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Copy of Unit 24 - Media and Current Affairs P6

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Alison Purver

on 23 July 2013

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Transcript of Copy of Unit 24 - Media and Current Affairs P6

Unit 24 Media and Current Affairs
P6: In a powerpoint presentation REVIEW current
case studies of media portrayal of the public services, including one factual and one fictional case study
These could be from TV programmes, films, video clips, newspaper articles, books, podcasts or YouTube clips.
Policing takes place in a highly mediated environment and policing itself is a very newsworthy activity, and there is an enduring public fascination with crime and criminal events
Risk, violence, deviance, celebrities and children
The line between reality police programming and fictional dramas is becoming increasingly blurred
recent research studies indicate that viewers gain as much information from police dramas and soaps, as from factual programmes
Changes in TV fictional policing drama can be a good indicator of what the public expects from its police forces
Dr Paul Mason conducted a
content analysis of 24 episodes of The Bill and discovered that the detection rate
at Sun Hill Police Station was 78%, more than double the then England and Wales average of 34% (Mason, 1992).
2. Is the media supportive of the police in their representations?
1. Is the TV Police drama the arbitrator of right and wrong for society?
Dixon of Dock Green, who ended every episode delivering a reassuring homespun homily from the station steps, before catching the end of the concert in the local church hall.

In contrast, police are now no longer portrayed as paragons of virtue, but as effective if often venal protectors of the mainstream public – ‘us’ – against risks posed by a variety of demonised others – ‘them’, including serial killers, paedophiles, international organised criminals and terrorists” (Mason 2003: 275).
Viewers may well have acquired via the media a better understanding of the politics and culture of policing, however, by contrast, their knowledge of sentencing, punishment and alternatives to imprisonment is for most a very limited, and considerably less than ‘half-formed’ picture (Rethinking Crime and
Punishment, 2003).

I also share the concerns of other academic colleagues and indeed of many criminal justice practitioners (including the police) that media
coverage of crime and disorder these days, rarely seems to consider serious alternatives to solving social problems other than policing solutions.
What do the public want from their police dramas?
Some history....
Dixon of Dock Green
The Sweeney
The Bill
Prime Suspect
How does this affect TV
representations of the Police?
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