Re: DIPLOMACY: Memetic Morphing

Scott Badger (
Sun, 15 Nov 1998 21:57:58 -0600

>>Since rationing TV time in a family is difficult, it may be best to
>>abstain altogether, difficult as it may appear in the first few weeks.
>>Is anybody aware of some basic study, e.g. as average TV hours/week
>>correlate with IQ?
>Such a study would be virtually impossible. Most children watch TV. Since
>who don't watch TV would come from exceptional families (whether these be
>Born Agains or Transhumanists) it would be pointless to try to do a
>comparison with the two groups. I once thought about doing a study on
>effect of television violence on children, but gave up for the same
>reasons: most children watch television violence, the backgrounds of those
>who don't are too exceptional use as a comparison.

Why are you only considering those who watch and those who don't? The question asked refers to the *average hours/week* as related to IQ level.

>I did try getting away from mainstream media for a while. So of 12 months I
>didn't watch TV, radio, or the newspapers. It was a little disappointing
>that during that time the USSR collapsed, the Berlin Wall fell down, and
>Eastern Europe was freed.
>ciao, patrick
>Patrick Wilken

I also stopped watching TV for one full year. Didn't strike me as a big deal
one way or the other.

The study in this area that I found interesting suggested that the content was
not all that important. Rather, it was the passive nature of TV viewing that was problematic. Too many hours of TV in young children were suspected of impairing normal neural development because what children normally do with that time is active play. Fewer play hours were also suspected of leading to fewer social skills. Even so, I don't doubt that there's a de-sensitization taking place. I also think that TV programs can lower one's self-esteem in a number of ways. Yes, almost everyone is better looking than you. But what I remember was that everyone was so great at arguing. I could always come up with the perfect line a half-hour after I needed it. TV actors had the right line at the right time. I worry that TV
creates a world for small children that they accept as real on some level, but they cannot meet the ideals and expectations that world establishes.