Televised images of satellite photos showing Russian nuclear installatinos in Cuba helped to hold the Soviet Union, and its leader, Nikita Kruschev, accountable to the international community. It helped to prevent Russian missiles from reaching Cuban soil, and led to a safer Western hemisphere. Televised images of business scandals, including the most recent Enron and Worldcom fiascos, helped to bring down some of the biggest companies in the world, and provided American business with a firm reminder to always stay within the bounds of the law. No other media has the richness of content, and the ability to gain groundswells of emotional support, quite like television. This is why tv is such an effective tool for highlighting crime and misdeeds, and why it is essential to our daily lives.

There is also another important benefit of television: convenience. Because the society can watch a diversity of programmes with a click of a button, there is no need to go all the way to the supermarket to buy newspapers to read. This can help the elderly and the younger generation.

I of the Negative feel that these are clear benefits that television provides, and that since the Affirmative cannot prove that there is a causal link between televised sex and violence and youth crimes, there is a very obvious net benefit to keeping tv the way it is today. Society is all the better for it.

This house believes that television has a negative effect on society.

Yes because... No because...

I add my point to propose this motion.

I disagree with the Negative. He or she says that tv is essential in order to spread information to the general public, but I believe that we do not need tv to get information. In fact, more people around the world have access to radios than they do televisions, proving that news would be better served on that medium. According to the Arbitiron/Radio Advertising Bureau, radio reaches 96% of consumers each week, while Media Targeting, Broadcast and Cable finds that the audience share for tv in primetime has decreased from 90% in 1980 to only 36% in 2000. Also, tv is a tool for misinformation, with many governments using it to promote propaganda. During the Philippine People Power revolution in 1986, for example, then-President Ferdinand Marcos fought with opposition forces to take control over the tv stations, because both sides knew that control over what was being broadcast would affect the public's reactions toward the revolution. When Marcos' forces finally surrendered, and tv viewers were shown the extent of public dissatisfaction with Marcos, instead of the steady fare of propaganda that was usually being shown, the majority of Filipinos supported the new, revolutionary government.

In my first argument, I has already provided you with very good reasons why violence and sex on tv negatively affect our youth. My opponent charge that this cannot be proven, but many respected medical and psychological organizations cite direct links between the violence and sex shown on tv, and increased levels of hostility and sexual willingness among young people. A study published in the September 2004 issue of Pediatrics magazine, of 1792 adolescents ages 12-17, showed that watching sex on TV influences teens to have sex. Youths who watched more sexual content where more likely to initiate intercourse and progress to more advanced noncoital sexual activities in the year following the beginning of the study. Youths in the 90th percentile of TV sex viewing had a predicted probability of intercourse initiation that was approximately double that of youths in the 10th percentile. Basically, kids with higher exposure to sex on TV were almost twice as likely than kids with lower exposure to initiate sexual intercourse. Futhermore, according to the American Psychiatric Association, " The debate is over... For the last three decades, the one predominant finding in research on the mass media in that exposure to media protrayals of violence increases aggressive behavior in children."
This is clear scientific evidence that there is a casual link between what young people see, and what they do. This is why we say tv has a negative effect on society.

Apart from this effect on young people, however, tv has another negative effect: it is a significant tool for rampant commercialization that is harming our society.
Society is exposed to more tv than education each year. A study conducted by the University of Kansas shows that children spend more time watching tv than in any other activity except sleep, and the Parents Television Council Publications found that children, on average, watch 4 hours of tv each day. All this tv viewing means that people watch thousands of commercial messages that encourage viewers to have a distorted sense of priorities and values. According to the Center for the Study of Commercialism, heavy promotion of shopping and buying distracts us from other activities such as reading, thinking, and playing. All the ads we're exposed to make it easy to forget how many different kinds of activities we enjoy.

Advertising also wastes our time. The same source states that "The average person spends almost an hour a day reading, watching, or listening to ads through TV, radio, theaters, videotapes, newspapers, magazines, mail, or telephone. By the time the average American is seventy-five years old, advertising will have taken 4 years of his or her life.
This much exposure to commercialization cannot be good, especially since it encourages viewers to veer away from more productive tasks.

This is not the only danger of commercialization. Advertising, by nature, does not deal with truth but with perceptions, and tv builds artificial perceptions of the world that harm our youth. Many lives have been damaged because they have come to view the world in a distorted way, mainly because of the messages they see on tv. The media Awareness Network reports that many ads imply, even if they don't say outright, that happiness is something we can buy. When we act as though this is true, our personal horizons and ability to find fulfillment in life are limited. The same source states that commercialism may erode values - such as sharing, co-operation, and frugality - fostered by families, religious institutions, and schools. Advertising promotes alcohol and tobacco use, which kill half a million Americans annually. Problems related to alcohol hurt more people's lives and cost society more money than an illegal drugs combined. In a national opinion poll conducted for Common Sense Media[New Attempt to Monitor Media Content." NY times, 5/21/03]], 64% of parents with at least one child between the ages of 2 and 17 believed media products in general were inappropriate for their families.
If we continue to allow our children to be affected in this way, by viewing this kind of content, we only have ourselves to blame for a worsening society.

