TV's New Reality

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photoWho gets the rose? Who gets voted off the island? Who cares? Reality television is scorching the airwaves and even President Bartlett is feeling the heat. The West Wing is feeling the sting of The Bachelorette. When true love is on the line, who cares about national security?

Reality TV is altering the way we watch TV and the way TV does business. It's real people, not actors that are in demand and that's means shrinking jobs for Hollywood writers and actors.

What's driving America's fascination with other people's lives? Have we become a voyeur nation, or just an exhausted one looking for an escape from the real world?


Clay Calvert, author of "Voyeur Nation: Media, Privacy, and Peering in Modern Culture, " professor of communications and law at Pennsylvania State University

Bill Carter, national media reporter for the New York Times

Rory Evans, freelance editor

Jeff Gaspin, executive vice president of Alternative Series Programming for NBC

This program aired on January 30, 2003.


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