Current Affairs Programs are not just about facts. Instead the facts are used to create critical arguments inviting the viewers to draw conclusions on issues of social concern. Discuss how this was achieved in a Current Affairs Program. The Current Affairs Program, “Today Tonight,” uses facts to create critical arguments inviting the viewers to draw conclusions on current social issues. In the segment involving dodgy repair men, this is accomplished through the persuasion of the attitudes and values of fairness of trade, honesty, quality of products and services, and getting what you pay for.
This is achieved by means of structure, selection of detail, use of language and film techniques. The purpose of Current Affair Programs is to educate the viewing audience on the facts of the corruption in the repairman industry, which is a present social issue. This is done in a persuasive way, according to the point of view of the program. The encouraged viewer response is shock, anger and disbelief as the dishonest acts are continuously going unnoticed.
Through film techniques, the Current Affair Program “Today Tonight,” presents facts to create critical arguments that persuade the viewer to draw conclusions on the issues of social concern. In the segment dealing with Alan Gilroy, the viewer’s negative attitude towards Mr Gilroy is constructed when the viewer sees the alleged offender from a confronting camera shot, running up to him; this makes Mr Gilroy look surprised, guilty and caught in the act.
In contrast, to the camera angle used when interviewing Mick Stevens from the Appliance Industry Association, the stationary, eye-level camera angle portrays a trustworthy, reliable and respectable person and a respectable point of view, which encourages the viewer to feel anger and is shocked towards the current social issue of unfair trade practises. There is also a camera shot of Mr Gilroy at an extreme close up. This catches all of the emotive and guilty signs, and the negative attitude is reinforced in the social issue of unfair trade practises when the expressions of Mr Gilroy depict an untrustworthy, lying and dishonest tradesman.
The use of video evidence backs up the programs point of view as a form of proof. Music also plays a role in persuading the audience in their attitudes and values. The sharp, high pitched background music with video evidence with the offenders caught in the act, this creates a tense, suspicious and nervous atmosphere, which is successful in reinforcing the concerned issue of fairness of trade and getting what you paid for.
Through the film techniques of camera angles, images, music and use of evidence in “Today Tonight,” the viewer draws negative conclusions towards Mr Gilroy and the social issue of fair trade. The facts in “Today Tonight,” make the viewer draw conclusions on current social issues through the selection of detail. The viewer sees the story through the eyes of the victim. The video evidence shows Mr Gilroy caught in the act, through the trap set by the program. Comparisons are made between the other repair men, and the same result occurs.
The viewer does see the side of the offender in this case, mainly due the appearance of the victim Mr Gilroy. Mr Gilroy is a typical repair man, and it does correspond to the persuasion of the point of view of the program, which is, ‘you can’t trust anyone,’ and viewer’s reinforced to the programs point of view on the issue of honesty in the industry. Other sections of the interview between Mr Gilroy are left out; the producers of Current Affair Programs only select the sections of the interview that support the programs point of view.
They include the sections when they evoke the audience, “consumers should be concerned,” and footage of Mr Gilroy nervous in front of the camera, downgrade his reputation to the viewers, “common practise, every time,” this exposes Mr Gilroy’s dishonest and guilty behaviour, which increases the negative feeling of the viewer towards Mr Gilroy and persuades them on the issue of trust and honesty. Also with Mr Gilroy, sections of the interviews are cut out; the viewer only hears the part which favours the programs argument.
For example, to the question “Don’t you think that that is a bit deceptive? ” the viewer doesn’t get to hear his reply. Leaving out and selecting information persuades the viewing audience to oppose Mr Gilroy and to draw the conclusion that he is dishonest, and to take the side of the programs point of view on the current issue of social concern. The viewer is persuaded “Today Tonight,” through the use of language. Throughout the segment voice overs are used when the viewer sees the alleged offender caught in the act.
The tone of the speaker is strong and positive; this persuades the viewer towards the Current Affair Program’s point of view. The language is very descriptive, therefore giving the viewer a sense of reassurance that the repairmen are dishonest, as the parts of the broken machine are fully described, this also reassures the viewers that the program known what they are talking about. Therefore the viewer is aware that the facts that the program are delivering are accurate and their argument is strengthened, reinforced and the viewer is successfully persuaded.
The viewer’s conclusions of social issues in “Today Tonight,” are strongly shaped by the structure of the Current Affair Program. The introduction to the segment includes facts and the social point of view of the Current Affair Program. The opening scenes of interviews with Mick Stevens from the Appliance Industry Association, backs up the point of view of the program and their argument to support it. This is an introduction into the situation and a reflection of the society’s values and attitudes.
There is an interview with the offender, Mr Gilroy, which appears uptight and untrustworthy. The viewer is allowed to see video evidence Mr Gilroy caught in the act, with the compliment of voice overs explaining the footage in a biased manner. Interrogating interviews with Mr Gilroy continue and we find that he false advertises “no I’m not a recommended repairer for Fisher and Pical”. This backs up the point of view of the program and influences the viewer also to feel strongly surprised about the dishonesty in the trade.
The segment is closed with footage of Alan Gilroy staring into the camera close up, as if attempting to deny the public his guilt. Due to the structure, the ending is strong, as it reinforces the values of honest, quality, fairness of trade and the attitude that we should get what we pay for and therefore our stance on the social issue is reinforced towards the programs persuasion. The Current Affairs Program, “Today Tonight,” conveys attitudes and value in reference to current social issues.
The program presents strong values and attitudes to the social issues current in society through the film techniques, selection of detail, use of language and structure, the values and attitudes of fairness of trade, honesty, quality and getting what you pay for are conveyed. The viewer is encouraged to be shocked in disbelief, as the offender continuously escapes his dishonest actions unnoticed by the consumer, which shows the unfairness of trade.