Because tv has these twin negative effects I in the Affirmative have already presented, directly causing greater sex and violence among our youth, and negatively affecting their perceptions about society, we must agree to let this motion stand.

This house believes that television has a negative effect on society.

Yes because... No because...

I add my final point.

(Cited from the same source.)
I believe that the Negative's focus on educational programs is misplaced, because the ratio of educational programs to programs with violent or sexual content is very small. Most tv content has no redeeming educational value, and these are the ones most popular with the youth. According to the University of California at Santa Barbara, "The tv programs that are most popular with adolescents have been found to be the most sexual in nature." In fact, according to Nielsen, the tv ratings organization that regularly conducts survey on tv viewing, ABC's Desperate Housewives is the most popular broadcast-network tv show with kids aged 9-12!

The Negative has focused mainly on a concept of tv which is unrealistic: that much of it is about information and education. This is simply not true. In a national opinion poll conducted for TV Guide (8/2/03), 57% of TV viewers said they 'noticed an increase in offensive material on tv lately.' Even if there are programs dealing with information and education, people still do not watch them. According to Nielsen the top TV shows for 12-17 year old girls were: American Idol, The O.C., Will & Grace, and One Tree Hill. The top TV shows for 12-17 year old boys were: The Simpsons, Malcolm, and The O.C. None of these shows can be considered as news programs or educational programs. In my two points, I have already pointed out that information can be distributed better through other forms of media, especially the radio, and that the percentage of educational programming of tv is miniscule compared to the negative programming I can Find. Tv, as I have clearly pointed out, is mostly about sex and violence, and this has a clear negative effect on our youth, and society.

My case has been very clear from the start: tv has a clear, negative effect on society.

In my first point, I talked about the presence of sex and violence on tv. He pointed out a number of important facts: there is a noted increase in acts of violence and sex on tv; young people are more vulnerable to these messages; and medical groups, educational institutions, citizens' watchdog groups, and even key members of gevernment all cite the dangers of television, and their negative effects on youth. According to Leonard Eron, a senior researcher at the University of Michigan, "Tv alone is responsible for 10% of youth violence." According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, a majority of parents say they are "very" concerned about the amount of sex(60%) and violence(53%) their children are exposed to on TV. After being read arguments on both sides of the issue, nearly 2-3rds of parents(63%) say they favor new regulations to limit the amount of sex and violence in TV shows during the early evening hours, when children are most likely to be watching (35% are opposed). All these facts point to a clear problem with televised sex and violence, and this shows that tv has a tremendous negative effect on society.

In my second point, I talked about the rampant commercialization on tv, and pointed out the following: more commercial messages are available on television than ever before; young people are just as vulnerable to commercialized messages as they are to sex and violence; and the same experts who warn of sex and violence also warn of the dangers of over-exposure to commercialization and its effects on th perceptions of our youth. According to Worldwatch in 1998, "the evolution of the consumer society has another ramification, a major one. Current consumptive lifestyles in the wealthier nations are enviornmentally unsustainable. The resources required to produce the goods are either non-renewable, or are being used up faster than they can replenish themselves. Waste products are being dumped into the soil, air and water faster than they can be absorbed. The energy fueling this cycle of production and consumption is largely derived from the burning of fossil fuels. The megatons of carbon dioxide waste resulting from this process has led directly to global warming and climate change. The magnitude of the probable effects is appalling, including a rise in sea level, reduction in biodiversity, and more severe floods, droughts and storms. It seems ironic that, in light of this knowledge, that the world automobile is the single largest advertised commodity, must bear some of the responsibility for that."

A study by Gerbner finds that "Violence on tv is an integral part of a system of global marketing. It dominates an increasing share of the world's screens despite its relative lack of popularity in any country. Its consequences go far beyond inciting aggression. The system inhibits the protrayal of diverse dramatic approaches to conflict, depresses independent tv production, deprives viewers of more popular choices, victimizes some and emboldens others heightens general intimidation, and invites repressive postures by politicians that exploit the widespread insecurities the system itself generates." So we can see that commercialization even compounds the damage done by violence, by promoting the export of violent programming.

I have been very consistent, and very factual. Tv has a clear, detrimental effect on society. My entire case has shown the negative effects of sex and violence, as well as commercialization. Society cannot continue to let tv destroy its foundation of values and principles.

We must let this motion stand.

This house believes that television has a negative effect on society.

Yes because... No because...

I oppose the motion. That means tv is more benefits than harms.

(The argument also cited from the same sample written by same debater.)

