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An Essay Analysing The Techniques Used In A Current Affair Program, Referring To Australian Current Affairs Programs

1403 words - 6 pages

The Camera Doesn't Lie... Or Does It?An Essay Analysing the Techniques Used In A Current Affair ProgramSixty Minutes. A Current Affair. Today Tonight. We like to see people's lives. That's why these shows succeed. They show us the good times and the bad. They bring people's lives into our living rooms. But are these shows bringing us the honest truth? For example, the segment reported by Sixty Minutes, titled "The Lost Children", tells the story of children who were sent to Australia for the opportunity of a so called "better life". It would be there where they would be taken care of by the Christian Brothers. However it was in this "better life" that the children were forced to work as ...view middle of the document...

The story is then brought back to the presenter in the studio, where they say a couple of words reinforcing reaction of the audience to the victim's tragic stories. Varying slightly from story to story, the bias in the segment is usually obvious, whether it may be because of uneven timing towards the victim and the person to blame, the use of emotive language or even the angle at which the footage was taken from.By moving the camera in different ways, different effects can be achieved. For example, a close up of a person shows emotion, a shot taken from above a person can make the person look unimportant, unimpressive, afraid or small; while a view of someone from below can make them see tall, powerful or important. Many of these techniques are evident in the Lost Children segment, especially close-ups of people's faces. This was used to show the viewers how the victims were on the verge of crying, raw emotions projected to television screens across Australia.The first clue that the story had been carefully planned to make the audience see the story differently in the Lost Children segment was a subtle one. The presenter was an older male. This suggests authority, which was supported by his deep voice and broad shoulders. In media, female presenters tend to report on issues that are more emotional, so that more concern can be felt. With a male presenter, the aim is more on the wrong that has been done and is told fact by fact. The presenter was well groomed, well educated and articulate. The suit and tie gave the audience a sense that he could be trusted, which may not have been as obvious had he been wearing a T-shirt and mumbling. He was also expressive, but was not emotional. This made the presenter convincing, again reinforcing that he could be trusted. When introducing the story, the presenter sounded well-informed and confident, making him sound honest. However, it was not this presenter's voice that was heard throughout the story.The voice-over in stories reports what is happening, without having to focus on a person. This creates the opportunity to show clips of what is happening while listening to an explanation. The voice-over heard during the Lost Children story again spoken by a man. With a concerned voice, he described the entire ordeal of the children. He also spoke with large pauses, usually after something emotionally difficult to listen to had been said. These pauses are used to let strong feelings sink in. although he was dealing with a difficult topic, the voice-over was not emotional, but rather a more matter of fact style. However, the voice-over did provoke emotions, mainly because of its use of emotive language.Emotive language is the substitution of a word by a different word that has either a negative or positive connotation. This can change something that was completely factual into something...

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