[Letters] A clever and useful box
The television is not an idiot box. Books are old. Newspapers are boring. The Internet is cheap. Besides an intelligent teacher always near you, TV is the smartest medium left that can be truly helpful.
TV influences human life immensely. Among its several positive effects, I will cover the three most important. TV offers a huge amount of useful information that contributes to the realization of true democracy, and it is also revitalizing stress reliever.
First of all, TV gives a lot of useful information in many ways.
News is an obvious example. It furnishes information on all current issues - including politics, business, culture, sports and so on - so that TV viewers can know what is happening around the country and the world. A more specific example is the program named “Number One.” It is a program that teaches many survival skills in unexpected emergencies, and this information is truly helpful for the viewers. Therefore, TV is a pathway to understanding current issues and other beneficial information.
Second, let’s look more minutely into TV’s political role. TV contributes to the realization of true democracy.
Television news announces political issues with a very objective and fair view. Also, TV is very helpful during an election campaign. It broadcasts each candidates’ electoral commitments, and the present situations of the number of votes polled.
Through these functions, TV helps one obtain perspective, and leads viewers to give healthy criticism. From here, true democracy can be realized.
So, does television help viewers only in profound and serious ways like this?
The answer is no.
Lastly, TV recharges the viewers. People can get rid of stress from watching entertainment programs. People can feel sympathy toward others by watching dramas. Moreover, people can feel affection through talking with family while watching TV. For people who live alone, TV can be a family or a friend. So, TV provides an essential way to spend leisure time and get recharged.
Some people say that TV is a bad appliance because it addicts viewers. However, TV addiction is not TV’s fault. The addicted viewers, who don’t control themselves, should take the blame.
TV is the most powerful route of getting information, an essential assistant for true democracy and an effective stress reliever.
Therefore, television, the so-called idiot box, is just as worthy of being called a clever and useful box.
Now, are you still going to call TV an idiot box?
Shin Soo-jung, student, Dongguk University
with the Korea JoongAng Daily
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