I accept the definition on the Affirmative, but would like to clash with him or her head-on by stating that tv provides so many positive benefits to society that far outweigh any potential harms he or she say it may cause.

I on the Negative have two major points to present. tv is an essential tool for information, providing the viewing public with critical news and acting as a watchdog against government and corporate abuse; and it is also a dynamic tool for education, providing young viewers with another medium for learning that enhances their academic and real-world education.

Before I present these points, however, allow me to rebut the points of the 1st Affirmaitve argument. It said that tv encourages young viewers to have more sex and commit more violence against others. I contend these points, because there is no empirical evidence to suggest a direct relationship between television viewing and crime, either of a violent or sexual nature. In fact, evidence shows that there are societies with high levels of televised sex and violence, yet with very low crime rates. US studies show that there is no established relationship between pornography and crime. A study commissioned by then-President Lyndon Johnson showed that no relationship existed between pornography and crime among adults and juveniles. Subsequent studies conducted in 1987 showed that this still holds true (Baron sand Straus). A review report by McKay and Dolff(1984) for the Department of Justice of Canada essentially says similarly: "there is no systematic research evidence available which suggests a causal relationship between pronography and the morality of Canadian society . . . [and none] which suggests that increases in specific forms of deviant behavior, reflected in crime trend statistics (e.g., rape) are causally related to pornography." But the most telling fact is this, according to a study by the University of Hawaii, "Within Japan itself, the dramatic increase in available pornography and sexually explicit materials is apparent to even a casual observer. This is concomitant with a general liberalization of restrictions of other sexual outlets as well. Also readily apparent from the information presented is that, over period of change, sex crimes in every category, from rape to public indecency, sexual offenses from both ends of the criminal spectrum, significantly decreased in incidence." This clearly proves that there is no direct, causal link between television and crime, and that the 1st Affirmative's points are not valid.

What is true is that tv is an essential tool for information that provides viewers with critical news that serves to protect, promote and enhance their quality of life. The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa states that, "This is especially true for developing countries where the media have a huge role to play in getting the message(of the Millennium Development Goals) out. Effective action depends on effective information." The information the media provide is just as critical for intelligent economic and personal decisions as for good political choices. There is a strong relationship between open media and free and effective economics. In fact, recent studies conducted by the World Bank have shown that free media are essential for successful economic progress in developing countries.

The importance of television in terms of informing the general public cannot be over-emphasized. Most of us learned of significant events over the course of our lifetimes through television. The Apollo 11 space landing; the fall of the Berlin Wall; the "shock and awe' of the second Iraq war; all were broadcast over the tv. Without tv, these defining images of our lives would never have been made possible.

Apart from this, tv, specifically the news, provides a necessary check and balance that prevents abuses by government and big business. Even before the 20th century began, Joseph Pulitzer, perhaps the most famous name in newspaper publishing was saying that journalism is more than just a way to make money or provide entertainment. It serves a public trust. Effective popular government, he had written, depended upon a "disinterested, public-spirited press, with trained intelligence to know the right and courage to do it." Tv, by its very nature, makes the general public understand the issues more clearly, because they show images, sound and videos, and therefore provide a very comprehensive information package for everyone. When the Abu Chraib prison scandal broke out, the pictures of abuse that were flashed on tv did more damage than any words describing them, and that was when the American people started to question the disposition of the war. According to William F. Woo, a Professor from Stanford University, "Before tv and the Internet, not all of journalism was public-spirited, and cynics and mercenaries were easy to find. But in the many decades in which the press was privately owned, an ethic had developed: Journalism existed to serve the people. Often this was disregarded, but nonetheless journalists came to think of themselves as a Fourth Estate, independent of public or private power centers. Their mission was disclosure; their canon, objectivity; their discipline, verification; their credo, the people's right to know."

Nowhere was this more evident than in the countless scandals that television covered, which gave the public an opportunity to hold accountable its public servants, and the men and women who control big business. Televised images of satellite photos showing Russian nuclear installatinos in Cuba helped to hold the Soviet Union, and its leader, Nikita Kruschev, accountable to the international community. It helped to prevent Russian missiles from reaching Cuban soil, and led to a safer Western hemisphere. Televised images of business scandals, including the most recent Enron and Worldcom fiascos, helped to bring down some of the biggest companies in the world, and provided American business with a firm reminder to always stay within the bounds of the law. No other media has the richness of content, and the ability to gain groundswells of emotional support, quite like television. This is why tv is such an effective tool for highlighting crime and misdeeds, and why it is essential to our daily lives.

I of the Negative feel that these are clear benefits that television provides, and that since the Affirmative cannot prove that there is a causal link between televised sex and violence and youth crimes, there is a very obvious net benefit to keeping tv the way it is today. Society is all the better for it.

Debates > This house believes that television has a negative effect on society.