Too Many Options Dilute Shared Experience
Despite the red carpet glitter of the Oscars, it is no secret that Hollywood has had a far from perfect year at the box office.
And unfortunately for Tinsel Town, its problems go beyond the obvious need for more successful films.
The way we experience both movies and television has evolved. We don't do things together the way we once did. We rent movies and watch them at home rather than going to a local movie theater with family and friends. Box office returns suffer and the centrality of film in our lives is weakened.
The same fragmentation is true in television. Sadly, the kind of cultural reference points provided by the likes of Johnny Carson, Lucille Ball, Jackie Gleason, and more - including the superstar network news anchors in their prime - are fading. They provided a snug sense of intimacy that comes from a shared common experience.
The result? Significant social change brought on by audience fragmentation. The root cause? A proliferation of entertainment options impelled by niche-driven marketing.
©2006 Christian Science Monitor
Drew, D.E. and Burrell, H. (2006, March 6). Too Many Options Dilute Shared Experience. Christian Science Monitor, p. 9.