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Impact That Television Images Have Over Spectators

2385 words - 10 pages

In this article, Druckman, J.N. (2003) evaluated the impact that television images have over spectators when evaluating each debater. By comparing the results of an audio (radio), and audio-visual (television) presentation of the same debate we are able to understand the real effects that television has on voters’ decision. The first Kennedy vs. Nixon debate is the perfect example to assess this problem. This debate is one of the best known in history not only because it was the first televised debate, but because of the controversy that created on society. While people who heard the debate on radio assured Nixon victory; people who watched it on television conclude that Kennedy had won. Also, presidents from Television networks said that Kennedy looked bronzed and presentable, whereas Nixon looked dead and sweaty.
Therefore, Druckman J.N. (2003) conducted an experiment with the help of 171 students attending Minnesota University. Recruiting students without knowledge of this debate, Druckman J.N. (2003), randomly divided them either to hear an audio of the debate, or watch the television emission. The post-questionnaire reveal that viewers based on leadership, issue agreement, and character (integrity) proclaimed Kennedy winner, in the other hand listener based only on leadership and issue agreement gave the victory to Nixon. As Druckmen J.N. (2003) predicted, television images make viewers take in consideration the integrity of debaters to make their decision or evaluate the contenders. This experiment shows how televised debates have a great effect on people and its truth because a great percentage of people might base their decision only taking in consideration how the candidate look instead of leadership effectiveness which was the case on the Kennedy-Nixon debate. This article does support the hypothesis previously mentioned by conducting this experiment showing that people do take in account personality traits when choosing a winner.
During debates, another factor that builds up the personality of contenders is the way they communicate with the public and with their opponents. The article (Funcion Discursiva, 2010) talks about the different speech strategies that candidates from different countries use during the political event. These different types of speeches strategies include: acclamation, attack, defense, and agreement where acclamation was the most popular one, but why is this? In (Funcion Discursiva, 2010) explained that, although acclamation is one of the simplest way to express, is the most appealing for viewers. In an event of this magnificence attacking the opponent might be seen as an inappropriate behavior from the candidate who can cause a decline in the personality of themselves. Being so, they decide to not use the strategy of aggression in the debates. Due to lack of attack, defense is not a strategy that is crucial to use in a debate. Lastly, agreement is one of the less popular between these...

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