A study conducted by the Girl Scout Research Institute (which is apparently a real place, where I doubt there are serious-looking women walking around with clipboards while wearing the little uniform) has concluded that girls who watch awful reality TV shows have worse images of themselves and beliefs about how to behave as women. I know. Shocker. They found that these girls “expect a higher level of drama, aggression, and bullying in their own lives, and measure their worth primarily by their physical appearance.”
These girls who watch more horrible shows about repulsive women being despicable also tend to believe that “gossiping is a normal part of a relationship between girls” (78%) and that “girls often have to compete for a guy’s attention” (74%). In addition, 72% of girls who watch a lot of reality TV also say they spend a lot of time trying to look pretty (38% say that a girl’s overall value is based on how she looks). No word from the Boy Scouts on the relationship of watching reality TV and using Axe Body Spray. While these results are hardly surprising, they’re certainly distressing. But it is, sadly, only the latest in a string of research showing the dangers of reality television.
Among the other recent studies regarding television watching habits findings:
Impressionable viewers who watch Jersey Shore are 38% more likely to have negative opinions about Italians, young adults, people who exercise, women, idiots, men, alcohol, New Jersey, coastlines, human beings, and the prospect of our continued existence. (source: The Boys & Girls & Applied Statisticians Club of America)
Regular viewers of America’s Got Talent are 21% more likely to believe that America does not, in fact, have talent. (source: The Little-League Baseball Department of Advanced Kinesiology Studies)
Scientists who conducted a survey of people who watch the program Survivor were stunned to learn that Survivor is still on. (source: The Federated University of Those Kids Who Try to Sell You Magazines At Your Door So They Can Get A Scholarship, And You Buy Some To Be Helpful Even Though The Prices Are Totally Inflated, And Then The Magazines Never Come)
Adults who watched episodes of Keeping Up With The Kardashians were 30% more likely to utter the phrase, “I’m sorry, who are they?” 19% more likely to say, “Why do they have a TV show?” and a whopping 46% more likely to angrily mutter, “Do they… do they do anything? Is there some talent they’re famous for? Why does this exist?” (source: The 4-H International Research Station)
Regular viewers of Chopped are more 27% more likely to serve their families a main course that includes the ingredients chipotle peppers, Sweetarts, aspirin, and whale blubber. (source: The Pat-a-cake, Pat-a-cake, Culinary Institute for Baker-Persons [admitting women since 1978])